For several weeks, I had been contemplating having gall bladder surgery. I flip-flopped back and forth, trying to decide if I could just live with the pain and discomfort or if it would be best to just go ahead and take care of it. I heard from friends on both sides of the fence. Some said they lived with theirs for six years before having it out. Others said they didn’t wait and it was the best decision of their life. So, what to do…I called and set up the surgery. Then, I called and cancelled the surgery. Then, I called again and set it up. The nurse probably thought I was crazy, which, under the circumstances, is a perfectly logical assessment. Anyway, I finally set the date, got all the pre-op information and then waited.
On the night before the surgery, I was beginning to wish I had cancelled. I really hate being put to sleep. Not because I don’t think I will wake up, but I just hate that feeling of wanting to be awake and feeling unable to be totally awake. I know some people like that sleepy feeling and they just sleep for as long as they can. I don’t. I want to be awake immediately and my first words are always, “Diet Coke.” As I stood in the bathroom, thinking about how much I hate being drugged, I also thought about how much I hate having an IV. All my life, I have hated shots, needles, and IVs. I literally break out in a cold sweat, feel faint, and I panic. Then, it hit me. What must it be like for Lauren? How can she have faced all those surgeries without going crazy? My surgery was going to be simple. Three small incisions, laproscopic, able to be up and around in a few days, how bad was that? What if I was having heart surgery instead? I felt sick just thinking about it. Not just sick thinking, “What if that were me?” but sick thinking about my precious daughter who had endured it, not once, but multiple times. I hated the image in my head. I hated the pain that I knew she had. I hated myself for being so weak. I hated the fact that it wasn’t over for her. And that was the biggest ache of all.
I know that Lauren and I started this blog a long time ago. We both wanted to tell her story and mine. The daily rigor of working as a teacher kept me from continuing, though Lauren asked me regularly if I could start back up again. Now here I am, with another piece. This piece is not so much a telling of the story of her life, but a look at her incredible obstacles. Since my last post, she has suffered sicknesses of all types. She’s been to the doctor every month, sometimes multiple times. Will she ever get better? That’s the question she wants answered. I don’t know what I should tell her, because I’m a little afraid of what the answer might be. Thankfully, God has provided abundant blessings on her behalf, so I have hope. Hang in there, Lauren. I love you.