“Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together.” Psalm 34:3 (NKJV)
When life includes mental illness (MI) how can having one more complication be good? Those are times God uses other people to magnify His love for us.
We headed off to the ER. Thankfully, it was for me and not our son, Chris. I’d rather endure my physical pain than relive any emotional pain of Chris suffering.
It all started a week ago with me vomiting on Wednesday night. So I only ate several tiny crackers on Thursday. Which I vomited Thursday night. The pain in my abdomen didn’t feel like a typical intestinal bug. So Friday I drove myself to the doctor, ignoring the searing pain of each bump and turn.
The doctor prescribed antibiotics and anti-cramping medicine. “If you don’t feel any better by tomorrow, go to the ER,” he instructed me. “They’ll run tests to determine the cause. It could be anything…food poising, diverticulitis, a gall bladder attack…”
Friday I followed the doctor’s instructions to drink colorless fluids, take my meds, and eat a bland diet.
Saturday morning I tried eating some applesauce. My loss of appetite prevented me from finishing off the snack-size container. Could only manage about a tablespoon.
By 10:00 AM Saturday morning, my condition hadn’t improved. Howie and I decided to head to the ER.
We provided necessary information. They did some tests. We waited for results and provided more information. Eight hours later they admitted me and had a diagnosis. My enlarged gall bladder, complete with a gall stone, caused all the pain and discomfort.
The decision was made to remove it. IV antibiotics had to be administered to reduce the size.
My first night in the hospital proved to be exactly what others joke about. The constant interruptions. Time to wake up and take meds. An hour later, time to check vitals. Next hour, time to see if the IV is okay. I was well-taken care of and weary.
Sunday morning Howie came to visit. Soon after, Chris arrived. What a blessing to have him come! The sweet time we spent together in the hospital almost made my pain worth it. Chris was so caring and compassionate.
“Are you okay, Mom? How are you feeling? I’ve been in hospitals and I know it’s hard to get a good night sleep.”
“Yeah, Chris. You can say that again. Nurses coming and going…the IV machine beeping and then sounding an alarm when the tubing had too many bubbles… …announcements on the intercom…and even a lullaby song played over the intercom announcing the birth of a baby born in the hospital.”
Howie and Chis left after a short visit. Later Sunday afternoon Howie called.
“When Chris and I were leaving the hospital, Chris asked the doctor if he could do anything to stop the announcements from being made on the intercom outside my room.”
What a considerate gesture! Chris made an effort to guarantee me better sleep. Even though the doctor had no power over the intercom, Chris’s thoughtfulness made my day.
Sunday night Howie came for another visit carrying a beautiful yellow vase full of flowers. He showered me with small gifts. Things I didn’t even know I’d need: warm footies for my feet, Chapstick, the recharger for my cell phone…
That second night in the hospital I still endured pain and interrupted sleep. But my heart was full of the love shown by Chris and Howie. God used my enflamed gall bladder to magnify His love in my life.
During trials, I’ve learned to be on the lookout for God’s love messages sent through others. He surely sends them because He’s surely there. And surely cares.
Yesterday when I arrived home from the hospital another of God’s love messages greeted me. This time sent through the loving hands of former colleagues. On their first day back to school, those dear friends and Christian educators took the time to sign a get-well card for me. Their card was like a bouquet of blessings filled with promises of prayers.
Thank You, Father, for magnifying Your love for me through family and friends. Help me make it a priority to magnify Your love. To open Your Word and closely examine how You show Your love. How beautiful You are the closer I am to You!
Magnify the Lord as you listen to Great Is Thy Faithfulness By Cece Winans