I am using the definition of bastard that does not pertain to a persons parentage; look it up, trust me it applies. You see my husband Mark, just came through his second round of hip surgeries beautifully. His first was a double hip replacement over Christmas.
We knew there was a problem the moment he woke from the first surgery grabbing at his right knee. He said his pain was horrible, worse than his hip.
The original anticipation and hope had been that he would feel like a new man within days and certainly weeks after his original surgery. Especially, since he had been in such pain for so many years, but if possible, things seem to worsen as rehab began.
Week after week we were assured the muscles would ‘fire’ soon and the hips would begin to work as they were suppose to, but they didn’t.
Mark got really good on crutches, but his job would not allow him to return to work with any type of crutch or cane. The four to six week hiatus from his job we had planned for became indefinite medical leave.
Mark was depressed over the situation but didn’t stop. He went to rehab, worked around our house and barns and tried to stay busy dragging his legs around with the aid of crutches. The left leg was some better but still hurt all the time. The right leg showed no improvement and continued to worsen. His doctor ordered X-rays and tests that were inconclusive; including one for Lou Gehrig’s disease that was, Praise God! Negative!
Helpless is not a feeling either of us are familiar with but we were feeling it now. Helpless. So we began to pray for answers and direction.
It was about the same time my boss changed his prayer direction too. I had noticed he was now saying, “God I have done all I can now it’s Your turn.” So we did the same. After all what other choice did we have?
Then, a few weeks ago a friend from church pulled Mark aside and began to question him about his rehab and surgery that had taken place in December. Since it was now, almost summer, all of our friends knew something was terribly wrong. After a moment Mark discovered our friend worked for a joint specialist. She told him she would have him an appointment for a reevaluation in a couple of days.
We were skeptical since other tests and doctors couldn’t find a problem but when X-Rays were taken a few days later, the problem was recognized and a solution proposed immediately.
So now as I sit and watch my husband sleep more soundly than he has in two years. Free of pain and again optimistic and excited about his prognosis I found myself getting angry. This is what we had expected in December. It would have been so much easier if things had just gone like they were suppose to!
I started thinking about the roughest moments over the past five months. Moments when we were beginning to think he would never walk on his own again and the pain was so relentless he would spend day and night sitting up in bed because lying down caused the pain to intensify.
I started asking God why and quickly the answer rolled through my mind. I dismissed it at first. I don’t use language like that but as the night wore on the thought would not leave me alone. None of this happened because God was trying to teach us or train us. God is good. It was because of Him our friend reached out to us with the answer. No all of this happened because the devil is an evil bastard.
He knew just how tenuous our schedule, our budget and our entire lives were leading up to my husband’s surgery this winter and how vitally important it was that everything went smoothly. He knew we would be tempted to ‘lawyer up’ as many friends had recommended. “After all, my husband had endured so much pain and suffering and the loss of income alone should be considered. Besides that is what insurance is for, right?”
That evil bastard knew our doctor and friend, a brilliant surgeon, was still healing from heartbreak. He knew how many friends would encourage us that “this might be God giving us an opportunity to make a little money” and help us recover our financial stability after so many years of illness, unemployment and if we are completely honest, bad decisions.
That evil bastard was a master at manipulating and aligning the circumstances to dismantle as many lives as possible. But what the devil does not know is that some of us still see things that happen as just that, things that happen, with no one to blame and no justice to seek.
So as I try to make sense of the convoluted journey we traveled these past months, of what possibly could have gone wrong and how many of our friends and family think we are crazy for not ‘lawyering up’ the only conclusion I can come to is, the devil is an evil bastard.
I will make a point to use my trusted doctor and friend again, probably before the year has ended; my knee is in need of a little tidying up.
We will not ‘lawyer up’ to extort money from an insurance system that is out of control and abused so extensively that it has damaged the very foundation of our nation.
We will remain thankful that all things work for good even the convoluted things as we enjoy the warmth and glow of the refiners fire.
And we will always remember in the name of Jesus that GOD IS SO GOOD but the devil is an evil bastard.