Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Hearing test...then started round 3

Anytime there's sedation planned, Talitha can't eat solids after midnight and any liquids have to be clear (e.g. no milk or orange juice; but water or even apple juice are ok because you can see through them). Then no liquids after 7am.

We always feel fortunate to get an early slot on sedation days so Tali doesn't have to go so long without anything to eat or drink. Such was the case today as Talitha had to be there by 7:30am.

The hearing test results for this third test were similar to the first hearing test--high range is doing great, low range is a bit impaired due to fluid in the ears. I hope and pray her hearing may continue to be preserved and that her ears may be kept from infection.

All her morning blood labs came back with strong enough counts that they did proceed with the third induction round of chemotherapy. Vincristine... followed by Methotrexate...funny taste in the mouth...diaper changes every two hours...and so forth...

One of the biggest challenges with prolonged trials is weariness (and not just the physical kind). Adrenaline can only take you so far. After the "novelty" of the challenge wears off, can you sustain faithfulness and a positive attitude long-term if called to do so?

I think the answer lies in the simple, daily habits that sustain life. I might grow weary of eating every day...but stopping that fueling function wouldn't be healthy, at least not for very long. I might decide I'm tired of constantly breathing in and out to take in oxygen and expel carbon dioxide--after all, it is rather monotonous don't you think?

Just as the physical body needs fuel and oxygen to survive, so do our spirits. Spiritual malnourishment can have devastating effects on how we feel, or cope, or even live. Just as we feed our physical bodies regularly, we must also nourish our spiritual bodies as often as possible. Spiritual weariness may be an indication that our caloric intake from spiritual food is waning.

A prophet of God once asked a group of people who had been faithful and strong in the past an interesting question: "And now behold, I say unto you, if ye have experienced a change of heart, and if ye have felt to sing the song of redeeming love, I would ask, can ye feel so now?"

In other words, you used to believe, and you used to be grateful for all God has done for you...but what about now? Do you feel that way still? Or can you feel that way again?

Our ability to answer in the affirmative hinges largely on how well we are consuming/digesting the spiritual essentials.

I'm so grateful for an abundance of spiritual food that strengthens me when I'm weary and lifts me when the road feels too long. The scriptures are packed with nutrients (no wonder the Lord invites us to "feast upon the words of Christ"). Prayer soothes, refreshes, and fills.

No matter the length of our individual trials and challenges, I hope we will never stop eating and breathing the spiritual essentials that support, sustain, and enliven.

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