HIS LAST TWO WORDS
HIS LAST TWO WORDS
It has been a great deal of time, since I have updated my blog. I have been doing well, with the exception of an occasional headache or the pain in my chest, due to the tumors, which are inactive now.
In May 2013, I went to my eye specialist and it just so happened that I was scheduled to see my eye Dr. At Duke Medical Center the next week. Both doctors, after examining my eyes told me that the health of my eye had deteriorated. They were talking about blood vessels growing through the eye and other conditions, which I did not understand and probably did not want to. At that time, I had not realized that I had burnt my eyes over the grill, when I was cooking up the Gyro meat for the Greek Fest.
I had never had a problem like this, or had the tremendous pain I was suffering through, when I went to see my primary care eye Dr. All my doctors know how I am about surgery, and removing body parts. I knew that if they were recommending the enucleation of my eye, then there were serious problems associated with the burn and the post cancer, after effects.
At that time it had been almost 10 years, since I had undergone a radioactive plaque surgery at Duke Medical Center. Over that 10 year period that doctors had talked about the deterioration of my eye and the possibility that one day would have to come out, in order to preserve my health. It now looked like the time had come to have the eye removed. After talking with my Dr. at Duke, I asked him to allow me to go one the summer camping trip, with my boys and the other boys of troop 791. He was hesitant, but allowed me to go with the understanding that if the pain gets too bad, I had come in.
Throughout summer camp, I experienced and suffered tremendous pain open my eyes and in my head. I truly believed, that God was in control of the situation, just like He had been throughout and if it was His will, I would not have to have surgery to have the eye removed. Shortly after the weeklong summer camp had ended, I was mentally preparing myself for the inevitable, removing of my eye. Like in so many other situations, where I knew I did not have any control over the outcome of what was going to happen, I gave it to Lord and at that His will be done.
As fate would have it, I received a phone call from tidewater council of the boy scouts of America, asking the two go and help support the jamboree that was being held in West Virginia. I first decline the offer for a couple of reasons, one was being that I was scheduled to have surgery, which would require the removal of my eye. The other was financial, because I had not put money away in order to be able to cover the cost of the jamboree. The cost of the jamboree was $1200.00. I was not prepared to pay that amount of money within a one week period.
Again, God was in control of everything going on, allowing someone to step in and offer to lend me the money to go to jamboree, if I wanted to borrow it. After talking with a crew leader and realizing that he needed my leadership ability to help make this jamboree a success, I agreed to go, if my doctors would allow me to. To my surprise, they agreed and I signed up to go to jamboree for almost 14 days.
We left out on Sunday and arrived that afternoon. On Wednesday, we’re all pretty much in the swing of the camping trip, so during some time when I wasn’t doing anything, I decided to check my emails. When I did, for the first time in my life, I had over 135 responses to my BLOGS in my e-mail box. Is it never happened before, or afterwards, but they were some of the best written responses I had read. Below the one for faith and religious matters were talked about, the responses were positive even from people who said they were nonbelievers. I knew that God was working and a foe what He was letting me know through these responses that everything was going to be OK.
Now, just for the sake of a couple moments, let me take you back to jamboree until you understand the pain I was experiencing at that time. I had some of the worst headaches in my eyes and over my eyes during this time. Even with all my faith, I was scared of the possibility of having my eye removed. We got home towards the end of July and my surgery was scheduled for August 14th 2013. I was still suffering pain and discomfort even after returning back home.
One morning, I woke up and there was no pain in my eye or in my head. I was excited, just for the relief of not having the pain. This continued for the next few days, before I realized that my eye was starting to look good again. I finally decided to call what doctors and tell them what I had gone through and ultimately, cancel the surgery to have my eye removed after consultation.
On September 14, 2014, I finally went back to Duke Medical Center and see my eye Dr. who everyone calls Dr. M. The reason he is called Dr. M, is because of the difficulty in pronouncing his name. I was not sure what to expect, since I had called his office and told them that I was not going to have surgery to remove my eye.
After waiting about 3 hours to see Dr. M, it was my turn for his attention. When he walked into the room, the first thing he said to me was how have you been and how are you doing? I told him I was doing well and that I was glad to see him. Before seeing Dr. M, I had seen one of his assistants, who did a work up on my condition for the Dr. This visit was not a typical then with Dr. M, because he knew that I was the doing a whole lot better and had already defied textbook medical procedures in order to stay alive.
Dr. M, told me there were two ways of doing things that Duke, the said text book and David Sumrell’s way. We chuckled, but I do in his own way he was being serious about what he was saying. He had told me a long time before, as a professor of ophthalmology, when he taught his students and found one who thought they knew everything, he would use my case as an example for them to figure out. There was no question in his mind as to the seriousness of my condition and the fact that I was still alive, gave his students something to think about and study, because all the answers didn’t come from a textbook.
I gave Dr. M, the copy of my latest book called, 'Returning from God’s Light of Hope.' He then asked me, you mean you have written another book. I told him yes, I have and gave him a copy for both himself and Chrystal, his office manager. Dr. M, looked at the book and told me I was prolific. He then said it again, in his amazement that I had written yet another book. I ask him if he was going to see Dr. Buckley in the near future. He told me he would see Dr. Buckley later on that day. I asked him if he would give Dr. Buckley a copy of my book and an update on my condition. He told me he would be glad to.
Dr.M, then gave me an ultrasound on my eye to see what condition the tumor was in and what else was going on inside the eye. He told me there was still blood in the eye, what he called a hemorrhage. After doing the ultrasound, he put his equipment away and then we talked about the enucleation of my eye. He told me that as long as I was good and the eye wasn’t causing more pain, then he was with me and supported my decision to leave the eye in. I told him I agreed with him and thanked him for seeing me. He asked me if I want to come back in one year’s time, just to observe the condition of the eye. I told him that sounded good and got ready to leave his office. He told me there was no indication of any recurrence of melanoma cancer in the eye. I was just a little bit more than happy, to hear this news.
What I heard next, was probably the most important thing I’ve ever heard him say about the condition of my eye and that was, he told his nurse “NO MASS.” Now, to a Catholic, this may have been a sad situation.
To me, this was a continuance of a miracle that took 11 years, for the tumor or mass not to be in my eye. Even the color of my eye had gone back to blue, from where it had turned brown and remained that way almost two years. I really don’t know if Dr. M, even thought about what he just said, until after I was leaving room. The reason I say this, is because he told his nurse to make sure and give me an updated copy of his evaluation and prognosis.
While on my way home, I thanked God, over and over again for all the blessings I have been given, both before and after the fight with cancer. I give God the Glory for the Blessing’s I have had and all the hardships, He has carried me through.
I am excited about seeing my ophthalmology Dr., Dr. Joy Robinson, who I am sure will be just as excited as I am about my trip to Duke and Dr. M. Dr. M did ask me if I was going to write another book before then. I laughed and told him how this one took over 5 years to write and I was written out.....