I watched the lights in the ceiling going past overhead, like the striping on the freeway – light, blank, light, blank, light…. I have the last minute jitters. Brain surgery, but they’ll only take out a little bit, about the size of a D-cell battery my neuro-surgeon told me. It sounded like a fair amount to me.
I’d just undergone a test where a catheter was inserted into an artery and then pushed up into my brain to numb one side. They asked me a lot of questions to see if my speech or memory or muscles were affected. Then they moved the catheter to the other side to see what happened when it was numbed.
“We have good news,” my surgeon told me, “the right side of your brain isn’t very smart so you won’t miss a piece of it.” We’d laughed then. Mine was nervous laughter: I think hers was relief. It must be almost as hard on the surgeon as on the patient. I’m glad I’m not the surgeon, but I’d prefer not being the patient either.
I guess it is good that the right side of my brain isn’t very smart, because that is where my seizures originate – the right temporal lobe, and I will have a right temporal lobectomy.
Sounds scary and I am afraid, lying on the stretcher, moving toward the operating room. I’m so afraid that I’ll forget my children and all the little things about them growing up. That’s all I really care about, except I don’t want to be paralyzed or in a coma and be a burden to my poor husband and all of them. I always joke with the family that they will be glad if I lose some of my speech; I talk too much. That makes me smile even now, on the stretcher. But, I do hope I can talk. I know they do too.
It is a comfort to me to know that I am finally doing what God wants me to do. I have felt Him directing me to do this for at least a year, but I’ve been so scared. “Lord, please! It’s brain surgery!! Couldn’t you just fix it, heal me?” “Trust me,” that’s what I always heard Him say, “Trust me.” I’d been anointed and prayed for twice, and of course all my family and friends prayed for me all the time. “Trust me,” He said.
It is so easy to tell everyone else that they can trust the Lord to be with them through their very most difficult times; He will take care of you. And I know it’s true. It’s just so very much harder to be the one doing the trusting. It’s not that I don’t; it’s just that I’d so much rather not have to.
I wonder if Jesus felt a little this way the night He prayed in the garden, “And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.”* Of course, He wasn’t afraid like I am, or was He? He trusted the Father completely, but still He prayed that it wouldn’t have to happen the way it did. I trust Him also, but still, I am afraid; I wish there was another way.
But I am on a faith journey and in the final stretch. Since my first seizure six years ago, through countless scans, multiple medications and their various side-effects, through deep times of disappointment and discouragement, I have been traveling to this point of faith and trust. I trust Him now in my most fearful time. “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”*
The stretcher turns the corner into the surgery suite. My doctor comes out to see me and suddenly I’m afraid again. I feel tears run down the side of my face into my hair. She leans over and asks, “So how are you doing?” I look at her and all I can say is, “Promise me I’ll remember my children.” She assures me that everything will be fine, and I believe her, and I believe Him, and it is.
I am so glad I trusted Him. I am so thankful for His goodness. I have learned so much.
All verses in the KJV
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