the anecdotal christian

She’s just an Angel (part 1)

Don’t mind her, she’s just an Angel (part 1)

Hebrews 13:2 Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.

Psalms 91:9-12   9 Because you have made the LORD your dwelling place—the Most High, who is my refuge—10 no evil shall be allowed to befall you, no plague come near your tent.11 For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.12 On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone…

And so to preface this story I have to add my words to the end of King David’s Psalm above in verse 12…Or have a stick rammed up your nose. Now, read it with these few words added to the end of the verse and you will better see what we were dealing with.

As any parent can tell you, when you have children, its like having a living calendar in the house. Time means little to younger, unmarried and childless people. The passing of months and even years doesn’t seem to phase them. The reflection of their physical appearance doesn’t change much and their surroundings stay the same. Their perception of life is pretty much characterized by answering the question of “How have you been?” with “SOS!”. An abbreviation for “same old stuff”.

But once married and a baby is put into the mix, when the first six months passes those same young people, once oblivious to the passing of days, can readily see time speeding by. When another couple of years are tacked on, if they had been single with no children, the time would basically go by unnoticed. But with a child in the house the passing of a couple of years’ time is inescapable. Things change daily and yesterday’s reaction of “same of stuff” no longer applies.

And so it was with us. Our son at the age of seven was an all round boy full of energy. Thank goodness he had grown to this part of his life with no lasting effects from the days when he was born so early and so small. He had more than made up for any of those first days and by this stage was the same size as his peers. He was smart and alert and there were no outward signs from the struggles he went through at birth. The only outward signs of his prematurity were scars on his forehead and wrists caused by infusions from intravenous needles.

During this time I was still building houses. I no longer was a part of the animation business I had started 12 years earlier so remodeling and building houses was pretty much how we made a living. I had also started a home inspection and consulting part of my little company making me the first home inspector in our area of the country. Things were pretty normal for our family but…you know us.

It seemed that God needed to get my attention once again. On this one particular week things had gone along smoothly and we looked forward to a normal family weekend but, as we were about to find out, this weekend was going to be anything but normal.

It was a Friday afternoon. I was coming home from the pleasure of a real estate closing where I had sold a house and then made the bank deposit. That event was always cause for celebration because in a small building business closings did not come along everyday. Anytime Daddy brought money home and paid down debt was a day to break out the good beer instead of drinking the more economical brands.

I made my way home through the afternoon rush, parked the truck in its regular spot on the driveway and noticed Peggy’s Pontiac was missing from the carport. I walked in through the back kitchen door and shouted to see who would come greet me.

Daaadeeeee!”…Caroline came running through the family room. I was to find out that my wife had left our daughter with our secretary at the house that afternoon. Donna, the secretary, was having to double as a baby sitter because my mother, who lived near to us at the time, was MIA (missing in action) for some reason.

I knew something had happened because Donna had never been called on for house duty of any kind.

After some hello’s and how are ya’s I was finally told that our son had been playing down the street and had tried to jump over a fence. The story my secretary told was something about how his foot had gotten caught in the wire holes of a fence. As she explained being tangled up on the fence had somehow caused him to fall down onto a bush below as he tried to free his foot and jump off at the same time.

John had crashed downward and broken a stick from the bush on his face or around his nose and Peggy had taken him to the pediatrician to get it sorted out. The doctor couldn’t do what was needed in the office so he sent both she and John to the emergency room at St. Vincent’s.

Well its always something around here…” and with that I scooped up Caroline, dismissed the secretary, and headed for the door.

It was still rush hour traffic and I began going down every back street I knew to make the trip as short as possible. Why is it when you are in a hurry all of the traffic lights turn red right as you approach them? And I hate red lights to begin with.

I asked my nine year old Caroline some questions about what had happened but she didn’t have many details of what was going on so I pressed even harder to get to the hospital.

After breaking a few speeding laws, creating a few new ruts in yards and parks along the way and with my daughter in tow, I had almost caught up with John and Peggy in the Saint Vincent’s emergency room.

Racing like a mad man I had no idea if this was a big deal or not. All I knew was what I’d been told to this point and I needed to find out more. I remember thinking, “so much for a fun night with the family.”

After ‘making’ a place to park the car in a very crowded Friday afternoon parking lot we walked across the asphalt surface, me taking giant steps and Caroline skipping on shorter legs in an effort to keep up. We went into the emergency room entrance and walked up to the front desk.

I’m here to see the Fox boy which room is he in…” I announced while moving past the other people who formed a short line in front of the desk. The little slumped shoulder admitting nurse looked up from the papers in her hand and in a very nasally sounding voice said …”only one parent can be with a minor patient at any given time.”

You just have to have love in your heart for rules that would keep an anxious father away from his child and wife at a time like that. While I took exception to what the woman at the desk was saying, she was very firm in quoting hospital policy to me and I knew I would waste valuable time even debating it with her.

I have a pretty acute frustration sensor in my body and it was ringing off the hook at that particular moment. I could see the softness in my nine year old’s eyes when I looked down at her. I wish I had a video of that moment. She raised her finger as if to scold the lady behind the counter but switched her gaze to me and said “I guess she doesn’t know you very well yet does she Datty?”

I guess not Sweetheart…I guess not.”

I left our daughter in the waiting room reading a book. In an effort to get to my son and wife my quickly devised plan was to make an end run through the ambulance entry doors of the ER from the parking lot. Out of sight from anyone inside this move would circumvent Nurse Cratchett at the front desk. Having exited through the ER doors it was outside that I saw my friend Dr. Bob coming across the parking lot from his car.

So Bob…what brings you to the hospital at cocktail hour?” I kept walking up to him and we shook hands.

The ER docs paged me, something about ‘some kid’ with a stick up his nose for me to look at, how about you?”

It didn’t take a genius to figure this one out and I told him I thought that “some kid” was probably my son.

Bob was a very well known ENT (ear, nose and throat) doctor in our community and had been a semi-social and certainly a good professional friend of ours for a number of years. I told him I was having a bit of a problem getting in to see how my son and wife were doing and he gestured with his right hand to the doors and said “Let’s go.”

This part of the emergency room was elongated from left to right. The waiting area was through a double door to the left and the examination areas were to the right. A couple of nurses and what appeared to be doctors in white jackets stood behind a desk positioned on the wall in front of us. Stethoscopes hung loosely around everyone’s neck.

As we entered the ER the head doctor for the emergency medicine group who was in charge of this area of the hospital called out…“Doc?…you here to see the Fox boy?”

“Yes.” Bob said while still heading to the examination area.

Well the kid has spinal fluid coming from his nose, have you heard that?”

Bob’s whole demeanor and body language changed…”No” he said. “No one has told me that…you’ve tested it right?”

Absolutely!” was the reply.

With that my friend Dr. Bob spun around on his heels holding his hand up like a school guard at a cross walk, he told me to wait…”Don’t move ’til I git back…got it?”

I felt a major frown crawl across my face but agreed to behave.

It was only a couple of minutes before Bob returned. He seemed to not want any more eye contact than was needed. “This isn’t good, this isn’t good at all.” His eyes tried to find a safe place to look. He rubbed his hands together and then stuck them down into his pant pockets.

Your boy has spinal fluid coming from his nose which could only mean one thing. My theory is that he must’a had a stick or somethin go up the left side of his nose. It’s gone up so far its punctured the space between the nasal cavity and the brain above and behind the bridge of his nose, right between his eyes.” He fidgeted shifting his weight from foot to foot as he continued to think out loud.

Before I could ask a question he continued, “This isn’t good cause a foreign body like that, well, it can do considerable damage and really cause some problems with that portion of the boy’s brain. You’re gonna have to get a neurosurgeon to remove the stick and they’ll have to try to repair the damage too.”

One thing I am sure of though,” he continued, “and that is there’s only one way for the spinal fluid to show itself and that’s through a hole, the stick has punched a hole. No other way, John…I tell you there’s no other way for that to happen.”

This turn of events had accelerated the urgency and spun the situation out of the ear, nose and throat expertise of Dr. Bob and into the realm of a brain surgeon.

I’m sure the hospital will call in another doc to help out but there’s really nothing more I can do.” Bob said as he walked past me. Then, without saying goodbye or good luck or anything else, he disappeared into the parking area as quickly as he had shown up.

I headed to the rear examination area to be with my son and wife. I searched from one curtained off examination area to the next. Finally I went into the last area on the right and pulled back the corner of the curtain.

That’s where I found my son John laying on his back on one of those typical emergency room types of gurney beds. When I looked at him my first thought was to focus in on where the stick was. I had expected to see something hanging out of his nose but I couldn’t see anything.

What I could see was a small stream of clear fluid coming from the left nostril. The child was in some pain but there was no blood noticeable on his face. No part of the stick could be seen even when I looked right up into John’s nose. He tried to smile and lift his head as I entered the room but then laid back onto the pillow.

Did you see the doctor?” Peg asked as she began to fill me on what had happened to this point of her day. My wife was always great during traumatic events. She kept her head and was always logical and rational in her approach but having said that, this time, she looked a bit frazzled by what had been going on.

She told me the mother of the kids John had been playing with had telephoned to tell about the accident. Knowing she had to go to the doctor’s office Peg had tried to find my mother but couldn’t so she was forced to call Donna, my secretary, to help out with Caroline. Peg described going to the pediatrician’s office and them not helping and having to come to the ER. It had been a very stressful experience to this point and she was just glad for me to be there to help think through the next steps with her.

Having been very familiar with hospitals and children and emergency rooms and all that goes with those things, this was not our first rodeo. We had experienced what happened to John when he was born and Caroline’s illness and also the number of times we had been back to the hospital with John’s bouts with pneumonia. Bouts that put him into the hospital for days at a time.

Peg and I made a good team when it came to such things. We knew we would have to draw on all of that experience in the hours that were still to come.

Through the curtains that cordoned off the spaces we could hear the examination rooms beyond beginning to fill with people. The squeaky shoes from nurses’ footsteps passed outside the area we were in. The low tones of voices contrasted the high pitched echoes of stainless steel as it clattered throughout. There were intermittent sounds of choking and coughing and muffled moans of pain and fatigue from patients and providers. The entire ward was consumed with motion and a definite sense of urgency filled every void.

I know one thing and that’s when a child hurts the parents hurt too. There was little to be done at this point other than wait to see what came out from behind Door #3 before making our next deal of the day.

It was only a moment from that last thought that a neurosurgeon came in and did a very cursory evaluation of our son’s condition. With a one word greeting of “Hello!” he walked past us and up to the table bed where John was. He put his right hand under the boy’s head, took about a three second look at his face and then turned back to us.

This guy stood about five feet nothing and oozed a very aggressive attitude in an attempt to make up for his lack of stature. A wrinkled lab coat of sorts that extended almost to his knees covered most of the shirt and tie and trousers that he wore. He had what looked like a prescription pad in his left hand and the breast pocket of the coat was smudged and streaked with from the comings and goings of pens and pencils.

The doctor had also been called by the hospital staff and when he showed up he acted like seeing a kid with a stick up his nose was a common daily occurrence for him.

Let me tell ya what you folks are going to do here.” he crowed as if anyone within ear shot was supposed to listen to his next words.

This kid needs surgery and you are the ones who need to let me operate as soon as possible. First off you have to sign these release papers so I can begin.”

What a little bully you are…” I thought. “…what a little sawn off bully.”

He started to wave a fist full of legal papers in my face. This was not exactly the way I would’ve tried to befriend someone or begin a relationship especially with a set of parents who are already majorly stressed out by a situation. He stood there putting those papers right in my face, “You need to sign these papers Mr. and Mrs. Fox and you need to sign them right now!”

I looked past him and down at John when all of this was going on. He just lay on the gurney with his eyes closed trying to be brave but not fully understanding what was happening around him.

If that was my son…” the doctor continued, ”I would have already been in the operating room! You see that stuff coming from his nose?…that’s spinal fluid!..there’s only one way for that to happen…whatever is up his nose has pierced the membrane between the nasal passage and his brain…we have to operate and we have to operate right now!”

On and on he went looking from me to my wife then back to me. As he ranted the whole time he was waving the legal papers like he was trying to sell them on a city corner somewhere.

In my brain I began to fantasize while listening to his words …‘Extra Extra read all about it…dumb parents do not react fast enough to save only son’s life…stick up a nose causes irreparable brain damage to the kid…read all about it.’

But what he was really saying was that we had a major problem that only he was going to be able to solve.

Having dealt with traumatic situations over the years the one thing we had learned was to ask a lot of questions. We would try on “what ifs” as a way of trying to get to the best plan for whatever the situation called for.

We asked him what all the operation would entail. “So what exactly are you proposing to do in the operation?” I asked.

That question fired up his ego and he removed one of the pencils from his coat pocket and used it as a pointer. “First we put him under a general anesthesia and then I am going to have to lift off and remove the frontal plate of the head.” That is to say he was going to literally cut his forehead off.

Then with this hole opened up as an entrance way into the brain I will go down in the area above the bridge of the nose.” the matter of factness of his voice was unsettling. “The stick would need to be extracted the same way it had come into the brain area but I will have to push it out from the inside.” That meant while applying pressure from inside John’s head the nose would have to be flared open somehow so the stick could then be pulled out.

The doctor would have to repair any damaged brain tissue that was caused by the stick’s penetration. After doing all of that he would work his way out and finally reattach the forehead area.

That’s the only possible solution” and when he gave it to us he didn’t sugar coat it.

The whole time when he was talking the doctor rounded the back of his hand on the side of his mouth like someone trying to gain entry into a speakeasy. He spoke in low tones as if he was telling us some sort of a secret that he didn’t want anyone else to hear. After he had completed the play by play of what we could expect he elevated his voice and continued, “But we have to act now, sign these papers and let-me-save-your-son!”

I never figured out how my father got past the admitting nurse but when he came in the exam area Peg brought him up to speed with what we were dealing with. Usually people thought he was one of the doctors anyway so he probably hadn’t asked for permission to come back to where we were. (By this time my mother had picked our daughter up from the ER waiting room and had taken her back to the house for some dinner and rest.)

After weighing what few options we had, Peg and I drew on our past experiences and finally began to come up with a game plan that seemed to make some sense. Before we ran head long into a major surgery we asked “what if” we did some testing like an x-ray or some way to better see where the stick actually was in our son’s nose.

What we want to do is move forward…” but before I could finish the thought he interrupted.

Excellent, here, sign these papers” he said quickly.

No, what I mean is, we want to move forward by doing some x-rays or whatever to see what we are dealing with before doing any surgery.” He snorted a couple of times like a very small bull and left the room in a huff but still waving the papers.

The ER staff took one regular x-ray of the affected area but the resolution was poor and showed nothing of value. In a few minutes…probably about fifteen or twenty looking back I would guess…a nurse came in telling us that a CAT scan would have to be done to better understand what we couldn’t see by just looking at John.

The technicians rolled our son out as we all followed down the corridor to the imaging center where the CAT scan machine operated. The halls were pretty typical of the many hospitals we had found ourselves in during the past years. There wasn’t the crush of people like we experienced every time we went to Gainesville to see Dr. Ayoub and there wasn’t the squalor or amplified suffering we saw at the University ER when John was first born. This was a more controlled setting but we knew it could still be as potentially dangerous as any of the places we had been before.

John began to squirm around because he was so uncomfortable. No one had allowed him to eat or drink anything or even go to the bathroom the whole time we had been there. “Dad, could I have a sip of water?” he asked, his eyes half closed because of the bright lights in the room.

Hang in there buddy…we’ll get you something soon.” I knew I had to stall while this all played out.

Any seven year old, with or without a stick up his nose, will begin to squirm especially around 7:00 in the evening. In John’s case there was not only pain and discomfort there was also the anxiety of it all…and there was, of course, the stick and the all important spinal fluid still slowly draining from his nose.

The imaging center had a special room just for the CAT scan machine. The machine looked like a very white and very tall doughnut with a sliding table that protruded from the center of the hole like a large tongue. There were no pictures on the walls, no tables and no chairs. The two doors that opened into the room were positioned on each opposing wall. Peg and Dad stayed out in the hall and I went in with the gurney.

Once in the room I was outfitted in a lead apron. My objective was to stay with John holding his head as still as possible while the machine took the necessary pictures of the affected areas. The techs calibrated the machine and monitored its movements from a glass booth located on the front wall of the room. The doughnut banged and clanked, whined, wheezed and tapped loudly as equipment like that does when taking the pictures. John lay perfectly still. After a few minutes…that seemed more like hours…we all went back to our examination room to await the results.

My dad had been pretty quite through all of this, as was his nature, and when we came back in I think he was saying a prayer by himself looking down at the floor in a corner of the room. Peggy was standing close to him. The doctor had made another failed attempt by swooping back through to pitch the operation idea again and of course he still had the papers he wanted for us to sign.

Are you sure you don’t want to go ahead and sign these papers…time is running out.” he whined. And, again we turned him down on signing anything until we had some definitive results to base our decisions on.

Just as our diminutive doctor stormed out totally frustrated that he was not having his way with us a very attractive young blonde woman dressed in a crisp new nurse’s uniform came in . None of us had seen her before she made this sudden appearance.

She looked like a regular nurse but trust me when I say…I would have taken notice of this gal even if I had been the one with the stick up his nose.

She stood a little shorter than Peggy, probably about five two or so. She was wearing what looked like a normal white uniform with typical white hospital shoes. She was very shapely but not exposed and looked to be in her mid twenties. She carried herself with a lot of confidence, head up and shoulders back. Scanning around the room she looked at each one of us directly in the eyes before she began to speak.

I was closest to the curtain where she entered and the woman stopped in front of me. With her right hand extended upward, as if to touch me on the chest, she said in a very clear but soft voice…”Listen to your heart.” Her fingers came close but never touched my body.

Without moving into the room further she turned her attention to Peggy and my father…tilting her head slightly ”Listen to your heart.” she repeated.

She looked back at me, lowering her hand, “No matter what the doctors say, no matter what they tell you, do only one thing…listen to your heart.” And with that as her final words she glanced at the three of us one last time, smiled slightly, turned and then left the room.

What the heck was that all about?” I muttered.

When have you ever heard of a nurse, or anyone else for that matter, come in and completely counter what the doctors had been telling you…especially in a emergency situation? These types of trauma situations and certainly brain damage cases are not normally resolved by committee and certainly not by a nurse…even if she was ridiculously good looking.

We had heard her very clearly and even though the three of us…Dad and Peg and I…did not go on to discuss this further the message had been clear. In the stillness of the wake she left we knew that something out of the normal had happened and it had somehow strengthened our resolve in making our decisions with whatever was to happen that night.

The curtain pulled back again and the doctor re-emerged followed by a different nurse.

The boy moved his head and blurred the pictures. We have to take some more.” the doctor was now talking in short bursts of words frustrated by how long all of this was taking. The nurse stood beside him and nodded her head in agreement.

I didn’t see how John could have moved his head because I was holding it when they took the first round of CAT scans. They say “Hold still: and you hold still. No way the images were blurred because we had held still.

All the way back down the hall we followed John’s gurney while the doctor kept up his sales pitch by telling us how bad this situation was and how we had to take steps immediately to begin the operation. While he continued to run his mouth all I could hear were the words of the pretty gal we had just encountered “Listen to your heart.”

Returning to the imaging area I cloaked back up in the lead apron and John was laid down on the part of the table that retracted back into the doughnut machine and we readied ourselves for more pictures.

As an aside to all of this, some other person came in and distracted me for a minute asking some sort of question about insurance or whatever. I answered their question but was interrupted by a muffled moaning sound of our son coming from the CAT scan machine.

Much to my surprise, when I turned back after being distracted for that single moment, another technician had come in to reposition John in the machine. By so doing she had grabbed him by his head and neck trying to pull him deeper onto the table.

What in the world are you doing!” I lunged forward to stop the woman’s hands.

This was now the second nurse who bore my hand print on her collar area. Golly that was just what we needed, some dang imaging tech causing more damage to our son. And with me standing right there trying all I could do to protect and guard him against such screw-ups.

That reinforced the fact that you can never be too careful when dealing with any of these service providers whether it is life threatening or not. In retrospect, dealing with this latest occurrence of ineptness on the part of the hospital staff added more emphasis to what the blonde nurse had told us… “Listen to your heart.” It didn’t matter to us if someone had graduated from Harvard Medical or North FloridaTech all of them were subject to messing up at any given time.

The extension of that was to not believe anything that we were seeing with our eyes but to only trust what our hearts were telling us. Not the doctors, not the nurses and not the technicians but only to listen to what was inside of us. We needed to take our lead and our guidance from the Holy Spirit and no one else.

I released my hold on the tech girl and they finally got things situated enough to take the pictures. This time instead of moving us back to our examination room in the ER we were told to wait where we were for the results.

John finally had a chance to take a little nap. He was pretty worn out by this time. It was approaching 9:00 and being a Friday night the general atmosphere where we were was beginning to become a bit more relaxed. Maybe that was more of a distorted perception on my part but what was not distorted was that I knew I wanted to get this all resolved as quickly as we could.

It was haunting almost, the phrase “Listen to your heart” pounded in my brain as I watched John rest.

The CAT scan room was very sterile and uncluttered, no chair to sit in. I was left to stand beside my son and I was glad to do that noticing that he was not in much pain at that moment. There was a control room over my left shoulder and through the large glass window that separated us I could see our doctor and some technicians standing at a console. They were all pointing at something in front of them and talking with an excitement in their voices that I could still hear even though muted by the glass. I began to feel isolated with all their smiling and grinning I was more frustrated than anything else.

Their body language looked more like making weekend plans than taking care of the business at hand. I knew these guys were probably anxious to call it a week but I just wished for that night, at least, that they weren’t so happy in doing it.

I looked down at John, he was awake now and silently looking back up at me.

Guess they’re planning a big night on the town.” I told him gesturing with my head up to the control booth. He didn’t even smile at my comment. Tears had begun to roll down his cheeks and I could see that fatigue was setting in.

The door opened on the far side of where we were and one of technicians came though the room. She had a silly looking grin on her face and without a word or even any eye contact she strolled through, looked down at John and then went out the side door.

Another one came through but this time I asked what was happening. “So what’s going on up there?”  She just shrugged and kept on going out the same door as the first.

What the heck?

When the next person from the booth entered I turned blocking her path and asked her straight up what was going on with the images. “So what do we know, did the pictures turn out?”

I’m not the doctor but…you’re gonna like what you hear…” She sidestepped me and left the room.

About that time the doctor for the night came in. I noticed that he wasn’t carrying the legal papers anymore.

Come on back down the hall and I’ll tell you where we are.” he said as he kept walking to the door. “I’ll catch up with you in the ER.”

We got John up and hurried back down the hall. Every personality we had been dealing with had certainly changed in the past hour and we knew that the news was gong to impact how the rest of the night was going to turn out.

Finally the doctor came into the examination room. “Well the pictures turned out fine this time and they clearly show that the stick has not penetrated the boy’s brain. There is a stick though and its about 5 centimeters long. That’s almost two inches. It’s lodged in the nasal passage but the images have confirmed that it can be removed with some long blunt tweezers and a very simple procedure. The stick should be extracted back out of his nose the same way it went in.”

And this was the doctor who was so emphatic that he wanted us to submit to having our son’s head opened up. Now he was telling us that the only surgical instrument to make everything alright and to remove the stick would be a pair of tweezers?

What about the spinal fluid that you were so worried about?” we asked.

Let’s move forward with getting this stick out of the boy’s head…I’ll call Bob to see if he wants the honors of removing it for you.” He had no other answers for our questions.

As if he could not sense or hear that we wanted more information, the doctor left us without any more conversation. He was off to call Dr. Bob to come back and “do the honors” of removing the stick. They were going to have to put John to sleep to do the procedure but that seemed pretty minor at the time considering the other options we had been presented with that evening.

Peg and I stayed with John as long as we could before they came to take him to surgery. Within two hours after the encounter with the Blonde the “minor procedure” was over and successfully completed. John was taken to recover in the ICU and we waited for the doctors to come out and talk to us.

There was a set of double doors leading out of the surgical suite. We watched through glass panel inserts in the doors and I could see the triumphant duo removing the outer layers of sterile surgical robes as the prepared to leave. They also saw me and separated from walking out together.

The neurosurgeon stepped into the hall first still removing his surgical mask as if for the effect of it all.

Awe…that was great, the kid is fine, resting comfortably…everything went just like I said it would.” He was crowing from the time he came through the door until he was past us. He was totally unapologetic about how he had treated us or even for being so insistent about the dangerous and unnecessary operation that he wanted to perform on our son.

I’ll probably check back in with the nurses tomorrow sometime…” There was no mention of him hammering us about signing the release papers. He never once said anything about being wrong with his diagnosis. He had no intention to admit that his vision would have resulted in us allowing him to open our son’s brain up and taking off a portion of his head.

About that spinal fluid…” I started to ask again.

Looking past me he flippantly said, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

With that he left. No remorse, only ego.

The other doctor finally came through the doorway. This was our long time friend and doctor who in years past had treated not only me but also my wife. He had even put tubes in our son’s ears when John was much smaller. While the other doctor did not know us at all we had a long time relationship with this guy.

So Bob, thanks for all your help, but what the heck happened to the spinal fluid?” I asked in as friendly a way as I could.

Bottom line is the boy is going to be fine, the procedure went well.” He looked at me with a very stern stare. Clinching his teeth together he then said “We will not discuss anything about this again, not now and not in the future.”

With that said he just kept on walking away from us.

John stayed in the recovery ICU that night. He was moved to a private room the next morning and spent a couple of days under observation. This quiet time for him would give the hospital staff and attending doctors time for any other side effects from the trauma or the removal of the stick to show themselves.

John was given a total of two Tylenol the first night after having the stick removed. He had no other complications, no other medicines for pain or infection and nothing further happened to him after we took him home.

We had in fact “listened to our hearts”…better said…God had heard our prayers and followed through once again on His promise. Now without any physical evidence to the contrary John had in fact been miraculously healed.

There is a part of us that ‘turns on’ when we are shown love. Somewhere deep inside of our brains there is a slowly triggered response that happens as we begin to trust in the person who is showing us this love. Its more of an awakening but it is a definite process as we evolve into a relationship with the one who loves us.

I love you more today than yesterday but not as much as tomorrow.” was sung by the band Spiral Staircase in 1969. Listening to the words we are able to understand the evolution we go through when we are in love…when we are loved. As this process continues, and what is not in the song lyrics, the ability to trust comes into play. And how can we not trust someone who gives us love and we love too.

These components of love and trust go hand in hand and as one grows so does the other.

There is another line from the Spiral Staircase that is easy to overlook when its sung but hard to miss when you read the lyrics without the music… “I thank the Lord for love like ours that grows ever stronger”.

That is what God does with us. He began the process of loving us long before we ever showed up to the party but when we finally see how much He cares, and we begin to love Him back, the trust begins and the bond is forged together.

This is an awesome relationship. Sadly, as with all relationships, we will at times forget how awesome it really is. Events of the day will cloud our feelings, our love will wane as will our the ability to remember. His love does not wane. This is all on us. We have to fight through our daily distractions to remember to be proactive in the relationship. Looking up helps with relocating the love and trust that we know has always been there. Him sending in a good looking blonde as an advocate doesn’t hurt either.

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