My week didn’t start and proceed efficiently according to my plan. I guess God had bigger plans.

I dislocated my shoulder while trying to cushion a fall. I didn’t fall, but my left arm did. It fell out of my shoulder socket. My arm became a deadweight, unable to move. It was super duper ouch! The pain nearly caused me to blackout. If a sprained ankle is a 1 on the scale of 1 to 10, this was definitely a 10.

Who do I call when I need help? I steeled myself and called my trusty, beloved colleague. I was lucky as my colleagues hadn’t gone for lunchtime Mass yet. Our guardian angels were probably annoyed that they had to miss Mass because of my clumsiness. My ‘paramedics’ brought me to the A&E. Thank God for them.

I was given priority for treatment even though there were many others waiting, maybe because I had the most dramatic I’m-in-pain face in that room. Time seemed to pass slowly while I laid there. Hoping the doctor will have more urgency in her calm demeanour, I asked her if I would get a heart attack from excessive prolonged pain. She didn’t seem to think it was possible. Oh well.

I guess God had bigger plans.

I thought I would be given painkillers straightaway. But no, I had to have the shoulder X-rayed first. Two junior doctors approached me to start me on a drip. They looked nervous. And they couldn’t find a prominent vein on my hand, despite slapping it. I told them to slap harder; I was anxious to get my arm back in place.

They proceeded to poke and tunnel the needle into my hand, causing me lots of pain while trying to find the vein. I assured them that the pain they were  inflicting on me was nothing compared to the pain in my dislocated shoulder. The senior doctor came and took over. Thank God she succeeded.

I was told the 1st X-ray wasn’t good and I had to do a 2nd one. Turning to the right side on the bed was no joke with a dead left arm. I had to lift it with my right arm, just so that a block could be placed below my dislocated shoulder for the X-ray.

Halfway through, I passed out due to the drug infusion. I woke up semi-conscious and felt immobilised. My left arm was strapped close to my chest and I thought I was in a space pod, in the outer space. Felt all alone and abandoned. Then I remembered where I was; I think I drifted back to sleep and vomited in my semi-conscious state. The nausea was terrible. Any slight vibration caused me to vomit.

I suddenly remembered my poor colleagues were probably still outside waiting for me. I could hear myself asking the doctors and nurses to tell my colleagues to leave, but I think I sounded delirious and crazy instead. It took me about four hours to lose my nausea. This whole saga started at around noon and ended at about 8pm that night.

Now thinking about it, maybe in my unconscious state, I was wheeled into a lecture theatre filled with junior doctors. The Manipulation and Reduction of my left shoulder was done as a live demonstration. Let’s just say I have a pretty wild imagination. Heh.

On a serious note, I thank God for the pain I experienced, as it made me more appreciative of how my Lord Jesus suffered for me. “… all my bones are out of joint. My heart has turned to wax; it has melted within me.” Psalm 22:14

By nature, I’m an anxious person; always trying to finish my work but losing my peace. At the A&E, despite being a busy and stressful workplace, the doctors and nurses could still remain cheerful and calm. I had newfound respect for them. I felt God was showing me how to be peaceful and calm. I needn’t be so stressed up and anxious. He will take care of me. I just need to place my trust in Him.

May God bless my wonderful colleagues, my sister who brought me home and her hubby who provided dinner for us. “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat… I was sick and you looked after me.” Matthew 25:35-36

May God bless the doctors, nurses and staff at the A&E department for their cheerful, calm and dedicated service.

My Monday turned out so eventful. In His infinite wisdom, I have learned much.

Thank God.

Lucilla Teo
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