There's no good place to start this story, so I'll just give you the end.
This morning David had his gallbladder removed. Good riddance.
You can fill in the rest...pain, anguish, emergency rooms, ultrasounds, CT scans, and hospital television. A repeat performance of the dance we did nearly two years ago, only worse.
And so, in the middle of the night in the middle of last week, I sat, cold and tired, in an emergency room waiting for the doctor. It was nearly morning by the time he came back with word.
Gallstones. A lot of them. Fluorescing bright as day all over the screen. His gallbladder would have to go.
I started to cry. Hard.
The doctor looked alarmed. He assured me that this was very routine, an easy surgery, my husband was going to be fine.
I told him that I just have a lot going on in my life right now.
And I do. Enough things to fast and pray for to keep me on my knees permanently.
Luckily, I have other people helping me with that part. (I love you all.)
As for me, I spent yesterday morning in the dentist's chair before I went with David to see the surgeon and visit the lab. Lots of drilling. A temporary crown. More pain and anguish. The dentist said it might need a root canal because I'd left it so long. "Fifty-fifty," he said. I am ready for things to fall my way.
I am trodding as cheerfully as I can. But you might be surprised just how long and just how dark the night can actually be. When the only light at the end of the tunnel is your husband's glowing gallstones on the CT screen.
Refine. Humble. Teach. Something is happening here. One day last week, in the fourth watch of the night, when I was sure I could not go one step further on this journey, I had the distinct feeling that heaven cares less about the destination, and more about what happens to me on the way.
I can only hope it won't take me forty years.
But let's be honest. Given my brass brow and neck of iron sinew, I'd say it's probably fifty-fifty.