I had a good visit with Dr. Benjamin today. She had a student Dr. with her, and the student was absolutely amazed that a person with a double cerebellar stroke could do so well. What is interesting is that is the first time that I have been told that the worst part of my stroke was not the cerebellum...it was the brain stem stroke. She said that by the time the swelling gets bad enough to effect the brain stem, most people die. In my case, I am amazing every neurologist with my ability to do, basically, everything. Dr. Benjamin said that, probably, nobody in Des Moines had ever operated on someone with a cerebellar stroke that went double sided. Her exact words were that these types of things (me walking, talking, driving, etc.) just don't happen. It is not that they are rare, they just don't happen. In the end, I am a walking miracle and I am amazed every day that I live and breathe. Praise the Lord.
A few years ago I was presented with the opportunity to come back to Stratford, Iowa, to First Baptist church, as their pastor; for those of you who have followed this blog for some time, FBC in Stratford was my first pastorate. Let's just say I prayed about it as I was jumping at the opportunity. The church has a parsonage, so I could live there and not have to worry about a houe payment; and I needed to slow down, and this was a part time position (which, as a side note, allowed for me to get a greater disability from the VA than when I was working full time with St. Croix Hospice...) We love Stratford, and absolutely love the church; the people are wonderful and accepted us, again, with open arms. This was, for me, the perfect position: I get to pastor a church I LOVE, I get to do life with people I LOVE, and I have already had the opportunity to do weddings and baptism services for kids (adults now) that I have known their entire lives. IT IS GREAT. The longer I have been here,