I had never had a hip injection before so I was a bit apprehensive going into the procedure.
Unless you have nerves of steel, I think most normal folks would experience moments of apprehension at the prospect of any medical procedure that involves long needles. During major surgery you have the benefit of being unconscious, however for this very minor procedure a small local anesthetic was all that was required.
I was patient #7. It was like a human cattle call, we were all lined up in a medical assembly line, each partitioned off in our separate little curtained waiting areas with our warmed blankets, hospital gowns, matching disposable shower caps and fuzzy socks with the skid proof tread on the feet.
The doctor actually had to help me put on my fuzzy socks as I could not bend over to put them on myself. She had come in to introduce herself. She took pity on me when she noticed that I had only managed to get one sock on. She bent down retrieved the lone sock and put it on for me. Whipped out a magic marker, asked me which hip was getting the injection and then put her initials on my right hip.
In the course of the hour or so I was there I lost count how many time I was asked to repeat which hip they were going to jab. Trust me when I say, they want to make REAL sure they get the right body part!
Now that I had both feet in my fuzzy socks, and was covered in a nice warm blanket it was time to wait!
Waiting is so fun, NOT!
I began to pray. Praying for myself, asking for all the normal things one asks prior to any type of medical procedure. Be with the doctors, be with the nurses, be with me etc….
I watched patient #6 walk by, so I knew I would be next.
This very nice young man came in and began to tell me what was about to happen.
Then within a few minutes I was laying on the table. The nice young man had an oxygen monitor and blood pressure cuff on me, he was monitoring my heart rate. He was sitting at my head behind me . As I am laying there the other nurses were prepping me for my injection. I was laying down flat craning my head in all directions looking at the various medical devise surrounding me trying not to focus on having a needle inserted into places that should never have needle inserted into. But I digress.
Back to the nice young man was seated down past my head.
He spoke, I could not see him.
“Take a few deep breaths for me, try to slow your heart rate down a bit.”
Apparently it was a bit fast for his liking. I am not sure what they expect of a person laying on a table in an operating room waiting for someone to jab a needled in ones hip, but I was a bit nervous, fearful and even though they had explained the procedure to me fully….does anyone ever want a needle jabbed into ones hip?
He also reached up and put his hand on my shoulder, something about the touch of another person, letting me know that even though I could not see him he was there watching over me.
Trying to be obedient I followed his instructions and began to take long slow breaths in and out.
I also began to pray.
The only pray that I could come up with at that moment was “Come Holy Spirit”
I laid there and recited that three word prayer in my head over and over.
“Come Holy Spirit.”
“That’s good!” He said.
“Whatever you are doing keep doing it!”
So I did.
A few minutes later, excluding some minor discomfort, my procedure was over.
I was up off the table and back in my little cubicle.
The reality, it’s always worse in your imagination. It’s always worse when you-know-who gets in your head with all kinds of bad thoughts which don’t warrant sharing.
My lesson of the day, relying on the power given to me by Jesus never fails to calm ones heart. The 24/7 access we have to His Power and Grace is only a breath away.
This morning I am much improved! I was able to get dressed with very little discomfort. Bending over, getting out of a chair, all the normal day to day activities are almost pain free.
God is Great! Doctors are good. I am still not prepared to state that insurance companies are good. I am fully convinced that the evil one has a hand in those.
However, as I was thinking about my day yesterday, going over the course of events, I usually recognize almost immediately when I have missed an opportunity.
“Whatever you are doing, keep doing it” he said.
I was so focused on my own human condition, that it was not until later that I realized that it would have been so easy to have said “Thanks, I’m praying.”
In my humanness I was waiting for the needle AND not thinking about anything else but myself!
In my moment of fear and apprehension Jesus provide the comfort of a human touch and a three word prayer.
I think when I miss an opportunity, I always feel like I have failed. The reality is that I also learn more from my failures then I do from my success.
I missed an opportunity to share with those four people in that room yesterday. However this morning, I have to opportunity to write it all down, to share a very small moment in my day when Jesus showed up.
“Whatever you are doing, keep doing it” he said.
So I did!
26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.