This week we started learning how to homeschool. We’re taking it easy at first, just a couple hours a day, mostly worksheets from teachers, and online exercises. 6 weeks off of school though means that we have to try to do something. The kids are handling it pretty well, they’re resilient like that. They don’t really understand the chaos the world is in, and that’s ok… we’ll keep them on the blue pill for as long as we can (that’s a Matrix reference if you’re not a Sci-fi fan).
We only had one Dr. appointment this week, and that was for the optometrist. Jenney’s eyes are still making her see double at times, and they looked and saw swelling around the optic nerve. I sat in the parking lot with the kids, got out to play a little Pokémon with them, while Jenney saw the Dr. He ended up referring her to someone else, and that Dr. just told us to get an eye patch… so… hopefully this corrects itself with time.
Jenney got to the end of her decadron (a steroid to reduce brain swelling) earlier this week, but by Thursday she was feeling pressure behind her eyes again. I tried not to panic, gave her a Tylenol, and we called the Dr. this morning to report this. They put her back on the decadron for a couple of more weeks. The Tylenol and decadron helped almost immediately. Very relieved.
Work has gone well this week. I have the blessing of working from home over the last 10+ years and this week was not a lot different in that regard. We even got a very large contract renewed along with a bunch of others. Concentrating on my job however, well that’s another challenge in and of itself. I make the meetings, and try to get various tasks done in between, but there are many more distractions than normal of late. The management at Lullabot has been more than sympathetic about this though, for everyone, ensuring we have the support we need, and knowing that we have to spend extra time with our kids being home. Thank God that this is one solid and stable thing in my life right now. Many others do not have this luxury. I pray they see relief soon.
My worries now are centered around what happens if Jenney can’t get the treatments she needs. The thought of having a premature baby in such a world… at such a time… Dear Lord be with us. We have an MRI scheduled for next week which should tell us if the tumor in her brain is regrowing, and how much time we have until she needs to start treatment, which will also determine when the baby needs to come.
Even with all this, we have many blessings we can count:
- friends and neighbors are still bringing us meals in the evening, and groceries.
- we are all still healthy and in good spirits, relatively.
- I have my job, which doesn’t require me to leave the house, and so many caring individuals that I work with there.
- we have our love for one another and tenderness.
- Jenney’s recovery from the surgery, allowing her to function and even help teach the kids.
- chickens that give us plenty of eggs.
- neighbors and a community who care about us.
- you, dear reader.
- we’re not quarantined by the government like so many of my friends in other countries, and we can get outside in the beautiful spring weather for walks.
We took a walk today in fact, and we took a trash bag and all cleaned up trash on the main road for a stretch. The kids pretended it was like an easter egg hunt. On our way back we heard our neighbor coughing a lot. She was in good spirits and talked through the camper window to tell us she was currently sequestered to her camper and is awaiting results from a COVID-19 test. Dear Lord please be with her and her family. Later I talked with her husband on the phone and he told us she tested negative for COVID but that they’re having a hard time seeing anyone to get her treatment because our health care system is overloaded.
My stress continues, and I fend off the panic attacks with exercise, trying to remember my Kenpo Karate forms, and building worlds in virtual reality. I’m currently designing and developing a meditation application in VR. Focusing on creation helps me in so many ways, and I’m hoping others join me to help build this. I’m also hoping to use the space to broadcast a friend’s guided meditation sessions on Tuesday and Thursdays. Listening and watching these in a peaceful virtual environment seems like it could be a healthy and helpful experience.
I’ve also been reading the Bible more lately, and it’s been many years since I’ve done that. I started by looking up the Lord’s Prayer. Next to it was “The Cure for Anxiety” which was the verse about God caring for the birds and how much more he would care for us. I was then reminded of Job and started re-reading that book… I should not have done that. God allows Job to be “tested” by Satan and basically loses his whole family and all of his wealth and possessions and got sick… this did not instill confidence. I looked for encouragement elsewhere but could only remember some verses from my childhood:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your path straight.
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul. He guides me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil, for thou art with me. Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever, and ever, amen.
I do hope for goodness and mercy in the days to come. I find myself remembering old songs during the day that I used to sing in church. I sang one to my son while I pushed him on the swing today. And we pray over dinner these evenings, and prayed for Rosie this evening.
Friedrich Nietzsche once said, “Two great European narcotics, alcohol and Christianity.” I’m of the opinion he was right on this, as it’s certainly comforting to me. I’m not sure if it’s the security of my youthful days when I believed blindly, or that God is listening and giving me some peace, but I plan to continue reading, and searching.
If you have any verses to share with us that could bring us comfort, I’d love for you to share them with us.