Denise Tam

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Stretched to be Shaped

Posted by Denise on November 11, 2014 at 8:35 PM

The buzzing was mostly annoying. But then came the vertigo that was also accompanied by nausea and followed by severe headaches. Did I have a tumour in my brain? For someone that has a history of cancer that was actually not so drastic of a question to ask.

 

The scan came back clean. I was put on some meds for the vertigo and it disappeared soon after. The buzzing in my right ear however increased and as it increased my hearing decreased when one day I just couldn't hear with it anymore.

 

I still remember walking out to causeway bay from happy valley along the tram line, a usual route I take to go to the gym. It was a hot summer day in May, the sun was out, and I was taking slow and careful steps as my legs were still swollen but recovering. I was still thankful though to be out of bed and to be able to walk that route that would have been unbearable for me just two weeks ago. The ringing was there and I knew I heard less but I didn't know exactly how much less until I placed the headphones in my ears to listen to some music when my left headphone dropped out of my ear and suddenly the music stopped. Did my phone stop working? Is the volume button broken? I placed the headphone back in my left ear and turned up the volume. Drums, guitar, singing- It came back alive. I took out the headphones from my left. Construction, cars, white noise. That's when I knew my volume button wasn't broken, but my right ear was.

 

The days and weeks that followed were dark when tests confirmed total loss of hearing in my right ear most probably due to drugs from chemotherapy that had damaged my nerves in the inner ear permanently.

 

"What more will you allow?", I asked God. "When will this end?"

 

My legs had been swollen since November and my doctors had given up on helping me which left me to help myself. We tried everything, or it seemed like everything, underneath the stars. The swelling would get a bit better but then it wouldn't. As if that wasn't enough after two battles with cancer I now had the hearing loss to deal with.

 

I felt like I was being bent and stretched in all and every way like a balloon. But the bending and stretching had really deformed me. I felt like I could no longer hold my form. If God was trying to shape me into something, I wasn't responding to His tugs and pulls. My emotional, mental and physical self felt like an overstretched balloon or perhaps even one that was about to pop. I wanted out. I needed out, permanently or temporarily. I felt like I was choking, like I was running out of air.

 

I'm too much of a wuss to take myself out permanently though the thoughts were certainly there. But temporarily, it was easy. Alcohol, soft drugs, food, relationships, busyness. The question is, would I do that to myself? And if yes, what would my method be? The temptations were there, many available and accessible.

 

I had one of those angel and devil conversations in my head for two or three days as I tried to find a way out so I could just stop feeling temporarily. That's all I wanted. I didn't need peace or joy or comfort I just needed to not feel anything. I prayed, "help me Father. I am so weak. I am so tired. I need an out."

 

Little did I know that my measly prayer was heard. The weekend after, I attended a healing conference with a friend where I found myself on stage and was prayed for by many and by the pastor himself. He placed his hands over my ears, called on Holy Spirit and Father God to come heal and my heart then hard at the beginning but now soft hoped and asked to believe in the prayer for healing. He lifted his hands from my ears and I felt a popping sensation in my ears. He spoke into my right ear and asked if I could hear him. I heard him say the name 'Jesus' as if he had spoken into my good ear in a quiet room, crisp, loud and clear, unlike other times where I would strain to decipher words especially in noisy environments. The doubting Thomas in me asked him to repeat himself and again I heard the name Jesus, loud and clear. I couldn't believe my ears. I heard! Praise God! We rejoiced and worshipped him in song as others received prayers for healing. The conference ended and my heart of despair, discouragement and weariness had turned into a heart of hope, faith and belief. The healing didn't actually stick and my hearing is still gone but the faith and hope stuck. On days where the despair creeps in, and believe me there are days like that, the memories of that day string back the faith and the hope in a God that heals, in my God that spoke to me directly, and a God that hears our prayers.

 

I have many moments of frustration with my right ear out of order but as I am learning to use only my left ear I am also learning to listen for His still small voice in my right with hope and prayer and belief that He will heal if it's in His will. Will you join me in hoping, praying and believing in this miracle healing?

 

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