I woke up quite groggy. Everything was so white and clean around me. I was in a big recovery room with about 8 different beds. We were divided by curtains. I thanked Jesus that He saw me through it. A sweet nurse came over to check my vitals and ask how I was feeling. I was feeling very sleepy. There was no sense of how much time had passed.
Chris was eventually allowed to come back to see me. It was so good to see his face and have him kiss me on the forehead. But I just wanted to go back to sleep! I had to be able to go to the restroom on my own before they would allow me to leave. The other patients were being discharged right and left. I finally got up to go to the restroom and wake up more. They measure your urine output as well as blood loss out put to make sure it isn’t too much. (This is an important part of the story, even though it does seem like TMI :-)) Everything was fine and very normal.
The doctor spoke with Chris and told him things couldn’t have been more textbook. I had minimal blood loss from the surgery, and there were zero complications. I should make a full recovery at home.
I was eventually allowed to get dressed. Chris went and got the car. I told my nurses goodbye as one of the hospital workers wheeled me down to meet Chris. I got into the car and we drove off toward home. We talked about grabbing some dinner on our way home since we would have about a 45 minute drive.
That was when I first felt it. Was I bleeding? I knew I would have some bleeding after a surgery like this, but was this normal? I felt it again. “Chris, I think I might be bleeding? What do we do? I don’t remember this from last time.” I tried calling one of my dearest friends, Christine, who is a nurse, but she didn’t pick up. Call Holly, Chris said. Holly is a labor and delivery nurse who also volunteers as nurse for many student activities (camp, mission trips, etc) at the church. Chris called her and she picked up right away. I explained the situation about the very normal d&c but how I thought I was bleeding more than I should be. She very intently said, turn around and go back to Vanderbilt. I thanked her and got off the phone.
I told Chris I needed to go to the restroom before we could turn back around because I was afraid I would make a mess with all this bleeding in the car. We were right at the exit of our church, so we pulled in so I could do what I needed to do.
Chris parked and jumped out to help me out. The second I stood up, it was like a nightmare. I started bleeding profusely. My shoes were filling with blood and it was pooling around me on the sidewalk. I was shaking and told Chris I knew I needed to lie down. Chris started unbuckling and ripping car seats out of the 4 Runner left and right – throwing them into the back so I could lay down on the back seat and head back to Vandy. I finally lay down and realize the bleeding isn’t stopping. I start to shake and tell Chris we won’t make it back, he needs to call 911. While he is on the phone, I decide to text a few of my prayer warriors.
I hear the sirens within a minute of him talking to the 911 operator. The ambulance pulls up and two paramedics jump out. One comes to either side of the car – one at my head and one at my feet. They are so kind and comforting. They pull me onto the gurney and into the ambulance. During this time, our pastor comes out and sees all that is going on. He told me later that I was so pale that it really scared him.
Chris wasn’t sure if he needed to follow me to the hospital or ride with me in the ambulance. I was sure I was going to be just fine and we would probably be coming home that evening – (hahah!) I told him to follow me in the car (which looked like a crime scene).
The second that the doors closed on the ambulance, I started shaking. They said my body was in shock over the blood loss. I just started saying Jesus’ name over and over again. Calling on Him because I was afraid and had no idea what was about to happen. Right when I began to say the name of Jesus, I began to have this peace come over me. He was near to me. The paramedics started an IV to make sure I got enough fluid so that my blood pressure wouldn’t drop too low.
We arrived at the hospital and I felt like I was in some sort of TV show, except it was happening to me. The sound of sirens, medical staff describing me as “33 year old woman with moderate to heavy blood loss.” People were running me on the stretcher into a room, lots of hustle and bustle. They were asking me not to close my eyes. They were taking my clothes off of me. One sweet nurse was cleaning all the blood off. Another nurse had to start another (much larger!) IV. I was being hooked up to all sorts of machines.
In the midst of all of this chaos, I remember the peace. This was unlike any peace I have ever felt or experienced in my entire life. It was all-consuming. I knew I was being held by the Almighty. Even though, that could have been a very fearful situation, I was not scared at all.
And y’all, there were angels. This is going to sound crazy, but it was real. I could not see them with my eyes, but I knew they were there when I closed my eyes. There were at least 10 and they encircled my bed (3 on each side of my bed, and 2 at the head and foot of my bed). They were huge – like 8-9 feet tall and they were dressed like Roman soldiers. They had massive wings. This peace and feeling like my dearest friend who could fix this problem and would fix it was right by my side. The peace, the safety, the security. I just kept saying, “Jesus, help me remember this.” I was loved, I was safe. There was nothing to fear. His presence was so close.
It is hard to recount something that you didn’t see with your actual eye, and yet have the faith to believe that it is so real. But, I will never forget the heavenly peace I tasted that day. It is real and I want you to believe that it is real. I was close to something we, as women and mothers, think up in our minds and dread…death. Have you ever lain awake at night with the creeping feeling of fear about to strangle you with all those what ifs?! What if I die? Who will take care of my kids? What will happen if I lose my child? What if this were to happen? What if…..
Can I tell you right now to stop even thinking all of those what ifs because Jesus is enough.
He is more than enough to be there when you are drowning in your what ifs. He is more than enough to meet you where the waters are the deepest. And His presence is like no other when unfathomable things happen.
The doctor later told me had we driven home first, I wouldn’t have made it. I don’t know how close I was to death, but I think I was pretty close. I touched the skirt of heaven that Wednesday, and it was so wonderful. I wasn’t concerned about my husband or my children. I knew they would be taken care of- that they were held by the same hands holding me. I had the most immense peace – if I could let you taste it, you would realize Jesus is always so near. There is nothing to fear when you know Him.
My prayer is that as you read this, you will truly look at your own life. Do you have a relationship with Jesus? You will know right away if you do or if you don’t. If you are questioning it at all, spend some time asking Jesus for some understanding and for Him to meet you where you are. I would love to talk to you more about this, as well. Email me. He truly wants to know you like friend – not just for you to know about Him.
Through a lot of testing they realized my body had gone into D.I.C. (Disseminated intravascular coagulation) Basically my body was just catching up to the fact that the baby had finally been released, and then it freaked out. It started bleeding rapidly and then just couldn’t stop. It is very rare, and it took all my doctors by surprised when I showed back up at the ER. I received 4 bags of blood along with some pretty invasive procedures to stop the bleeding and to help bring my blood back to the point where it could clot again.
I will ever be so thankful for the health care professionals who saved my life that day. But, what I will never ever forget is that Jesus is so very very close. He is always enough. So, any of those fears that creep up – I replace them with the fact that He will always show up when I need Him. And He will do the same for you.