As I mentioned a few days ago, I have been recovering from an emergency surgery for the past 2 weeks. Everything about this experience has been challenging.
Physically, getting over a surgery stinks big time. Regrowing blood from lots of blood loss is more exhausting than I can describe.
For me, though, the biggest challenge is always asking for help. I am really, really bad at asking for help. (I didn't even join a study group in law school. I was all, Nah. I'll just LEARN ALL THE THINGS by myself.)
And so, the experience of this emergency and the surgery and the recovery is being defined, at least to me, by the help we've asked for, the help that has been provided, and the easy love that we've received from our village.
My dear dad drove me to the emergency room so that we didn't send our children into years of therapy by making them watch an ambulance cart Mommy away.
Andy just happened to be in town from Pennsylvania for work. So, of course, he came to our house and watched the kids so that Durel could jet to the hospital to see me before surgery. Oh, and he didn't just hang out with Jack. He taught him to play chess.
Cristy dropped everything and flew to Austin. She arrived from Albuquerque a few hours after I got home from the hospital. She walked Jack to school, made me breakfast burritos, and kept us going for those first days home.
Jenny dropped everything and flew to Austin. She arrived from Delaware the day after Cristy departed. She walked Jack to school, made me breakfast burritos, made sure I napped enough, and kept us going for the next days home.
Liz brought me a delicious lunch and freezer-friendly dinner, even though she's 9 months pregnant and I should be making her dinners, not the other way around.
Jen and Trevor knew, before Durel and I even realized it, that the best gift for us may be quiet time. And so, they whisked Jack off to the pumpkin patch with their family on a balmy Texas afternoon. (Durel, Sawyer, and I promptly slept the entire time our little dynamo was gone. I mean, has anyone had a five year old boy wear a Fitbit? I would love to know how many steps that kid gets in. My guess is like 40,000 a day.)
Megan brought me coffee and donuts and changed poopy diapers when I couldn't lift Sawyer and the rest of my boys were on the soccer fields.
I am so lucky. To be alive. (This was a life-threatening event.) To have these friends (and everyone else that I didn't specifically mention, thank you). To have this family. To have safe and accessible health care. (I didn't say affordable. Ambulance rides cost a grand a pop, by the way. HEYOO, deductible.)
I'm about to turn 40. A friend asked me how I felt about it. I told her that I think it's fantastic. I get to be 40. And I'm lucky for that, too.
Hope someone lifts you up today.