This is going to be a gross entry, filled with details of a medical emergency I had concerning my throat. Proceed at your own risk!
The last time I was in the Makati Med ER, I had paralytic shellfish poisoning. Before I had lost control of all my senses, except my hearing, my mom tells me she heard me say “I see a light” but I do not remember this. They were nervous that they were going to lose me. What made me come to was the siphoning of the poison which caused me to throw up. That was 12 years ago… I would have died, hopelessly separated from God.
At around 1pm (Manila time), I was eating some chicos and a seed got caught in my throat. I alerted my mom, a pediatrician, about it, and she told me to get dressed so we could go to the hospital. She had known of a previous case of a little boy dying because the chico seed he swallowed lodged itself in his throat. I vaguely remember the story, so I knew it was something we couldn’t just ignore.
I was the first one out to the elevator, and while keeping the doors open, remember thinking, “Do you want me now, Lord? I’m ready if you do. Thank you that I got to spend some time at home to see family and friends before I left.” In the elevator mirrors, I could see redness around my throat and collar bone, tears in my eyes, the strain whenever I tried to swallow or breathe through my mouth.
In the parking lot of our building, I had to spit out some saliva (so sorry, people!) and tried to breathe through my nose instead. It was quite uncomfortable, and some bumps in the road made it seem like the chico seed was going to embed itself in my throat.
When we got to the ER, I had to visit the sink and spit some more. One doctor asked about some medicine/allergy history. Another one asked if I was pregnant. (Someone was doing an xray right then) Another one asked about the usual stuff they ask women on their check-up.
I was sprayed with something in my mouth that numbed my throat and tongue. Two times, the doctor wrapped my tongue with paper towel and pulled it. My eyes were closed when she did this, so I didn’t see what else was being done, but I was gagging. The second time, the prodding inside my mouth was enough to make me vomit. The chico seed came out!!! Hooray!
I was asked if I was scared. I wasn’t. How could I have been? It was a win-win situation. I would have been in the presence of my Creator had I died. If I survived, then things would have gone back to normal and I’d await my US visa interview, work on the children’s progress reports, and hopefully turn 32 on Wednesday, my earthly birthday =).
I believe each of us has a God-given fear of death. Death was something that God never meant to happen. Humanity, instead of choosing to stay within the confines of security under God’s protection, chose independence instead. (Genesis 3:6) Outside of God’s grace, man, out of his own free will, sins, the effects of which are fatal. (Romans 6:23 ) We were made to fear death, because our souls unconsciously desire to be with God eternally. Even though we are not born into any religion, our God-given conscience tells us we’ve done wrong when we lie, cheat, or steal. We feel a nagging feeling in our throat, or a pain in our stomach. We can’t sleep at night, or we lie more to cover the wrong we’ve done, because we are aware that we were not supposed to have done whatever mistake. If you are afraid to die, let me tell you something… you do not have to be. All people die because it is a natural cause of sin, but God’s only begotten Son already died for your sins. If you turn to Jesus and turn away from sin, and put your trust in Him, He will spare you the punishment you deserve. An eternity of torment is yours to lose and everlasting life is yours to gain.
My adventure in the ER reminded me of a youtube video a friend of mine has in her site. It is less than 10 minutes long. You’ve read this far… go for it!
By the way, if you ever crave chicos, be sure you take out the seeds before biting into it!
Thank you to Dr. E. V. Ortega and the rest of the ER crew at Makati Med who was there on January 12, 1:00-2:00 pm!