I have been meaning write this for some time now. It is personal. And may disappear from my blog sometime in the future. But for now, I would like to share it.
. . . . .
In addition to the tremendous miracle of my diagnosis, there were many other miracles associated with my surgery. We know it was more than a coincidence that we were referred to a skilled surgeon, conveniently located right here in Ogden, who was competent to perform the operation. And we know it was more than a coincidence that he just happened to be trained by the leading MALS researcher/surgeon in the world.
. . . . .
At the beginning of my post about the surgery, I gave a brief description of the scheduling mishap. Saying we were frustrated when I was notified that my operation would be rescheduled for three weeks later would be an understatement. It wasn't just a matter of convenience, I was in bad shape. I was sick every night, and we were desperately counting down the days until surgery. Waiting three weeks just didn't seem possible; we went to sleep feeling helpless and dejected.
Steve left for work the next morning and told me that he prayed that if this was truly Heavenly Father's will, that a way would be made possible for me to have the surgery as originally scheduled. He told me I needed to pray for the same thing.
I was discouraged, disheartened, distressed.
Dr. Steppacher had already explained the situation (and apologized profusely). It was impossible for him to perform the surgery, as planned. And just because it wasn't going to be done when we wanted it to be done wouldn't mean it wasn't the Lord's will, would it? What good would it do to pray for something that wasn't possible?
But I knelt down and prayed. With my children. A humble prayer. A pleading prayer.
Not ten minutes later, Dr. Steppacher called to say that he was able to get me on the schedule for March 4. Just one day later than initially planned. I immediately called Steve, in tears. Thankful. And a little ashamed.
Prayer is real. Prayers are answered. Even when we lack faith.
. . . . .
My grandpa called me the night before my surgery saying that he had prayed that they would open me up and find a simpler solution. I said thank you. Of course it would be nice to find a simpler solution. But I the results from the angiogram had already confirmed that a bypass was necessary. We were just hoping the surgeons didn't find more damage than anticipated.
The morning of my surgery, I was given a priesthood blessing by Steve and his dad. Among other things, Steve prayed that the doctors would find a simple solution as they operated on me. Hearing it for the second time got my attention. Is it possible that the Lord will bless us with things that we have deemed to be impossible?
Instead of the bypass, Dr. Steppacher was able to use a patch to restore blood flow through the celiac artery. A solution that hadn't even been considered. A simpler (and far better) solution.
With God all things are possible.
. . . . .
My recovery, especially my recovery at home, has been slower and more difficult than I expected. On one particularly burdensome day, I was reading an inspirational book that talked about the Lord answering our prayers through other people. I knew that was possible. I've had my prayers answered through other people numerous times before. But how was that going to help me then? My kids were already being taken care of by a wonderful mother-in-law. Kind friends were scheduled to bring dinners. But still, that didn't seem to be what I needed. I was sitting in my chair, gazing out the window. Sick to my stomach, in pain, frustrated, and lonely.
And then the doorbell rang. Flowers. Beautiful roses. I wish I could find the note to record exactly what was written, but it said something about hoping that I could feel the love and concern from my family and friends. It was exactly what I needed at exactly the right moment.
Thank you, MaRea.
The Lord loves each of us. And He is aware of our needs. And He will answer our prayers.
. . . . .
And finally, I would like to share one other thing from my priesthood blessing. Steve blessed me that the angels of heaven would surround me in the operating room. As they wheeled me away from Steve towards the operating room, I was as nervous and apprehensive as I had ever been. But as soon as I entered the operating room, I felt it. I felt them. I really did.
. . . . .
Thank you all for your prayers. They have bolstered me up and brought me peace.
(And thank you, Jack, for fasting for me. Your eight-year-old faith inspires me.)