First of all, I want to start with this... an update on Matt Chandler. I don't recall if I've mentioned him on the blog or not. He is a pastor where I used to live and his daughter attended the preschool where I worked. So, I have a slight personal connection to the family and have been following his story very closely. You can read his story via the link below. I have been awed and inspired by the way he has handled suffering. In the beginning, I spent many days praying that if I were put in that situation that I would handle it with as much grace and faith as Matt has. I have experienced a fair amount of suffering this year (nothing in comparison to brain cancer) and I feel like still I have a lot to learn about grace and faith. I hope this inspires you...
Secondly, my mother-in-law did have a brain aneurysm and brain surgery to fix it. The surgeon said that if she did not have surgery, within days the aneurysm would have blown and she would have died. She is alive and well and went home from the hospital on Halloween (Merely 2 weeks and 2 days after her surgery) - PRAISE GOD! She had absolutely NO symptoms of stroke and no complications - PRAISE GOD! Please continue to pray that she would recover quickly. Her main issue (aside from a nasty scar) is that she was virtually immobile for two whole weeks, so she is very weak and tired. Things could have been SO much worse and we are so grateful.
How is it going with Rheumatoid Arthritis? Better. I have now started all three of my medications and have had no side effects so far - PRAISE GOD! My daily symptoms have been reduced - my joints are working better, though I'm physically exhausted a lot. At least one of the drugs is an immune suppressant and I came down with a pretty nasty cold this weekend. I have started doing a lot of research on RA and treatments, especially non-medicinal - just to see what is out there. I've decided that sometimes ignorance is bliss and that research is very depressing. I've found message boards of "support", but all I find there are people who list every symptom that is bothering them that day and the difficulties they are having. I know how miserable it is to suffer with chronic pain, but I don't want to spend all day reading about other people's pain too. There is a tough balance between getting the support you need and detailing your troubles to others.
I'm amazed at how life can be strolling along... flowing smoothly... and in one instant or one day - things change. For Matt Chandler, that one day was last Thanksgiving. For my mother-in-law, that one day was October 13. For me, that one day was May 23. It catches you by surprise. You weren't expecting this. But, God has a plan. He is not surprised. He knows when your day is. You may even have several days. He is the same God before that day, during that day and after that day.