I’m posting to give an update on my health and ask for prayers and support. I have been dealing with rather serious sinus issues for almost a year. After multiple unsuccessful treatments (antibiotics, steroids, allergy meds, etc.), I am going to have sinus surgery. I saw a specialist this past Monday, and he agreed to do the surgery. Not only do I need to have everything “cleaned out” (I’ll spare you the details), I also have a deviated septum that must be corrected.
The surgery is very routine, several people I know have had it (or something similar), and most people have no complications. The biggest risk is that the surgeon is working in delicate areas near the brain and eyes, so he must be very careful throughout the procedure. Because of that, the surgery will take 2-3 hours. I will be anesthetized the whole time, and it is an out-patient surgery so I should be able to go home on the same day.
For several reasons, I am not feeling too nervous about the surgery.
- God is in control and is the great Healer. I believe He is going to use this surgery to heal me.
- My surgeon specializes in this particular procedure, and the surgery will take place at a very good hospital–MUSC in Charleston, SC.
- I have already been through one major surgery–thyroid surgery in Taiwan–and I know I can face another. In many ways, the thyroid surgery was scarier because we didn’t know for sure that the tumor was benign plus I had to contend with language and cultural barriers in addition to the normal stress of surgery.
God has already been at work in making this come together. Let me tell you about scheduling this procedure.
When I saw the doctor on Monday, I was naively hoping that I could get the surgery as early as the next week, but the doctor said it would probably be late April. However, when the surgery scheduler called on Tuesday, it was looking like there were no dates in April at all. Unfortunately, because of two major upcoming travel plans (I have a big conference to attend in late May, and I am matron-of-honor in my best friend’s wedding in early June), we weren’t sure that we would be able to schedule the surgery and fit in post-op visits before all of my travels, thus pushing the surgery all the way back to July. I pleaded with the scheduler to do whatever she could to get me an earlier date, and she said she would see what she could do and call back the next day.
When I got off the phone with her, I sobbed. I couldn’t accept the possibility that I might not get in for surgery for another two to three months. I cried and prayed and asked friends and family to pray that God would open up a surgery slot for me that would be soon and would allow for my travels to go unaltered. Early the next morning, the scheduler called back and told me that they shuffled some OR time around and we could do the surgery this coming Wednesday, April 12! Praise the Lord for a huge answered prayer!
Since then, I’ve been answering pre-op phone calls, getting medications in order, and thinking about all the details of this surgery. I have several prayer requests that I’d like to share and ask you to lift up to the One who holds it all in His hands.
- Pray for me on the day of the surgery (Wed. April 12)! Pray that God will grant favor to the surgeon and healing to me through that surgeon’s hands.
- One big hurdle is that Charles cannot get off work to take me up for surgery,* so I am still looking for someone who would be willing to give up a day to help me. Please pray that God will give me the right person, someone who will be understanding of my anxiety issues and will be a calming presence and a willing friend. UPDATE: Praising the Lord that a friend from church is able to take me to and from Charleston for my procedure. Thank you, God, for your provision.
- From what I understand, the recovery is not all that easy. I’m kind of a wimp when it comes to pain, so I ask for prayers that I will endure the pain and recover quickly.
- I also ask for prayers that this surgery will be effective in clearing my sinuses and nasal passages, helping me breathe better, keeping away further infections (and opening things up so that if I do get sick, medicine will be able to do its thing), clearing my ears by taking away the swelling in my eustachian tubes, and giving me back my full sense of smell. As the doctor told me, this surgery is often quite successful, but there are some people who continue to have recurring sinus issues, and particularly, many people don’t regain their normal sense of smell.
- Finally, I ask that you would think of Charles and Nellah as they help me through this period of pain and recovery. Pray that we will be able to juggle doctor’s appointments (mine and Nellah’s), grocery shopping, cooking meals, household chores, etc. while I’m down.
Let me close with this thought. Since my surgery is happening on Wednesday of this next week, I don’t expect to be recovered enough to go to church on Easter Sunday. That saddens me because Easter is my favorite church holiday. I love being in church on Easter, singing songs of praise to Jesus, focusing on the resurrection and Christ’s victory over death. I will be sad to miss this Easter celebration, BUT I am so thankful that we have a resurrected Savior to celebrate. Facing this surgery would be so much harder if I didn’t have the certain hope of life after death, the constant presence of the Holy Spirit in my life, the comforting knowledge that Jesus understands because he became human and bore our suffering, and the knowledge that God the Father is watching over me. I am so thankful to know Christ and the power of His resurrection. Praise the Lord!
*This is not meant to say anything bad about Charles’s company; it’s just that he and one other man are the only tech guys for the City of Beaufort, and his co-worker requested this week off months ago and will be traveling. Since they can’t both be gone at the same time, Charles has to work that day.