Monday, April 27, 2015

Crisis Management

To my son Tommy,

The trick to dealing with a crisis is to pretend there is no crisis. If you downgrade everything to urgent and deal with each thing you can in a calm and collected fashion, you will breeze through the challenges of life. I used to be good at that. I used to be able to roll with the punches and just deal with whatever was thrown at me in a "nonchalant, oh well, baby steps" type way. Nothing really concerned me.

Nowadays, after dealing with what I consider to be more than our fair share of ongoing crises over the past couple years, even the smallest things can seem daunting. Not that the current crisis is anything to be scoffed at (you having pneumonia is fairly serious) but before when something like this arose, we would just take it in stride. As a singular incident, fairly easy to deal with. We would just deal with the around the clock nebulizer treatments and the extra meds and the promise of little sleep and increased concern. We could even shake off the insurance company screwing us by not covering the cost of the antibiotic that you need. Now, every event just seems overwhelming.

To be honest though, even normally happy events can be a crisis nowadays. Your Grandpa Leo went out with your Great Uncle Kevin and bought a new grill for his house the other day. They got it on the truck with the help of the sales associate, but when they got it home, they couldn't get it off the truck. Your Grandpa Leo shouldn't even be trying such tasks, but he is a stubborn Irishman like his father, and his son, and even his grandson. Anyways, he started worrying about leaving the grill on the back of the truck and that, coupled with whatever strenuous attempt at getting the grill off, started to send him into seizures. Your grandpa called us and then went and laid down and got his seizures to subside. We left Ryan's first communion party, came over and helped get the grill off the truck and we had burgers from the new grill that night. Well, you didn't have burgers because you are allergic to beef and that would have sent us to the hospital much earlier, but the rest of us enjoyed the new grille's cooking.

The point though is even getting a new grill, which would be cause for fun and celebration, can become a crisis. That is why I, until things settle down, I have pretty much cleared my schedule of any extra curricular events or commitments or responsibilities. I just focus on the most essential things and only at the last minute, if it seems like we can get away with it, do we attend those fun extras. I can't even consider giving any effort to addressing or worrying about all the real woes of society that are affecting our country and state and city right now, and frankly, in Baltimore, things are getting intense. It may sound a bit desperate, and we are managing better than I let on, but it is pretty much all we can do to manage the day to day living of ourselves without adding any additional crises than the ones that are real and present.

So for now, we will just pretend there is no crisis. We will treat your pneumonia like it is just something we have to do and just get it done. Remember, you can choose what you let become a crisis. Right now, you are amazing at that and just seem to accept whatever comes our way. You are sitting on the couch, getting a neb treatment, playing your ipad, as if everything is normal, and the only thing you think is different or extraordinary is the new neb mask you got from the hospital. This is a great attitude to have, and means your mom and I are doing pretty good at not letting you realize that there really is a lot going on and this is not normal. Some day you will read this and think, holy crap, how did we get through it all. I don't know about you but I got through it with hugs from you and prayers to God (plus denial and whisky always helps, I kid I kid).

Anyways, more later, maybe. We are probably headed back to the hospital soon as your O2 level is dropping again (even though you just finished a neb treatment) and we most likely will be admitted for at least night. The only reason they let you come home before I think was because Mommy is a nurse and can handle it here. Oh well. Your mom just said that you got your oxygen level back up a bit so now we are in a wait and see mode. Repeat after me, "This is not a crisis, this is not a crisis, this is not a crisis."

Sincerely with love from your dad,

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