Monday, March 9, 2015

My Escape

At the age of seven, I was playing on the monkey bars, as any child would do.  I was trying to show myself that I could easily skip the first monkey bar by jumping to the second bar.  As I jumped, my hand slipped, and I fell to the ground.  A kind lady, that was walking by calmly asked if I was okay, and without looking at my arm, I said I was.  The lady kept looking at my arm, so I looked down at my arm.  I instantly screamed to the very top of my lungs.  As a seven year old, I said it looked as if my elbow moved to the top of my arm.  My mom and dad and many others came running.  Someone called 911, and the ambulance arrived after what seemed like forever.  I remember riding in the ambulance, and asking why they did not turn the sirens on.  Of course, they did not know how serious the situation was.   

I arrived at Wilkes Regional Medical Center, and they tried to set my arm back in place long enough for the ambulance to rush me to Brenner's Children's Hospital.  When I arrived at the hospital, they were unable to find a pulse in my arm with an ultrasound.  They made the hasty decision to perform surgery on my arm.  My parents began to pray during that time.  The doctor called them during the surgery, and told them that they may have to amputate my dominant (left) arm.  They were able to save it with the amazing touch of God's hand.  I was in the hospital for a couple of days, and then they sent me home.  

 After a week, we went back to the pediatric orthopedic surgeon, for an x-ray, as well as a follow up.  They immediately noticed that my bone had slipped out of place again.  They informed my parents that I would have to be back at Brenner's the next morning at 6:00 a.m. for another surgery.  While performing the surgery, the doctors realized that I had something called Compartment Syndrome.  This is a condition resulting from increased pressure within a confine body space, especially of the leg or forearm.  As a result, I was left with a drain in my arm to decrease the pressure.  I was in a cast for six weeks.  After six weeks, the much anticipated day had come, the day I would get my cast removed.  I remember being scared to death when they were cutting my cast with such a tapering utensil.  They told me, as well as my parents, that I would never write again, so I learned to write with my right hand.  I was placed in physical therapy for three months to reverse the nerve damage in my arm.   

The next summer, I began taking piano lessons.  The teacher would tell my mom that I was struggling, and that she could tell I was in excruciating pain, especially while playing chords.  I wanted to keep taking piano lessons even though it hurt immensely. It has been six years since I broke my arm.  I have added many instruments such as violin, mandolin, guitar, and a little banjo :).  I continue to have many struggles with my arm.  Playing the violin and piano hurt more than other instruments.  

I called this treacherous experience, my wall.  This wall is not the same as a structure made of sheetrock.  This wall was emotional, mental, and physical.  I found the door or escape to my wall.  My door is music.  Music was and still is my escape.  I have come so far with the touch of God's guiding hand!  I could not play chords at all due to my arm.  Now, I am playing chords almost every Sunday.  That shows what a magnificent God we serve!  I give all the glory to God for my talents. Here are a couple of my favorite verses:

      Deuteronomy 31:6 (NIV)
      Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid or terrified because of them.  For the LORD your God goes with you;  He will never leave you nor forsake you. 

      Psalm 100:1-3 (NIV)
      Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth.  Worship the Lord with gladness; come before Him with joyful songs.  Know that the LORD is God.  It is He who made us, and we are His; we are His people, the sheep of His pasture.



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