Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Smell of Smoke

The blood pounds in my ears.

My teeth are clenched.

I want to scream.

I want to throw something.

I want to break things just hear them shatter.

I want to pick a fight.  I want to make you mad at me so that I can isolate myself and nurse my pain.

I am tired and can't sleep.

I am angry, and have nowhere to direct my fury.

I drive too fast; I brake too hard.

My stomach churns and I want to vomit.

I haven't even gotten close to the fire, and I smell like smoke.

I bang the letters on the keyboard, forming words that will release me from this demon of fury, words that I know, in the end will wrap me back to where I belong, firm in my faith, pressing hard into His love and mercy.

But right now, I'm angry.

It was supposed to be routine.  It was supposed to be just a check to get a baseline before prescribing meds.  It was supposed to be an in-and-out, no big deal, five minute sort of thing.

But the little paper with the gash across the middle made a gash across my heart and made my world tilt at an crazy new angle.

The little lines on the paper were supposed to jog up and down in their jittery pattern uniformly across the page, but they don't.  There's one rogue line that slashes through the others and leaps out of the norm and almost off the top of the page itself.

The doctor shows me this paper and says off-handedly:

We got the results of the EKG back.  There's an irregularity.  You'll want to follow up with a cardiologist.  There's a thickening of the wall of the right side of her heart.  

I want to snatch the paper out of her hand, rip it up and throw it away.  What do you mean, lady!  There's nothing wrong with my child! You're WRONG!

I want to shout it at her, shake her, make her see it my way

But there's no point in shooting the messenger, so I calmly tuck the prescription for the follow-up exam in my handy dandy notebook, and force my feet to follow her footsteps out of her office and down the hall.  

What does this mean?

I don't know.

And part of me doesn't even want to know.  I want to keep my head in the sand and deny that this even exists.

But I can't.

As my youngest baby is upstairs coughing her way through her latest bought of pneumonia, this other child of mine, the curly haired girl who already struggles with a mood disregulation, is now stepping with me into the whole new world of cardiology.

And while her heart is the one that may be damaged,

my heart is the one that hurts.

I know from my latest Beth Moore study on the book of Daniel, that there are 3 ways to be delivered from this fire:

We can be delivered from the fire, i.e. we could find out it's nothing at all and the reading was wrong,

We can be delivered through the fire, i.e. we could find out it's something that we can manage and live with,


We can be delivered by the fire, which is a place a never want to think of going with my children.

I take a deep breath.  My heart rate slows, my blood pressure lowers, I stretch the cramps out of my fingers and I realize I've been biting my lip.

And as I stand here at the lip of the opening of the firey furnace, and I peer down into the flames, I hope and pray that we have the opportunity to just turn around and walk away from this.  I hope that the cardiologist will tell us it was all a mistake, that it all means nothing and that there are no worries.  But I know that if we are forced to make that leap into the opening of this scorching furnace, if we have to head down the path of diagnosis and treatment, we won't be the only ones walking through these flames.

I can't fight this, whatever this may be.  I can only turn the page on this new chapter in our lives, smooth the blank page,

and turn the pen over to God, and know that He will be beside us, all the way, whatever tomorrow may bring.

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