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Two Peas in a Pod

January 17, 2017

by Marc Kelliny, MD

Mrs. Nelson* is a 76-year-old widowed lady who came in to the hospital with multiple previous medical problems. She had had a heart attack, an ischemic stroke and had her right leg amputated because of worsening peripheral arterial disease. This time, she was admitted because her middle left toe had a painless black spot on it that was growing. It was deemed the cause was a popliteal artery occlusion with small collaterals trying to make up for it. Interventional radiology was unable to lyse the clot. During the days she was in the hospital to undergo these tests and procedures, Mrs. Nelson saw the black spot grow, now with her entire middle toe turning black with the bone sticking out of progressive dry gangrene.

As a result, she became distraught, having lived with her right foot getting darker until it had to be cut off. She exclaimed defiantly, "I will not give them my remaining foot." As we were waiting for the vascular surgeons to give us their opinion on what they would be able to do, I stopped by Mrs. Nelson's room to see how she was doing. She shared she was struggling with the fear of losing her only remaining foot. She did not know why God was letting this happen to her and how He had seemed distant to her these last few days despite having normally a close relationship with Him. She remembered a song in which of the lines says, "Me and God, You could say we're like two peas in a pod." I found it and played it for her from the computer in the room. I observed peace come over her face as she remembered our Savior's faithfulness. When I left her room that evening, she was smiling, aware of God's presence even when she did not feel Him.

*Name changed

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