Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Comfort and Peace in the Word

Last Friday, my left arm began hurting.  A slight pain every time I tried to move it high or even parallel to the floor.  I thought I may have slept wrong and it would get better with time.  I was wrong.  Saturday was a little worse, although it wasn't too big of a problem during the time I spent at the Vine and Branches Conference listening and learning.  But by Saturday night it really, really hurt and I could barely move it.  Sunday was the same and even a bit worse as the day wore on.

Monday morning David awoke me and took me to urgent care.  They gave me a pregnancy test (-) before they would xray my shoulder.  The xray turned out normal, so the doctor ordered an MRI, and gave me two range of motion exercises to do twice a day so as not to have my shoulder "lock." Fortunately for us an opening in the MRI department was available in one hour, giving us the ability to stay in town and not have to drive home and then back.

About three or four years ago I had a full body MRI done to rule out MS as a cause of unusual back tinglings I was experiencing.  At that time it was scheduled and they gave me instructions on what to expect and to bring.  I was able to dress in my own comfortable clothing and bring along some favorite music.  I chose the Kantorei's "With Angels & Archangels."  On the day of the testing, which would last for a good hour, I laid on the table in an open MRI machine listening to the Kanteroi amidst the banging, pinging, and pounding of the MRI testing.

That is what I remembered from that first MRI, the loud banging of the machine, but having the Kantorei singing God's praises (which I couldn't really hear during the banging, but was so crystal clear in between) and that kept me peaceful and comforted.  But yesterday, I was going right to the testing and my Kantorei CD's were at home.

This time, I had to wear their supplied hospital gown and shorts, was in a closed machine, and was able to choose music to listen to on their sirius radio headset.  As they maneuvered me into the correct position for testing (ending up with the harness needing to press firmly on the sorest spot of my shoulder for the entire test) they asked me what kind of music I wanted to listen to; I chose classical.

They then slid me into the closed machine and I didn't close my eyes fast enough and I began to slightly panic and feel closed in.  But I immediately took a couple of deep breaths, and began praying the Lord's Prayer and the Apostle's Creed.  At some point in praying, I relaxed, and the machine began testing and all the pounding, pinging, and banging began.

But this time I had no Kantorei to sing for me, so I sang hymns.  But like I always have when testing time comes, I panic and all that I learned leaves my brain and I stare at the question, "Sing a Hymn," and think to myself, "What? I don't know any hymns! Aaaack!"

But God put the liturgy into my mouth and I began to sing "This is the Feast," all the while picturing this:

And I became even calmer, the banging, pinging, and pounding less annoying, and I was even able to sing more hymns and liturgy.  When the testing was done (only about 30 minutes this time), I wasn't ready to stop as I was sort of half asleep, although my arm was starting to hurt more, so it was nice to stop.

I walked back to the dressing room still singing and praying; thankful that God who is faithful and just, whose peace surpasses all understanding, will keep my heart and mind in faith toward Him and bring me to everlasting life.


Elephantschild said...

((hugs)) That's one of my favorite paintings.

I remember a crisis about 18 months ago or so - I could not pray, for I didn't know what to pray FOR, but I kept my TLH by me all day, and I sung the liturgy.

Melanie T said...

I love the painting, too.

One of my greatest real fears in life is needing an MRI. I don't think I could do it without full anesthesia.

Isn't the liturgy a great blessing? A pity that so many will never understand the great joy and comfort to be found in that which is so familiar.

Praying that the pain turns out to be nothing serious. How does your arm feel today?

Erin said...

Any diagnosis yet?

Glenda said...

My arm feels much better, the anti-inflammatory meds helped. I just got off the phone with the doc and she read the MRI report. I'm not sure she was speaking English,. ;-) But I did understand that I have a grade 2 tear in the lower 3rd quadrant of ...... and there is some fluid in the joint and some bursitis. So off to the orthopedic tomorrow morning, for more analysis.

Karen said...

I'm glad that you're feeling less pain. Maybe physical therapy can take care of most of the problem.

Cheryl said...

Hope healing is fast and the pain monster is soon vanquished! Keep us posted.