God Winks

Today I am taking a break from writing about the school to telling a more personal story.

My husband, Herb, and I had a crazy 16 days in December. It started with attending two funerals. We came home from a cousin’s funeral in our hometown to the results of a biopsy on Herb’s tongue that showed carcinoma.

Five days later, thanks to some quick footwork by our daughter in law, we were in the office of an amazing Head and Neck Surgeon, Dr. Brody, at Penn Medicine in Philadelphia. Four hours later, Herb was scheduled for surgery and finished with pre-op CAT scans and bloodwork. We had already planned a family Christmas for the weekend to work around the busy schedules for our 3 children and 6 grandsons. Coincidence? We both felt gratitude our family gathering was planned early. The first time we’ve ever planned it that early. We had a great celebration and even a family photo shoot by a sweet friend.

We headed back to Philadelphia on Monday evening and Tuesday morning we hopped in an Uber in front of our son’s house. The Uber driver’s name was Gilbert. As you know Gilbert is not a very common name. But Gilbert was Herb’s dad’s name, who died when Herb was 6. I felt the arms of God surrounding us over this. Coincidence? We arrived at the hospital and awaited the admissions process to begin. I need to say here, if you ever have a need for specialized care, Penn Medicine wins hands down. I’ve had experience in many hospitals and every person we encountered was friendly, helpful, and proactive in care.

Herb’s surgery began at noon and was over at 3:06. I was informed the minute he went under anesthesia and the minute he was awake. The doctor removed the cancerous cells from his tongue and removed lymph nodes under his chin. We await the pathology on his lymph nodes, but all indications give us hope they will be cancer free. Herb spent the night in the hospital and had amazing care and attention! I even felt comfortable not spending the night (and that’s big)!

The next day, the discharge process was smooth with the NP, RN, CNA, and Resident all working together to get all the ducks in a row. Our son brought our car to the front door of the hospital and we hopped onto 76 W. Driving for about ½ hour, I noticed a black Ford Edge a little ahead on our right. Herb had his eyes closed, (yes, I was driving) and I thought to myself; “My niece and her husband have that same car, wouldn’t it be funny if it was John!” There are only 2 million people in Philadelphia and it’s suburbs. What would those odds be? About that time I noticed the black car slowed down and as I drove past, there was John with a big wave and smile. Coincidence?

We arrived home safe later that afternoon. Throughout these days we have had so many prayers and good thoughts sent our way. We are blessed with the best friends and family anyone could ever hope for.

Some may think that John and Gilbert, and even the already planned family Christmas, were just coincidences. I believe there is no such thing as coincidence, only small miracles that constantly surround us or, as my brother refers to them, little Winks from God.

Watch for your little winks from God; I promise they are out there, you only need to be open to seeing them!

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