People are different. Have you ever had to have an MRI? You know, they put you inside that confining space of a tube, and leave you in this tunnel for what seems like hours? You are all closed in and the knocking and clanging in different decibels is not drowned out by the ear plugs they’ve given you?
Yes, well, I fall asleep. Yup, every MRI I’ve had, I have fallen asleep. Of course it might help that I always schedule them for after work, when I am already tired. And I never open my eyes ~ I always start out praying, but end up falling asleep. I was actually surprised to learn that it is not dark in there. I didn’t know that because my eyes are always closed.
I am not most people. My mother is claustrophobic. When she had to have an MRI many years ago, in the late ‘70s, she was terrified. She had no idea how she would get through it. It was the early days of MRI and there were no open MRIs at that time. She was going to have to lie on her back, perfectly still, for 2 hours. She told them they would have to knock her out completely. They could not do that and she did not know how she would ever get through this. Her mother-in-law, my grandmother, who lived a number of states away, told her she would lie perfectly still for the entire time she was in that MRI machine. For some reason, just knowing that Grandma was doing that for her, gave Mom the courage she needed to go through with it. Mom was profoundly affected by Grandma’s willingness to do this for her. And I was profoundly affected by the effect it had on my mom. I remember thinking, “I want to do that for someone some day!”
It took many years, but I finally got my chance! I heard about a friend who had to have a procedure done, during which she had to lie flat on her back without moving, for 2 hours. As soon as I heard that, I knew God had answered my long ago prayer of wanting to be able to do for someone else, what my grandmother had done for my mom. I was thrilled! Upon talking to my friend, I found out that this was going to be more difficult for her than your standard lying-flat-on-your-back for-2-hours-without-moving (as if that weren’t difficult enough!). You see, my friend does not lie flat, even to sleep. It is extremely difficult for her to lie flat at all, let alone for two hours! Prior to the scheduled date and time, there were many times of doubt, when she seriously considered canceling the procedure.
The day came for her scheduled procedure. We talked and prayed together beforehand. It was an emotional time for both of us. I had planned to lie flat and motionless. I could not lie on my bed ~ for two reasons: first of all, that would be way too comfortable and I wanted to be as uncomfortable as my friend; and secondly, I was afraid I’d fall asleep! So I had decided I’d be lying on the floor; I just needed to decide where! If I lay down in the living room, I could get distracted by people or the dog. My office is in the basement, so I opted for the office floor under my desk. When the time came, I turned out all the lights, got rid of the phone, and lay down. I thought it would be difficult; I thought the time would drag. I thought my mind would wander. I thought all kinds of things. But I lay there perfectly still, praying for my friend. After what I thought was maybe an hour, my husband came to tell me that the time was over. What? 2 hours already? I was amazed!
Soon after that, my friend had to go through 7 weeks of radiation therapy. I decided I’d lie down under my desk and pray for her during her treatments when I was home. Because of my weird work schedule, I am off 3 days in the middle of the week. So during my off days, I lay down under my desk and prayed for her during her rads (radiation treatment). Yes, that is a picture of me lying under my desk praying for my friend. I cannot explain what a joy and a blessing it was to me. I hope and pray it was for her too!
After her seven weeks of rads were done, I decided I liked praying under my desk! I told my friend this, and she dubbed it my "prayer closet". So now I pray in my “prayer closet”, lying down under my desk. I used to do my “major” praying first thing in the morning and last thing at night. The former in a chair and the latter in bed. Unfortunately, there have been many times that I’ve fallen asleep during those prayer times. So now my MAJOR prayer time is on the floor under my desk, in my “prayer closet”, where there is little chance of falling asleep or being distracted.
So in praying for my friend, I found my prayer closet! Thank you, dear friend! It has been a lovely journey!