When I collapsed in my home, almost two lives were lost instead of one
You’ve likely heard of near-death experiences, but what about a near-life experience? A sudden change in my health made me reevaluate my priorities, and fully invest in writing fearlessly.
I had been feeling “funny” all week, hoping that fluttering feeling in my tummy would go away all on its own. But it only got worse. The sound of my skull connecting with the floor alerted my husband, who found me passed out in the hallway. Soon, the E.R. doctors were poking me here and there, trying to figure out why my skin was pale and blood pressure was low.
“Does it hurt here?” they asked, pressing on my back. No. “It’s not appendicitis. Order an ultrasound.”
“I think I found something,” the technician said as I writhed in pain, the instrument probing my insides. What they found was blood, and a lot of it, all sloshing around my abdominal cavity instead of flowing through my veins.
“Before we take you into surgery, are you pregnant?” Maybe. I don’t know.
“Your test came back positive.” What should have been a joy-filled moment was instead filled with anxiety and helplessness.
What happened? Without warning, I had sprung a leak: a bubble had formed on my ovary, popping like a zit and leaking blood into my abdomen over the course of several days. By the time I was wheeled into the O.R., I had lost about 70% of my blood, and possibly, my unborn baby.
As I waited for help, I closed my eyes, and prayed. Too weak to form words, I formed a picture in my mind: a felled tree as tall as a California redwood, floating on a steel-gray sea, with no sign of horizon in any direction. Although the log was lost at sea, the waves were calm, and there was no storm. I, the cut tree, could only lie there, floating; with nothing but ocean in all directions, the only place to look to was up. Up to God.
After my gorgeous boy arrived, my priorities shifted. Yours might, too, if you had a near-death experience, and a near-life experience, all at the same time. I stepped down from my job in corporate communications to care for my darling, and in between naptime and playtime I began to write.
That’s not entirely true – I’ve always been a writer. Only, before, I was too afraid to share my work. Now, what do I have to be afraid of?