It happened this past Monday morning. My mother and I were enjoying a breakfast of scrambled eggs with toast and coffee. We were eating with speed as I had made an appointment for her to see a doctor because over the weekend she had developed a fiery red throat with white patches. We both wondered if it could be strep. The first disappointment came when the doctor she particularly likes was not on duty that day. She felt thwarted again. It’s been a tough year as she has disappointingly had a long bout of illness off an on. Therefore, getting the sore throat, along with an appointment with a doctor she had never seen, was another nail of frustration hammered into an already nail-scarred door of “what next.”
Upon entering the doctor’s office he immediately asked if my mother’s breathing was always that labored. She answered that she guessed it was asthma or allergy. “You look grey,” the doctor stated as he grabbed his stethoscope. After several moments of listening front and back and front again, he said to me that he would call an ambulance but as the hospital was so near I could probably get to Emergency quicker myself.
We got in the car and away I went. The staff were waiting for us. Quickly and efficiently my mother was hooked up with an EKG and monitoring of all sorts began. The doctors discovered a pulmonary embolism. “It’s big, big ,big,” the doctor said to me. He then told me that if she hadn’t come to Emergency it was doubtful she would have lasted to the weekend.
She was sent to the Emergency Care Ward, hooked up to oxygen, and a regime of tests began. The right side of her heart is strained as it over compensated to assist the lungs working hard to breathe while the blood clot was blocking free passage of air. I was praying and sending out requests to everyone I knew to please join in lifting my mother’s needs to Father.
As the day faded into night, activity lessened around my mother. I watched her lay there, pale, an oxygen tube attached around her face, very still, exhausted, eyes dull. “Mom,” I said as I sat close to her, “we can surely thank God that you got that sore throat. It took you to the doctor. We can surely be thankful that your regular doctor wasn’t in because this new one saw right away that something major was going on. He got you to Emergency. We can be thankful for a wise and efficient emergency team. They saved your life. It’s actually been a very good day.” She smiled, nodded, and said, “We can surely be thankful.
“For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future ad a hope.'” Jeremiah 29:11