At various times throughout the day, I am a wreck. At other times, I am fine. I think part of my problem is I am so focused on myself, which is not a good thing for many reasons. I remember early on in my infertility I read something about suffering that suggested getting involved in some sort of volunteer work to help you focus on something bigger than yourself. Well, I think that's my problem right now. I need to focus on the big picture - that there are many people much worse off than me in life. People are dying, suffering, cold, abandoned, sick, you name it. I am just having a routine surgery - not to save my life, but to improve it. My aunt told me the hospital she works at does 10-20 laparotomies a day, and it's in a small city, so that helped put it in perspective for me too.
Speaking of my aunt, she is meeting us in Omaha and will stay with me the entire time I'm out there. That will allow my husband to go home for a few days of work, then fly back out on the following Monday in time for my post-op appointment. How nice is that of her? I need to remember her complete and utter generosity and try to do the same the next time an opportunity presents itself in my life. I don't know that I would even think of going above and beyond to that degree for someone. She's a really good person. My husband, meanwhile, feels really bad that he didn't take off the whole week. It was a difficult decision at the time because he had just started a new job and had already negotiated a week off a little over a month into his time there for an already-planned vacation. I have break-downs once in a while about him not being there, and I have probably made him feel really bad about it. I'm okay now though, because, as I told him, no offense to him but my aunt (a nurse) will take wonderful care of me.
So now, to be totally indulgent, I am going to list the things I am worried about to get them all out. I know myself, and if I keep things inside they tend to grow and take on a life of their own. Usually if I voice them (or type them in this case) they start to diminish. So here goes:
1) I'm afraid I'll die during surgery due to some sort of complication (I have had anesthesia twice now and have never had a problem, not even nausea, so I know there's nothing to fear. Plus Creighton is a great hospital)
2) I'll get a blood clot after the surgery and die of that (I think I read about this happening to someone somewhere, so I took it on as my own)
3) I'll be sick and lonely in the hospital at night (if that does happen, I'll get through it. This too shall pass)
4) I'll have to pee a million times while I wait for surgery and will have to keep dragging my IV to the bathroom (probably the most realistic of my fears, but it probably shouldn't be a fear, so to speak)
5) I'll be in terrible, excruciating pain and no medication will help (my sister-in-law described her post-C-section experience recently and so I began to fear a similar situation)
6) I'll wake up from surgery and be told that it was much worse than they thought and a)it couldn't be fixed, b)they had to do a hysterectomy, c)they found something else like cancer or any other horrible thing that could be found, d)I have to have another surgery, or, e)they'll tell me it spread to my lungs and/or brain. (Okay - Dr. Hilgers preserves fertility at all costs, he won't do a hysterectomy, and as for finding something else bad, I have had tons of blood work done, not to mention a laparoscopy, and have always been fine.. also, I got the lung and brain thing from a neighbor who told me it spread to her aunt's spine and can go to those places as while. Dr. Hilgers never mentioned this for me and I have no reason to fear it.)
7) The thing he's going to remove on my liver comes back as being cancer (as I've said in the past, if Dr. Hilgers even thought there was a 1% chance it was cancer he wouldn't have waited over four months to remove it, not to mention he never said anything about cancer and I'm quite sure cancer doesn't look like it does.)
8) I have to leave my dog Sophie at my in-laws and I will miss her terribly. (This I have to do, so it's not that I'm afraid it might happen, but you get the point. I cry at least twice a day about this. Misplaced emotion, maybe? I know she'll be okay - as long as she doesn't sneak out an open door - but it's her first time staying there so I worry. She's my baby!)
So that's it. Actually, as I was writing it I was amazed at how short the list is. When they're all swirling around in my head it seems like the list is endless. So this little exercise helped already! The other obvious thing that came to me while writing the list is this: If I had an ounce of faith I wouldn't be afraid of any of those things! I know fear is normal, but I really need to trust God more. Why can't I trust that he'll protect me? If the absolute worst possible outcome happens - death - then I'll be with Him! If I truly believed in Him and believed His promises, I wouldn't have so much anxiety. It all comes down to that.
Speaking of that, the other day I had a very brief glimpse into what I can only describe as wisdom. I was daydreaming and the thought popped into my mind that Christ will protect us always, from everything. That's nothing new, I hear it all the time and try to remind myself of it often. But it's usually just one of those thoughts that goes in one ear and out the other (which I now realize happens with 99.9% of things with me). Well, suddenly this concept made complete sense to me. Just complete sense. It was as if the words sunk deep into my soul and I heard it for the first time, and felt it. By the time it took me to think the thought, though, it was gone and I was thinking back about the amazing feeling and insight I had just had. It didn't linger, it seriously lasted maybe 15 seconds. But it was like God gave me a glimpse. And once you get a glimpse you want more! What if I felt that way all the time - like words made sense and I actually 'got' God's promises? That would be amazing. Not to be too over-the-top here, but maybe that's what heaven is like.
Anyway, I brushed it off shortly thereafter, because nothing really happened, but felt compelled to tell my husband last night while out for my birthday dinner. He immediately commented that things like that never happen to him and they seem to happen to me a lot. He said it was absolutely God's grace and I need to remember it. I'm glad I have him to remind me of that because I probably would otherwise forget experiences like this immediately (negative things are on constant rotation in my brain but the good moments get almost no air play).
So I am going to take this experience with me to Omaha. I believe it was God's way of allowing me to glimpse the way I should be feeling - the warmth of His protecting arms around me, no matter what happens. Seriously, what bad can happen to you when you have God? I picture him up there thinking, "She just can't get it on her own! Alright, let's give her a glimpse so she knows what she's missing." He must be really frustrated with me, but he obviously loves me because, for a few seconds, I really felt it.