Right now as I type, a surgeon has his hands inside my mom’s spine.
All week, I’ve been having images in my mind of this surgery not going well. The images were very graphic: the doctor telling me something went wrong, me hitting the floor, having to make all those phone calls with earth-shattering news to all of the people who love her, leaving the hospital alone, her funeral, trying to carry on at work. Trust me, I got in way too deep.
More often than praying about it, I found myself wondering if the images were some sort of weird premonition.
In Mass yesterday, Jesus asked me: don’t you know that I’ve already defeated death?
To which I responded with a sigh of relief: yes, Jesus. Thank you, Jesus.
But my trust was short lived… like it usually is.
This morning, she picked me up at 4 am, mad because I was taking too long. (She hasn’t eaten since yesterday afternoon…. #hangry.) We drove to the hospital. A series of doctors came in and out of pre-op. She told them all about how she’s getting a bionic neck.
When it was time for her to go, I hugged her and said goodbye. I realized I didn’t say “I love you” as they were wheeling her away, but I knew if I were to speak I would cry and I didn’t want her to know how worried I was.
Next on the agenda for me was Mass. There’s a Catholic Church in walking distance about a half a mile from the hospital. I didn’t plan on walking (#lazy) but there was an issue that required me to walk over to the parking services building and when I got there, I could see the Church. The walking did me a lot of good.
I got to the Church and a group of people were praying the Rosary in Spanish. It’s always a joy to be reminded of how universal the Church is. The Mass was also in Spanish. I don’t speak Spanish well, but I understand it okay. From what I could gather, the homily was about the Holy Spirit and his desire to shake us from the mediocrity of sin and inspire us to greatness.
After the Mass, I took off walking back to the hospital. I realized on the way that the OR Nurse hadn’t called yet. She’d said she’d call an hour after they got started, and I checked the time. It had been an hour and a half. And I started to panic. A few blocks closer to the hospital, I got the call. They’d started the surgery and everything was going great.
I said “thank you” and hung up. And then I broke down crying on the sidewalk. Full on ugly cry.
So many emotions: relief, worry, fear, thankfulness. But not a lot of trust.
I was coming directly from receiving the body, blood, soul, and divinity of the God who stepped down from Heaven to conquer the grave, for me. And here I was, crying on the sidewalk. Me, of little faith.
I pulled it together and got up to walk the rest of the way to the hospital. And now I’m sitting in the waiting room as they finish the surgery. Everyone here is running on emotion and caffeine, as phones ring with information for various families.
Regardless of the outcome for my mom, or for any of these families, I know one thing for sure: Jesus is good, and worthy of my trust. Satan wants me to rely on myself, to entertain images of destruction and turn my gaze away from the Holy Spirit who is Life. Jesus says Hell cannot, will not prevail.
Lord, I believe, help my unbelief.
This blog was written by a guest writer and parishioner, Brittany Anderson. Brittany is a financial planner by day and evangelist by calling. She spends her free time Instagramming her many random hobbies and checking things off her 30 Before 30 list.