Something happened last week that changed his perception on this world…..again…
He told me, “I can’t tell you about my last shift because what I saw was so horrible I want to protect you from it.”
I wanted to know because I could sense the uneasiness. He was different that day; quiet, withdrawn, serious. He was being tormented by the memories and visions he had to soak in on his last shift. I remember I had asked him when he got home, “How was your shift?” as he put down his lunch pail and walked by me in the kitchen. He answered me using his usual one word answer “fine.” It wasn’t until a few days later I could sense the crushing. And that’s when I knew he was holding the secrets to pain, death, and the evils of this world. I want to help my husband.
PLEASE DON’T FIGHT THOSE DEMONS ALONE, I thought to myself.
As a flight nurse I can relate and understand the medical treatments. I know about grief. I know about fighting self-doubt and keeping the ‘what if’ scenarios from consuming your thoughts. When the outcome, in spite of your best efforts, is death of your patient the untruthful thoughts and self-doubt take control. “What if I would have got that IV sooner.” “what if I would have started that Levophed…” “What if I could have been there a few minutes sooner” But today I know that’s not what he is quietly fighting. It has nothing to do with self doubting or questioning a medical intervention. It goes far deeper than that. I have a feeling it’s the days after days…months after month….years after years of answering the call. He has a way about him when he starts that battle.
Most post shift I can be part of his debrief because of this understanding I hold. And he’s the same for me post shift. We are each other’s confidant. We have each other’s support 110% and we are a great team together! We have flown together as partners in the transport environment on the helicopter. Not many husbands’ and wives’ can say that. We share a very special bond and have multiple relationships…..husband and wife, medic and RN, partners, co-workers, friends, study buddies, and mom and dad team to twins.
….so that they are no longer two but one. ~ Mark 10:8
I despise the fact that whatever he saw that shift is challenging his sense of self, safety, and trust. He no longer believes that life is predicable and just. I can confidently say he hasn’t thought life was predictable, and that this world is safe, since he was 15 years old. So I pray the prayers of the faithful wife and look to find understanding and peace for him.
At dinner I watched him from across our table as he neatly folds his napkin and I realize that he folds it the exact same way every time. He is always in control and striving for perfection, down to the simplest task of folding his napkin. Does he feel that powerful sense to be flawless because of his experiences of a paramedic? Or is it that his impeccable attention to detail is the reason why he is so great at being a paramedic? I would dare say it’s the latter of the two. He is the strongest and most confident person that I know…. I trust him with my life. If you are ever his patient, trust him, too. He holds the knowledge and the skills to save you. There is no doubt. I don’t say that just because he’s my husband. I say that because I have seen him firsthand because I have had the honor to fly bedside him as a partner.
Lord, I pray for your protection on my husband’s mind. Protect and defend him from the lies of the enemy. Help him to clearly detect your voice from any other. You have instructed us to take every thought captive to make it obedient to Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:5) Please show him how to do this when he thinks of all the answered calls that torment his memory. May he learn your good Word so that he can recognize any untruthful thinking. Give him power to resist lying thoughts. And at that moment cause him to remember that he has the mind of Christ. If, when, and where the enemy invades his thoughts, I invoke the power of the Holy Spirit to rid his mind of any feelings of guilt or impurity. I pray for the Holy Spirit to cleanse his mind. By that authority given to me in the name of Jesus, I command any untruthful spirits away from my husband’s thoughts and mind. You have given me “authority over the enemy.”(Luke 10:19) His mind will not suffer with evil or negative thoughts, but continuously be transformed by the renewing of his mind so that he may be able to determine what God’s will is—what is proper, pleasing ,and perfect. (Romans12:2) May he not worry about anything but instead pray about everything. That he tells you everything that he needs and thanks you for all that you have done in your perfect will. I pray that he experiences your peace which exceeds anything we understand, guard his heart and mind through Jesus Christ. (Philippians 4:6-7) AND LAST… whatever things are true, noble, just, lovely, of good report, having virtue, or anything praiseworthy, let him think on these things. (Philippians 4:8) IN JESUS’ NAME I PRAY. AMEN
Written by Lesley Karonika