Update on my surgery. First off thanks for all the love, support and prayers on my behalf. It’s funny how I had been documenting my God experiences in my posts and blogs. Only God knew what He was preparing me for. Only I knew what I was willing to sacrifice out of love and gratitude for all that He continually bestows on me. How could I not respond to His call? So much has happened in this past year for me but by far, the greatest gift God gave me was my cancer diagnosis. It has truly opened my eyes to just how much God loves His children.
Let me start by saying death no longer frightens me. The minute we are born, we are working our way toward death. That’s reality. How we choose to live our life up until we take our last breathe is our choice.
I was going into battle to claim victory over cancer. Not the two physical cancers that could take my life. I was going in to have every emotional stress, burden, fear, you name it, successfully removed. I had done all the necessary pre-op and now the Greatest Surgeon anyone could ever have was ready to successfully remove those cancerous cells.
A little background into what I’m talking about.
December 2019, my word for 2020 was “surrender”. I wanted all that prevented me from loving God as I should to be obliterated away from my path. Ready the way of the Lord. The Divine Essence of my being Who has gently guided me all my life, knew that I was serious and He said to me: “Trust me, I will never abandon you. I will carry you all the way”.
January the journey to surrender begins
My husband and I were driving to my youngest granddaughter’s birthday celebration. It was snowing, the road was icy and our car spun out of control. As it was spinning I felt my side begin to rise up. I remember saying, this is it we’re about to be in a car wreck. There was a tremendous peace that came over me. Instead of fear first, I turned to trust first. In those split seconds, I felt a force pull the car down. The car had spun around twice and we were now facing whatever traffic that would come our way. Augie, my husband, composed himself and drove back to our side of the road. God had just given me my first test in trusting Him on this journey of surrender. I reacted in trust, not fear. Neither my husband, nor my children understood the significance of what had happened but I did. Fear not for I am with you.
COVID introduce itself to the world
March swirls around and all hell broke loose. A pandemic causes the world to shut down. People are dying, we wonder will I be next? Will loved ones pay the price. Frenzy’s take place, our lives change and many people begin taking cautious baby steps toward trusting in God. Others turn their attention to the chaos that is ensuing. If we were wise we recognized the fight of good and evil. If we were wiser, we recognized the battle of those two forces that live in each of us. As I watched evil forces attach themselves to the political world in hopes of creating The Great Divide, I prayed to God to keep me focused on His truth not mans truth. I didn’t fear the viral pandemic, I feared the division of our country, family, friends and neighbors consumed by evils twists and turns. God showed me during this time how His children are praying but we don’t know how to listen. How could we? We are to preoccupied to pay attention. In order to hear God we have to open our eyes, ears and hearts to His voice. God speaks to us in so many ways, we just have to train ourselves to recognize His call. Second lesson taught. Make the time to let God in. Learn to Listen. God answers our prayers daily we just do not listen. That is our fault not Gods’.
May, my mother dies during COVID.
I never had a mother/daughter relationship with my mom and we both suffered because of it. I was always uneasy in her presence. I never wanted to see the human side of her maybe because it would make her the mom I needed and I was afraid she might abandon me. When she died during COVID, I felt peaceful because I knew I had been the best daughter I could be under the circumstances. I was finally able to see her humanness, understood her struggles and I was able to surrender to foregiveness. Lesson, See the humanness in those we do not understand so we can forgive ourself.
Summer brings torrential winds that in a split second knocks down a tree, electric pole, and a live wire spinning its way onto my property. I look at it and say, this is it, my house is about to burn down. I hear God ask if I trust Him. I walk away from my door and sit down. I breathe, then I return to the door. The wind stopped the wire landed live side up and my house was still standing. Lesson, get out of the house dummy. lol. Real lesson, Be not afraid, I can calm the greatest of storms.
August, the first cancer diagnosis
In the process of this crazy year, which by the way I see as an opportunity to get a clear 20/20 vision into what is going wrong and fix it before we go blind to Gods light. 9/11 was our emergency wake up call We picked up but not everyone stayed on the line. Let’s hope we do better with this one. If not, the next one might be far worse. Let’s end 2020 with better vision then we started it with.
Any way, back to my surrender, I felt a pain in my left abdominal side which began to prevent me from my every day life. I attributed it to my Parkinson Disease or as I lovingly refer to it as my Auginsons Disease after my husband. lol. I quietly suffered some unfamiliar pain that was taking over my body. Because of COVID, I allowed the pain to fester and grow. I finally went to my doctor. He had been telling me over the past two years that the mild pain I occasionally felt was diverticulitis. God was telling me something different. I chose to listen to God. God said if you let me lead you, I will lead you to the right path. I said, lead the way. My doctor told me to go to a gastro doctor for colonoscopy. I went. The results showed a mass that was perceived to be a hematoma. The gastro doctor suggested I see a surgeon. He gave me a list of surgeons to choose from. I chose the first doctor and made the earliest appointment which was the last week in October. Two months away.
My pain got progressively worse and my husband wanted me to go elsewhere for an appointment. I refused. Finally, I knew I couldn’t wait much longer. God knew too. I received a text from a friend that I call “soul sista” because of a connection that goes much deeper than friendship. She asked if I were pleased with my doctor. If not, she gave me names of two doctors that her daughter was a patient of. Because I trust my friends heart, I called one of the doctors. This doctor could see me sooner. I made that appointment but something told me not to cancel the appointment with the other surgeon, just in case.
My friends doctor told me that she suspected I had something more than a hematoma. She suggested I see a colleague of hers who could perform the surgery I would need. She gave me her colleagues name. It was the doctor that my original appointment was with. I went to see him.
Now bare in mind, all this time, God had been telling me that I had cancer. I told him I knew and that I trusted Him and was not afraid of the word cancer. I had His Word and that was the Word I chose to remain focused on.
The surgeon confirmed that the mass was cancerous. He sent me to an oncologist that was two floors down from his office. I met the oncologist and she said it was a stage four endometrial cancer. She told me not to concern myself with the stage. I assured her I was not concerned in the least. For some reason she did a breast exam. I didn’t ask why. I was enjoying how God was at work to give it much attention. Tests showed I had breast cancer unrelated to the endometrial cancer. Went back to my surgeon he confirmed both cancers and said he would do them at once.
Two things, First thing, the endometrial cancer had placed itself in a precarious spot inside my abdominal wall muscle. A very uncommon position. Only 5% of cases. I became the table talk conversation at the doctors weekly consortium. Not to worry, I was in good hands. I was being held in the Hands of God.
The second thing is that every appointment for tests that I had to make were guided by God. He made it stress free. When I had to call for the mammography, I was told the earliest appointment was end of January. I needed one earlier. I was given other places to go. There earliest was end of December. I called back the hospital, spoke to a different woman and she said she had an appointment for next week. I thanked her and asked her name. She said her name was Dio. As I was thinking about her name, my husband asked if I knew what Dio meant. I said I did but was gonna look it up for fun. The definition of Dio, Divine, God. God literally made an impossible appointment possible. Are you following how God works in our lives?
With my concern about the pain I was in, I thought about post surgical pain. I didn’t think I could handle any more pain. One night in prayer, I asked God if I could get a hug from Him. The next day while I was paying bills over the phone, I had to clear up an issue that kept recurring with my insurance company. The representative was very helpful. She asked me to do her a favor. Even though it was the companies fault, she asked me to do the leg work. I told her it would have to be done later that I was about to go in for surgery. She asked what kind of surgery. I told her. She then said she had one last thing to ask me to do. She said, don’t think I’m crazy but I need you to take your right arm and place it on your left shoulder. Now place your left hand on your right shoulder. She said now give yourself a great big hug. I can’t physically be there to give it to you but I wanted you to have one. I thanked her and thought about the sweetness of her doing this. I walked out of the the room I was in and I heard in my heart, “Did you feel my hug”? Yes God I felt it through the heart of a stranger. I hadn’t realized it at first. Had I known it was from God, I would have held myself tighter.
I want you to know that during this whole cancer diagnosis, I paid no credence to its power. I focused on Gods power. I had witnessed what God can do so many times in my life that I refused to deter away from it. My husband looked at cancer through the worlds eyes. I saw it through Gods vision. God doesn’t want us to fear any disease, He wants us to lean on Him.
All the prayer warriors I know got on the prayer line and it reached across the country and the world. Strangers were praying for little old me. They were asking for a pain free recovery. Guess what? No pain. Tell me again why we don’t trust God.
I thought about all the quiet time that I had chosen to spend with God and was so grateful for the time He and I spent together over the years. I realize now that my hibernation and seemingly lazy demeanor were necessary for my recovery. The severe pain I was feeling was necessary in order to understand the power of healing. In the process, God, my Rock taught me so much about faith and showed me the benefits of trust.
Yeah, the day was finally here to rid me of the pain that was killing me inside.
God was about to cure me of my emotional cancer which was in essence, the cancer that kills. The doctors job, was to get the other cancers out. As I prepared for surgery I united my (minimal in comparison) physical pain to the sufferings of Christ. I told God I was willing to die to show Him how much I loved Him. All I asked as I united with my best friends (Gods’) suffering, was that if my dying was going to turn my family away from Him, then let me live. I didn’t want to be responsible for drawing anyone away from Him. I wanted to bring them closer to Him.
The surgeon had explained to my husband and I that the total surgery should be about 4 1/2-5 hours. 2 1/2 for lumpectomy and 2 for the abdominal surgery. God told me it would be longer than that. I told my surgeon that he was in the best hands, Gods’ , so let’s go for it.
Well, just as God said it would, my surgery went for seven hours. The Doctor told my husband that he removed 3 additional lymph nodes in my breast that needed biopsy. He also told my husband that he never met anyone quite like me. In the medical field, I am a huge in more ways than one ha, ha high risk factor. In Gods’ field I was no risk at all. The doctor also told my husband that I never flinched when he told me I had two separate cancers. That was true. I was not letting fear stand in the way of Gods’ word. Through this whole trial, I was more focused on the removal of all the emotional cancers that had once consumed my body, mind and spirit. God told me the removal of all those deadly cancers was a success. I would need to be cautious as to what I allowed myself to ingest from now on. I don’t want any new cancers to lurk around waiting to find there way in. I dont want to move backward, I want only to move forward.
Once I awoke and saw that I was still on this Earth, I thought God must have plans for me. After thanking Him for choosing me to serve Him, I wanted to begin immediately. I told God let’s go for it. He told me I needed to rest in Him and He would slowly lead and teach me until I had the sturdiness I needed to walk like a warrior. Like therapy it’s one step at a time.
When my eyes opened in post op my heart awoke to a new life. A life that only God can make us see. God had taken a timid, shy, quite, insecure, fearful little girl who was filled with self doubt because of no formal education beyond high school and transformed her into an educated woman who had just graduated as a warrior of Gods’ power. Staying focused on God is where my strength and knowledge will come from.
This was a course of trial, error, endurance and strength. It was also a comedic, humbling part of my journey. From the first initial doctors visit, humility would be taken to a whole new level. Without going in to much detail, I can tell you I’ve become quite the exhibitionist. From the insecure teenage girl who wore a leather jacket in the summer, I now flashed as though I had a sex goddesses body. Let’s just say there was always a full moon shining brightly behind me. lol
There were two messages God was telling me. Get to know as much about your care takers as possible. He also wanted me to find someone from a particular country. I tried doing as much of that as possible. The teams at the hospital are very precise and dedicated so they move quickly to the next patient. When it was quiet or when they were working on me I’d strike up conversations with them, about them. I wanted to get to know who these heroes of the medical field were. They all were angels in disguise.
I listened to how they spoke to all the patients. They used terms such as yes dear or no my love. Comforting words especially during these trying times.
I had four roommates in a twenty-four hour period. My last roommate was a woman older than I. I didn’t reach out to her because I felt that I had entered her room and I wanted to respect whatever privacy she had and needed. She was suffering in terrible pain. During the next day, she introduced herself to me. It was fast and simple. She needed rest. During the middle of the night, I heard the intensity of her pain. I overheard the nurse say that they had given her a different pain medicine and they couldn’t give her more until later. I asked God to soothe her pain. As I asked God’s aid, He said, I’ve been with her all along. Each time she reeled in pain, I prayed for God to comfort her. She was calling His name and He was right there listening to her. As I prayed for her, her pain subsided in a minute and she had a more peaceful rest.
The following morning, she again reached out to say hi. After a brief conversation I told her I needed to tell her something. I said please don’t think I’m crazy but God was with you last night. He sat upon your bed, held your hand and comforted you. I told her that God wanted to assure her that He is always with her. She thanked me for letting her know. I thanked God for allowing me to witness how He is always with all of us..We just don’t allow ourselves to take it all in.
Going full circle
My husband was having a hard time not having me near Him. He was scared for me and missed me. Even though I pick on him constantly he still needed to feel my presence close by. He would call me and I’d have to comfort him. One day, he called to tell me that my old boyfriend, the one that my hubby stole my heart from 50 years prior had read on Facebook (which he never goes on, Divine intervention) about my surgery. He told Aug that he worked at the hospital and he would go see me. Augie, (my husband) called to prepare me. He knows I have a thing about not seeing anyone unless I’m looking my best. Especially my ex. lol. He said the two of them were gonna hook up in the lobby later on. I looked in the mirror and scared the crap out of myself. I at least wanted to comb my hair. Just as I was putting a little blush on, in walked my old boyfriend. He had love, compassion and concern written on his face. We talked for a while and then he had to go back to work. He said he’d be back during his lunch hour. He kept his word and we were able to talk for a while.
After he left, I called my husband and told him about my two visits. My husband came later on and as we were talking guess who walked in? My ex told my husband that after he saw me, a melody entered his mind that he titled “So In Love” – in regard to my husband and I.
As I looked at the two of them standing side by side, both looking lovingly down at me, I was brought back to 50 years prior when my ex realizing he had lost me to my new love, looked at him and said, “Don’t ever hurt her, if I ever find out, I don’t care how big you are, I’ll get you”. I never got the opportunity to tell my ex how that made me feel. I always wanted him to know how touching that was and that Aug had done good by me. A few little cracks along the way but a good bag of cement was all I needed to fix them.
lol My first boyfriend was the catalyst to bring me to my husband. I’m not sure, but think I heard my husband ask if he wanted me back. lol
The following day, my ex came to see me again. We had a beautiful spiritual conversation. After he left the girl from housekeeping came in. I sensed she wanted to say something. I smiled and said isn’t God wonderful. She said you are spiritual I could tell by your conversation with your handsome doctor. I told her it was my ex boyfriend. She couldn’t believe it. I told her I like to share my love for God. I could tell she wanted to talk, so while she cleaned, I listened. She thanked me for inspiring her. I thanked her for showing me her heart.
As I prepared to leave the hospital, I reflected on all the gifts that God had bestowed on me so far during this journey and I was ever so Grateful.
The ride to rehab
To my great surprise, my husband along with my family had planned to greet me outside as I was transported from hospital to rehab. My husband and I were telling my escort our story. I was telling her of my many blessings, he was telling her that we were together for fifty years and about our kids and granddaughters. My escort said I’m sorry you won’t be with your family on Thanksgiving. I said, I’m not, I know they love me and I hope they know I love them”. With that, she rolls me outside to find everyone there to greet me. I looked over and saw the gleam in my youngest granddaughters eye as she said, Nanna, God got this and gave me the thumbs up. She had made me brownies before my surgery and held on to them until she could give them to me. I enjoyed those brownies of love on Thanksgiving morn.
God gave us an hour outside together because my transport was running late. We all spent time laughing and joking as we always do. Finally we said our goodbyes and I was on my merry way. The name of the transport company was Genesis Transport. The owners name was Matthew. My drivers name was David. Wonderful David. Very appropriate that I had transportation from three names in the Bible.
After David settled me in, I asked how he was doing. I asked if he liked what he does. He said he loved the job. He asked me if I minded if he put something in the CD player. I told him I didn’t mind at all. He said he thought I might enjoy it. It was a cd of a preacher giving a sermon. The preacher was giving praise to God. He spoke about how even through our trials, God only has our best interest at hand. When we surrender to him, He shields us with protection. I thought the sermon might be long and decided if it didn’t finish by the time we got to our destination, that I would ask where to purchase it. Miraculously, we hit some traffic. Just as the CD ended we drove up the long driveway to rehab. David turned to me and said, here, I want you to have this and another one that I think you may like. He said listen to it with your husband, he needs to hear it. This man didn’t know me from Adam yet he felt compelled to give me a copy of this CD. The next day after dropping of another patient, he stopped by my room to peek in to make sure I was okay.
Out of the light, into the darkness
When David brought me in the doors, I was overwhelmed. This place looks like a five-star resort. I have my own private room. I was greeted by the nurse and taken to my room where I was put into bed. I was expecting some kind of activity to pass through my door. I called for aid to use the bathroom and was being watched as I attempted to get out of bed. At the hospital they catered to me, here I had to do it mostly on my own. I didn’t know it at the time. I called my husband and asked him to call his sister who had worked at Burke Rehab. I asked her about standard procedure with new arrivals. She told me each place was different. We got the supervising head nurse to come in and I felt a little better. My husband was not happy. He wanted me transferred so unbeknownst to me he told his sister to get the paperwork rolling.
After this happened and I decompressed, God and I had a little conversation. I asked Him why He chose this place for me where I felt abandoned. He told me I needed to set myself free from what I thought I was incapable of. He told me that what fear wanted me to believe was furthest from the truth. I was not left abandoned. The nurses were there to assist but I needed to learn to do things on my own. He asked if I believed He would ever abandon me. I told Him once again that I trusted Him with my life. I few minutes later, my first Angel walked through the door. Her name is Maxine. Her kind, loving heart got me out of the darkness into the light. Then there’s my ray of beauty, elegance and grace, Odette. I have a couple of funny nurses that make me laugh. Patsy, Claudia, and Libnee. (I hope I spelled his name right or he will let me know. lol. There’s also Pauline whose spirit shines through. And beautiful young Deandra, who gently took my face in her hand and soothed away all the remnants that had remained on my face from the surgery. Mariel a light that shines brightly, Lilia and Betty my spitfire nurses and beautiful, sweet , young Mercedes who cleans my room. Every person that I have encountered here are wonderful loving people with the kindest hearts. I’m getting to know them, I’m learning about their life, their culture, their food etc. I needed to see who the people who care for us really are. If I’ve forgotten to mention anyone, reset assured they will be mentioned in my book.Here, like in the hospital, all go non stop. They answer every call button but never leave anyone without settling them first. Anyone who cares for more than one child has stress on them. Imagine having 8-11 patients who want your attention at the same time. Health care workers and workers in general are not robots. They are human beings like you and me. They need to be treated with kindness and respect. The world needs to open up and see who each other really is. The world we live in wants us to see only the negative. I want to see the beauty and God has shown me just that.
There are people who won’t understand what I’m saying and there are those who will get it immediately. We have to remove our fears and open our hearts to receive Gods love from whomever He sends our way.
What I want people to know, is when we put fear first, we lose sight of how God works. Fear is needed, it just shouldn’t take precedence. I am so grateful for the fears that I had. I was laden with them. God took those fears and turned them into strengths. I now intend to serve God as one who can teach those that are willing to surrender how to do it.
As far as I’m concerned, cancer won’t register in my brain. What remains with me is what God taught me about fear. If we don’t let it go, we’ll never be able to reach for the gifts God has for us.
When I think back to the fearful child, teenager, wife, mother that I was, I see all that God does. He took that child of His and made her a woman of His strength. So much so that I had the audacity to reach out to Lisa LaRocca from News 12 Westchester. I’m willing to be interviewed looking like I do, missing teeth and all to bring hope to Gods’ world and to show the world who our caretakers are. They are Gods angels. I was blessed to have the best of the best.
A new day and a new year are coming. Don’t be afraid to let go of what prevents you from Gods’ graces. My husband and I have struggled over the years living paycheck to paycheck. I can honestly say that spiritually, God made me a billionaire 100 times over. He filled my cup so much that it over flows. Whenever I needed something He provided. My trust in Him filled my spiritual account.
So if you ask me how my surgery went all I can say is God cured the cancer that was most important to me. Like my previous cancer, my Parkinsons and now these two new cancers, I have won the lottery. What was given to me over powers anything that fear kept in my way.
A million thank you s’ first to God, next to my caretakers then to you. To my husband, I love you more than you’ll ever know. To all my kids and grandkids remember what I couldn’t do and now watch what God strengthen me to do. To my family and friends, I’m here and I will help you get over your fears as well.
Cancer is a word. Gods Word is truth. Now let’s go kick our emotional cancers butt. ️️
Oh by the way, I haven’t had a deer sighting at my house in a very long time. My husband told me that a buck, a doe, and 2 fawn walked by the other day. What a symbolic sign that God has given me my hinds feet to soar with.
Married 44 years to my hubby whose purpose in life is to prevent me from getting through the “Pearly Gates”. Mother of two, Nanna of four loving granddaughters and retired secretary aka administrative assistant. I went to the University of Hard Knocks where I received my Doctorate. My thesis is titled: How To Survive Life’s Trials Without Killing Yourself or Someone Else. I live by the belief that when life throws you a curve, learn from it rather than use it against yourself. Faith and humor are my survival kit. Appreciate the simple things for they are the true treasures of life.