Friday, March 1, 2013

hope in him

Two weeks ago we were in the middle of a glorious basketball filled weekend known as the annual ICSB basketball tournament. I have posted about it many times over the years, and it sure is fun! Teams from many parts of Central and Eastern Europe come to compete against each other at our school. Kevin's varsity boys have won the last three years, but this year they lost by one in overtime. Oh, it was so tough but it was a lot of fun!

We spent Sunday and Monday (no school) resting and hanging out as a family and enjoying time together. On Monday we played a bunch of Wii games (a Christmas present to the kids from grandparents!) and ate Kevin's yummy pizza. I went to bed Monday feeling some abdominal cramps, and I just prayed that our baby girl (yes, we're having another girl!) was okay. The Lord immediately answered my prayers by having her kick away. :)

Tuesday morning I woke up still with some painful cramping in my abdomen, but I thought that they would go away as the day went on. Not so. Around 11 a.m., after nearly collapsing in the shower earlier in the day, I called Kevin at school and asked him to come home. I kept thinking that it would pass, but about two hours later and thinking that I might just die from the pain, he drove me to the hospital.

I was admitted and was relieved to find out relatively soon after getting there that our girl was indeed okay but that they didn't know what was causing my pain. I knew I wasn't having preterm labor as it wasn't the same feeling as that. They ordered another ultrasound on my abdomen to see if they could tell what was the cause of my pain. It was during this ultrasound that they discovered some spots/masses/lesions (all words that different doctors have used to describe them) on my liver. And I have to tell you that during this whole process, the most amazing thing happened...

I was completely overwhelmed with peace. I mean, I cannot even begin to describe how I felt during this time. The pain was the most terrible thing I've ever had (birth is pretty painful, but this was different), and even after hearing that they saw something on my liver, not once did I feel panic or worry or stress. (Very unlike me!) I felt completely at peace and at ease. I know it came from our Heavenly Father, and I am incredibly grateful for him giving that to me. Over the years I have often prayed for that sort of peace for others, not knowing how to explain it but asking the Lord to give them the only kind of peace that he can. And here he graciously bestowed that upon me. It was unreal. I cry thinking about it.

It was determined from the ultrasounds that I had two cysts that might be causing the pain but they weren't sure if there was an appendicitis as well. The liver was unrelated to my pain. So they said I would be kept overnight for observation and they would do what they could for the pain. The rest of the afternoon and evening dragged on, and somewhere around 1 a.m., I got a bit of relief from the pain. It never went away, but the intensity went down a notch...and I felt like I could breathe again. I was able to get a couple hours of sleep as then it was more manageable.

Throughout the day on Wednesday, I met with several doctors. They were concerned about these spots on the liver and wanted to figure out what they were. Worst case scenario is that they are malignant, but they could also be benign things that are no big deal. We have no idea at this point, but we do know the ONE who does know. And we are asking the Lord that they be nothing. Because I have never had an abdominal ultrasound before, they can't compare it with anything nor do they know how long they have been there.

They wanted me to go to another hospital for an ultrasound again and an MRI later in the week. I had read several things (including an actual medical journal) that talked about the dangers of using the contrast solution in the MRI for pregnant women. I told them that I would do an MRI but only without the contrast solution. The two doctors insisted that I HAD to have the contrast solution and how dare I question them. So I told them that I did not give my consent to having an MRI done. Needless to say, they were very angry with me for questioning them (and hence afterwards I referred to them as the evil doctors when I talked to my family about them).

After I questioned the doctors, my internet was coincidentally cut off. :) They were still trying to figure out what to do with the pain, but at that point I could manage and asked if I could go home. I told them that I would sleep better at home, and that if the pain intensity came back, I would just come back to the hospital. They signed off on it and told me that I should go to this other hospital on Friday afternoon. I could do the ultrasound there and refuse the MRI myself.

So thus my days at the hospital came to an end...or so I thought. More to come.

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