Fibro fog, pain, writing sandwiched in between. Quotes. Sermon notes. Encouragement.
|The Story of a Great Doctor
by Marilyn Mackenzie
Today, there was a memorial service for a man from our church. He wasn't someone that I - or many of us - knew very well. He took care of the sound board during our worship services.
Sometime soon, I'll have to share more about Andy and the memorial service. But I wanted to make sure that I first told the story of a great doctor.
Almost two years ago, Andy was diagnosed with end stage 4 cancer of the pancreas. One day he was fine. Then his back hurt badly, and he went to the emergency room, thinking that he might be having an appendicitis attack. They kept him overnight, then told him the next day that what he had was cancer.
Andy was fortunate that his cancer didn't take him as quickly as it was predicted. Usually, stage 4 pancreatic cancer takes the patient in 2-4 months. Luckily for all of us - and for his family, since he has a 10 year old son - he survived for almost two years.
During that time, he had treatments. And he was a member of a support group, termed a Wellness Group. I love that the support group for cancer patients and survivors is called a Wellness Group. That alone offers hope to those needing it most.
In such groups, people like Andy who know that eventually they will die of their disease, often make up their own "Bucket List" (things to do before they kick the bucket). On Andy's list was "driving a convertible."
When Andy's doctor found out that was one of the things he wanted to do before he died, the doctor handed Andy the keys to his car - a Mercedes convertible with a V12 engine. He told Andy to drive it for as long as he wanted. And Andy did.
One of the first outings Andy had was with one of his Wellness Group friends. They drove around in that convertible for 3 hours. (And later that friend told Andy that his trip to Florida was not as much fun as that 3 hour ride had been.)
Today, that convertible still sits at Andy's house. He's gone now, so someone will need to make sure that the good doctor gets his car back. Andy had that car for many months, enjoying the last months of his life.
I wish the doctor had been at the service today. Perhaps he was and just didn't speak up when the pastor talked about how great it was that he allowed Andy to cross off one of the things on his "Bucket List."
Makes you cry, doesn't it? The world lost a good man this week. But God welcomed him home.
And for the months preceding his death, he happily tooted around town in a gas guzzling Mercedes convertible, letting the wind blow through his patchy (from cancer treatments) hair.
And, surely, driving that car was one reason that Andy hung around as long as he did. Who wouldn't, when given the opportunity to drive the car of his dreams?
Thanks, doc. You are a true healer. We need more like you.
To my friends who are prayer warriors:
Obviously, Andy's wife and 10 year old son will need our prayers. They're happy knowing that they will meet Andy one day in Heaven. But, still, losing a father at that young age will be difficult.
Pray, too, for the Wellness Group friend who drove around with Andy for those 3 hours and had such fun. He, too, is having his cancer problems reappear. His name is Jim.
And don't forget to celebrate that awesome doctor who handed the keys to his car to Andy to drive for many months. I don't know his name, but I'm sure God does.
"My Favorite Neighbor"
"Sharing Sunshine...It's What I Do!"
"Whose Work Are You Stealing?"
"The Potter's Cup and Saucer"