We escaped

On our way out of Salt Lake on Wednesday night, we passed an Escape House.  The kids are always talking about this escape place down town so, in my effort to recoup from a rotten sort of day, I told Shelbie to call and reserve us a spot.

The one Shelbie signed us up for was a mad scientist themed room.  The description said there was blood and gore and surprise elements.  For some reason, I thought that meant there would be people jumping out at us while we tried to escape a room so I wasn't exactly going in to this party very excited.

The blood and gore were stickers and paint and the surprise element was giant stuffed spider that fell from the ceiling.  However, we had to escape this room in the dark! Pitch blackness.  Our first chore was to find 4 sources of light.  Those sources of light were three half dead, tiny dollar store flashlights and an old lantern that was only working half the time.

There were various clues hidden, codes and puzzles that unlocked doors and boxes and one clue even had us gathering notes to play on a very old organ.   We had an hour in total darkness, except our dying flashlights to get four chains unlocked and a key code punched into the escape door.

We had so much fun.  I was surprised at how much fun we had.  The girl running the place could see us via cameras and microphones to hear us.  I'm sure she was amused at how stupid we were.

We escaped with 11 minutes to spare.  The newest record apparently so I guess we weren't that dumb.  She said most groups have more than 6 and get out with just seconds to spare.

As we were driving home, Shelbie commented that she thought the escape room was a metaphor for our life.

"Why, because we are half dead, in darkness and trapped with no apparent way to escape?" I asked.

"NO.  Because we all worked together to get out.  That's what we do as a family.  We go through everything together and we are there for each other and we make it out together and alive and laughing."  She explained.

She's right.  I can't think of any other kids I would like to go through these hard things with.  They are patient an resilient and try to look on the bright side.

I am amazed at how quickly we have fallen back into a pattern of normalcy even when things can not possibly be normal.   Shelbie is in good spirits, very tired all the time and a little traumatized but she wakes up each day and does what she has to in order to get caught up on work.   Spencer is working hard and he doesn't skip out on anything even though his heart functions in fits and starts.  Sam has taken his bit of bad news in stride.  I actually think Spencer and Shelbie were more saddened to hear of Sam's brain problem than Sam was.  At least, he didn't let on to be too scared.  Worried, a little and maybe as time goes on and he has a chance to really process things, it will make more of a difference to him.

Today Sam hasn't been feeling well at all and has had one of his bad headaches.  He has had a really bad tremor too and his heart rate is clipping along.  His usual heart rate of 35 was in the high 70's and 80's this afternoon and his blood pressure was really high! 170/70.  Sam runs a low blood pressure too.  I really wanted to ask him to stay home tonight but as I eluded to that thought, I knew he wasn't going to slow down on account of his crummy health.

For me, there are still moments when I feel trapped and wonder how our circumstances are ever going to improve but, then I look at my kids and they are still moving ahead, holding out that everything is going to be okay.  So, I'll tag alone for the ride as we work together to carve out a life worth living.  I've been blessed to be able to let them go and not be consumed with fear.  I've been blessed in some ways, to be emotionally distant from the latest blows.  I'm trying to keep my perspective on the blessings and good gifts we receive from a loving Father in Heaven.  I'm not always successful on this front but I am making a more concerted effort to be a gracious host to these difficult things.



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