Wednesday, November 18, 2015
“For truly we are all angels temporarily hiding as humans.” ― Brian L. Weiss
Someone posted on Facebook asking if any of us remembered a time when we didn’t know God was taking care of us, but looking back, could see it had to be. At about nine o’clock in the morning on December 31, 1976, when we were living in Claremont, California, (L.A.) I went to our local Kaiser Clinic for an injection of antibiotics because I had a cold, and I didn’t want it to interfere with my New Year’s Eve partying. The doctor, (Stephen Glass whom I had never seen before and would never see again—changed things). He was giving me the injection when he noticed a spot on my arm and told me I needed to go the Kaiser Hospital in Fontana, California. I said I would after the holidays, but he said, “No, right now,” and picked up the phone and made me an appointment. I drove our only vehicle (a VW camper, what else) the 25 miles out to Fontana prepared to spend the day in the waiting room as the dermatologist was very, very popular. Sure enough, there must have been a hundred people in the waiting room. As soon as I sat down, they called my name and I was lucky to escape the others who had been waiting for much longer. The doctor just looked at my arm, said, “Hmm.” He picked up the phone and asked the chief of surgery to come in and look at it. The chief of surgery came quickly, looked at my arm and said, “Hmm.” Then he picked up the phone and told someone to get operating room three ready. At this point, I said, “Excuse me! Could someone tell me what’s going on?” The surgeon (who was completely hairless—didn’t even have eyebrows) told me they just wanted to take the mole off my arm to be on the safe side. I had the surgery and while I was in recovery (they took a big chunk out of my right arm) they called my wife and told her I was out of surgery but would need to be driven home. Now, she thought I was getting a shot and the surgery thing threw her, but she got a neighbor to drive her out to pick me up. I was told to come back on the third of January to talk to the surgeon again. Needless to say, there was no New Year’s Eve partying that night. On January 3, 1977, I went back out and heard that I had malignant melanoma, Clark Level 3, and only had a one in ten chance of living for two more years. I had to have needle biopsies every day for the next two months, then once a week, and then once a month. They took photographs, but I lived with no more surgeries and no chemotherapy. Was Dr. Glass an angel that day working with God to keep my date with a mission in Africa decades in the future? I’ll never know. If I get to heaven, I won’t ask. I only have one question if I get to heaven and that’s “Can I stay?” If the answer is yes, I will have no more questions.