This is the first blog post I’ve ever written. God gives us many firsts. Our first step, first puzzle, first crush, first attempt at spreading our wings, first love, first home, first child, first graduation to attend, first loss… and the “firsts” keep coming.
Some firsts bring us joy—others hurt. I’ve journeyed through my share of both. God blessed me with a good life: an amazing husband, three incredible children, a beautiful home, and two cute dogs. But I’ve also known my share of pain. God has walked with me through four miscarriages, the passing of my father-in-law, and my husband’s job loss, among other trials.
But I never took God’s love and provision for granted. Or so I thought.
Then He pulled me through a “first” that I never imagined. It was a rainy Friday afternoon when I first went to see my ENT about the ringing in my ear. Tests revealed that I’d lost most of the hearing in my right ear. The doctor ordered an MRI to find the cause of my hearing loss.
After the MRI, I sat in the waiting room planning my weekend. It was stacking up to be fun, busy, and completely hectic.
A nurse called out, “Helo, it’s time for you to come back.”
I picked up my to-do list, hurried back to the room, planning that evening’s dinner in my head. I walked into the exam room to find that there were two doctors instead of one. Now, I was puzzled, “What’s the backup for?”
My doctor compassionately said, “Helo, sit down. This has nothing to do with your ear. You have a tumor the size of a golfball resting over the main artery in your brain. You have to go see a neurosurgeon on Monday.”
Time froze. My to-do list dropped to the floor.
Shock fertilizes fear. This “first” turned my world upside down and shattered me. I had no idea what to do, and then I heard God’s voice. He said, “Helo, I loved you first, love Me back. Trust Me.”
“God, I promise to love You first. I’m scared. Please wash away my doubt. Hold on tight, and don’t let go.” I’ve cried tears of joy and sorrow before. But this time was different. I’ve never sobbed so hard. That’s what shock does. My parents came. We hugged—and they brought me home.
My husband, Rich, bolted out of work to come pray with me. In my shock and disbelief, I whispered, “God, please make something beautiful out of this.”
Within a week, I was looking back at the faces of my loved ones, as the surgical team wheeled me into the operating room. I stared back until I couldn’t see my family anymore. When I closed my eyes I was on an operating table. It was January. I didn’t wake up until several weeks later. It was then that, while intubated in the ICU, I motioned that I wanted to write something. It took me five minutes to write: “God is amazing.”
After that, God helped me endure eight weeks of hospitalization and twenty weeks of intensive rehabilitation. I learned how to walk, talk, eat, think, and function again. Relearning “firsts” isn’t easy.
Cherished child, He loves you. He will never leave you. He knows how to take shattered parts of our lives and make them glisten. He is my first love. Make Him yours. And know that in Him hope is always found.
Halo Found Hope: A Memoir is the first book I’ve ever written and the Northwest Women’s Show will be the first convention I’ve attended as an author. I’ll be at the allmomdoes section and I look forward to meeting you for the first time. 1,000 books will be available at a special discounted price of $15. I will be available to personally sign copies. The first fifteen visitors each day to the booth will receive a free copy.