Thursday, May 24, 2012

God bless medicine

I wanted to share with you something I've been learning out of a Bible Study I just finished this week.  It has to do with the life of David and the things we can learn from him.  The resounding theme of this study was to learn to MOVE past the devastation we have with God over circumstances we thought/think that are not fair or hurtful and learn to press forward in Whole Hearted Obedience.  WOW!  That one hits me between the eyes.  It was perfect timing once again with this study as it came at the time I needed to hear it most. 

Have you ever found yourself pouting over a circumstance or situation?  I have found myself there many times and sometimes it has become my reaction to things that are inconvenient or negative that has happened in my life.  Case in point: surgery on a herniated disk. 

If we stay in that spot of pouting though we can develop a life style of professional pouters.  Feeling sorry for yourself and getting stuck into a rut of poor little ol' me.  Not really something I want to have people remember me as or something I want my kids to learn from me, and certainly not somewhere I want to be stuck at for months or years.

**(I may add that the teacher Beth Moore addressed death as being an authentic devastation that only God can get us through.  And grieving is a thousand country miles from pouting. However if we ressit the grace of God and do not let Him tend to us and bring healing over time, we can develop into life-style pouters)

As scared as I was I went into surgery 2 weeks ago today.  And by scared I mean panicked.  As in uncontrollable tears that would NOT stop.  The ugly cry if you will.  I could NOT get a grip.  I just kept on a thinkin' what if they make a wrong move when they go in thru my THROAT  for this surgery and bump into a necessary artery?  Or perhaps a windpipe that I use every. single. day?  The thought kept going thru my head....that my children are so small...they need me.  I can't leave them.  And then I had one tiny thought that comforted me.  Heaven is a really great alternative.  And if the surgery does bump into something by mistake and I die....I would be spending my first Mother's Day in Heaven.  With MY MOM.  It all seems so dramatic now since I'm on the other side of it sitting well and feeling awesome.  But that day my thoughts were on a rampage. Back and forth between the 2 feelings of ~~~I'm sure it will be fine (which Donovan kept telling me) and I'm pretty sure something is going to go wrong here....I got a bad feeling.

And then these other little thoughts were in the back of my mind.... why? Why surgery? Why not heal me God? 

This is just before I was wheeled off into surgery. My Doctor saw my state of mind and the constant tears and went ahead and told the anesthesiologist to give me a little treat in my IV.  Of course he didn't say "little treat" he had a name for it.  Which I don't remember.  And I have no memory of that hat going on me or getting wheeling off.  The power and beauty of modern medicine folks.  I am in a state of oblivion in this picture.  I don't even remember Donovan taking it.  Or talking to the anesthesiologist about the laundry I hung on the line that morning.  Or being wheeled into the operation room.  God bless medicine.
And then something else occured to me....after surgery.  What am I supposed to learn from this??  And quite honestly I think that last question is one of the most important I've been thinking about since surgery. 

After we can move ourselves past the devastation the question we need to ask ourselves is how can we cooperate with God for a work that leaves us in awe saying, "Who am I, O Soverign Lord, and what is my family that you have brought me this far?"  (from pg. 81 of the David study)

Pretty doped up in this picture.  I think Donovan took it just after surgery.  I remember waking up and thinking~you spared me Lord.  You woke me up and here I am with my sweet husband.  How magnificent you are.  I would wake up for a few minutes and get a looksie at some very beautiful flowers and think~how awesome.  Flowers, I am alive and my husband all in one room!  :)  And drift back to sleep. 
Later that afternoon my mother in law and father in law brought in the kids.....what a great site to have all of them there.  So thankful for my husband's parents that moved into our house and took over for us while we were gone for 2 days. 

And while I had some pretty amazing nurses~this was my favorite.  Right after surgery I had a room that I was sharing with an older patient....and  we were only seperated by a curtain.  And as long as I had a female room mate....Donovan was not allowed to stay with me in my room thru the night.  And my room mate was allergic to some of the flowers I had~and she liked Willie Nelson music played loudly.  So while I didn't want to pay for a "private" $3000 room....I also really wanted/needed my husband with me thru the night.  And you know what happened?  The nurse on duty moved me. Explaining that she can't guarantee that in the new room I won't get a room mate eventually.  But for the night I could have Donovan stay with me.  Isn't that the coolest thing EVER?  She just did that.  The above picture he is getting ready to give me a sponge bath.  Only with a washcloth.  And not to worry it was only my face, arms, and legs. 
I had some leg squeezers on to prevent blood clots, an IV, a catheter, and a drainage tube coming out of my neck.  Making it pretty hard to get around~but with Donovan's help and a nurse I got out of bed 4 times for walks down the hall.  It felt good to move.
The next day about 28 hours after surgery the drainage tube in my neck was due to come out.  The incision and tube coming out of my neck did not hurt at all.  But let me tell you I felt that tape and tube coming out. 
Here she is pulling the tube out.  And I post this picture because of this.  To remember always how far God has brought me.  This was only 2 weeks ago...and I am sitting here pain free and feeling amazingly well. 
Here is the tube that was pulled out.  In case you wanted to see it. :) What?  You say~you didn't really want to see it?  Too late. tee hee.
And here is 3 days after surgery.  Mother's Day with my lovies.  I was definately slow moving for a few days....make that over a week.  But I could get up and move around.  There were some days I'd do too much and be extremely tired the next day.  But I am pain free.  For the first week I had a little bit of an ache in the back of my neck where the plate and 4 screws (the fusion) are...but never pain.  And now today I am moving with no ache, no arm pain, and actually hard to tell that I ever even had surgery. 
How great is our God?  To bring me this far?? I totally am in awe of that truth and thankful to be on this side of surgery. 
Thank you so much to all of you who brought meals and wonderful things.....Marlys, Arlene, Beth, Allison, Julie, Barb, Chelsea, Aunt Fran, Ashley, Carrie, & Rose.  Your thoughtfulness and generosity means so much to us....esp. when you have your own families to care and cook for!

Thank you to my pastor ~Rick~who came to see me even though I wasn't there yet....because my surgery got moved back by 2 hours.  Sorry again about that!
Thank you to Pastor Josh for the Starbucks & visit.  I love me some Strawberries and cream w/ whip!!
Thanks to Aaron that came and was there at the hospital before I was.  As I told the receptionist my name I was so choked up and cried. (EMBARRASSING) and I turned around to see Aaron there to hold me while I sobbed.
Thank you to my Bible study ladies who showed up to pray and comfort me and give me a happy face balloon.
Thanks to mom & dad Gingerich who brought the kids and helped them pick out flowers and balloons for me. 
Thanks to my sister, Holly who came to hug me <3
Thank you to friends who stopped in to encourage me when I was getting discouraged from sitting at home for over a week.  You didn't know that....but God did and sent you at the perfect time.  I so appreciated the visits and the sweet treats~Jen & your boys, Jamie and your boys, and Tonia.
Thank you to those who sent encouraging cards~Rosetta & Aunt Ruby....You lifted my spirits with finding treats in my mailbox besides bills and junk mail. 
And thank you also to my employer for sending me some beautiful flowers.  I miss you guys and can't wait to be back to taking care of babies with you!! 
And most of all I'm thankful for each and every prayer that those of you that saw my plea for prayer on facebook and lifted me up.  Funny how that social media can be such a blessing and curse. 65 of you friends left me an encouraging comment and I really truly appreciated everyone of them.