Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Want to have Surgery?

A number of weeks ago, my orthopedic surgeon asked me a question.... "You want to have surgery?" Well, my response was, 'certainly not...' I did not 'want' to have surgery. Then he clarified that he determined my shoulder injury, after six months of therapeutic, non-surgical treatments, would not improve past the 80% healing point that I seemed to be stuck in... He explained that there was just the tip of a bone that continued to irritate the injured area (called an impingement), and needed to be shaved down, so the injury could fully heal. He explained it with pictures and drawings that a simple guy like me could understand, and I agreed to the procedure and the time was set.

When I awoke from what was supposed to be a simple hour long procedure, I noticed that the Surgical recovery area was empty except me, and that somehow I had been in surgery for five hours.... The Surgeon had left for the day, having explained to my wife that he discovered the real problem, a hole/tear in my rotator cuff, that needed to be repaired, and that I was to meet back with him in a few days at his clinic.

Karen, my wife, explained it to me, the best she could, but this had not been part of the long explanation that I had been through before I agreed to surgery. The MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging... kinda like an x-ray of tissue) had not revealed any injury like this that was mentioned to me... I was a bit more at a loss.

Three days passed painfully slow, at the meeting with my surgeon, he clearly explained to me what he discovered when he went into my shoulder with his orthoscopic camera. I asked, why the MRI did not pick this up months before? He explained that an MRI is like looking out a window with Vaseline smeared all over it... is that a truck in the parking lot?... I think so, it is blue, but what kind of condition is it in..... ? ...Well I thought that an MRI was a lot more clearer than that, and that surgeons were more certain of what they could see before going into a surgical procedure.

I look at the five small incisions in my shoulder now in the mirror as they heal and I am moved at how such a discovery can be found, and repaired through that small space... In addition, I have recently become a new student of the structure and make up of the human shoulder like never before. God has created such an incredible number of cooperating levels of tissue and mechnisums that makes up the shoulder that just blows my mind. And that with the technology we have today, there is no clear way to really know what may be wrong without actually allowing the surgeon to go in and look for him self.

Kinda like surgery, I am most grateful that God is at work in me, even when I'm not sure what the procedure is or why it needs to be done, I know that when the pain resides and my strength returns I will still be in love with Him and trusting Him in all things, all the more. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 13, "NOW we see but a poor reflection; THEN we shall see 'clearly' face to face.." The question I ask now when the Surgeon (my Lord) says, "Want to have Surgery?" The fact that He wants to help me, He loves me and knows what needs to be done humbles me greatly. I hope that my desire for any surgical procedure He wants to do, however painful or if I don't even understand it, my answer will be a trusting "Yes!" I look forward to these faith growing procedures more each day.

"Want to have surgery?" God.