“Man up! You survived your son’s suicide!”

I am having minor shoulder surgery tomorrow.  Not really a big deal… but I’m still feeling anxious about it.  Not so much the procedure itself (although I may be saying something different tomorrow morning just before the procedure)… but the recovery is what’s got me uneasy.  I’m afraid I’ll be in a lot of pain.  Enough pain that physical therapy will be too hard, that I won’t be able to start running again right away, that the procedure won’t work and I’ll still have pain and limited motion.  But at the root my anxiety is a lack of trust.  Does God even care about something so small?  Of course He does – I know that.  But do I believe it?  Can I trust that even if my “worse case scenario” plays out that God is still good, that He can still work in me and through me, that He still wants to give me the desires of my heart, and that He knows better than I do what is best for me?  That’s a tall order.  I often find myself asking God, evening begging Him, to help me in my unbelief.

The feeling of anxiety also triggers me.  I associate feeling this way with my son’s death.  Not that the anxiety I’m feeling today is anywhere near as intense.  But it’s an association thing I guess.  Even feeling just a smidge like I did on that day – that horrible awful day – is enough to have me shaking, uneasy, and sick to my stomach.  Then I hear the voice… “Man up, Denise.  You survived your son’s suicide.  One of the worst things ever.  How can you be such a wimp heading into a simple little surgery?”  That argument sounds logical to me.  It makes a ton of sense.  And it’s completely unhelpful.  Our enemy is like that… he wants us to focus on fixing ourselves under our own power rather than acknowledging our weakness and crawling up into our perfect Father’s lap.

So here I am.  Facing a minor but unpleasant situation that is viewed through my new life lens.  Sometimes I don’t like my new lens.  And what I really don’t like is that every single decision – from watching a TV show to choosing what to wear to the bigger stuff like attending a memorial service or a minor surgery has to be filtered through this damn lens.  It’s not fair.  I don’t deserve this.  Why me?  I just want my normal life back!

God help me to not feel sorry for myself.  Teach me gratefulness.  Teach me to live life with eternity in mind more consistently. 

Lord thank You for the ability to have surgery – for the financial means, for the access to skilled surgeons.  Thank You for the family and friends You’ve blessed me with.  Thank You for my eyesight as I look forward to extra reading while I’m recovering on the couch.  Thank You for chicken and rice soup.  Thank You for anesthesia and pain killers.  Thank You for the women I’ve already met during physical therapy.  Thank You for laughter with them as I drop F-bombs in my pain… they’ve been such good sports in spite of my mouth!  Thank You for the reminder of when Drey broke his arm and how speedy his recovery was.

4 thoughts on ““Man up! You survived your son’s suicide!”

  1. Hey D,

    Praying for tomorrow. I am grateful for how vulnerable you are with each step of this journey.

    Can you imagine what shit Drey would be giving you about being anxious. “Suck it up, Mom, you can kick this surgery in the ass” or something like that.

    Love ya – Happy Birthday

    Vicky Thompson

    Development Director

    Central Ohio Youth For Christ

    3630 North High Street

    Columbus, Oh 43214

    614-848-4870, Ext. 6105

    Cell 614-204-0004

  2. Denise, I wish you well and a fast recovery. i have had surgery on my shoulder (the only football game I missed of Brandon’s) and it was a success as I have never had another problem since…as I hope for you. I know you have the determination to get through it. God bless you.

  3. How did surgery go yesterday. Shoulder surgery, however small, is no walk in the park. I am sure you are in a lot of pain today. Once the pain subsides, if you are like me, I kind of liked being lazy without guilt. I read and watched a ton of TV and Paul waited on me. I did not want visitors and hung out in my nightgown. If it was summer it would be a big bummer but in this weather, it is kind of nice to hang low and recover. Sending you a cyber get well hug for rest and a speedy shoulder recovery. E

    Sent From My IPad

    “If you know someone who has lost a child, and you’re afraid to mention them because you think you might make them sad by reminding them that they died — you’re not reminding them. They didn’t forget they died. What you’re reminding them of is that you remembered that they lived, and that is a great gift.”–Elizabeth Edwards

    Best Regards, Ellen Schoonover Personalized Assistance Area Consultant International Professional Relations, Inc. (IPR) Cell: 614-208-3746 epschoon@msn.com

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