The Lord is My Shepherd - From My Prayer Closet
I went to sleep an able bodied strong and healthy woman. Then at 6 am I opened my eyes. It was a new day and it would be a busy one. I had a very important appointment with someone who wanted to buy my car. I had to meet him quite early on this Saturday morning. But, I had been running around so much, my body felt it could do with 10 more minutes of sleep so I closed my eyes and slept still holding on to my phone to check the time.
When I woke up again it was exactly 6:15. Okay, it was now time to wake up and start getting ready to leave. Since it was Saturday, everybody was still in bed and the house was quiet. Still in my sleeping position, facing the ceiling, I turned my head to the left to look out through the window. Immediately the windows started moving really fast. I turned my head to look at the wall; it too was spinning.
“Good Lord, what is going on?” I said to myself and slowly got out of bed.
The sensation in my head was horrible. Everything I looked at was spinning, my body felt clammy, I was sweating and it felt as if there was not enough air in the house. Mornings in my country are fresh and beautiful. I could do with an early morning breeze. I staggered out of my bedroom, past the other bedrooms through the hallway, to the living room area and finally through the kitchen. I unlocked the wooden door and struggled a little to loose the bolt on the metal grill door. Then I walked out to our long driveway on our three-acre yard. I walked back and forth. Even the air outside, was not enough to overcome the forces that were overtaking my body. I walked back to our kitchen verandah and sat down with my head on my lap trying to catch my breath.
The sensation of dizziness gave me an impression I could pass out anytime. I struggled to stand up and get back in the house to awake someone as time was of the essence. If I did not let anyone know now, I would pass out and they would not know what happened until an hour or two later when everyone woke up. I felt like I was fading.
I knocked on my elder’s sisters’ bedroom door.
“Could you please ask Collins, our neighbor to come and drive me to the hospital, I am sick,” I managed to say and disappeared into my bedroom where I lay on my bed gasping for air and feeling like the whole world was spinning around me.
My elder sister and her husband woke up immediately.
“What is the matter with you?” they asked examining my face.
“I do not know, I am just very dizzy,” I said gasping.
Like the good and faithful Christians they were, they first laid their hands on me and prayed before they went to call Collins to drive us together to the hospital.
When Collins came, he found me lying down in a chair covered in a heavy coat from head to toe, I was shivering, my body now felt really cold and weak, I could not even sit up. He looked at me once and said nothing. They helped me to the car and we started off for the hospital. Somewhere along the way, Collins diverted from our route, the car needed more gas because there was not just enough to get us to the hospital. I was listless.
“Please take me to the hospital quickly,” I mumbled under my breath with my head hanging on my left shoulder. “
We need gas,” Collins said sympathetically and drove into the gas station.
The normal refueling process seemed to take ages. I was so out of it, I stopped talking and looking at anything. I just lay still.
When we got to the hospital, the reception staff began to ask about my name, file and stuff like that. They were taking too long, I withdrew from the counter, lay sidelong on the patient bench and kept quiet. I was fading slowly and I could feel myself.
“Call the doctor quickly,” one of the girls said.
I did not know what I looked like, but people were reacting to me in a strange way that I did not like. While I felt listless in myself, I did not think I was that bad.
Immediately, they wheeled me to the emergency room ICU to attend to me. There were no formalities, they would get to them later. In the ICU, the phlebotomist whom I knew very well and who had drawn blood from my veins a hundred other times before struggled to find my blood vessels.
“All the veins have collapsed, I cannot find them,” he said tapping and tapping the inside of my joints. My favorite doctor was standing right next to him trying to find out if I was bleeding anywhere.
“No, I was not,” I told her. She asked if I was taking any medication.
“Yes, there was a medication I was taking for my tooth ache, a new kind of strong pain medication I had bought over the counter from a local pharmacy and an antibiotic. She wanted to see the pain medication. It was in my purse, my elder sister gave it to her.
“This drug has the potential of causing intestinal bleeding,” she said. We need to take the tests quickly.
As they struggled to get my blood, I felt me slipping away slowly. I got ready to put my hands by my side and let go easily. I would just let myself rest as I already had enough. Then, I remembered some old wisdom from a source I could not remember. Just a voice saying to me quietly, “Do not put your hands down, you will not wake up.”
I quickly raised my hands up and let them stay there and I began to meditate on and pray Psalm 23.
PS 23:1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. 3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Just at that moment, my doctor’s phone rang and her ring tone played to the classic tune of “The Lord’s my shepherd, I shall not want…..”
The old tune I loved to sing when I was a child. It was so comforting and timely, I knew God was right there ministering to me. Just then, my husband called and after talking to my sister in private, he asked to talk with me. I got the phone and for all I know the only reasonable thing I said to him was that I was doing great, singing “The Lord is my Shepherd….” as I went with my Lord. The rest of the things I spoke were gibberish and I knew even if I could not control it. It was in a euphoric…. I could feel it even if I could not express it. My husband could not say anything more, he asked to continue talking with my sister.
By this time, they had managed to find at least two blood vessels to draw blood from. My blood was so dark, it reminded me of the dark blood oozing from a little girl I had nursed a couple of years back just a few minutes before she passed. My blood was the same. I must have been running out of oxygen and dying. They put an IV on me and wheeled me to the wards, still puzzling over what to do with me. They requested stool and even if it was difficult to give, I did. It was scanty, but a great achievement on my part.
Once in the ward, I could only face to the right. If I faced left, I screamed with dizziness.
“Oh my God, Oh my God!” I cried out when Collins came into the ward to see me and chose to stand on my left side. Not wanting to be rude I turned to face him and the life began to go out of me. It was painful.
“What is the matter?” he asked in a concerned voice.
“Dizziness,” was all I could say.
The doctor forbade to me to eat anything but ice cream. Then, immediately the messages began coming on my phone. My sisters in another city were standing in prayer for me. Messages of encouragement from the Bible, they were so beautiful they brought life to me immediately. I could feel prayers going up for me and I knew I would be just fine.
Before the end of the day, I was recuperating really fast. They had not traced any bleeding and attributed my dizziness to some middle ear infection but even that was not accurate. The doctors just remained puzzling, but were glad that I was doing better.
The following day at noon, I was discharged from the hospital, very weak, but nevertheless far better than the day I had come in. The nurse who wheeled me to the car was someone I knew quite well. She had a word for me.
“Girl, what is it with you? Each time you get sick it is something that scares everyone in the hospital, you do not know how to get sick!”
I sure did not know how to get sick but I rarely ever got sick! I thought to myself. The next few days were turbulent, not because I was getting sick again, I was drained, no energy in me, I could only sleep. I was sometimes too scared to exert myself for fear of going over the edge again. I spent more time resting than I wanted to but I had to. As for the dizzy feeling, it took over a year to go away!
But thank God for praying people and for the Holy Spirit who will sing us an assuring song even in the most unlikely of places! I was so blessed. One of my friends who fell really sick recently said to me,
“I was so sick I could not pray, but my friend (the Holy Spirit), whom I walk with, was around to lift me up. Amen.