This is an edited journal entry from my Caring Bridge site written one week after my kidney transplant was cancelled. (Originally written 1/24/15)
A portion of today’s Jesus Calling reads, “If you have the world’s peace–everything going your way–you don’t seek My unfathomable Peace. Thank Me when things do not go your way, because spiritual blessings come wrapped in trials. Adverse circumstances are normal in a fallen world. Expect them each day. Rejoice in the face of hardship, for I have overcome the world. ”
My kindergarten classroom sat quiet as all the students had left school already. Putting the last few things away on a shelf while my girls played with blocks and puzzles, my phone rang.
The doctor began talking right away, as I sat stunned. It was surreal, hearing the doctor say the words. I had to repeat back to him what I heard him say just to be sure it was really happening. I asked him if he was positive and he repeated again that surgery was cancelled.
My kidney transplant surgery, which was to happen in 6 days, was cancelled.
Cancelled. The tears came and wouldn’t stop. Shaking, dizzy and unsure of what to do, I sank down into one of the tiny child-sized chairs.
The doctor continued on to explain that the melanoma I had removed on my foot a couple of months prior had been deeper than he originally thought. Standard protocol with cancer, is that the patient must be cancer free for 2 years before preceding with a transplant and being put on immune suppressing medications.
Mikayla and Abby ran to me, asking over and over, “Mom, what is it? What’s wrong?”
“The surgery is cancelled. I won’t be receiving a new kidney.”
“What? What do you mean, Mom? Why? You need that kidney.” Their questions were followed by loud sobbing.
Initially, I was certain, the girls were disappointed in the change of plans because they wouldn’t be staying with Grandma for a while now. When 7 year old Abby managed to choke out the words, “But mom, you are always so tired. This was going to help you,” I know I wasn’t giving them enough credit…they got it.
Oh, Lord, how will we get through this? This was not the plan. You had worked out all the details to get us to this point.
Though others had stepped forward to be donors, my brother-in-law, Dave, had the same blood type and was a healthy, perfect kidney donor for me. He was prepared and excited to make this sacrifice.
Almost immediately, the Lord brought to mind the best example I have of MY plans suddenly changing and HIS better plan taking over. Once again, I shared this story with my girls as they stopped sobbing and looked me in the eye.
It was about 10 years ago. Jeff and I had completed our home study for adoption and I was desperate to be a mom. A birth mom saw our ad, called me, and set up a time to meet. We met her for dinner and learned she was about 8 months pregnant. The meeting went well, so well in fact, that she called me a couple days later and said she had chosen us to raise her baby.
I could think of nothing other than this baby that would be ours! I was overcome with joy! She would be in contact with our adoption attorney and we would just wait. Well, 2 weeks went by and there was no contact. I called her to make sure she was okay and she told me that she had changed her mind, we would not be raising her baby.
Just like that, that plan was ripped out from under our feet. All the details, planning, excitement, hoping…gone.
The same surreal feeling flooded my heart. I was devastated, heart broken. I thought, “How long will I have to wait, Lord? And, will I EVER get to be a mom?”
About 2 weeks later, we received a call from a social worker about a baby that would be born in about 2 weeks. A week after the phone call, we met the birth family. One week later, Mikayla was born! She was ours and we were in love! We couldn’t take our eyes off her. The heartbreak from the previous month was completely erased, forgotten. God’s better, sovereign plan took over.
I don’t know how or when we’ll have that moment of clarity with our current situation, but I know it’s coming. Because God’s word assures me, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5.
I did not know how God would get us through that time or how He would bring clarity but of His power, I was more certain than ever. There were so many humans involved with my transplant…some who know Him and many that do not. The Lord exerted His will over the entire situation and put me in my place…my rightful place, resting in His shadow, waiting on Him to move next.
Jeremiah 32:17 ‘Ah, Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You.