Lung Biopsy

September 9, 2012

Four days after my biopsy. My soreness is all gone, but I’m coughing up a little blood. My airway feels much more “open” and breathing is easier than I remember it being before. Earlier this week I was choking on the surplus of air I was able to get into my lungs. Yes, “lungs.” Two of them working together.

That’s a victory to me.


Faith Like Pee

November 7, 2011

“If you don’t pee by this afternoon, we’ll have to send you home with a catheter,” the nurse stated with an apathetic expression on her face. It was a mix of her words, the expression on her face and the stress of being in a hospital that filled me with intense dread. That and the anxiety of watching your body slowly lose it’s ability to function autonomously. Urinating had been getting harder and harder for me after each surgery. I simply was unable to do it without a skinny, plastic tube inserted into my penis. The thought of taking this home with me destroyed my motivation to keep living. Inside those healing walls where patients are cured, I wanted to die.

The nurses told me drinking more fluids would help, so I drank until I was vomiting all over myself again. The nurses told me walking would help ease my bladder, so I walked. Despite the pain it caused me, I walked. I decided to take one last walk before going home, already accepting that this catheter was coming home with me. My father walked behind me, prepared to catch me if I fell. I made my way from the adult hospital to the children’s hospital and from there, I made my way to the children’s surgery waiting room. A place I had spent many moments of my life, but not enough moments to exorcise the demons that lived within me. There would not be enough moments in my life to berid myself of them. I had accepted that reality too. These demons would be with me all of my life and I slowly learned to live symbiotically with them.

I found a children’s activity magazine and sat down in the empty waiting room (surgeries were always in the morning) to read through it. As I flipped through the pages, reading the stories and admiring the artwork, memories of my childhood inside this very hospital flooded through my mind. Before I could acknowledge my emotional pain, tears began to fall, staining the pages of the magazine. Sobs soon accompanied my tears and my father, who had been sitting beside me quietly, looked at me and asked, “What’s wrong?” “Why does it have to be this way?” I sobbed. My father looked at me and I could see immense sadness in his eyes. He didn’t answer my question. How could he? He must have asked himself the same question thousands of times. Instead, he stood up from his chair, walked behind me and silently began rubbing my shoulders. I could tell he was silently praying because the rubbing stopped and he simply held my shoulders for a moment.

We made our way back to my hospital room. Still feeling emotional, I took the urinating jug into the bathroom in one last attempt to urinate before going home with a catheter. I held the container under me, feeling the urge to urinate, but unable to do so. It was all too much now. I began sobbing, “God, please don’t leave me. Don’t abandon me.” “Help me pee, God… Please, don’t leave me,” I pleaded with tears in my eye. Almost immediately and without any difficulty at all, urine began streaming from me. Filling almost a third of the container, I urinated.

The Lord of the Universe, Creator of Everything, in all of His glory, helped me pee. Any doubts I may have had about His love for me and His plans for me were gone in an instant. I knew at that moment that I was not alone, that I was loved and that my God would always be at my side. My pain and suffering would not be without a reason. A feeling of relief and understanding enveloped me. A sense of purpose overcame me. I knew then as I knew when I was a small child that I was where I needed to be. Faith poured from me again… Much like my pee.

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