Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Purpose And Blessing

Cottage Hospital has such a different feel than UCLA. The ER was very well organized, and they got us in very quickly. We did have to wait for a long time to get the test done and processed, but the staff was incredibly attentive and caring which made it much easier to be there. Not that being there was easy. Actually, Krista was in incredible pain. As she suffered she prayed she felt that it wasn't fair that God would bless her through her suffering, so she specifically asked Him not to bless her but just to bring meaning to her suffering.

It is is so amazing how God answers prayer! Three years ago, Elizabeth, a woman around Krista's age, was diagnosed with AML and admitted to Cottage 6 Central for treatment. This was four months after Krista was diagnosed the first time, also with AML. Since Krista was further along in the treatment, the nurses asked her if she would talk with Elizabeth to let her know what to expect, and to show Elizabeth that others have made it through the treatment. This same Elizabeth was recently admitted back to 6 Central with a relapse of AML in preparation for a stem-cell transplant at UCLA. Last night, before Krista was admitted to the ER, the nurses were talking with Elizabeth about her upcoming stem-cell transplant and wishing that Krista was there to be able to tell Elizabeth what to expect. Everyone was so amazed in the morning when they discovered that Krista was there as a patient! Krista was so happy, too, because it really did bring an immediate purpose to her suffering.

But God didn't keep up His end of the bargain. No, He's much too generous to hold back a blessing just to fulfill a purpose. While Krista and Elizabeth were talking, Krista saw one of her favorite nurses, Jen, walk down the hall. Krista managed to get her attention, and in came Jen, along with Raggedy Andy. Jen was on her way to Elizabeth's room with Raggedy Andy to bring a little cheer. Wow... was Jen shocked, not only to see Krista, but to see Elizabeth there, too. It was hilarious. And, Krista had some wonderful childhood memories of Raggedy Andy, so she got the extra blessing of getting to meet him in person. Doesn't she look great in red yarn hair?

Anyway, back to Krista's medical condition: the Kayexalate was successful at reducing her potassium down to a normal level by the afternoon, so they let Krista go home. The excess potassium is probably an artifact from the medicines that she's taking, and they'll probably make some adjustments to them at our Friday UCLA appointment. In the meantime, her local oncologist added back a small daily dose of Lasix to help her urinate excess potassium out. Her blood pressure was also pretty high, so he also added an additional blood pressure reducer. At their recommendation, we bought a blood pressure monitor so we can know when to take it and when not to. In addition, a nutritionist came by to give us some information on reducing potassium intake in her diet. Oh, it's sad, because so many of the things she has managed to tolerate are now on the naughty list. But God is good and He'll get us through this trial, too.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.
(2 Corinthians 1:3-7)

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

Sorry you had to come to the Hospital, but Thank you, thank you for helping me understand UCLA.

Hugs Elizabeth