As many of you know, I recently had surgery to repair an abdominal hernia.  At 44 years old, this was my first surgery of this nature.  Going into the surgery, I was excited to finally have it taken care of after finding out that I’ve actually had it for awhile and the potential dangers to not getting it fixed.

My 8:30am pre-op went pretty smoothly… really not too nervous.  Lots of questions, vital sign checks, etc.  I was told to put all my clothes and belongings in a hospital provided bag and slip on “the gown.”  All I can say about ‘the gown’ is now I know what an Orangutan lives with every day… have you ever looked at the ‘backside’ of one of those?  Anyway, not a deal-breaker, just different… not so used to my ‘backside’ being exposed like that!

The best part of the pre-op was the fact that I didn’t feel the IV needle at all!!  The nurse said that they use Lidocaine cream that numbs the needle area.  I liked that!  I didn’t feel a thing!  Then the anesthesiologist came in.  A very nice, older, ‘grandpa’ type guy, who told me the history of anesthesiology – then told me that he would be giving me an initial dose to start the numbing process, have me breath oxygen for a few minutes, then the full dose of ‘knock out’ would come. Well, that’s pretty much how it happened.  However, I don’t really remember much of anything after the initial dose.  The next thing I knew, I was waking up in the recovery room… dazed… wondering if the surgery had even happened. It had.

My wife soon arrived to pick me up. I had changed, eaten a few crackers and some juice and was somewhat ready to go. Honestly, I was a little surprised when the nurse brought a wheelchair for me to get into. Even in my dazed and confused state, I remember thinking ‘why do I need a wheelchair?’ Standard protocol. I don’t know if it is a ‘manly thing’ or what, but admittedly, it was almost ‘embarrassing’ being wheel-chaired out. I wanted to get out and put the nurse in the chair and wheel her outside. Really! I realized though, that it was a bit of my pride slipping out of my dazed mind. As I pondered this over the last few days, it made me realize how hard it is sometimes for us to ‘accept’ help… even when we need it the most.  This sweet nurse was just doing what she instinctively knew to do.  It made me think of my relationship with God.  How many times have I resisted His help – God just being and doing what is ‘instinctive’ for Him to do. How many times has He nudged me, instructed me, warned me and wanted to bless me, but instead, I turned the other way, thinking that ‘my way’ was better… or not wanting to humble myself before Him and allow him to ‘wheelchair’ me through life’s challenges and difficulties.

I am thankful for that nurse who knew her job. If she would have let me walk out of the hospital, I would surely have paid for it later.  And the same, I am very thankful that God loves me and always knows what is best for me… even in the midst of my own stubbornness – those times when really, I want to put Him in the ‘wheelchair’.  Thank you Lord for your patience!

  1. Debbie says:

    Tis true that we are often embarrassed by our weakness and need. Yet it is when humility has us firmly seated that God Himself moves us to where He has designed for us to go.

    On a similar note, yet also on a totally different level, can you imagine going through life from within the seat of a wheelchair, literally?

    I enjoyed your post very much. Thank you for sharing.

    • brian hetzer says:

      Hi Debbie – yes… for those who spend their lives/significant time in a wheelchair… I am even more humbled. Good point about once we are in God’s ‘wheelchair’ it is then that He is able to ‘wheel’ us where He wants us to go. Thank you!

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