Hope Deferred (for a Day)

12Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.

Proverbs 13:12 (KJV)

Despite our best planning, we spent from 1:30 to 6:00 today not being seen by the endocrinologist. (But it’s not really his fault.)

13Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”

James 4:13-15 (NIV)

What happened was this:

Nichelle and I arrived at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Manchester about 9 minutes behind schedule. We’d made one wrong turn, which cost us about four minutes. We tried calling, but no one answered before we were actually headed up the driveway.

For the record, until we actually arrived there, we didn’t know we were going to a medical center. We thought our destination was a doctor’s office of some kind. That was our undoing.

We rushed inside (guessing on an entrance) and started waiting in line. In less than a minute, Nichelle asked a staff member for where we should go. She directed us to another counter down the hall. When we got there, the counter was unstaffed. We decided to follow the signs to the main lobby, and met another staff member on the way who said we needed to register.

We were served fairly quickly at the registration desk. They only had to correct Nichelle’s first name and her last name (yes, Michelle Wilcott :: sigh ::), and look up the insurance three times, ask for her birthdate twice and mine once, then run the co-pay.

Then they sent us upstairs, where we checked in again and sat down. After a few minutes, Nichelle was called, and the nurse explained that we checked in too late for the appointment. I was struck instantly by an unusually strong mixture of extreme disappointment and rage. I actually turned and walked away for about 10 seconds.

They did say that if the next patient did not show up, they would let us in, so we waited. Nichelle spent the next 15 minutes with her head down and eyes closed. I spent that 15 minutes reading, rubbing Nichelle’s back, wishing there were something I could do to help, and mentally reviewing verses about God’s sovereignty.

The nurse came out, and told us the next patient had arrived. She listened to our story, and noted that similar problems had occurred recently, and went back in to find us the number for the medical center person who handles such problems.

During the ride home they phoned us to make another appointment; we were grateful able to get one tomorrow—at the same time of day, but in Concord, rather than Manchester.

I’ll have to take another afternoon off from work, but can make up the time later in the week, or take it as sick time (our company policy allows this; I’m not being a weasel).

God knows what He is doing. It is comforting to know Nichelle will be seen by someone who doesn’t squeeze patients in, but rather insists on giving them proper attention and time.


Nichelle has a new symptom. We’re not sure what they are caused by—they might be tiny hemmorages under the skin—but in several places she’s had tiny, dark brown, circular freckle-like spots appear. She noticed a few yesterday. This morning there were more, and this evening still more. They are definitely increasing in number. One that seems to be just forming (based on location and size) is a reddish color, which leads me to think that they are indeed tiny spots of subcutaneous bleeding. There’s also no external irritation or rash present near them.

The other symptoms, pain, dizziness, fatigue, difficulty walking, burning sensations, severe edema, stabbing pains, painful pressure in the head, etc., all continue for much of every day.

One Reply to “Hope Deferred (for a Day)”

  1. How frustrating! As frustrating as it is, it is good to remember that it was God in His wisdom who arranged it so you didn’t see the Dr. You didn’t “miss the appointment”. It was best for Nichelle to see the Dr. in Concord this afternoon instead of yesterday. Maybe her symptoms will be clearer, maybe the Dr. will be in a better frame of mind. All of this is under God’s control. I’m praying that the new symptom will help in a diagnosis.

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