Wow, it's been such a long time since I've made a Wednesday in the Word post, and I feel so excited :D My last post in this series was in February, and that's... not okay. That is nowhere near the standard of commitment I hold myself to, but to be honest... I didn't want to. I was in a place where I felt really vulnerable and uncomfortable sharing my innermost thoughts. I did get really busy with school and work and my personal life, but I honestly let that become my excuse for the past few months.
For me, my Wednesday in the Word series is my way of really reaching out to you guys and open up about my personal life. I am a pretty private person with my friends - part of it comes from being too introverted to join in on conversations and feeling like I might be being too narcissistic if I talk about myself. This blog is my way of being able to talk about things, even to my friends, about my struggles, things I'm praying for and about, and reflecting on things. I think I'm finally able to open up a bit more about the things that have been going on in the pats few months, and I'm sorry if this comes to you as a huge block of text that you are too tired to read. :)
In February, my doctor officially told me I needed to receive surgical treatment for my hand in order to possibly regain full function. As much as I tried to convince myself to not be afraid, I was scared out of my mind. What if the surgery went poorly? I felt too young to never be able to fully use my hand, but I also felt too young to never be able to use my hand again - was it worth the risk? My hand had plateaued in PT and OT, and was slowly regressing, and my doctor gave me his professional input - take the risk. I prayed hard. I prayed that my hand would automatically somehow get better and I wouldn't need surgery. I prayed for a good surgery. I prayed really hard, and though I knew the only way to finally stop freaking out was to surrender and know that God is in control, I couldn't. I wanted to know the outcome of my decision, and I dreaded as April dawned on me.
I asked some people in my immediate circle of friends to pray for my surgery and recovery, but I put on a brave front. I felt so lost, and I had no idea how to feel about it all. So many people facing nerve damage don't even have the opportunity to have a chance of regaining function through surgery. I, living in the US, with worker's compensation, had that opportunity. Instead of gratefulness, I was feeling out of sorts and even bitter for having to make a choice that would affect me for the rest of my life. I didn't want to have to choose - couldn't I get some forewarning of whether or not I would regret getting surgery or not? I had little support system - I don't think any of my friends knew what a big surgery this was. I hid it from my mother, telling her that I was away on a work trip, and I had brushed it off as a small surgery when telling my friends.
My first full day post surgery, I broke down uncontrollably, crying. I was so scared going into the surgery, and it was finally over. The fact that they were working on my nerves made it so scary, and I found out post surgery that they actually had to also go into my back, not just my hand, to repair the damages. The incisions were small, but felt tingling and numbness and pain all over my body - while the surgery was supposedly successful, I was still really scared that the recovery process wouldn't go well. I didn't want to face my feelings and my fears. With all of these fears eating me up inside, I didn't want to think and reflect on Scripture more deeply. Instead, I approached Scripture from a generic and academic standpoint.
Update: my hand has been healing well, and I've been attending PT and OT weekly. My strength is very much recovered, though my hand does get sore and tired quickly. My typing is still a bit off, so my right hand reacts much faster than my left hand, resulting in a lot of typos. However all in all, my recovery is going well, and my doctors tells me that I'm doing a lot better than he hoped. The scarring is still there, but it's pretty faint. It's nothing that won't blend in with all the crazy scars my cute little cat gives me.
Something else that really plagued me over these past months was more a struggle with friendship. Someone that I was really close to randomly cut me off - there was no argument, no interaction... nothing. This was a friend that I considered a real sister, not simply a sister in Christ. To give perspective on how close this friend was: she has my login to my accounts in case I was gone and needed any transactions to be made, I have (had? I didn't check) the login to a few of her accounts in case of an emergency, I paid for her ticket overseas as a graduation x Christmas gift, gave her my Costco membership card so she can have discounted fill-ups, etc. This was someone that if I went missing, she would be the person to be able to login to my accounts and tell the police who my last Facebook contact was, etc. We had celebrated her getting a new job, and even separated with a "see you soon!". And then she stopped responding to any of my texts. My company had hired her on for a freelance project, and she wouldn't even respond to my emails from my firstname.lastname@example.org work email. She would only respond from the general email@example.com company email. I was hurt, bitter, angry, and confused. I wasn't sure how my posts and reflections would come off if I blogged about my reflections on the issue; I wasn't sure if I was even approaching the issue with the right heart. I honestly still don't know if my heart is in the right place regarding this issue, but I do know that I am getting over the hurt, and I hope that she finds peace in whatever it was that pushed her to completely cut me off.
Ultimately, I think what it boiled down to was that I was not really seeking God in these situations, but trying really hard to calm myself down through what I'm "supposed" to think and feel. We are saved through faith, not works; I was definitely more leaning towards what I was doing, and how it could prove my faith, rather than just simply being honest with myself, God, my friends, and my audience.
"For whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything. " - 1 John 3:20
There really was no reason for me to feel afraid of judgement from others regarding any of my fears, bitterness, anger, sadness, and confusion. It was really an inner spiritual battle with myself in not trusting God enough and being afraid of the demons residing in my heart. Vulnerability should be shared with our brothers and sisters. Afterall, what's the point of community if you can't let God be the one to guide the relationships?