Dear praying friends,
The first few days of treatment are behind us, and we are now able to start assessing what benefit if any and what difficulties Chris is having while at Miracle Mountain.
The first day of treatment went pretty well; the second day of two treatments went badly. He got so hot in the chamber that he started shutting down physically. This is what happens with MS when your body temperature gets too high. In Chris’ case, too high is about 95 degrees. MS symptoms increase significantly with each degree your body temperature is raised. A normal body temperature for him could mean death, as his lungs could shut down and he wouldn’t be able to breathe.
He actually had one day, Wednesday, where he WAS starting to have difficulty breathing. The chamber got too warm inside. He was in with several mothers with young children, most of whom were uncomfortable and fussy, some crying quite loudly. There’s nothing like a screaming little kid to heat up a tiny room (I’m not trying to sound disrespectful; these children are there because they have serious illnesses, and their mothers are lovingly bringing them to try and get help for them. They do still heat up the chamber inside though, which means paralysis for Chris).
Chris was moved back to a somewhat quieter group session, where it is also cooler in the chamber. He is also cooling himself down with ice packs and a wet shirt along his neck and back.
They do have the capability to blow more cool air into the chamber, but this then, affects his hearing and is painful to his ears. There’s a delicate balance to be had in all of this. This is what we are praying Chris will be able to find in the chamber treatment sessions.
Besides that, bathroom issues are the next biggest problem Chris is having. Without going into any details, please just pray that God would help Chris and help Joseph help Chris.
Joseph is doing great. He enjoys helping Chris. He’s preparing food for Chris that he himself enjoys eating (lots of fruit and veggies) God is helping him know how to help Chris, even when it means picking Chris up after he fell twice today getting in and out of the van on the way to his HBOT session.
Chris just got his internet connection working last night, so he and Joseph are just starting to read your encouraging notes. I can tell you they mean so much to them. Thank you to all those who have written!
Chris said this evening when we talked, “I hate MS and I really want to go home and be with the Lord, but God has told me to keep living, so I’m going to keep living.” I then shared what a difficult week this has been for me, too, trying to be mom and dad with a houseful of teens, and how God was whispering in my ear, “Press on, press on, press on by My grace.” This is the stuff of living.
And to our repeated question of, “Lord, what do You want us to do?” we hear His answer, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness,” II Cor. 12:9a, and His encouragement to “…show the same diligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope until the end, that [we] may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith, and patience inherit the promises.” Hebs. 6:11-12)
We then prayed for each other once again, and invited God to have His way with us, to give us the grace we need to trust in His good promises, and the power of His Holy Spirit to follow with joyful abandon. He Himself is our best promise and reward!
Praise for today — we thank God that:
~Chris was kept safe through his two falls today
~Joseph was there to help him in those falls
~Chris’ internet connection is working, and he feels more connected to the world
~Joseph and Chris can read all the encouraging emails and notes on Caring Bridge you have been sending
~even though Joseph has to get up twice a night to help Chris get back in bed after he uses his chamber pot during the night, Joseph can go right back to sleep easily
~Joseph finds it not only NOT difficult to prepare food for Chris, he is enjoying it–I suppose his being hungry might have a little something to do with it 🙂
Prayer for today — we ask the Lord’s help that:
~Chris would be able to get through each day on the manna the Lord gives; thinking about two more weeks of this is just not possible to do well from an emotional standpoint
~both Joseph and Chris would get both enough and deep sleep
~that getting HBOT each day in the chamber would not feel so much like going to prison; it is really difficult–specifically:
1. he is totally helpless (can’t wear his shoes/braces, so he’s really stuck)
2. he can’t fall asleep (his chair in there has no arms on it; even if he moves the wrong way, he could go tumbling out of the chair onto the floor)
3. he also can’t sleep because he has to keep clearing his ears from all the pressure that keeps building up while he’s in there (it’s painful, too)
4. he can’t do anything in the chamber, so an hour feels like 4-5 hours
5. it hurts his ears (this is truly an MS thing; he’s raised 7 children–it’s not about children) when there are little ones crying loudly or screaming in the chamber
6. he frequently gets too warm, and then is totally wiped out for 2+ hours afterwards (this is both debilitating and discouraging)
The rest of the story–“Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore, I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake, for when I am weak, then I am strong.” ~II Corinthians 12:9b-10
Thank you for praying!
Grateful for His grace,
Tracy, for Chris and the Klickaclan