My husband tells me he’s heading to the ER around 2:30. I say something dismissive and fall back asleep.
He texts me at 6:00 to tell me that he’ll be having surgery to remove an appendix very soon.
I beg my small group for prayer in an email while waiting for the kids to wake up so we can go to the hospital.
My small group leader texts back me to say she’ll be there in 30 minutes to get the kids.
Breakfast, kisses, good-byes, and off to the hospital to be with my husband.
He’s wheeled into surgery an hour later and I spend the time texting and talking until I’m worn.
Doctor sits me down in the conference area. Tells me it was bad. Perforated. Waste leaking into his blood stream. Hubby will be in the hospital for at least three days.
Three days stretches to six long days. Children are shuttled to and fro from one kind friend to another. I’ve called clients and postponed appointments. I walk with him in the hospital. Rub essential oils on his tummy. Eat meals brought by friends. Make fun of his “gas baby.” Take trip after trip to the hospital with the kids who refuse to go a day without seeing him. Put the three to bed alone and exhausted. The days run together.
And all of a sudden, he’s home.
Memory fragments over trauma and these fragments are from early November.
October had been the best month I had ever seen as a photographer: five paying clients (my maximum!) and a trade with my CPA for photography if he’ll keep my taxes straight.
Then November comes crashing down with my husband’s appendectomy in that first week of the month. My God-sized dream of photography drops to the very bottom of the to-do list and I inch forward on survival mode hardly knowing when a day has passed.
But this temporary suffering was more of what God had for me. The suffering was its own form of a God–sized Dream.
I’ve never felt quite at home with a group of people. Being a strong-willed introvert with decisive leadership skills but a one-to-one social awkwardness has often felt like a thorn in my flesh. Sure, I can take your problem, analyze it, give you a 12 step action plan, and rally a whole crowd to do it… but making friends scares the pants off of me.
For six long days in the hospital and almost a week afterward, people rallied around me and I wasn’t leading them to do it. God was leading them to do it. God was leading them to whisper gently into my biggest fear. He was sending them to counter the lie that I didn’t matter to anyone. They countered the lie that my unique set of skills were valueless.
So my husband had an appendectomy and we all suffered through a week of being stretched in so many different directions. Meanwhile we listened to the chorus that we were valued over and over and over through one small act of service after another.
Through it all, a tribe that I didn’t know I had arose. This tribe that had pushed me toward Him, delivered meals, provided childcare, and whispered His words over me in an hour of need.
Sometimes suffering is part of the plan for us. Sometimes suffering meets one of our definitions of a God-sized Dream: wanting more of what God has for us. (<====Click to Tweet)
Shared By: Melissa Aldrich