The kidney stone was a really, strange diversion. In dramatic fashion, I broke away from the responsibility and urgent demands of that day. I went off-road and tumbled down an unmarked route.
I experienced this weird waiting thing, where I knew the stone would pass and the suffering would fade. But wow! In the middle of the fierce pain, I grew understanding for what some must endure for months or years at a time.
I know that lots of people suffer because I belong to a dying race. I want to wear my pain well if it ever visits me again. In that potential could I become an ambassador of endurance? I hope I don’t have to suffer too much.
I wasn't thinking those thoughts at the time of the pain attack. I was ticked off with the agony. I was being controlled by it, and I didn't like the submission to it that I felt. I didn't know what was happening until the medical people told me, so I wasn't sure if I should be afraid, get angry or make peace with God.
I did throw in a deathbed confessional, just in case.
In those moments, I really like the idea of drugs that could make me comfortable. My pre-occupation seemed to mostly be with comfort. I just wanted relief. When it came, I was sleepy and happy.
In the uneven ground of that season of detours, I wrote some thoughts about what I was feeling:
Low places filling in. High places getting flattened. God’s jackhammer, dynamite and backfill being strategically placed.