Tuesday, May 10, 2005

The Frog Story

This is a little known story about faith. It was spurred on by a single email; from a friend I don’t even know that well. It’s amazing how one seemingly insignificant event can change a life forever. This story is about a frog, but by the time you are finished reading you will understand why…it’s not about the frog.

In June of 2002, my daughter Drew had a life threatening "911" bleed caused by complications from her liver disease. That day holds the single most horrific moment of my life. The vision was something out of a horror movie. But this was not a movie. It was MY husband covered from head to toe in MY daughter’s blood because he was holding her when she started to vomit. The bathroom walls were splattered with blood. But the scariest thing of all is that we almost lost her that day. After we were released from the hospital I was in the grip of worry that was all consuming. They told us that until Drew got her liver transplant it could happen again. I wondered where we would be when the next volcano of blood would erupt. Would we be in the market? At a birthday party? I wanted to shield others from the horror that I knew could happen. It was too much to bear. I needed to overcome this worry. It was suffocating me.
Continue reading...


July 9th I received an email... the subject line read F.R.O.G.

Here is the email exactly as it was sent.

__________________________________________________________________________

F.R.O.G.

I was told a story about a lady in the hospital who was near death when an area Chaplain came to visit her. This Chaplain was a very young female with long blond hair. She listened to the lady who was ill and left her a small gift for comfort. It was a tiny ceramic frog.

The next day one of the people from the lady's church came to visit. The lady told her friend about the beautiful young Chaplain who had come to visit her.

The friend was so impressed with the way the lady had improved and felt the need to talk to the young Chaplain. In her search to find the young gal, she was repeatedly reassured that the chaplains are never very young and that there was never a gal that fit the description given.

Upon returning to the lady in the hospital, a visiting nurse entered the room and noticed the ceramic frog. The nurse made the comment "I see you have a guardian angel with you." As she held the little frog.

We asked why she made the comment and we were informed that the frog stood for:

(F) Fully (R ) Rely (O) On (G) God

_______________________________________________________________________

I read the email that day in July with no expectations or understanding of its meaning. At the end of the email it said “Send this to eight people and something amazing will happen in four days” or something like that... I hardly ever forward stuff that says pass this on, blah blah blah. So I deleted the email and carried on with my day.

That night I was giving Drew a bath; my moments of deepest thought somehow find me there. Her precious belly in its naked splendor only caused me to worry. The Kasai scar reminded me of her battle, the road map of veins led my mind to worry. Does it look bigger today? I picked up a bath toy to distract my self. It was a scrubby-spongy thing. I recalled the day when my stepdaughter Mallory got it. We were in the checkout line at Stater Brothers when she remembered that she wanted a body scrubber... She ran back moments later laughing... "This is the only one I could find..." We both laughed, it had a silly frog on top.

Remembering this story while holding the frog was like a chain reaction of memories speeding through my head. I recalled that during all of Drew's trips to the lab for blood draws we would always bring the same stuffed animal for comfort. He is a silly, smiley, green frog!!! Then it all hit home and my throat became choked with emotion when I realized what had happened just four days before. We had taken Drew to UCLA for the first time to be evaluated for a liver transplant. Drew was scheduled to have an ultrasound. UCLA is a teaching hospital and there are usually other students and doctors who observe procedures. During the beginning of the procedure a woman in a white coat came in just for a short time. Even though we had a backpack full of toys, a DVD player playing a movie for Drew and a huge bag of M&M's the woman in the white coat asked us if Drew would like a toy. We sort of hesitated but said, "Okay…sure." She handed Drew a small plastic toy and then left. It was a small green frog.

_______________________

People wait their whole lives to receive some sort of sign from God to let them know that He is there. At that moment I felt like the Grinch who stole Christmas, during the part where his heart grew three times its size. But it wasn’t my heart that grew…it was my faith.

God has been so kind and gentle to us during all of these difficult times and now in his amazing, omnipotent way he showed me exactly what to do with my worry. Fully Rely on God. I am positive that none of this was a coincidence...

Without my friend sending me the email on that day, I would have missed the most amazing thing about God. But He knew I needed it that day, at that very moment and as always He pointed out how many times He has been there for us even on the days I wasn’t thinking about Him. He was with us. He helped me to realize that he is in control of our situation and that I can trust in him. Fully rely on him.

This is only the beginning chapter of this story, the rest is still being written. Frogs continue to be a sign of His love for my family and me. They come at times when I need them the most. Sometimes they are given to me by people who know the FROG story. Then there are the ones God sends. There have been many, many more and each is another chapter of His love for us. There are times when I feel like people wouldn’t believe how many frogs have popped up since our story began. But it’s absolutely the truth.

So now you know my story. You may never look at a frog the same way again and most importantly you know that my frog story is not about the frog.

8 Comments:

Blogger none said...

That´s just wonderful! Thanks for posting it!

2:29 AM  
Blogger Laurie said...

Mika,

I love that story! Thank you! I know I will NEVER look at a FROG the same way again. And Anthony's got about a billion of them!

8:59 AM  
Blogger Emma said...

When I was younger I used to have a huge problem with my disability and then I began to collect frogs. I don't collect them any more but also I no longer have a problem with my CP. Guess there was more to those frogs than I thought! Thanks for sharing that story.

1:49 PM  
Blogger Lu said...

My daughter has BA too - we are waiting for a transplant. We haven't had a major bleed, although she is a "seeper" we can't see it - I am also frightened of this and of other peoples fear - thank you for your blogg! It helps alot. And one of my favourite ornaments is? An iron frog. Its going pride of place. I am not relgious as such, but I have my own thoughts on the matter.

Thank you xx

4:11 PM  
Blogger trisha said...

This is a beautiful piece! Wow!

I have goosebumps. Thank you so much for writing this. Very well done!

8:11 AM  
Anonymous Stacy said...

MIka -

This is one of my favorite stories - I think you had posted it on CLASS once before. I love it - and we took a frog with us during Tanner's transplant for that very reason!

7:47 PM  
Blogger Moreena said...

Here's the frog from the German stories Annika is currently in love with.

Thank you for the story, Mika.

12:44 PM  
Anonymous Marisa said...

I admit I tease my freind about her love for frogs. It was a nice, silly teasing but after reading your story I know she has been blessed by her frogs.
SHe has undergone 2 kidney transplants and is waiting her third. SHe is a year or 2 younger than me with 2 small children. She has had dreadful symptoms/problems due to different things through out the years. I will be sharing this story with her. THANKS Mika.

11:22 AM  

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