The Lord will cover you with His feathers and under His Wings you will find refuge. His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart
In the last two and half months since moving from South Florida to Oviedo, I have been shocked, amazed, and left speechless (not easily done) at the people in my new home town.
I was doing due diligence and had scheduled to have a dermatology full body scan as there were a few places that appeared questionable. Sure enough there was a basal cell carcinoma on my chest. This was removed and I was sent on my way. However, after four days, instead of showing signs of healing, a red, raised, angry circle began to form around the incision site. It was Friday and I realized I needed to have the doctor look at it. I called the doctor’s office in the early afternoon and was told that while she was not in, the MA (Medical Assistant) would call me back. By 4:30, I knew it was not going to happen. In fact, when I called the office back, the phones had already been turned over to the answering service!
“What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?”. Matthew 16:26
I have always prided myself in being efficient, goal oriented, doing whatever it took to accomplish a mission. I come from a long line of strong, self-sufficient women and take my responsibilities seriously. After all, I must uphold my families honor and traditions..
Yet, years of physically doing whatever is needed, being too prideful and not patient enough to seek help have taken their toll. A lifetime spent multi-tasking to the point where you mind can no long shut off threatens to deafen God’s sweet whispers. While I never graduated college I had a Ph.D in hurry.
Moving is challenging physically, emotionally and mentally. But I was confident that we were up to the task. After all, I had moved many times in my life. In fact, at an early age my mom taught us to pack up our own rooms so I was rather confident, okay cocky that although I was much older I was up to the task.
We made it to Oviedo, FL in fine shape but two days later I wondered into the office and noticed that a small box housing the grandmother clock weights was by my desk and I thought, “That box should be by the clock!.” I bent down to lift and turn and my left hip slipped right out causing the leg to retract about 5 inches and my knee to turn towards the right knee. I was a pain-ridden flamingo standing on one leg screaming “Thad, Thad!” Now unbeknownst to me Thad was having a moment of his own with an attack of colitis which had him tied to the chamber pot. Hearing me scream in pain he responded, “I’m coming, I’m coming! This yelling “Thad, Thad!” and “I’m Coming, I’m Coming!” went on for what seemed to be forever but was realistically probably 20-30 seconds.
It’s funny where your mind goes as you try to handle the pain, and try to get your body to somewhere safe like an office chair rather than fall. I thought – “What must the neighbors be thinking about their new retirees that moved in next door?” I know, you know what I mean.
I thought if I could just lie down on the bed, it might go back in. So Thad wheeled me and my desk chair into the bedroom where I quickly realized I wasn’t able to stretch out. My clear thinking husband suggested (horrors!) that we call 911 to which I replied “I didn’t shower last night – I have to shower!!” As he pushed me towards the shower I was dismayed to realize that there was no way I could step down into the shower and that me and my stinky body were about to go to the emergency room.
An ambulance ride to the hospital, x-rays to rule out a fracture, Propofol for pain, and a resetting of the hip and I was good as new. Or so I thought.
Twenty days later, while conquering the last frontier by unpacking the garage supplies I bent over to put two boxes of side walk chalk on a bottom shelf and a repeat performance occurred. I was stunned! I lay on the garage floor waiting for the ambulance in total disbelief I was thinking “This can’t be happening” and “Why, God, why?”
Medically, I understand that each time the hip is dislocated the ligaments become stretched and reoccurrence becomes more probable. But mentally, I have been trying to come to terms with this new limitation. Trying to find the reasons why and more importantly adjust to a new way of moving without compromising my lifestyle.
Not an easy task for a “type A”, goal oriented, I can do all things —
Uh, Oh. Somehow I forgot about the “Through Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4:13! It took two dislocations to make me realize that while I am good at packing and moving and that God created these amazing bodies I have not always been a good steward of it. In fact, I have worn many of my parts out as evidence by the arthritis that has taken up residence in my back, kneck, hands and fingers; making itself know to me daily.
So why did this happen? I fell back into my old ways and became obsessed with doing and forgot to be; giving little respect to my body-God’s Temple (1 Cor 6:19). I needed to be humbled. I needed to slow down. I was over extending myself physically to meet my own self-absorbed, self-dictated goals. I was spending more time organizing our home than time in our Father’s home and in His word. I needed to learn to do things differently and some things not at all. My mind was not where it should have been and because of this my body and my soul became dislocated.
A sign in the x-ray department read:
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. – Romans 15:13 NIV
While I do not believe God created this scenario I do believe that if we seek Him throughout our days, He will use these events to strengthen us and guide us. I am thankful that our God is a God of grace, patience and mercy. He gives us second chances to heal not only a dislocated hip but a dislocated soul.
Thanks be to God.
God, make a fresh start in me, shape a Genesis week from the chaos of my life. Psalm 51:10 (The Message Bible)
The challenges were piling up and I was feeling scared and alone:
- Our last pet passed to greener pastures and we have agreed not to have another pet for a while.
- Our home had been on the market for two months and there were no takers.
- We had bought another home and money was pouring out in renovations.
- Meanwhile at the old home: the garage door sprung, the air conditioning kept turning off and on as if it were possessed, the cold water hose under the kitchen sink burst and took a week to get the part in.
- My husband received a new cancer diagnosis.
I was beginning to crack.
It’s been a while since I posted because I have been living in a maelstrom of moving from Boca Raton, FL to Oviedo, Fl. Packing up, moving, and unpacking have been my 24/7 purpose these last four weeks. Moving is organized chaos at best, but add the fact that it’s been 29 years since we last moved and I am that much older; my brain hurts from keeping track of the myriad of details and my body hurts from the long hours of packing and unpacking.
However, throughout this self-inflicted turmoil there have been angels who have come along side us to help us.
I walk the familiar streets of my neighborhood knowing there are precious few days left. I reminisce about block parties, impromptu neighbor visits under the shade of an oak tree enjoying a beer or a glass of wine after yard work, children playing basketball in the street, triumphs and losses. As I walk, I meet well familiar faces and stop to say a few last words, pet their dogs and feel the ache of a sore heart. I am already missing them.