I don’t understand the ways of the universe, and I am too familiar with the saying that God works in mysterious ways. And that there is a reason things happen the way they do. And a million other useless platitudes that people use in weak attempts to offer some degree of comfort when things are hard. I don’t buy into it, I’m too much of a realist. Sometimes prayers just go unanswered. And I don’t know why. I don’t understand why Melissa’s cancer continues to spread, why my Grandmother hasn’t passed on quickly like she had hoped, why my Dad has heart failure, why a simple root canal has turned into a nightmare for me. (When I look at the list I just wrote, I realize that my pain pales in comparison to those prayers that involve life a death but it’s a pain that is a daily reality for me and it is my life right now .) I’ve been pleading to God, begging, crying, yelling, and I don’t have any answers in this moment.
I remember my Mom always told me as a kid that hard times would either strengthen a person’s faith or destroy it. I’m hovering on the later end, for many reasons, so many that I don’t know where to start. I have stayed positive during years and years of daily health problems and I’ve taken things in stride, and only Craig can attest to that because believe it or not- I don’t share every hardship with the blog or event my family. But I have really struggled recently, and I’m filled with anger over these unanswered prayers. I can’t tell you how many people have told me they are praying for me, and for my family members, and I want to believe it makes a difference but logically, I just can’t get there right now. Does that make me a fair-weather Christian? I suppose so, in a way. I’m not so proud of it, but that’s the truth.
Even as I struggle with my attitude daily, life moves on. I’ve decided that there is actually no decision to be made about the parotidectomy. It simply must be done. I can search and search for a doctor to tell me otherwise, but at some point I have to realize that would make that doctor the quack, and not the dozen before him who are all telling me the same thing. And as I accept this reality more fully, I’m feeling a little bit more at peace. I don’t really want reassurance from anyone, because let’s be honest- no one can tell me that it is going to be okay. Hopefully, it will be. Most likely, it will be. But no one knows that right now and quite honestly, I just don’t want to hear it unless you happen to be the surgeon performing the procedure. There are some serious risks to this particular surgery in my case, and I have a right to be worried about it.
Am I grumpy and not a lot of fun to be around right now? Yes. No question. That’s just the way it’s going to be right now. And I thank all of you who have been loving me regardless, who don’t ram positivity down my throat, and who have allowed me to feel angry about what has been a very hard few months. The most theraputic time I have had thus far is when a good friend and I sat off in the corner at a professional meeting and griped for over an hour. It felt awesome and I went home in better spirits than I have felt since this whole ordeal started to get out of hand.
I have thought of one small thing that I am thankful for (I know there should be more, and there will be eventually). I live in a big city, and going to a specialist is a 20 minute drive. If I lived in a small town, I can’t imagine the money we would have spent by now on hotel rooms and gas to drive here. And because I can still think of a few things I am thankful for, I continue to maintain that I am a realist, not a pessimist. And thus far, life hasn’t given me much reason to feel too optimistic.
Just start answering some of those prayers, God, please?
This year isn’t ending much better than it started.