Almost four years ago, when I received a diagnosis of Aortic Valve Stenosis that would eventually require open heart surgery, I literally laughed as I said "no way!" So unprepared was I, I hadn't asked my husband Jose to come to my first appointment with a Cardiologist (I immediately made a second appointment and we came loaded with questions)! My immediate question was how soon. It was so typical of me to try to gain any type of control I might have. I was comfortable with my spiritual life, and content knowing I had a strong parish community who would have me covered in prayer. But let me be honest. Since losing my baby Jordan in December 1990, I have struggled with the power of prayer and God's will for me. I had a perfect pregnancy, and a perfect baby daughter who was stillborn three weeks before her due date. What it came down to is what criteria had I since established to determine His love for me.
The weekend of September 9 - 10, although busy , I was extremely tired and had no appetite. I never have no appetite! I put it aside as having the flu, although it didnt feel like it. That Tuesday I had a 103° fever, took an asprin, went to bed, and woke up drenched. I went to my primary care physician who sent me to emergency to make sure there was nothing going on with my Aortic Valve. Long story short, after two weeks of fevers, a month and a half long of nausea (thank God for accupuncture), 14 lb weight loss (yay!), and numerous tests, the only thing my cardiologist could access is I must have had some type of virus which came and went, but for someone with my condition, it hit hard and long. What we did know for sure was the valve damage had increased from my last Echocardiogram on July 31 and it was time to start preparing.
What transpired from November until surgery kept me busy, focused, and I began to realize there is only so much I can do, and truly the rest is in God's hands. (We'll actually it is all in God's hands, but He wants our trust and cooperation.)
I continously pondered how do I know my faith and trust was where it should be, and not determined by answered prayers based on my will.
A couple weeks before my surgery my answer was this. God already knows the outcome and there was no sense worrying, and taking away any normalcy I was enjoying pre-surgery. I trusted if I survived, He had plenty for me to experience to go deeper into my faith. Should He have called me, all my prayers and those offered for me would be there to lead me to Him, and equally important for Jose, Monica, and my family in ways of peace and understanding.
I made the decision to say "see you later" to Jose at home, while Monica and I left for the hospital. Monica had spent the night with me during my labor ànd delivery with Jordan, and I loved the thought of us peacefully sharing this transition.
When I woke up in ICU I saw the clock, the Crucifix, and murmured Praise God!
I was told Sunday I would most likely go home, having met all the criteria needed to be released, but Monday it was!
Prayers have been answered in ways I have only begun to fully realize. Your hearts truly beat in mine my heart brothers & sisters 💕.
With the deepest of love, respect, and continuous prayers I remain with you. Sue ❤