Merry Christmas and happy 2016, friends! I hope that your holiday season was just as blessed, but perhaps not quite as crazy, as mine has been. But regardless of the crazy factor, everybody knows that Christmastime is my very favorite time of the year.
On any given day, if you were to ask me, “What is better than a Christmas tree?”, I would wholeheartedly answer, “TWO CHRISTMAS TREES!” And this year that wish came true! But this happened in such a way that, by the end of the debacle, I was the only one who still loved Christmas trees.
In the past we have always had real Christmas trees. But anticipating that we would be having a hectic winter, this year we decided to go the “easy” route and give a pre-lit artificial tree a try. As my papa and I decorated the tree on St. Nicholas Eve, all was going splendidly. By the time I settled in for the night I had a dazzlingly beautiful Christmas tree! All was merry and bright.
But when I awoke on St. Nicholas Day it was a bit less merry and a lot less bright. Not a single light on our tree was shining. Not to worry, though… With a little “Christmas magic” (and a few hours more work) we found not one but two Christmas trees in our living room!
I told you it was magical!
*Magical* may not be the word my parents would use. As a matter of fact, I have a direct quote from my dad. For context I should tell you that we were partially inspired by my Aunt Janet’s magnificent artificial tree. However when our Christmas tree emerged from its box, I believe that Papa’s exact words were, “It doesn’t look like Janet’s”.
True story. It did not look like Janet’s.
I even heard my mama say, “I hate Christmas trees.” Sometimes I question if I could be an elf adopted and raised by humans! You can take the elf out of the North Pole, but you can’t take the North Pole out of the elf.
Even more crazy than the Christmas tree fiasco, I had surgery to place a gastrostomy (G tube) just before Christmas. But I was truly blessed to have a special place to spend my recovery period. On Christmas Eve I was released from the hospital and taken by ambulance to my big sister Krista’s house! She and Tim were extremely kind in letting my parents, Alice Eloise, and me stay with them for two whole weeks so that we could celebrate the holidays together. For Alice Eloise, this meant FUN with Cousin Lulu… Perhaps a bit too much fun, but hey, it was Christmas vacation after all!
As for me, our extended stay meant getting better acquainted with Everett, my new baby nephew. It just so happens that my hospital bed was perfect for snuggling. And what could be more healing than snuggles with this sweet little guy? You should see him now; those cheeks have grown exponentially to become irresistibly kissable!
My memory has a tendency to become a bit misty when I am very sick, so I don’t remember much about my first couple of weeks post-op. But I imagine that we all enjoyed a lovely Christmas together. Now, don’t ask me what happened – I just do not know – But like I said, I am sure it was simply lovely. And what’s more, the first time I was able to leave the bedroom was the day of Everett’s baptism. It was such a blessing to be a part of my buddy’s special day!
As you may (or, more likely, may not) recall, I was originally supposed to have a gastrojejunostomy tube (GJ tube) placed during my recent surgery. Those plans changed slightly, though, as the doctors thought that this particular surgery would be too traumatic for my body. Instead they placed the G tube I have now with the intention of converting it to a GJ tube later. This means that my tube has only one port that leads directly into my stomach, without access to the jejunum. I do believe that this was the right decision, as I have had quite a time recovering from the G tube surgery as it is.
Which leads me to – you guessed it – a prayer request. Yes, I know, I have made many such requests lately, but I am hoping they will slow down soon. But today I will be having surgery to place both my GJ tube and a new central line. I am a bit nervous, as last time I had combined procedures I was paralyzed for a week and my right arm never woke up. Today will be better, though. I have my trustworthy anesthesiologist, my personal protocol, an ICU step-down unit with doctors and nurses who will do their best to manage my pain… And I hope that I will also have your prayers! They help the very most.
Well friends, I am off to take a long winter’s nap. Make a snow angel for me!
PS Happy Laura Admiration Week to my cousin Honeypie! I hope that for your special week the rest of the world sees your admirable glimmer the way that I do.