I woke up today thinking.......today would be the perfect day for them to call me and tell me that Abby's heart is here. Actually, I think about it all the time, I love to play the "What if" game. What if the pager went off right now and it was the transplant team calling to tell me it was time?? I know it drives my friends and family crazy, but I can't help it. I can't stop playing, because one day, hopefully very, very soon, it's going to happen and I need to be ready and totally prepared for the next step. Did you know the actual surgery will take between 4 and 6 hours? They sew the new heart right in the chest cavity? If I want, they will bring Abby's damaged heart out and show me (I'm planning on this, I think I will look at it, and then I just want to take it and chuck it at the wall with every ounce of strength I have!!), Abby will then have to be in the hospital for at least 3 weeks while they're watching to make sure she doesn't reject the heart? This will be a lifetime thing for us....she'll always have to go to doctors, take medications, etc.? Lots to think about, but we still just need to get that heart ASAP!!!
I've spent the last 2 1/2 weeks being so, so sad that this is happening. But I think that now I'm moving on to the next stage, because now I'm just so, so mad that this is happening. It shouldn't have to happen, there's no reason for it to, it just doesn't seem like anything like this should have to happen at all in this world, it should be able to be avoided. I can't find any purpose in it.....none, it's worthless and this makes me mad. So, to try not to be so mad, today I'm going to blog about tender mercies, because we have had so many tender mercies that maybe it will help me to make more sense of things and be less mad. David A. Bednar says that "The Lords tender mercies are the very personal and individualized blessings, strength, protection, assurance, guidance, loving-kindnesses, consolation, support, and spiritual gifts that we recieve from and because of and through the Lord Jesus Christ." I think they usually seem like little coincidences, but they're not, they're intentional. Here are some examples of tender mercies that we've recieved through all of this......
-Cammeron Murdock, Abby's PE teacher, had just recently finished being trained in CPR and was right next to Abby when she collapsed
-It happened the day right after I was done with my crt testing for all of my classes at school, I was pretty much done teaching for the school year and Abby was done with all of her testing for the year.
-It happened when we had the next 3 months off
-A couple in our ward needed to find a temporary place to live, just until December, and are willing to live in my house and pay almost exactly what I have to pay for our place up here, hmmm......coincidence? I don't think so.
-a friend of my dads had this house ready, furnished, and available for us to live in and it's only 7 and 1/2 minutes away from Primary Children's Hospital, and they're so nice that we're only on a month-to-month contract and they reduced the rent to help us out.
-The many friendships that I have made just this past year....all of these people are fundamental in some way or another with what we're dealing with.
-I went through the temple less than a year ago
-I had already completey all of my grades at school and was ready for the year to end.....whoever doesn this more than a week early, I usually don't!!
-How quickly I became so close to Ali and Cozz this past school year.....what would I being doing without them now?? They now are Mama Thacker and Mama Cozz.
-We found a place to live that's less than 5 minutes away from my brother and his family, and Abby loves to spend time with her cousins and often talked about moving close to them.
-Brittany and Brock are so strong and mature. If you know them you know that they aren't your average kids, there's just something about them that make them more able to handle this. I think that they've been building up and forming relationships so that they'll have the support to get through this. Especially when we're in SLC and they're in St. George.
-The first paramedic on the scene was a friend and knew just what to say to Abby to help her fight. I recieved the greatest message from them telling me just how strong Abby was.
-The young women's president in our new ward is my mom's best friend's daughter. They grew up just down the street from us and we've known each other for years and years. Not only that, she works in the cardiology department at the University Hospital.
-My sister-in-law works for the organ donation foundation and knows the ins and outs of organ donations.
-I hear things daily that are happening in St. George to help us. People donating things to the yard sale, people showing up at neighbors doors asking how they can help-even though they don't know us, people driving through St. George and stopping to see us just when we need it most, friends stepping up and finding ways to help like opening accounts and doing fundraisers, etc. So many tender mercies, and so many that I'm sure I don't even know about.
The list goes on and on, I could keep typing all day, but I think you get the idea and I'm a little less mad now. I think I need to focus on these things and realize that the greatest tender mercy we're going to receive is when Abby finally gets her heart! Be aware, pay attention, see if you can find some of the Lord's tender mercies in your life.
One funny thing, Abby is really starting to play into this whole thing. Sometimes she'll say things like, "Will someone please get me a drink, I can't do it..... you know I have a medical condition," or "I can't clean my room, don't you know I need a heart transplant??" It cracks us up and I think it's important we keep finding the humor wherever we can or we're all going to go a little crazy!!!