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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Question for People who Pray

Yuri Kugach. His work is great. See more here
People who pray, I'd be interested in your thoughts on this one.

I have cancer surgery scheduled for today. On the sliding scale, it's not super scary surgery. My last biopsy results were neither "benign" nor "malignant" but rather "cannot rule out cancer" so more stuff will be removed today and studied. Everything is predicted to be brief and not-too-traumatic.

Even so I'm worried. I grew up with horrifying tales of my maternal grandmother dying young, slowly, and painfully of cancer. My mother would tell stories of how her mother cried out in pain, and they wouldn't give her more pain killers, because she might become addicted, and my mother shouting at them, "She's dying! So what if she becomes addicted?"

When I heard those tales, I almost inhabited the white, sterile, cold American hospital room where this woman of the poppy-strewn fields and mammal-rich mountains of Slovakia slowly and painfully breathed her last. I would become so outraged at the American doctors who tortured her to death and so terrified that that would be my own fate, because "it runs in the family."

The "it" of the above sentence is, I think, not cancer, but some banshee curse. Oh, stop, D, look on the bright side. Okay.

I was by my own mother's bed as she died of cancer, holding her hand, wiping her tears, feeling her life escape from her body like a wild bird that had been in a cage far too long.

And by the bed of my brother Mike, and my sister Antoinette.

So, yeah, scared, but today's surgery is low-risk and everyone has high hopes that the new biopsy results will not be ultra-scary.

Yesterday I was standing in the kitchen. I had just eaten breakfast and finished washing the dishes. I suddenly realized, with some horror, that one of my bodily organs was malfunctioning. I turned to everyone's favorite doctor, google, and discovered that I needed to get to a doctor, pronto. I did. The news I received was not horrible, but not great, either. I need to be watched and this rather beloved bodily organ may never function as well again.

So. I came back and all these wonderful people on Facebook said they had been praying for me. I knew that they had. They knew about surgery today. And, in the midst of all that prayer, God smote a totally unrelated bodily organ.

I'm not asking the big questions. I know about what's going on in Syria, Iraq, North Korea. I'm asking about me, a woman awash in prayer, who just lost the full functioning of one of her favorite bodily organs.

I don't know the answer.

I do know that after I left the doctor's office, I did pray my daily rosary. It's a discipline. No matter how pissed off, confused, or devastated I am, I pray those same prayers.

God, I showed up.

Gotta go. 

1 comment:

  1. Dearest Danush,

    Our God is the god who gives second chances (even third and hundreth). Keep the faith, Baby! Believing and receiving is the key. From the NIV: Psalm 91

    Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
        will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[a]

    I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
        my God, in whom I trust.”

    Surely he will save you
        from the fowler’s snare
        and from the deadly pestilence.

    He will cover you with his feathers,
        and under his wings you will find refuge;
        his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

    You will not fear the terror of night,
        nor the arrow that flies by day,

    nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
        nor the plague that destroys at midday.

    A thousand may fall at your side,
        ten thousand at your right hand,
        but it will not come near you.

    You will only observe with your eyes
        and see the punishment of the wicked.

    If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,”
        and you make the Most High your dwelling,
    no harm will overtake you,
        no disaster will come near your tent.
    For he will command his angels concerning you
        to guard you in all your ways;
    they will lift you up in their hands,
        so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
    You will tread on the lion and the cobra;
        you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
    “Because he[b] loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him;
        I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
    He will call on me, and I will answer him;
        I will be with him in trouble,
        I will deliver him and honor him.
    With long life I will satisfy him
        and show him my salvation.” Sending armies of angels your way!