"When I am afraid, I will trust in you." Psalm 56:3
I cannot emphasize enough about my nurses in Nashville. I had originally chosen to leave the name of the hospital out of my blog, but they have been so good to me that I have to throw my opinions. Many of you have heard of Vanderbilt Hospital, and how wonderful they are. I'm sure Vanderbilt is a fantastic facility, full of doctors of wisdom and knowledge, but if you are in the south and have a choice for care, Centennial Hospital is truly the only place I would return to. Their team of heart doctors and association with my high-risk pregnancy OB team were the original reasons for sending me to Centennial, but upon the news that I had to return for another surgery, I insisted on Centennial.
My first stay consisted of two nurses in the CCU (due to my semi-short stay) I had several different nurses once I was moved to a step down room, and they were wonderful as well, but my CCU nurses are what made the difference. My daytime nurse found a heart doppler that was not intended for fetal heart tones, but she would come in every few hours just to let me listen to sweet Ethan (at the time, Baby Cannoli) and give me peace of mind. A mommy herself, we discussed my pregnancy quite a bit, and she even made a guess that Baby Cannoli would be a boy! With every intention to write her a letter to thank her and tell her about Ethan, I had the opportunity to walk down one day and tell her the news myself. My first night ever in the hospital was in the CCU at Centennial. Because it was CCU, visitors are not allowed in the room with you beyond visiting hours.
My nighttime nurse told me she could see my fear and uncertainty of this whole mess. She also talked with me about her first hospital stay and remember ing how afraid she was to be alone. For her sweet heart alone, she brought a reclining chair in for Jason and set him up to stay with me 24 hours a day. As long as I promised not to disturb the other patients with my visitors, I was allowed to have as many visitors as I wanted during the day as well. It was so comforting to be surrounded by family in a time of fear. During the moments that Jason was asleep and I was wide awake, my nighttime nurse would come in and talk with me for hours. She was not a mother, but had many hilarious stories of her experiences with babies to keep my spirits up, words of comfort about my fears, and a true understanding of my families needs. They were so wonderful to me that I will never forget those moments of kindness.
I arrived to the CCU room with a room full of people waiting. There was a nurse I had never seen before, my surgeon from my previous procedure, and a tech that I remembered to complete a fast ECHO. Within minutes, my surgeon informed me that he did not feel that the pericardialcentesis was the route we needed to go.
He felt that because the fluid came back with such aggression, that if he completed the same procedure again, we would be arriving back at Centennial for a third time within a month. I agreed with him that completing that procedure throughout my pregnancy was not ideal. He suggested the pericardial window (cutting a hole in the sac of my heart to allow the fluid to drain away from the heart to safer places in the body) but warned me that this procedure was much more invasive. I began to cry, for fear of Ethan. My surgeon told me that the second trimester was the golden time to operate with as minimal risks to Ethan as possible. I understood, and he then informed me that he would not be doing the surgery. My fear rushed back, because I trusted this doctor. During my last surgery, he talked with me calmly throughout the procedure, as I was wide awake and very afraid. He was so good in my last stay, I wanted him to be the one to take care of me. He told me that he felt that his talents were not up to the level of care he wanted for me, and found the very best surgeon for this procedure. So I trusted him.
They quickly began to prepare me for surgery, and many other doctors and nurses began to rush in. The ambulance took me from the cardiologist's office in Kentucky so quickly, Jason had no choice but to head down to Nashville after the ambulance. Centennial moved so quickly that he barely made it in time for me to see him prior to surgery. He arrived, and I began to cry again.
They took me downstairs quickly for surgery, and my nurse handed me a notecard. Through my tears, I read: "When I am afraid, I will trust in you." Psalm 56:3 You were prayed for today."
Of course, in my horribly emotional pregnant state, my crying didn't subside but increased. I knew that my nurse meant it of comfort, but little did she know my battle of trusting God. I've spoken with you many times about my journey to trust God with EVERYTHING, instead of just parts of my life. I blog about trusting God a lot, but I rarely speak of it out loud. I'm not sure why, but it seems to come across so much better in writing rather than explaining. I chose not to explain it to her, but I thanked her sincerely. She walked down to the operating with me, and allowed Jason to do so as well. She squeezed my hand, told me that her shift was almost over, but she was looking forward to seeing me again in the morning. I thanked her again and she left.
That verse stayed in my head until I was put to sleep. How on earth did she know that was the exact thing I needed to read? There are so many verses that provide comfort in times of crisis and fear, I knew it was no coincidence that she gave me THAT verse in that moment. I wasn't putting my trust where it needed to be, and I needed to be thrown back on track. God will always communicate with us some way, often quietly. When we don't listen, he will make sure we figure it out somehow, even if it pops up on a 3x5 index card.
It's time for me to start listening all the time.
"When I am afraid, I will trust in you." Psalm 56:3