Saturday, December 11, 2010

Tough Going

The old cigar advert blew clouds of smoke across the screen and burned the lyrics of the song into my memory for ever.. 'There may be Trouble Ahead'.  Remember it?  Well that ages you and me both.  But it feels about right for what's happening to me just now.  Once again I am facing surgery in a London hospital - Guys - and I don't really know how it will go.  I have been warned that because of the nature of the surgery on my spine, I will have to to remain awake for at least the first part of the operation, so that they can be sure that they are working in exactly the right spot, and then they will anaesthetise me.  Boy, do I hope they get a move on.  Pass me the Hamlet cigar box please!

Yet I am strangely feeling really hopeful this time.  Each time Diane and I have set off by plane for Gatwick airport to report in a London hospital yet again - many more than 50 times now - we have looked at each other and said 'Just one more time eh?'  We really hoped that it would be the last.  We were always wrong.  This time I know it will not be the final visit, nor the last surgery to be endured.  Next Tuesday (14th Dec) will only be a trial, inserting electrodes into my spine and tunnelling cables inside me to place a computerised piece of kit something similar to a TENS machine but much more powerful.  If the trial succeeds there will be at least one more operation to make the whole thing complete, but we are both really hopeful that this equipment will bring meaningful relief.  It may even enable my medical team to reduce the amount of morphine that I require each day to survive.  Who knows, I may even be set free to do what I love the best, preaching and teaching God's precious Word.

The sign above would worry anyone, wouldn't it?  Unless that is they are searching for the little Scottish village called - you've guessed it - 'Tough' where this photo was taken.  Then the sign would be a step in the right direction.  And that is what I am hoping to take with Diane next week, a step in the right direction.  Even if it is going to be 'Tough'!