November 13, 2010

That Day I Fainted and Broke My Jaw: Part 4

This is the fourth post in a six post series. Here are the first posts:

That Day I Fainted and Broke My Jaw: Part 1
That Day I Fainted and Broke My Jaw: Part 2
That Day I Fainted and Broke My Jaw: Part 3

The Best Thanksgiving EVER

A little premature to be saying this, but this has honestly been the best Thanksgiving I've EVER had. Wait, WHAT?!  Yep, you read that right. I passed out, fell and broke my jaw, spent six days in the hospital, got two surgeries, and have a long recovery process ahead... but this has been my best Thanksgiving.

Let me start by saying that I have the BEST family and friends that I could ever dream of. Ever since my accident, people have been going completely out of their way in order to help however they can.  I've needed a lot of help caring for my kids, since my husband wanted to be at the hospital with me, and have needed help doing all the everyday things that I take for granted (cooking, laundry, cleaning, etc).

I know a lot of people will say, "Oh, let me know if there is anything I can do to help," and you know they kind of mean it, but you would never really ask them.   However, my family and friends have really taken charge--"I'm going to come over and do your laundry" and "I'm bringing your family dinner today and on Wednesday" and "I'll pick up Eli from school and let him play at my house for a while" etc.  I love not having to ask, so that I don't feel like such a burden.

You all know how much I stress about everything. I'm always a nervous wreck. When this accident happened, all I could worry about was money. I wanted Jerry to be with my in the hospital, but all I could think about was how much money we were losing with him being at the hospital instead of work.

And honestly, I shouldn't HAVE to worry about that! I was in a huge amount of pain and I wanted my husband there for support, which I don't think there is anything wrong with. But it was always nagging in my mind, "We need the money."

And also, I didn't want to buy things that I knew I shouldn't feel guilty about buying. I was even trying to pick and choose which medications I needed because I wanted to save a little money. I even felt guilty buying 100% juice for my liquid diet instead of a juice cocktail, because it's twice as expensive. How lame is that?!  But that is the way my mind works.

So, what I'm getting at, is just WHY this is the best Thanksgiving ever. My sister flew in from Illinois to be with me (as well as to help out with my kids); my older brother Brian flew in from Minnesota to visit me and help out;  my little brother came to visit me a couple of times (he lives in Michigan, but I don't see him as often as I'd like).  My parents took care of my kids EVERY day since the accident, keeping them overnight so that I can get rested.

On Saturday, since everyone was in town (it's rare that my parents, brothers and sister and I are all in the same town at the same time!) my mom decided to cook Thanksgiving dinner. She asked me if it was okay with me first (since I'm on the liquid diet and can't eat).  I was fine with it, and actually pretty excited to spend time with my family.

My dinner was a little different than theirs, obviously ;)

She cooked dinner, and then after dinner everyone told me they had a present for me.

There was a card and two gag-gifts:  a straw that was in the shape of eyeglasses, and a HUGE jawbreaker.  When I read the card, I just started sobbing. That card meant more to me than any other gift I've ever received.

My parents and siblings chipped in and deposited $2600 into my checking account!  The number was figured because of my house payment ($1000) + car payment ($300) + health insurance deductible ($1000) + a little extra for Christmas money ($300).

Now, my family is not rich by any means. I know $2600 isn't an INSANE amount of money or anything, but I was in SHOCK over how generous that was!  Not just the amount of money, but the fact that they don't benefit from it in any way--they gave it to us out of the goodness of their hearts.

They know that Jerry and I struggle financially as it is, and they know how much I worry about money. They didn't want me to worry about paying the bills this month since I've had so much going on with my accident, so they chipped in and took care of that for me. They even said that I don't have to use it on just bills--I can choose to use it how I want.  I'm just so GRATEFUL and amazed and PROUD to be part of this family.

So when I said this Thanksgiving has been the best one ever, I didn't mean because of the money they gave us, I meant because I realized just how blessed I am to have such a loving family. I couldn't have hand-picked a better family, and I just love them so much! I really hope that someday I'll be able to do something this nice for each of them as well.

Along with all that, I've really gotten a lot closer with Jerry. He's always been a fantastic husband, but this accident has brought us closer than ever. He really enjoys taking care of me, and I love feeling taken care of. He doesn't act like I'm a burden at all. He just loves me and really shows how much he loves me.

Before the accident, I wasn't very affectionate. I was never a very huggy/kissy type person, and I felt bad about that because Jerry most definitely IS affectionate. Now, having spent all this quality time with him and really just FEELING all the love from him, I want nothing more than to cuddle with him and hold hands and hug.

I was catching up on some shows, and Oprah's Favorite Things show was one of them. As I watched it, I just thought, "I'm so much luckier than all of those people!" Honestly--the gift my family gave me couldn't have been beat by ANYTHING--because it came from their hearts, as corny as that sounds. I realize that this whole entry sounds really corny, but I just wish I could shout to the world how lucky I am to have these people in my life.

To be continued in Part 5... That Day I Fainted and Broke My Jaw, Part 5

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