Thursday, May 10, 2012

Bringing back memories...

A little over a year ago I was assigned to visit teach (a part of our church where we look after certain women and help them with any needs they may have) Melanie. At the time we were both pregnant with our 3rd child. We bonded and got along great. Shortly after her daughter was born it became clear that some things weren't right. Her daughter had some surgeries and went through an extraordinary amount of pain and hospital visits. I remember sitting with Melanie while she went home without her daughter and had to continuously make it to the hospital to see her. At the time Melanie told me how thankful she was that I was her visiting teacher because I had been through something similar with Kalli; I understood what it meant to have my baby in the hospital, to undergo surgery and deal with the aftermath. She had told me that if it were anybody else, they would be loving of course but they wouldn't understand. I truly believe that, I knew what she was going through, if only in a small way.
Her daughter was finally released after quite a while and all seemed to be going well. Then she was told that her daughter was deaf, but Melanie being as extraordinary as she is, took it in stride and worked her hardest to learn sign language and help her daughter in all her capacity. Then things got really good for awhile.
Last Saturday I got the message that Melanie had taken her daughter in to the hospital and it resulted in a 5 hour emergency surgery that saved her life. I promptly set up to come to the hospital and visit her, bring her treats, movies, books. Being in that hospital room with sweet Melanie and her amazingly resilient daughter brought back a flood of memories from when Kalli was in the hospital. There is nothing like seeing your sweet baby hooked up to so many wires and machines. There is no more helpless feeling than seeing that baby and knowing you can't do anything to make them better. As I sat talking with Melanie I told her how happy I am that she has such love and support with her. People in our church are begging (begging!) to help out Melanie's family in any way they can. When this happened to Kalli we barely had a support system. Nobody but Joe, his mom and my mom were there to help on the home front and at the hospital. I remember feeling so lonely and completely disconnected.
This week has been quite emotional as all I can think about is Melanie and her family. Each day I find some way to help them out, whether it's visiting the hospital, making dinner, calling someone to bring the family snacks at the hospital. I completely have a testimony that we're assigned certain people to visit teach, that it comes from the Lord. Sometimes we don't know why but others, like Melanie, I know why I'm doing it. And to be honest, it's not all for Melanie. I've learned so much from visiting with Melanie each month.


Mena said...

Kristen, you are the truest of friends and I love you with all my heart. You are a blessing to so many people but selfishly I think that you were sent to me and my family as an angel to watch over us. You have truly lightened our burdens and lifted our hearts. I will forever be grateful to a loving Heavenly Father for the blessing of having you in my life.

April said...

Dang girl you got me tearing up over here. That ward is truly special. I have been in A LOT of wards in the last 8 or so years and that ward was my favorite by far. The people are truly amazing! My thoughts go out to Melanie and her family!!!