When the Dr. says it’ll only take 1/2 hour…

Went to have my annual oncology exam for my left eye.  Discovered about 6 years ago, it seems I've had a mole on the back of the inside of my left eye.  This mole, also known as a "nevus" was regularly measured by my ophthalmologist each year.  In 2012, he thought it looked like the mole had grown.  So he sent me to an ocular oncologist at the Havener Eye Institute of The Ohio State University Medical Center.

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The drill there was to take pictures of the nevus, then measure it by ultrasound.  The ultrasound requires placing the transmitter directly in contact with the eye and moving it around across the eye.  Sounds icky, doesn't it?

In 2012, the report was that all was well - no blood vessels in the nevus, it was very thin, and it really hadn't grown.  It was due to measuring error at the regular doctor.

Well that part of this year's exam went fine again and I was right on my planned schedule to be out of there in 1:20 minutes.  Then the doctor said, "I noticed in the pictures that some blood vessels look like they may be leaking."  Now this is called diabetic retinopathy and is what leads to blindness when untreated.  I had it in my right eye in 2006, so the words were familiar.  "If you have the time," she continued, "I'd like for you to have another test done."  This test involves injecting dye and taking a series of pictures of the eye to see if any of the dye is leaking from the suspected blood vessels.

"How long will it take?", I asked.  The response?  "Oh, about 30 minutes."

Like P.T. Barnum's famous sucker, I gave the go ahead for the procedure, knowing that I could cut my lunchtime short in order to get to work on time.

Of course, since none of this extra test was on anyone's schedule, it took 30 minutes to get worked back into the photo lab's schedule then over an hour until I could squeeze into the Dr.'s rotation.  Finally, she came in.  She told me everything looked fine and she'd see me in a year.  In and out in 1 minute flat.

patience

Moral of the story - when the Doctor says, "It will only take ...", DON"T BELIEVE THEM!!!!

In the end, I took the rest of the day off, because with the delay I would have only been  there 2 hours anyway.  But it would have been a much more relaxed day if I'd known that beforehand.

 

I am, despite all of the extra waiting, glad I had it done.  A good report and it saved me another trip downtown!  Win/win - you can't beat that!

Hot air (well, actually, engine coolant)

 

This week, our 98 Cadillac began leaking engine coolant.  NOT a good thing...

So we took it to the shop.  Turns out it was a radiator cap gone bad.

This IS a good thing...

With my CES, I need a vehicle with more than average room to get in and out of.  Vehicles with ingress and egress which require acrobatic skills are not good.  For me, that is most vehicles.

Since our "Piggy" is old, we know that sooner or later, a repair will be needed that is worth more than the car is.  But for now, other than the gas, she's cheap transportation.  DRIVE ON!!

My_1998_Northstar_V8_Cadillac_Deville

 

 

Losing patience with God…

Have you ever wondered how long a trial will last?  Or suffered through multiple trials at once?  If so, perhaps you feel as I do sometimes...

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Like this faithful dog, I sometimes feel as though I've sat in the downpour of troubles and trials     for plenty long enough.  And I wonder, "Why hasn't God acted?" 

As I thought about it, and asked Him, He responded.   "How patient was I with you?", God asked.

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"How many times did I reach out for you only to be pushed away and ignored?  For how long did I offer you my love before you accepted it?", He wanted to know.  "And once you did come to me," He continued, "how many times have you fallen down over simple things that should not cause you problems any longer?  Which have you done more - made time for me or spent time on you?"

I realized that God is infinitely more patient with me than I am with Him.  The graphic to the right says it all - especially when the "someone" it refers to is God.

How humbling this is, how freeing this is, if only I can put it into action through faith.

Knowing that God is a patient God.  He waited 4,000 years to send Jesus to pay for mankind's sins.

He pursued me for 22 years before His patience paid off.

I've fallen more times than I can count.

Yet, still He loves me.  He. Still. LOVES. ME!

Is the night any brighter?  No, just as dark.  Is the night any shorter?  No, just as long.  But again is that peace of knowing that He loves me and that makes me willing to sit in that downpour until He causes the sun to shine again.  And He will... it's just a matter of time.

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It isn’t the heat, it’s the humidity! The trial of Cauda Equina Syndrome

Growing up in central Georgia, I often heard this expression.  We all know that a humid day feels much more miserable than a day at the same temperature with low humidity.  We're going to look at our human suffering and trials that we encounter in life from the same type of perspective.

What I have learned, from personal experience, observation of others, and study of the Bible, is that quite often "It isn't the depth of the trial, it's how long it lasts!"  In studying Psalm 15, we see David, the writer of the Psalm ask the same question.  He feels that God has forgotten about him.  David is searching for God but just isn't connecting.

At the time, David was in the midst of a long trial.  Saul, Israel's King, was obsessed with killing him.  David would not do harm to God's anointed King, so he ran and hid... for a very long, lonely time.

Often, that's how is it with the trials we face.  It is a painful time, either physically, emotionally, or both, which goes on longer than we think is bearable.  At first we think, "This isn't too bad.  I can deal with it."   We expect it to last for a certain period.  Then we find out it is worse than we thought and/or it continues for longer than we expected.  We begin to lose hope.  Those around us have come to accept the trial as normal so their support wanes.  That's not a knock against them, it is the way most humans are wired.

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Like the infamous Chinese Water Torture, where drops of water are used to tirelessly, relentlessly, wear down the human spirit, so do the trials in our lives.  It is the constant battle against them, the intrusion into our daily living, which are like the drops of water to our forehead.  It wears us down and beats us up, all the while those around us think, "That's not really a big deal."  Our strength and resolve drains.  For me, this is my battle with Cauda Equina Syndrome.  Strangely enough, my fight with diabetes hasn't felt the same way, even though diabetes can easily kill you whereas CES won't.

I'm not saying there are not times and trials we face that are profoundly devastating and hope-robbing.  Very deep pain which hurts to the extreme.  Pain which takes a very long time to go away, if ever.  These trials are like hitting your thumb with a hammer - intense pain which has a relatively short life span, followed by a much longer time of lingering pain.  It develops into the kind of trial I've been talking about.

So... what do we do?  Well that depends a lot on our personality, our perseverance, and our faith.  For me, it is my faith in God's goodness.  Does that mean I will always think of trials as good?  No.  But I also know that God allows or brings such trials in order to move my character, values, and actions to become more like His Son, Jesus.  For those who have placed their trust in Jesus, God the Father uses the events in our lives, both good and bad, to develop us further into what He wants us to be.  For those readers who don't have a Father/Son/Daughter relationship with God, wouldn't you like to have an all knowing, all loving, all powerful Father who always does what is for your ultimate best?  Learn how to enter into a father/child relationship with God.

When we're facing unbearable trials, who better to hold us and comfort us?

On The Journey

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