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As stress built up in her life, Lisa Simmons discovered a way to hand her burdens over to God.

Most of us are familiar with the saying, "getting our ducks in a row" to mean trying to straighten out things going on in our life, or at work or with people we're in charge of. But I had to laugh when flipping through a catalog one day I spied a t-shirt that said, "I don't have ducks, I don't have a row, I have squirrels and they are drunk." Now I don't of course advocate too much drinking, but today worry and anxiety were causing me to feel like I had more inebriated long-tailed rodents in my life than flapping birds listening to my directions.

I am having to have a total hip replacement, just fifteen months following a total knee replacement and I was worrying about that surgery and everything it entails for my job, my home life and normalcy. Two weeks before my scheduled surgery, I had to take my 88-year-old mom to the emergency room at 1:30 in the morning for chest pains, which turned out to be a severe gallbladder attack and resulted in a week's stay in the hospital and finally gallbladder surgery. So while she was in the hospital for an entire week, I was fretting about canceling my surgery to be able to take care of her. Now I have three very wonderful younger siblings who always step up to bat when it comes to helping take care of our mom so I was worrying needlessly but that didn't stop me from chasing after a squirrel.




We got her home with a week to spare before my intended surgery so just when I thought the coast was clean, she was back in the hospital again because of back pain and swelling in her feet. My worries persisted on whether I should cancel my own surgery, but family members and co-workers insisted on going ahead because they could see how much pain I was in from my hip and I don't disguise such things very well!

So today I was visiting my mom in her hospital room when I got a text from my husband telling me the electricity had gone out at our home leaving our crockpot to slowly stop cooking the dinner in it. So my ingenious husband who, luckily, was home at the time this happened takes the chicken out of the crockpot and begins to grill it outside. He is so resourceful! He stopped the squirrel from getting too close to me.

I left the hospital to go to work at our parish. I got there and the air conditioning was out in our office building on a 90-plus degree day. Well this will be fun sitting at my computer trying to get the next three weeks of bulletins finished before I leave for surgery plus type up information on our parish picnic which happens in a month and I am chairperson of. Sweating, I head to a Confirmation meeting and oh, drat, those letters need to be printed and mailed out to all of our candidates and their parents and the meeting packets put together before my surgery date because the Confirmation committee set the meeting date only three weeks away.




My squirrels were in full-blown tizzies and I trudged over to church to drop off some paperwork for a cantor who is covering me for a funeral while I am out of the office. I walked into the quiet, cool, dark church and thought I'd stay and visit a while with our Lord. Thank you, Holy Spirit, for that thought because just sitting there gazing at Jesus in the tabernacle did me a world of good. "I got this, Lisa!" I heard in my heart. And I received the peace that yes, He really did have all this. It would all work out despite my worries and fears, my pain and hurting.


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God really did have all this. It would all work out despite my worries and fears, my pain and hurting. #catholicmom

So even though my mom remains in the hospital and my surgery date is just days away, I found out that the floor I will be on for my hip surgery is just down the hall from her room. So even if she is still in the hospital when I go in, I can crutch it down to see her!

My co-workers are amazing and always offer to pick up my slack at work and of course my own family always comes through helping me at home and supporting me in my rehab just like they did after my knee surgery and will help take care of my mom.

God is good. He looks after me and my inebriated squirrels in life and tells me it will all be okay. And it will be!

Copyright 2021 Lisa Simmons
Images: Canva Pro; Pixabay (2011)