It was Friday night. A sharp excruciating pain at my lower back emerged out of nowhere when I bent to pick up the large plastic container that is my guinea pig indoor hutch at the balcony, and turned around to bring it inside my apartment. Cold sweat trickled down my forehead and my vision started to blur. I quickly went to my black leather sofa and sat down. I felt as if a saw was cutting through my back when I sat upright. The pain was intolerable. My throat felt dry. I needed water so I walked over to the kitchen with much difficulty to get a glass of water and sat down again at my sofa. I realised I would feel better lying in my bed so I trudged over to my bedroom.
Unsure of how to help myself I smsed 2 friends for advice, rang my mum and eventually ended up ringing my neighbour next door who rang for the ambulance to take me to hospital. 2 paramedics arrived at my place. They asked me a couple of questions. One of them took my blood pressure and squirted a liquid up my nose – a painkiller which would help me walk to the ambulance. When I got in the ambulance, I felt my eyes getting heavy and the drowsiness of the drug overcoming me. I fell into asleep on the stretcher for a bit. I felt myself being wheeled into the hospital. Had to wait for what seemed like almost an hour before they found a hospital bed. By then, the pain had gone.2 nurses attended to me, a doctor came and did some tests. After a while I was told that I could go home, given some painkillers to take for the week and advised to do some stretching as long as it didn’t hurt. When my neighbour came to pick me up to take me home, I felt the sharpness of the pain in my lower back when I sat upright in the backseat. I was thankful the drive was only 5 minutes as I was pretty sure I would have passed out or dissolved into tears if it the journey had been any longer than that.
When I got home, I fell into a deep slumber and slept like a log through the night. When I woke up the next morning, I felt dizzy and devoid of strength. It was an effort to walk around and I found that sitting upright was impossible whether it was at the dining table or at my laptop. The pain was unbearable. I had not planned my weekend like this. I had it all perfectly planned out including the coming week. I was going to work on my assignment Friday night and all day Saturday. I had been really looking forward to going rock climbing with some friends on Sunday. I found myself having to tell the organiser I was not going to be able to make it to rock climbing and emailing my university lecturer requesting for an extension on my assignment because I was unable to work on my assignment. I also informed my boss that I had to take the whole week off work and cancelled the interpreters for my lectures this week as I would not be able to drive for a couple of days.
With all this, it would have been all too easy for me to throw my hands up in the air in frustration and ask: “God, why must this happen? Why did you allow my plans to be stuffed up like this especially when I have a deadline to meet?” However, I realise that whatever happens in life is not within our control. We can make our plans but unexpected interruptions can occur. Sometimes God allows these for a special reason because He can see the big picture which the limitations of my human mind cannot fully comprehend. I can’t change my circumstances but i can certainly choose my response to it.
In the past 4 days, I have been walking for a bit or either lying down in bed resting and sleeping because the drugs prescribed put me in a deep sleep every time I take them. Yesterday, I tried starting on my assignment but did not get very far because the pain resurfaced after 15 minutes at the computer. Despite being restricted in what I can do, I found myself enjoying this much needed rest. In between naps, I found myself reflecting and contemplating life and also spending some time reading my Bible and praying. It compelled me to search within myself and ask God for some answers to questions which I know I have found. Deep inside of me, I feel an inexplicable peace which I know comes from above. I am also overwhelmed and touched by the care and concern of family, friends and my neighbour – some who were so willing to go the extra mile to help. I am so thankful that I have an iPad that I can use in bed and here I am using it to type up this blog post.
Sometimes unplanned interruptions can seem to be infuriating at first or in more serious cases it can be devastating like the death of a loved one or an accident. But on hindsight, they are truly blessings in disguise.
“Ok assignment, I am going to try and work on you today. I must hand you in by Monday. God please help me!” 😉