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Linda Beck column: A Celebration of healing

Six months and five days … a long-drawn out time of waiting … a healing period, slow and trying … a test of patience and faith that someday it would be over, another event from the past, and finally the day arrived: May 9, 2008.
The nurses in the Wound Care Unit at Rowan Regional were so kind to me through all my moaning and groaning; those many times when I asked, “How much longer will it be until I can swim again?”
And finally I got the answer I had longed to hear … “It’s healed.”
Once again I asked, “When can I go swimming?”
Sandy replied, “Right now.”
I immediately started praising God and thanking Him for the healing of this burn. It might be ugly but at least it was healthy skin again. I just had to go celebrate. There were just a couple of problems: my swimsuit was at home, my YMCA membership was pending and I only had two other Rita van stops on this special, unforgettable day.
But I also had two options. I could possibly get my daughter to bring the “elegant” swimsuit that I told everyone about in a previous story or maybe find a new bargain suit on sale at the mall. Going to the mall was faster, but I had to try on several suits and when I finally found the one I wanted, I asked the customer service lady at Penney’s if she would take the tags off and allow me to keep the suit on. This would be so much easier than having to change again at the YMCA.
The only problem was that both pieces had those tags that have to be removed by a machine and she wasn’t sure we could get me close enough to reach the tag. Well, most folks know that I believe where there is a will there must be a way if I set my mind to it. She was willing to help and we tried two places but we got it to work. I bought two towels to cover up and have for drying off and to the pool I went.
I ran into some old friends there and we rejoiced together. Shelley and Terry both have multiple sclerosis and when they saw me walk down the ramp just lightly holding onto the rail, Shelley said, “Linda, that is the best I’ve seen you walk in so long.”
I just told her it’s another one of God’s amazing miracles.
The folks in her class wanted to know where I had “bought my tan” and I told them I earned it working out in my yard. The ladies were admiring my new swimsuit and I shared the fact that they could get one just like it at the mall and I wouldn’t mind at all. Normally, I like mine to be a little different, like that “elegant” one, but all that mattered this time was being able to walk in and then swim five laps. That was the goal I set for my first day back and I did accomplish it.
I was absolutely elated!
This was a day of farewells and hellos. I said goodbye to all the folks I have known at the hospital. I told them I would miss each one but I hope I won’t see them there again any time soon. This was one more of the many blessed days the Lord has given me and all the folks I know gave me another encouraging ego boost. I reminded Shelley: “Never give up, keep on keeping on, have faith in God!”
Linda Beck lives in Woodleaf.

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