Irony: Extreme Makeover Home Edition
As I sit in Jaeli’s hospital room at Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth (CHaD) in Lebanon, New Hampshire, admittance for what turned out to be a urinary tract infection, listening to housekeeping paint scraped walls and clean the carpet in my pod, a strange mixture of emotions swirls inside. Not from the cleaning—I wish they’d come clean my home—but from their reason for the extensive and sudden spring cleaning: Extreme Makeover Home Edition is coming to tape a family in my pod tomorrow.
Of course Jaeli will be moved to another section of the CHaD pedi floor away from the taping so fake patients can move in to fill the other rooms in our pod for show, and perhaps so Jaeli’s cries won’t disturb the taping, but I sit here astonished.
We’ve now spent four to five difficult, cramped years in our 800 square feet, now 900 since Jaeli’s been born and Jim added a room in literally four days to accommodate her special needs. During those times, we’ve flirted with applying for the home makeover show, but after reading the contract, could not in good conscience sign it. (A former The Building Brows post details why.) Then our friend asked permission to nominate us, and I struggled to answer yes because of that contract, but I finally did because she had it so much in her heart to help my family. Yet it slid away into silence, for which, at the time, I was glad even though my family needs our house completed and we still can’t do it.
I made that decision with peace in my heart. It was right. But what are the odds that this show would come to the CHaD, and then, when we were here with Jaeli admitted? This aside from the odds of birthing beautiful Jaeli with a rare chromosome disorder to add to our family already living in a unique situation.
I’m really happy for the family here who is being tended by the show. It is a great, wonderful thing. On the flip side, this is very hard for me, knowing that contract stands in the way from receiving like help when my husband is doing all he can to care for our six other children while I care for Jaeli, and run a business that just three years ago didn’t exist, so we can get through the winter in our tiny home. This couldn’t be more in my face.
Why? What purpose does God have for this?
This is surely a test of some kind, but I’m not sure what subject I’m trying to pass and how I’ll make it through. Either way, today, tomorrow, and days after, I’m sure, will prove to be difficult emotionally for me as I face Jaeli being discharged at the end of the week to return home to our now 900 square feet in the woods for our family of nine.
One thing I know today lives strong and well: Irony.
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