In this job we are blessed to meet some extraordinary people on the road. I met one such person the other day. I met a woman who has had a very tough time of it over the last year. It started last September when she pulled a muscle in her back, up near her ribs. It was giving her some discomfort but then seemed to affect her lower back so she went to a doctor to have it checked out. He gave her some meds and said if the discomfort persisted to Monday (this was Friday), to come back in. Over the weekend, the problem changed and her legs got tingly and progressively got worse. By Sunday she could barely get out of bed so she called her mom to take her to the ER. By the time they arrived at the hospital, she had no feeling in her legs and couldn’t walk.
Long story short, an infection had invaded her spine and ate away at her spinal cord. She had several surgeries, but was still unable to walk. Infection also filled up every cavity in her body and required draining. In the midst of all of this, her husband left her. Her children now had a mother who couldn’t walk and no dad. The doctor who took her case and did the surgeries told her recently that he didn’t feel she would ever walk again….her case was so severe.
This story did not come out of the woman when I first met her. She noticed my ring with the tree on it and asked me about it. She said that she felt a tree, with its branches stretched outward, regenerating itself, resembled her. I agree….she is pretty amazing for what she has gone through. She is walking now…walks with the help of a crutch. She doesn’t have total nerve sensation in her legs but it seems to be returning. She had to learn how to walk all over again. She has made incredible strides in the last year and I told her when I see her next year, I have no doubt that she will be running laps around her place. She does represent the tree…a mighty oak that bends and sways but keeps reaching for the sky. Pushing upward….growing, regenerating and making miracles.
How blessed I am to meet and talk to so many amazing people. They enrich my life with their stories of courage, life experiences and their wisdom.