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Anything is Possible!

The other day I was rummaging through storage bins in the basement and came across a big bag of cards. I paused for a moment, as I realized they were cards I had collected during Matt’s early days in the hospital, his weeks in rehab, and months after…including his time in Omaha. As I sat down to peruse the cards, I couldn’t stop the tears. There were just so many wonderful notes and thoughtful messages. We amassed cards from co-workers, family, friends, and friends of friends. All so caring. I remembered all over again how much they had meant to me – knowing that Matt wouldn’t be able to read or understand them for weeks and months to come. Their words comforted me, encouraged me to keep doing what I could do to keep us moving forward. I simply can’t express how much they meant to me then, and how much they still mean to me now.
One in particular stood out. Its sentiment ringing as true today as it did then. It read:
‘With God every day is a day
To hope for the very best -
To believe your prayers are being heard
To believe good news is on its way
And that anything can happen between yesterday
And tomorrow’
I shed more than a few tears, thinking about all of the people who prayed for Matt. It’s something to realize your own little life can stretch across miles and years and impact so many other people. It’s humbling – so very humbling. But this one card stuck with me. I pondered the words for days afterward. I kept it out after I had put the others away…knowing that there was something I wanted to say about this card.
It’s so easy for us to go about our business and forget how far we’ve come since those first few days in the hospital. It would be easy to give in to those feelings of loss and grief. It would be understandable, expected, perhaps for us to be stuck in some sort of limbo…angry and sad over the past and never moving forward with acceptance into the future. But – we aren’t. We didn’t. Somehow, some way we were able to shed the layers of grief and loss…bit by bit over time. We were able to push past those dark days and see there was light ahead. And I can’t help but think that this is a direct result of all those prayers you all said for us. I remember how vividly I felt God’s presence that day with the birds. I remember how peaceful and secure I felt on that sunny, beautiful morning when my life was pure chaos. I remember how it felt to be embraced by so many loved ones…sharing their grief…and their HOPE. I held on to that hope…held on to those promises…grasped my faith with whatever little bit of strength I could muster…and slowly, day by day, we made it through. Together.
It’s not by chance. It’s not by some weird twist of fate. I can honestly and humbly say that God carried us through. That your prayers helped carry us through. That we simply would not be where we are today without them. And I want to thank you…thank each of you for all that love. All those prayers. All those shared tears and shared hope. I look back on those early times…at who we were…and I can scarcely recognize us. Physically. Emotionally. We are changed people through and through.
These past few years have been an awakening for us both. We’ve seen the worst in each other and the very best. We struggle at times, to accept the hand we’ve been dealt, but after the tears there is always a hug. After the grief, there is always…hope. When I start to feel myself get down about the things Matt can no longer do…I remind myself of what he CAN. I think about the days when he couldn’t speak – and we had no real idea of how much he could comprehend. I think about the days when he couldn’t even roll over in bed. I think about the days when his face was so contorted by muscle spasms that he was barely recognizable. I remember that he couldn’t swallow. I remember that he couldn’t move a sucker from one side of his mouth to the other. I remember that he couldn’t sit up. But slowly, surely he overcame all of these obstacles. While he can’t walk by himself – he can walk to and from a car with me. While he can’t pour himself a glass of juice – he can get the jug out of the fridge for me, drink it, enjoy it and happily ask for more. While he can’t drive a car – he can easily get in yours and go for a spin any old time he wants. I could sit here all night and write all the things he can do – but you get the point. It’s a miracle Matt survived his brain hemorrhage. He should have died. He often jokes that a weaker man would have…but truly…he is a living miracle. A sweet old woman from church, who has since passed away, used to smile at him each Sunday and call him her miracle man. And she was right. He is a miracle. Each tiny little thing he can do…is just a testament to how far he’s come. When you start out from nothing, you quickly realize how big all those little things are. A smile. A hug. A voice. I try…oh how I TRY not to take those things for granted.
Thinking on the past 6 years…I can’t help but believe…BELIEVE that truly, anything can happen between yesterday and tomorrow.

Comments

Emily said…
It's true - even strong men of great intergrity have let their lives collapse over less. The victories you two have achieved inspire hope in me, too! When Matt's getting out there and giving it all a go, there's no excuse for me!

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