The Dreaded Phone Call

what is it that looms beyond the fog? (gulf coast, 2011)

From my first look,  I had that gut feeling.

Something is wrong with this patient.

We couldn’t pinpoint what it was, at that time.  But months later, we learned.

A terminal illness. 

Having watched this child slowly grow, then go in and out of the hospital…

Seeing the love on her family’s faces, seeing how she made them smile, laugh, sigh….

I remember now two of the reasons why I didn’t want to work in pediatrics – sick children and hurting parents. It is just heartbreaking (yet somehow I ended up in primary care/family medicine?!)

Learning the news, that it could be any time now…  I felt as though the light had been extinguished. A black fog of sadness had swooped in, overwhelming my eyes, pulling my lids down tight. It was tugging, wrestling to force open my impenetrable tear ducts.




Lord… the words to express the sorrow… are too difficult to utter.

“You provide the fire
I’ll provide the sacrifice
You provide the Spirit
And I will open up inside

Fill me up God
Fill me up God
Fill me up God
Fill me up

Love of God
All my soul”

-Fill Me Up, by Jesus Culture


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