It’s been a while since I’ve written about our friends in “The Neighborhood.” There are several reasons for that. One of the main reasons that we haven’t been able to spend as much time with them as we normally would.
In case you haven’t been reading my blog in a while, “The Neighborhood” is a low income, government assisted housing development in Wake Forest. Originally, one of our friends invited us to come meet some of her neighbors there. Eventually, we became good friends with many of those who live there.
One of the ladies that we met was T. When we first met T., she had just had surgery for breast cancer, and she had been diagnosed with emphysema. She’s been on oxygen the entire time that we’ve known her (about 2 1/2 years). For the last year or so, she has had an assistance program coming to her house a few times a week to help her out.
She called me last week. She was very upset. She’s been having an even harder time breathing, and she went to the doctor. She was not able to see her normal doctor. The doctor that checked her that morning told her, “You’re dying. There’s nothing we can do for you. You may have a week or two, or maybe a year, but you will die soon.”
Now, she’s under hospice care.
I stopped by one afternoon to spend some time with her. She actually looks very good – better than she’s looked lately. She doesn’t think she’s as bad as the doctor said. Who knows.
She told me that she knew that God was taking care of her, and that she was trusting God. If God decided she was going to die soon, then she would. If God did not want to die soon, then it didn’t matter what the doctor said.
She said that she wants to get stronger so that she can come meet with the church with us. I told her that coming to our meeting place on Sunday morning should be the least of her concern. But, I told her, I thought the church would want to come to her.
Her face lit up. She smiled really big. “Do you think they’ll come here?” she asked. “I’m not able to clean my house like I want to. I don’t look very presentable.”
I promised her that her brothers and sisters did not care what her house looked like (they would probably even clean it for her), and they didn’t care that she had not had her bottom teeth replaced yet, and they didn’t care that she couldn’t take baths as often as normal. I told her that the church would want to come to her, to encourage her, to pray with her, to sing with her, to help her through this.
I haven’t seen her this bright and cheerful in a long time.