Walking didn’t seem the best option any longer as my husband stumbled out of the truck, white knuckling his way along the edge of the box rim attempting to remain upright on the parking lot of the ER. I frantically ran for help. As the ER nurses all but dumped his increasingly helpless body into a wheelchair, my bewildered mind knew life was about to change.
The decline of my husband’s health had taken a nose dive days before and was all but deteriorating in front of our eyes.
By the time he finished triage, he could barely walk. Whatever was happening to him was happening fast. After a mirage of scans and tests, the diagnosis came in - a massive heart attack.
Trying to let that sink in, we settled in on the cardiac ward. We hoped this potentially life changing news would lead us on a journey of recovery sooner than later.
The next couple of days brought us to a shocking turn of events as my husband’s mobility started to deteriorate, his body paralyzing from the bottom of his feet to the top of his head. His prognosis took an alarming turn.
No heart attack. Guillian-Barre Syndrome.
Guillain-Barre (gee-YAH-buh-RAY) Syndrome is a rare disorder in which your body's immune system attacks your nerves. Weakness and tingling in your extremities are usually the first symptoms. These sensations can quickly spread, eventually paralyzing your whole body.
As I watched my husband lay in the metal hospital bed, rails holding in his helpless body, machines beeping all around us, only being able to move his eyes, our world as we knew it seemed to be crashing down around us at an alarming rate.
Heading home one night from the hospital, after an exausting week with no change, my mind and my heart wanted to fear the unknown. As I fell into my unmade bed that night, my head hit the pillow, exausted.
The doctor had just given us a description of what was happening in my husband’s body at this point, painting a bleak picture of his spine. Until his body would begin healing itself, particularly his nerve endings, there was no point in starting rehab or any hope of recovery. Statistics were the only answers they had for us at this point: At best, lifelong pain in the hands and feet and long term instability; At worst, confined to a wheelchair, respirator, or even death.
My mind was still racing as I remembered what I had been hearing God say to me the last couple of months:
“Speak to your mountain.”
“God has given you the authority over your problems in His name.”
“God wants you well.”
As I lay there that night, I spoke to the seemingly enormous mountain in ours lives and I spoke life into Bruce’s body as I had heard to do. It was all very new to me but I knew I needed comfort and answers, but most of all hope. Hope of a healed husband that would walk confidently with strength back into our home and back into our growing family.
Falling into a deep exausted sleep after my short prayer, I experienced a vivid dream depicting my husband’s spine with what looked like giant fluffy white pillows wrapped around the nerve endings. In my dream I saw this as protection against any further damage. and I saw it as the promise of healing.
I awoke with new-found peace and rest the next morning. I felt like I had slept for days. I arrived at the hospital to the news that his spine and the nerve endings were responding and healing had begun.
Days later, I experienced another very vivid dream. I saw my husband walking in a field with tall waving yellow grass towards a woman in the distance. who was bending down holding the hands of two small children. We had lost our second baby 25 years before, and I knew beyond a shadow, this was our child. As he got closer, it became clear the woman was my husband’s mother who had passed on five years earlier. She waved at him to turn back and said, “It’s not your time yet.”
I awoke with a jolt and knew with such certainty my fears of death being the end result had been quieted by what I called a “heaven” dream, sent by God to bring peace to my anxious heart in those long hours, days, and weeks.
Three weeks went by and paralysis was still a big part of my husband's life. Yet I held on to God's promises.
Week four was rounding the corner and small improvements turned into big improvements in a short time. His legs and arms began to moved as rehab had begun.
By week six he was making strides with a walker down the hospital halls. The nurses on every rotation became his cheering section along with many a senior in the rehab, giving them something to look forward to everyday too.
On his first day-trip out of the hospital, we headed home, Pulling up the driveway, Bruce jumped out of the truck and left his walker behind as he grabbed the wall on the side of the house pulling himself heavily onto every step. I frantically tried to grab the walker from the truck, but got waved away as he made it in the front door.
Heading straight for the dining room table in his unsteady legs, he pulled out his chair and sat down. I saw the look in his eyes and knew in that moment he was seeing himself whole and healed back in his home.
Then the day then finally arrived - he was going home.
As he walked tall past the nurse’s station to say goodbye and thank-you, he was met with huge smiles and cheering and was giving the title he still wears with incredible gratefulness.
What was to have taken years to recover, or at worst death, turned into a life changing six weeks in an incredibly different way. He was a walking miracle, and still is to this day six years later.
I often looked back to that time in our lives and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God was there in our every moment. During the biggest crisis of our lives, we said "mountain move," and healing came.
Thanking Him still for His protection and healing, but above all, His incredible love.♥️♥️
About the Author:
Arlene and her husband Bruce have been together for the past 35 years. They love spending time with their growing family, including 8 grandchildren. She has worked for the Hanover School Division for the past 15 years, the last 8 years at the SRSS. One of her favourite things to do is write, which has led her to publish her first book, IN THE MOMENT.
If you would like to send a message to Arlene, email firstname.lastname@example.org and put her name in the subject line.
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