What to Do When Fear Creeps in the Doorway

fear in the doorFear started with a fever. Three days after my outpatient surgery, I felt pretty icky (not that one ever feels great after a surgery), so I took a mid-day nap. When I woke up, I took my temperature and discovered that it had risen to 100.9—just a smidge over what my post-op instructions had said to call my surgeon if I experienced.

I hesitated. After all, I felt icky, not awful. Of course, I hadn’t really had much of an appetite the last two days, and I felt nauseous around food, so I caved to my inner prompting to go ahead and call the doctor.

“Come on in to the office,” she said. And so I did. It involved a 90-mile drive—fortunately, Pedro could take off work to do the driving. Because of road construction, the usual 90-minute trip turned into a two-hour trip—and I made it to the doctor’s office right before they closed for the day. After a quick exam, she gave me orders for a CT scan—not exactly what I expected.

It turns out that the hospital’s outpatient radiology department couldn’t take me, and so I had to go through the emergency room to get the CT scan. It also so happens that yesterday was one of the busiest days of the year for the ER—with eleven life-flight arrivals, not to mention the various and sundry stubbed toes, fevers and heart attacks.

I felt a little fraudulent, waiting for triage, and then for a visit from the ER doc. After all, I just needed a CT scan and I didn’t feel awful. I only felt icky. As the hands on the clock marched past six, then seven, then eight, then nine, then 10, I questioned my decision. But, since Pedro hadn’t suggested that we leave and come back tomorrow, I kept my mouth shut.

When the ER doc finally came to visit around eleven, I sheepishly explained that my surgeon wanted a CT scan with contrast. He sounded dubious, but agreed to do what she had ordered—adding a kidney function test to the list of things to do before the scan.

At midnight, when the radiology tech came to take me for the scan, I asked why I hadn’t had contrast and she said she couldn’t tell me. I hate it when people know but they can’t tell you. Fear nibbled at my freezing toes.

The doc came back at one and explained that my kidney function wasn’t what they wanted it to be, so they hadn’t used contrast—but that the CT looked fine. They would pump me full of liquids and do another test in a few hours.

I sent Pedro to a hotel while I dozed through two more blood draws and bags of IV liquids. Around seven this morning, the new shift came in and the doctor greeted me with, “Does anyone in your family have a history of kidney failure?”


(I’ll keep writing, even though my five minutes are up)

This morning has included more tests, more IV fluids and a lot of waiting for answers. I’m not a patient patient. My kidneys continue to operate at one-half to one-third capacity, so they want to keep me another 24 hours. I haven’t spoken to the nephrologist yet (that words remind me of something Egyptian, for some reason—maybe because of Nefertiti).

I still feel icky (but obviously well enough to write my five-minute Friday blog post) and I suspect the doctors are trying to unravel the mystery of why an extremely healthy person would show up in the ER with ‘acute kidney failure’.

Fear? It tried to get in the room when the doctor walked out this morning, but I refuse to let it enter. I’ll close the book covers on worst-case-scenarios and open the covers of my Bible instead. Because I know without a doubt that God loves me—and there is no room in love for fear.

I know without a doubt that God loves me--and there's no room for fear. Click To Tweet

What about you? What do you do when fear creeps in the doorway?

Anita currently teaches English to 7th-12th graders. She describes herself as a ‘recovering cancer caregiver’ who gives thanks daily that her husband has been cancer-free for ten years.

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  • You are the strongest, most God-loving woman I know! I want to be just like that. ❤️ Many prayers ascending.
    Laura recently posted…Five Tips On Getting Things DoneMy Profile

  • I love that “there’s no room in love for fear.” So praying with you my friend! So praying…what you are going through…and still your heart shares; still you write your FMF post for us all to enjoy!! Thank you for sharing; for opening your heart and your life to us! We are with you…God is with you; and so happy that you are opening the cover of your Bible instead of any worst-case-scenarios!
    Barbara recently posted…I FIND STRENGTH IN…My Profile

  • I love that you are such a writer, through and through, that you are blogging this experience. Your family has certainly had more than it’s fair share of “stuff” lately, and I hope you can feel the prayers going up for you!
    Melissa recently posted…Paralyzed PerfectionismMy Profile

  • Tara

    “Perfect love casts out fear.” Ipening my Bible and praying for you too!

  • Oh, Anita!! Keep us posted, sweet friend. Prayers that they find out what’s going on soon and that there is a quick remedy. So glad to hear that you are keeping fear at bay. Much love to you!
    Holly Barrett recently posted…fearMy Profile

    • Thank you for your prayers Holly! I think they know why it happened (an unfortunate reaction to the anesthesia, the antibiotics and the pain meds that only occurs in a very small section of the population). Unfortunately, the remedy doesn’t appear to be ‘quick’. Just a lot of flushing and waiting!
      Anita Ojeda recently posted…What to Do When Fear Creeps in the DoorwayMy Profile

  • Boy, that sucks. Prayers up.
    Andrew Budek-Schmeisser recently posted…Your Dying Spouse 20 – Fear of DeathMy Profile

  • Hello! I enjoyed reading your story. I’m visiting from http://katemotaung.com #FMF. Enjoy your day!

  • Lisa Knight Davis

    Sometimes the only thing I can do when fear creeps in is to meditate on scripture–especially this one: Thou wilt keep in perfect peace him whose mind is stayed on Thee.

    Praying for you, friend!

  • You do know the cure for fear….promises of God’s love. Thankful you’re rooted and holding on to that, Anita. Praying for you as you go through this time of testing – in more ways than one I suspect.
    Debby recently posted…Five-Minute Friday {fear}My Profile

  • Goodness, friend. I am in prayer for you already. Please keep us posted. This is what I needed today: “Fear? It tried to get in the room when the doctor walked out this morning, but I refuse to let it enter. I’ll close the book covers on worst-case-scenarios and open the covers of my Bible instead. Because I know without a doubt that God loves me—and there is no room in love for fear.” Bless you for that. God is with you! Much love being sent your way.
    Julie Lefebure recently posted…3 Sentences That Transformed Our MarriageMy Profile

  • Wow, do keep us posted.
    Michele Morin recently posted…Creativity and Fun in Your PocketMy Profile

  • I can’t believe you wrote an FMF post in the hospital – you crazy woman! But, because I’ve seen updates this morning which is Monday I know you are doing much, much better. I love your sense of humor and it’s been a privilege to keep you in prayer through this! xoxo
    Susan Shipe recently posted…sonday reflections – june 21 2015My Profile

  • i totally get why you wrote a post in the hospital anita:) granted, i wasn’t the sick one when ron was in the hospital. when i’m in, it is usually for a bunch of seizures and my brain isn’t functioning. when ron is sick, i need to keep my mind off worse case scenarios! writing helps with that.

    i saw this today. will be praying for you girl. low kidney function is nothing to play with for sure:( sounds like you are improving but will continue to pray!

    don’t you love it when minor surgery gets these fun complications? ugh!
    martha brady recently posted…ARE YOU LOOKING FOR LIFE?…My Profile

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