All is Well

We were shaken out of bed on Sunday morning to begin a day that turned out much differently than we had planned. I was living in Santa Clara, CA during the big 1989 quake, and when I felt the ground move on Sunday I knew it was also a big one.

Fortunately, we were far enough away from the epicenter that nothing actually fell down or broke. The one house you probably saw over and over again with the destroyed chimney belongs to the family of one of Kyle’s classmates, but other than that house Oahu was pretty much spared from direct earthquake damage. The power was a whole different story…

As the parent of a medically fragile child it quickly becomes apparent how dependent we are on electricity. The oxygen concentrator, the pulse-oximeter, the suction machine…things we depend on every day were suddenly completely out of commission (the concentrator) or on very limited battery power (pulse-ox and suction). I quickly made Abbie’s food for the day and packed it in a cooler with ice packs. We then made the freezer and fridge totally off limits. Well, first we got out the left-over pizza and heated it up on the barbeque for breakfast. I wanted to do whatever I could to save the 5 gallons of raw milk we’d just received for Abbie.

She has been on and off oxygen since we got back from Disneyland, requiring lots of suctioning some days and not so much on others. Praise God that she chose to have a very good breathing day on Sunday. We were able to just spot check her stats with the pulse-ox to save the battery, and didn’t have to use the rest of the limited tank oxygen we had on hand. As the day wore on her biggest challenge was the heat. Thankfully it was an overcast day, but the humidity was around 85%. We gave her extra water, cooled her with washcloths and she hung in there like a trooper.

Her brothers rediscovered Monopoly and playing outside. They enjoyed themselves so much they said it ‘d be great to have power for the fridge and stove but that we didn’t really need the TV and computer. Amen to that!

Ray’s day was filled with running between the three Oahu hospitals he oversees. Obviously it is a challenge to maintain patient care and services with limited generator power, but he is blessed to have many outstanding people working for him — they put in a herculean effort on Sunday, and things went as smoothly as could be hoped for. It made it a little tough on me to deal with the boys and Abbie by myself, but there is always a silver lining. At one point in the afternoon he brought home some hot food from the hospital cafeteria. This pre-empted the major challenge with four boys, no power and an off-limits fridge…their hunger!

We had just gotten everything all set for the night as the last of the light was disappearing outside, when in an instant we were back into the 21st century with lights and A/C at our service. Finally we could see the news and find out what was going on around the state. We are so fortunate that a quake of this magnitude didn’t result in any deaths or serious injuries.

Power was on to most of Oahu by midnight, although the boys held out hope that Manoa was still dark so that school would be closed on Monday…no such luck. Life is back to normal now. Abbie had a great PT/OT session on Monday, and did HBOT today. On the way home, past the port, Debbie asked her where the boats were. Without any hesitation she turned her head to look out the window at them. Things like that make me smile!

Her burn is all closed now, so we are able to put her back in the tub, to her great satisfaction. We have committed to working in her neurodevelopmental program during the day, and she seems to like it (most of the time).

I owe so many people emails since 3 of the boys were home the last two weeks, and RJ has been sick so far this week…I will get them out as soon as I can, just know that I am thinking of you!

One thought on “All is Well

  1. When they announced at church Sunday evening that there was a earthquake in Hawaii, you were my first thought. I said a little prayer for you guys and have been wondering about how you were affected. Sounds like you handled it perfectly and I’m glad nothing was damaged.
    Good to hear about Abbie’s progress. Sounds like she is doing GREAT!

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