Jehovah was not in the wind. And after the wind, an earthquake: Jehovah was not in the earthquake.
And after the earthquake, a fire: Jehovah was not in the fire. And after the fire, a soft gentle voice. (1Kings 19:11-12)

Thursday, February 4, 2016

In all the Craziness {One Thing Our Marriages Desperately Need Today ~~ A Husband's Heartfelt Words as His Wife's Heart was Weak—for #HeartMonth.}

{To read Part 1, the beginning of the series:

"What is your name?

What is your birthday?

Where are you?"

Three very simple questions that each and every nurse would ask me as they began their shift.

I wondered why I found answering them so incredibly difficult. My reply came slowly, surely and proved to me that I really had not gone crazy.

The days following open-heart surgery were a cycle of confusion and restlessness. Jon would hand me my iPhone, but I could not figure out how to use it.

The staff put a movie on for me to pass the time and help me to get some rest and I wondered why they were trying to make me watch something so absurd! The animals in Homeward Bound were talking to each other. I kept thinking: This is absolutely insane! Animals do not talk!!! 
I also believed they were running a test on my intelligence with the movie and so they displayed the captions on the screen, but my vision was blurry and I was frustrated that I couldn't read them and that I was going to fail the test. It was hardly a restful way to pass the time, but rather left me further agitated. 

As the carbon dioxide rose in my blood I struggled more and more with delusions. I would slip into a restless state and the Respiratory Therapists would fight to put a breathing mask on me and I would panic.

During one of these episodes, when my CO2 was elevated and it along with the ICU psychosis and the medications 
were causing me to be delirious and affecting my clear thinking, that I was not even aware that I was in the hospital.

I thought I had died.

I had come to the end of my life when the most terrifying thing occurred.

My life flashed before my eyes: "Google" had a record of my whole entire life. I was viewing my life from start to end on an enormous computer screen.

Then, I became aware of a panel of judges and an audience that was split into two. One section was cheering for my entrance into heaven, the other section was cheering for my banishment into hell. Whichever side cheered the loudest would be how the judges would determine my final destination.

I protested.

The heaven side cheered loudly for most of my life.

The good things I had done in my life were replayed.

The heaven side cheered. 

The sins I had committed were replayed.

The hell side cheered.

The cheering went back and forth from side to side until false accusations began and the side cheering for my entrance into hell erupted into deafening cheers.

I cried out: it's not true! It's a lie. I did not ever do that!

The false accusations rapidly increased and the wicked cheers escalated.

I could stand it no longer.

It was all wrong. That is not how it is determined that one goes to heaven or hell at the end of one's life. I tried to expose this false gospel.

I waved my arms and demanded this stop.

I had to proclaim the truth.

I boldy declared:

The only way to enter heaven is by grace through faith in the work of Jesus Christ on the cross. It's not about what we did or didn't do; it's about what Jesus did for us and Him calling us to Himself and redeeming us. If we trust Him he removes our sin and places His robe of righteousness on us. There is only ONE way to heaven and it is by faith alone in Jesus Christ, by His grace alone!

I tried to articulate the true Gospel more clearly so that they could understand.

The judges demanded I stop speaking. They yelled for someone to crank up the heat in hell. They were going to wait to send me there until the heat had risen to full intensity.

I watched helplessly as they stoked the fire of hell.

In a final attempt, I yelled for this madness to stop.

But, no one was listening to me.

I resigned.

Opened my eyes.

I realized I had not died. But that the people in this place were asphyxiating me!

I had to get out of here!!

Then, I saw Jon and my dad all dressed in protective garb and I thought they were patiently waiting for me to die. I tried to get their attention and begged them to get this mask of my face. They refused. I could't believe it! They wanted me dead, too!

I finally took my hand and cut it across my neck, indicating to them that these people were trying to kill me.

They finally understood my panic and talked the truth to me and helped me to understand the reality of the situation. I was not dead. No one was trying to kill me; they were all here to help me. I needed to rest and keep the mask on.

No one truly understood what was going on in my confusion. Jon was researching the medications and was reassured by the staff that these are common side-effects and occurrences in ICU. 

In the middle of all this craziness, Jon sent an update on September 3rd:

I was wanting to ask Tim Hortons if they supply double doubles in an IV drip. I just might sign up if they do. :)

Rebekah is sitting in her chair. She is getting a bag of blood for strength and top up to boost blood pressure too. She's having a chocolate ensure meal replacement milk shake now and pills for thyroid and Cumadin for blood thinner. Still on heparin too, but they hope to ween that off once Cumadin kicks in tomorrow.

She spent two hours on a bi-pap machine to reduce CO2 levels in her. She was panicky with this initially because of the air mask and thought they were killing her, but it has stabilized her again now.

The psychiatrist doctor looked into her Meds today and I questioned some of them. She has removed some of her drugs now. They want to keep minimizing them into tomorrow too.

Thanks for continued prayer as her body heals and adjusts and strengthens.

Another meeting here now with psychiatrist who controls and adjusts medications related to confusion and delirium and 3 other doctor specialists are forming a new plan for tonight. A new light sleeping drug and some excercize here today will hopefully allow Rebekah to relax and finally sleep after 3 days. She's exhausted.

Please pray this plan will work for her tonight.

Thank you.

{Clearly, prayer was needed.

This was a horrific battle in my mind. It was the delirium that was causing the strange, vivid dreams and delusions—NOT that I was experiencing a "near-death experience".  It was unfamiliar territory for both of us and we deeply appreciated the people praying and the Lord interceding for us.}


This is part 3 of a new series:
One Thing Our Marriages Desperately Need Today ~~ A Husband's Heartfelt Words as His Wife's Heart was Weak
{for #HeartMonth.}

You can read Part 1, the beginning of the series here.

Part 2

Read Part 4 here.

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1 comment:

  1. I hope you continue Rebekah. I find your story fascinating. I am praying about sharing my testimony. I tend to dramatize on the frightful things the Lord has brought me through, but I find it amazing to recall how the Lord was with me or my children, protecting and bringing us "through the fire or floods" alive and well. I think I tend to scare people sometimes and I'm not sure if I should include details all the time. I am sure it is no small coincidence for me to find you sharing your story at the same time I am praying for wisdom to share mine. I have been through a recent valley with a suicidal son, but he is alive and well and God is leading us to "higher ground". Life is more wonderful than ever after this trial. God is faithful to turn it all for good! The harder trials only help me love and worship God more! I think somehow we strengthen others to walk through their trials when we share our. So I am trying to encourage you to continue your story, but prayerfully as God leads you. Love, in Jesus, Cynthia


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