I have one tattoo. It was so small that the tattoo artist laughed at me and didn’t even charge me for it, “That it; that’s all you want? Just two small lines?” To some people, that’s all it is and all it ever will be. Honestly, there was a point in my life where that’s all it was to me as well – just two small lines.
I grew up going to church, but being so young and immature, church as was more of a social setting for me to hang out with friends versus a place for me to go and be with God. I believed in God and I prayed, but it wasn’t until my freshman year of college where things really changed for me.
On December 26, 2010, the day after Christmas, I got the call that my mom was in the hospital and I needed to go up there to see her right away. Of course, all the worst thoughts possible start popping up in my mind. Did she get in a car accident? Why wouldn’t they tell me what happened? Is it really that bad?? God, please let her be okay. I dropped what I was doing and had my friend that I was with at the time take me to the hospital.
My mom had her own room by the time I got there. I walked into her room to find doctors and my immediate family standing all around her bed. She looked calm as ever, “Hey sweetie.“ There was no blood, no casts – nothing. She was simply sitting under the covers.
The doctors and my family caught me up to speed – my mom was diagnosed with cancer, more specifically an Ependymoma.
An Ependymoma is a type of tumor that can form in the brain or spinal cord. Hers was at the bottom of her brain where her brain and spinal cord meet. The tumor was only allowing a pinhole size of space for her cerebrospinal fluid to transfer from her brain to her spine causing her vision, speech, motor skills, equilibrium, just everything to be off.
Surgery was scheduled for three days later. It was supposed to be a 8-10 hour surgery; however, little did we know then, it would actually take them 13 hours. God, please let her be okay…
Those were the first words I heard coming out of my mom’s mouth. She was in ICU, which would be her new home for the following two weeks. She was still coming off of anesthesia, wires hooked up to her everywhere, her face unrecognizably swollen from being in a prone posterior position for 13 hours during surgery. Yet there she was, hands raised praising God and repeating, “There is a God.”
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10
Though she still credits God for getting her though it all, she remembers absolutely none of this.
But I do.
I remember seeing my mom praising God and feeling like I was being wrapped in someone’s arms though no one was within 3 feet of me. I remember the biggest rush of peace hitting my body after I pleaded, “God please take away her pain; give it to me if you have to“. I remember exhaling as if I had been holding my breath my whole life and inhaling knowing everything was going to be okay.
Y’all, I will never forget that day, because that is the day I truly felt God’s presence not only next to me, but on top of me and even in me. He was everywhere in that room as I know He had been in the O.R. with my mom.
Maybe this is a “You had to be there” type moment, but I have no doubt – He was there.
I have one tattoo of two small lines on the back of my neck. The vertical line is going down my spinal cord just like the incision line is on my mom’s neck. The other line is completing the symbol for the cross. To some people, that’s all it is and all it ever will be – just two small lines. However to me, these two small lines represent one of the hardest times in my life; a time where I felt Gods realness; a time where there was hope when I should’ve felt loss. These to small lines encourage me to share my testimony.
My mother has been in and out of the hospital since 2010. She’s battled cancer, meningitis, and has had a few migraines sprinkled in between. I’ve seen her go from needing a walker and speech therapist to learn how to walk and talk again, to taking a run around her neighborhood and singing in Church. My mom is the hardest fighter I know; she has been declared cancer free since 2015. God, thank you for letting my mom be more than just “okay”.
“I will give you back your health and heal your wounds, says the Lord” Jeremiah 30:17
I know not everyone has a testimony like mine. Maybe you found God on a mountain top admiring His creation or maybe you found God at the grocery store. Wherever you found Him, if you feel compelled to share your testimony too there’s a comment box below and a reader on the other side (like me & many others!) ready to be encouraged and inspired.
“But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” 1 Peter 3:15-16
I hope you enjoyed my testimony! Thanks & God bless <3