The weekend flew by and now I’m faced with a very atypical week. Tomorrow and Tuesday I will be in school, but beginning on Wednesday, I’ll be out of school for a whole week. Ah…I can almost hear your envious sighs. Not so fast…the reason I’ll be absent is because my husband is having back surgery (a lamindectomy) on Wednesday. Mike has been struggling with spinal stenosis, herniated discs and a plethora of back ailments for quite a while. Recently, however, his legs have started to go numb when he walks. Over the past few months, this has become increasingly incapacitating. He tried a cortisone shot (very painful) and got minimal relief. Last month, we wound up in the orthopedic surgeon’s office. When the doctor looked at Mike’s X-ray’s, he proclaimed, “It’s a no-brainer”. At least we had a definitive answer. Confidently the doctor continued—“Surgery is the best option. It’s only going to get worse. If it’s not done now, it will be more difficult in the future.” Mike was scheduled for surgery before we left the office.
The preliminary tests are done, our work schedules are cleared, now we are within three days of a pretty serious surgery that carries with it at least six weeks of recovery time. I’m trying to stay positive and calm. I’m trying to not anticipate the problems that I know can arise. Mike and I will be married forty-five years this May. He is still the love of my life and it’s scary to think of what lies ahead for him. However, we both agree this has to happen. Our five children and their spouses have all reached out to us during the weekend and undoubtedly the days ahead will be filled with prayers, love and support for Mike. I’ve lived long enough to realize that challenges always come bearing gifts. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be mindful of the gifts this difficulty unveils and remember to be grateful for them.