Monday, May 5, 2008

The value of son-in-laws

Remember back to Monday, May 28th, when my son-in-law had to be here to accept the delivery of the hospital bed being rented for me to use while I am staying with him and daughter Debbie? Remember how I said what a brave thing for a guy to do, for it had a definite beginning date with an open-end to it, not knowing how long I might be here?

My son-in-law has a name, I don't go around calling him son-in-law. His name is Mark Simmons. He HAS to be the best son-in-law ever. Now, he doesn't live half way round the world, away up in Alaska, over in Africa, no far away place like that where I hardly ever get to see him. Mark and Debbie live one block down the street. Here's a recent picture of Mark made at this fantastic restaurant here in Blytheville one weekend when Ashley and Ashton were here visiting for the weekend.

Other than being nice and respectful, I guess one of the first things I remember Mark doing for me was getting good sturdy metal ramps ramps made for our front door after I got my power chair, releiving Jim of an extra duty loading and unloading the chair, and making for a MUCH smoother ride in and out of the house for me.

Then during the middle of one night, I got stuck in my bathroom because my right leg would not function, and I could not rise from the potty. Jim and I had tried everything we knew possible, and I just could not get pull up to the standing position. The only thing left to do was to call Mark, and down the street he came - literally the middle of the night about 2:00 a.m. - and he helped Jim posistion things for me to be closer to my chair once I was up, and then comes Mark to the rescue. Now, you may laugh, for it does sound funny, but son-in-law comes into the bathroom, grasps his mother-in-law beneath both arms and lifts her up and over to her chair! Hooray! Now, she can back the chair out of the confines of the space he and Jim have created. Jim felt badly for me having my son-in-law see me in such a situation of being in the bathroom, still on the potty, but *I* was just glad to have a son-in-law who was willing to see and help his mother-in-law such as she was. I think it says a lot for both of us! There are times when perspective must be put into place, and to me, this was one was at the top of the list.

There was another late-nighter, though not quite like the 2:00 a.m.-er. It was February of last year, Jim and I had been there in the living room, he was comfy in his chair, feet propped up, doing what he does on his computer (don't ask), and watching TV, too (remote nearby or sports network going), while I was over on the couch - this was pre-hospital bed time - reading one of my books quiet as a mouse until I made a strange gurgling sound he had never heard from me before. He called my name. No answer. Called again. This time louder. No answer. Then he came over, and by his reports, he says he did several things to waken me, even slapping me (lightly I am sure;). He realized I was unconscious so he quickly called 911. Immediatelly afterward he called Mark and Debbie. They both came down, and were there when the paramedics arrived, finding me barely still alive. Once in the ambulance, they tested me and found my blood sugar a whopping 16! When I eventually came to in the emergency room, Jim was near to me, Debbie just behind him, but there at the end of my bed whose face do you think it was that I saw? Yep! None other than Mark's! Ole smilin' Mark's!

I've told him how good it was to see his face that night. He could have been other places waiting for Debbie to be finished with her mother, but, no, he was right there all along until I was conscious once more, asking the questions just like they do on TV and in movies "How did I get here?" "Why am I here?" I really did that for the last thing had remembered was lying on the couch earlier in the evening reading my book, and now I was waking to bright lights overhead.

Today I am residing in Mark's home (Mark shown at right), indefinitely. First of all, he keeps his cell phone on and with him at all times, and for me he tells me to text him anytime 24 hours of the day he will be available. That makes it nice since they live in a large two story house, and sometimems Debbie does not hear her phone.

Debbie has had to go back to work, and Mark has been ever the vigilant nurse. He comes to check on me periodically to see if I need anything, and if everything is going okay. I had some worsening myasthenia symptoms this morning, leading to a mild crisis (MG), which (MG crisis) he had never heard of, and he handled it all very well, like a champ!

That was the fastest I can recall it all coming on like that, and reaching the vocal (I call it my stupid talk), and nearly reaching the incapacitating stage, needing help for more than usual movements. Mark was a fast and willing learner.

It really convinces me I need to get on the ball, and get my emergency kit compiled. It certainly seems paramount now that the only one who knows what to do is not with me. Complacency. Shame.

This is just a glimpse of Mark Simmons. I hope I have given you a fair share of the man he is.
Missie Nicole Wages
One of our babies
Striving for a world without Myasthenia Gravis

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