Thursday, May 21, 2020

The Most Terrifying Moment

Living in an era of the Internet, where information is disseminated easily and rapidly, deciding what information and how much detail to share can be difficult.  We've received multiple inquiries about our silence on social media lately and finding the appropriate response has been a challenge.  I consider Instagram to be a digital photo album where we preserve memories.  However, there are some moments in life that we'd rather not remember.

While this story I'm about to share is not a secret, it is personal.  And sometimes social media can feel impersonal, frivolous, and even invasive.  However, we've always strived for honesty, and more importantly, we realize the inquiries are coming from a place of genuine concern.  
Last Saturday night, Leanne had a choking incident so severe that she turned blue and lost consciousness.  An ambulance was called and fortunately, she began breathing before the paramedics arrived.  
Given that we are currently experiencing a global pandemic, the paramedics confirmed that her vitals were strong, and advised against taking her to the emergency room.  Leanne's physicians have been notified, and she is scheduled to have an EGD (Esophagogastroduodenoscopy) next Wednesday.  
That incident was the most terrifying experience of my life.  But in reflecting on that traumatic moment, Mr. (Fred) Rogers famous quote comes to mind, 

"Look for the helpers.  You will always find people who are helping." 

Everyone was outside, and when I went to the door and screamed for help, multiple neighbors came running.  Travis dialed 911 and followed the instructions provided by the dispatch operator.  Our neighbor appeared in the doorway and he picked Leanne up and attempted to do the Heimlich.  He did not leave her side until the paramedics arrived.  His wife lead the triage, addressing the needs of the various family members.  Another neighbor ran to get a doctor who lives down the street.  One neighbor ushered Biddy outside while other neighbors rallied to distract and calm my children.  And one neighbor held me while I sobbed.  
The heroism of this group of people who heard my cry for help, had no clue what was happening, and came running anyway is something that I will never forget.  When the EMT's arrived, one asked if everyone standing in our home was family and my next door neighbor replied, "We're neighbors but we are a family."  And that means so much to someone who has so little family left.
At Leanne's pre-op appointment today, I tried explaining how terrified I felt and the doctor said, "I get it; she's your person."

I thought about that for a long time afterwards and ultimately concluded that Leanne is not my 'person'."  Travis is 'my person'."  Leanne's role in my life transcends human relationships for me.  She's like a guardian angel who has always been by my side.  I don't know who I am without her.

And that leads me to why I am sharing this story: When Leanne finally regained consciousness and calmed down, she addressed each of my neighbors individually and insisted that they pray for her.  She named their children and insisted that their children pray for her.  Leave it to our diva to demand a prayer vigil in her own honor.  Travis says "That's the moment I knew she was okay." 

To that point, please keep Leanne in your thoughts and prayers as we take the necessary measures to ensure that her health is restored.  
The blogosphere prayer warriors have always been there for us and we truly appreciate your concern and support.

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