I had an appointment today at the pain management clinic. My young cousin a few times removed drives me to appointments that are within 30 miles of my home. Another woman who lives in my community drives me to appointments that are in large cities farther away.
My cousin drove me today. Her name is Lanie, and she’s the same age as our daughter. She’s a sweetheart. We always find something to laugh about during our trips together. We share a similar sense of humor. It started out as a gloomy day and as we made our way to town, I shared a story that happened to me a few years back when I was hospitalized at St. Vincent’s in Little Rock in 2015.
Living in rural Arkansas, I’ve never been around a lot of Catholic people. My daughter is dating a man from a Catholic family. He doesn’t practice the religion. I’m not familiar with it.
Back to my story. I was in the hospital because of complications from gastroparesis. The doctor ordered a gastric emptying test to see how well my stomach was functioning. I had to eat radiated eggs, and a technician monitored how long it took for the eggs to pass through my digestive tract.
Since the test took a long time, I was lucky to be able to watch the green glowing eggs on a computer monitor as I reclined on a gurney. I was in an area of radiology where the nuclear medicine was stored because there was a locked glass cabinet filled with containers. It had hazard warning signs all over the place, and the lock had a keypad. We’re talking about some serious security in place for that medication.
As I was watching the glowing mass of eggs just sit there going nowhere, a woman came in wearing scrubs and stood before the glass cabinet. She didn’t move. So I watched her thinking, “What’s going on?” It was then I noticed she held a necklace in her hands. She was praying in front of that cabinet. Then she made the sign of the Cross, opened the cabinet, retrieved something, and left.
I had just eaten radiated eggs…
Some Catholic hospital worker felt it necessary to PRAY before touching whatever was in that nuclear medicine cabinet…
Those radiated eggs were still glowing in my throat…well a sliver was in my stomach too.
She just PRAYED and I ATE that stuff!
As I’m considering what strength of radiation it takes to make my insides light up glow stick green, another worker walks in and the technician monitoring my stomach and throat says, “Hey look at this! See how it’s lit up here and here? It looks like she has two stomachs!”
Hello?! I’m lying RIGHT HERE!
It FELT like I had two stomachs!
I was about to ask the technician what the results meant knowing the answer would be, “You will have to wait and discuss with your doctor” when the praying worker returned.
She paused at the cabinet again. She made the sign of the Cross, held her rosary, said her prayer, made the sign of the Cross, unlocked the cabinet, and returned the medication.
I should’ve asked her to pray for me.
As I was telling this story to Lanie, she was laughing. I started laughing too. It led us down a path of eating radiated food and turning into a Spider-Man like creature. I recently found out I have several thyroid nodules that may have to eventually be destroyed by a radioactive pill. We laughed about it possibly giving me superhuman powers. That would be awesome!
We grabbed a bite to eat. She went in and got my prescriptions at the pharmacy so I didn’t have to get out of the truck.
On the way home, I got a horrible case of the hiccups. They wouldn’t stop. We laughed about that. We had such a good time. I’m thankful for Lanie and for getting to spend the day with her. I needed a day full of laughter.