Since Monday, Drew has been terribly sick with severe breathing problems. Neither of us have slept more than an hour or two per night all week.
I was so tired that I wasn't even tired anymore. I never thought that I would envy a newborn feeding schedule, but getting up every four hours was starting to sound like a luxury.
My Papa used to end every prayer by saying, "With You and our health we have it all." I didn't really understand that as a kid. I barely understood it as a young adult. It just sounded like a nice thing to say. But I've learned that if you are unhealthy, it's hard to enjoy anything. And if you have good health and the good Lord, then you have everything you need to be happy. The rest is up to you.
I've thought about Papa's closing prayer a lot over the past few weeks. During the days when we have been sick, I see that not much else matters. I don't care what car I drive. I don't care if my hair needs to be colored. I don't care what label is on the back pocket of my jeans. All I care about is us being healthy again.
When someone you love is sick, you realize that you are fragile and weak and you are dependent on God's love and mercy.
Sometime around four o'clock this morning, I drifted off to sleep with Drew beside me. It was the first time that he had ever slept in the bed with me in his life. I was so tired that I didn't even know I had fallen asleep. I only realized it when I was awakened two hours later.
I felt a single finger tapping four or five times on my arm just below my shoulder. The way that a child would quietly wake you up from a deep sleep.
I was sleeping on my side, facing Drew, so I opened my eyes expecting to see that sweet, little face looking at me. Maybe he would whisper something like, "Mama, can we watch Dora now?" or "I'm hungry for a donut."
But instead, Drew was asleep. There was nobody there.
And that completely freaked me out. What a crazy dream.
Now that I was awake, I touched Drew's back. I just wanted to love on him and let him know that I was still there.
When I touched him, he felt rigid. I reached my other hand over and touched his side. His ribs were stiff and not moving. I quickly flipped him over and felt underneath his nose. If he was breathing, I couldn't tell. I placed my hand on his chest and felt a heartbeat. Thank God! I put my face to his face and felt his cool, clammy skin.
I started talking to him and moving him all around. Drew, wake up and take a deep breath! Come on, baby. Wake up! But he didn't move. I picked him up and started walking. I need to get him to breathe!
He quickly stirred up and started breathing deeper. Later, he opened his eyes and started talking to me about the alien book that we read together at the doctor's office yesterday. The cool moisture was helping him. The steroids were starting to kick in. He was going to be fine.
These are the moments that define us as parents. These are the moments that leave a mark of our hearts. These are the moments that we never forget.
So I would like to say a special thank you to the angel who tapped me on the shoulder this morning. Maybe we can grab a cup of coffee sometime.