Back when I was in college (ahem... 20 years ago), a book came out that sold like crazy. It was called Life's Little Instruction Book. It was small, fit in your hand, and had some basic life lessons, one per page. I don't recall the lesson number, but I remember perfectly one lesson in particular. It said this:
When someone asks you how you're doing, just say fine.
It may have gone on from there, or maybe my brain added the next part: They don't actually want to know about every detail of your day. At the time, I was not an unbeliever, but I definitely had nothing to do with God. And when I read that, I thought I had stumbled onto a goldmine. I began living that very statement.
It was only years down the road that I realized my error in believing my friends didn't really want to know about my day or who I am. It took having a friend literally ask me to "take off the mask" one day to realize that for all those years, I was wrong. I didn't have to appear happy or perfect to be likeable. And since then I've worked very hard to be real with the people I encounter in a day. I have no pretense. What you see is what you get with this girl. And I really like myself that way.
So today I want to lay something out before you that is going to be a real part of my journey. And I'm going to ask you to pray for me and my family. I hope you will.
My daughter has had scoliosis that was diagnosed by her pediatrician at her yearly check up at age 10. She was referred to an orthopedic doctor in Oklahoma City and we've been visiting him for 18 months now, getting x-rays taken, and monitoring her progress. In the beginning, it was "no big deal." "Not out of the ordinary." It was measuring a curve at 15 degrees. "Don't worry!" we were told. "It only becomes a problem when they are in the 30-40 degree range."
Six months later it was at 18 degrees. And six months later we were at 23 degrees. But today, when we went in, the mood had changed. He checked her back, had her lean over. And then he turned off the lights to share her x-ray with us. It showed an S shaped curve at the top of her back. Now there were two curvatures, one at 32 degrees and the other at 20 degrees. And now, we're not going to be seeing this doctor anymore. We need to go see a pediatric spine surgeon.
We have now officially made the leap from "monitoring" to "surgery."
I worked hard to remain calm. I put my precious daughter into my car and made the long drive home. I swung by Starbucks just for her and then delivered her to school. And then I sat on my sofa with my husband and cried.
I want you to know here that I am scared. I'm apprehensive. But I'm also resting in the peace only a BIG GOD can provide. And MOSTLY, I'm trying to keep this all in perspective. And trust that we will be carried through this journey by friends and strangers whose prayers I covet. Will you please stand with me?