Friday, March 17, 2017

Day 7: Sweet Sleep

Last night, Luke couldn't sleep. I don't like those nights. Because when Luke can't sleep, I can't sleep.

It didn't help that Anna smashed her finger in the door and it looked like it might be broken. I decided to bring her in to the Urgent Care to get it X-rayed but it was super busy and with just a little broken finger, she was at the bottom of the list. So we ended up leaving without her finger getting checked out and just decided to splint it on our own.

I was exhausted when we got home and looking forward to bed. So you can imagine my dismay when I saw Luke in the hall, ticking away, saying he couldn't sleep.

I gave him more Benadryl, even though he already had some. Dennis didn't give him his full amount prescribed by the doctor, because lately, we've found that Luke can do ok with half the amount (he's really groggy in the morning with the full amount.) But even that didn't work and an hour later, he was still awake.

I adjusted some things in his room to make him more comfortable. Told him to sleep with his covers off and turned up the fan. It gets really hot in his room and he sleeps on the top bunk. Then I headed to bed because I just couldn't stay up any longer.

At 12:30 in the morning, I woke up to go to the bathroom. And there was Luke--in the bathroom! I don't know who looked more surprised when he opened the door--me or him. I became really upset that he was still awake. Not mad at him but just mad about the situation. He had to go to school the next day, and I had had him out for a few days already for a stomach bug. Now I was getting nervous about him going to school half-asleep.

I gave him one more dose of Benadryl, praying that it wouldn't end up killing him in his sleep. I really didn't know what else to do.

I sent him back to bed and I went to bed myself. But I was wide awake with frustration. I was so sick of these episodes of no sleep. I was sick of not being able to do anything for him. It seems that that is the case with everything lately.

So I prayed--a very angry prayer, I'm afraid. Angry but honest. I still don't know if my prayer was a "good" prayer or not. We're not supposed to get angry at God or blame Him. But last night, I was blaming Him. I had done all that I thought I should: pray, keep faith, and be patient. I had done all I thought I should do as a mom, which would be to bring Luke to the appointments but we've seen zero progress.

The neurologist prescribed Zoloft for Luke's "anxiety", hoping it would reduce the tic. Nothing.
The Pediatrician prescribed tic medicine, hoping it would get rid of the tic. Nothing.
The "Herb Doctor", as we call him, prescribed many supplements to support Luke's brain function and immune system. Nothing!

And yet, the only Person who could help me and take this all away, had not helped. This is how I saw it at the time, anyway. It isn't the way I feel now.

All I wanted was for Luke to go to sleep. It was hard enough to take shuffling steps of "progress" (just a bunch of appointments with very little results, in my own opinion), but it was quite another to take giant steps backward of problems I thought were already solved, like insomnia.

It wasn't that I was doubting God's power or ability, or if He did exist at all. I was doubting His mercy.

Wow, that is hard to admit out loud.

But God knows everything and I think He just wanted me to say it. So I did. It felt good to say it and yet it didn't. Because I didn't want to admit something so horrible.

This prayer was maybe 2-3 minutes long when I suddenly had the idea to help Luke fall asleep by sitting up. (It is a trick I use on myself a lot. Just sit up until you are so tired you have to lay down. Then you're relaxed enough to fall asleep.) So I got out of bed to go talk to Luke.

He was asleep. Within 2-3 minutes of when I talked to him.

Was it the Benedryl? I had a hard time believing that it could work so quickly, especially when the first two doses hadn't seemed to touch him at all.

Was it God? I should have latched onto this idea right away, but I couldn't believe that God would be so merciful after the way I had acted. I had acted like a brat, and I knew it.

Believe it or not, I couldn't believe he had actually really fallen asleep. I thought for sure he was in maybe a very light sleep and it would just be minutes later that he would wake up. So I went back to my room to express my doubt to God.

Now that it was "out there", I couldn't seem to take my doubt into hand. I couldn't just suddenly say, "Ok, God. After all these weeks of discouragement and dead ends, I suddenly believe You are helping us." I just couldn't. I seriously just didn't believe that God helped us.

I stayed up maybe a half hour longer, waiting for Luke to come into the room. He never did. I went to his door again, pressing my ear against it, to listen for his tic. It was nothing but silence.

I finally went back to bed myself and finally got the sleep I had been needing all day.

This morning, I thought about the whole thing again. I'm in a much better frame of mind. I apologized to God all day, repenting and wishing I had never stooped to such a level of doubt. But in the back of my mind, still wondering, did God really help us? Even after the way I acted?

I believe that He did, because He is greater than my sin. I know that He did, because He loves Luke--and me, too--even though I'm a brat sometimes.

I think that He wanted me to face my anger, my doubt. I didn't. I wanted to remain unaware. But you can't move on when you're stuck. You can't grow when you're stunted.

It is Day 7 and another answered prayer. I don't think Luke will be cured--at least, not any time soon. I believe though, that he's going to be ok regardless.

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