Sunday August 21st 2011

St. Mary's and Accident and Emergency

Magic crutches
  Not quite so good this morning. A good night's sleep but a lot of pain from my left groin when I try to move. Maybe it is something that will loosen up as I move around a bit more. Getting socks and trainers on is a surprising ordeal.

I do need to get a move on; we are going out to church in less than ¼ hour.

Our morning service could have been aimed straight at me. Come to think of it, it probably was. Clive Hawkins confirmed that the text was selected weeks before and he wrote his sermon at least 4 weeks in advance. God has a plan for everything. John Saunders mentioned us in the prayers in a wonderfully sensitive way, after which everyone knew that I have a serious problem. The feeling of love and support moved both Sue and I to tears.

There were lots of people talking to us at the the end of the service, which is just what we wanted.

The focus of the sermon was spot on .. from James chapter 5 verses 13 to 16, entitled "The prayer of Faith."

Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray.
Is any one happy? Let him sing songs of praise.
Is any one of you sick? He should call on the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord.
And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well‡; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven.

The music included very moving and relevant lyrics.

Susi Hare - "I will come with open hands to receive what you have planned. I will lay ambition down all for You, all for You. Lord, I surrender all that I am, all that I'll be; Lord, I surrender to your work in me."

An old hymn from Stuart Kyne - "When through the woods and forest glades I wander and hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees; When I look down from lofty mountain grandeur, and hear the brook, and feel the gentle breeze; Then sings my soul my Saviour God to Thee. How great Thou art; how great Thou art."

Finally a newer song from Stuart Townend (just after the prayers) - "In Christ alone, my hope is found, he is my light, my strength, my song; my cornerstone, this solid ground."

After lunch at the Hatch, a problem! I can hardly walk, my left groin is so painful. When Cathy had gone home, I went upstairs to the loo. I could hardly make it, so at 4pm and we are back at the hospital in A&E trying to get some relief so that I can walk around. 5pm and it is clear that none of the other pain relief has had any impact on the groin.

And now a real low point. Birmingham have lost 3-1 to Middlesborough .. it is going to be a long season.

A&E is depressing. We have been here for 2 hours now and very little has happened. There are people who were here long before we arrived. The expected wait time has gradually extended. When we arrived, it was about 2½ hours. We are now at 3½ hours. I suppose that more urgent cases have arrived by ambulance elsewhere.

Sue headed off in search of coffee and a snack. The coffee and panini were very good and consumed time. It is frustrating not to know what is happening. We have now been here for 3¼ hours and apart from triage, we have just been sitting here.

7:25 and progress .. I am moved into a cubicle. After another wait while doctors attend to a more urgent need, I was pretty thoroughly examined and then referred for an X-Ray. It looks like being a long evening still. 4¼ hours and counting.

Everything seems to be speeding up now. There was very little wait for the X- Ray. By 8:31, I am back in A&E for assessment, but I am beginning to feel the need for painkillers. The X-Ray pushed my back into some strange uncomfortable positions.

Sue has been wonderful this afternoon and evening, pushing me around the hospital in a wheelchair. I don't know what I would do without her. The X-Ray showed no bone damage and no link to the cancer on my right hip. Good news!

I left with a dose of heavy duty pain killer and crutches. The many hours waiting ended on a positive note. I entered A&E in a wheelchair and left on my feet!

When we got home, I realised what a difference the crutches make. I walked up the path, not exactly pain free, but comfortably and then got up and down the stairs at home with little problem.

‡ A very brief theological note. This does not mean that all a Christian has to do is ask and they will be healed. "Well" in this context has other meanings.