Exodus 23:22 “But if thou shalt indeed obey his voice, and do all that I speak; then I will be an enemy unto thine enemies, and an adversary unto thine adversaries.” King James Version (KJV)
On Thursday September 12, 2013 in the wee hours of the morning my life changed. As I was downstairs contemplating whether or not to go to North Carolina to a funeral and thinking about a recent deceased classmate, I decided to turn in for bed. As I walked upstairs to my bedroom the clothes I was holding began to fall from my hand. When I bent over to retrieve them I experience the worst headache of my life. Upon rising my head began to hurt even more. I told Willie (my husband) how I felt. The Holy Spirit then told me to take two aspirins so I went to bed. After my condition didn’t improve, a soft voice (the Holy Spirit) said get up and get out of here. I then asked Willie to take me to Doctors Community Hospital Emergency Room. Willie who was probably sick at the time and moving too slow for me; so, I decided I would drive myself to the Emergency Room.
Once outside at the car, I reached for the car door the Holy Spirit said in that soft voice, don’t drive that car you could have an accident and kill someone. I went back into the house and called 911. The 911 called caused the Fire Department to be dispatched to my home. The fireman checked my blood pressure and said it was good. I calmly said "Sir, something is wrong I need medical attention." He said the paramedics would arrive soon and I could decide what I wanted to do. On the arrival of the paramedics they parked in front of my neighbor’s home and they basically told me I was fine but they would take me to the ER. Again the Holy Spirit spoke to me and said let Willie take you because the paramedics may stop for a burger.
On the way to Doctors Community Hospital I was thinking I sure hope Willie drops me off in front of the ER, which he did. After getting checked in around 3 a.m. and telling the receptionist that I had the worst headache of my life I was seen before other patients. The clue word which I didn’t know at the time “worst headache of my life” usually describes a brain hemorrhage from a leaking cerebral aneurysm to medical professions. I was immediately taken for a CT scan. After the CT scan I was taken back to a room, the doctor advised me I was bleeding in my head but for some reason it had stopped, and that I had an aneurysm. I told the doctor pointing towards the Heavens that I had taken two aspirins upon the advice of the Holy Spirit, he seemed unsure of this because aspirins are known to cause the blood to flow freely. He then said Doctors Community Hospital was not equipped for neurological patients. I was told I would be transported to MedStar Georgetown University or MedStar Washington Hospital Center, whichever had an available bed. A nurse asked me if I had children, I told her yes and was advised to call them immediately. I then realized the seriousness of my illness and began calling my daughter, a sister and my supervisor. Everyone was in shock because I was talking.
In transit to Washington Hospital Center I was taken by ambulance to the Fire Department on Good Luck Road in Lanham. There I was transported via Medevac to Washington Hospital Center. Once at the hospital, silly I asked to see my family before surgery. I was told they needed to operate ASAP. In hind sight my family couldn’t reach the hospital that fast.
After waking up on Friday morning, my first thought was my head must be bald. I quickly did an assessment of my head; my hair was still there I had no bandages on my head. Now I’m thinking what did they do. I saw a nurse and my first thought was I need her to take off all these contraptions, IVS, oxygen, catheter etc. The nurse ignored me so I motioned to her I need to write since I was unable to speak because of a tube in my throat. On paper I wrote, "Please take all these contraptions I’m hooked up to so I can get better faster." She said NO, I then wrote and asked her to give me a sedative so I can sleep the whole time I’m hooked up to all of this. She gave me a sedative.
God had orchestrated months before my illness that my Uncle Bert (a minister), Aunt Mece and cousin Mandell would be visiting the DMV area at the time. Even my niece Monique was her on a planned weekend with her girlfriends on Friday 13th. The neurosurgeon had only been at WHC for two months he had recently retired from the National Military Medical Center at Walter Reed Hospital. Also on Friday my niece Erica called to tell me her mother (my youngest sister a register nurse) Maude was on her way from Durham, North Carolina to the hospital. In a matter of minutes she was walking through ICU to my room. I later called Rev. Denise Moody from my church (Reid Temple AME) and advised her of my condition, she told me of another member which that was a minister that worked at WHC Rev. Kim Queen. Rev. Queen visited and prayed with me. Rev. Denise Moody and Prayer Warrior Karen Bryant visited me at home, prayed and gave me communion when needed. This reminds me of the scripture in Jeremiah that says “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord” plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 NIV Version.
On day two after surgery I was up walking. Everyone was elated and saying I was a miracle. I was truly a miracle; I experience supernatural events while in ICU. One day a spirit came in my room and did an assessment of my head. This was not the normal assessment that the technicians performed daily in the mornings. I felt this spirits presence so profoundly that I asked the staff did they see it. One night I had a male nurse and the Holy Spirit started talking to me about him and a doctor I asked the nurse who was the doctor and his family and he said my brother but in January I will start medical school. God is Awesome, he will speak to you to encourage others in their walk with him.
I stayed 11 days at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, most patients stay longer. God allowed me to see once I arrived in the Step Down Unit how truly blessed I was to survive without any major setback. I even saw one patient that could not be left alone that required twenty fours companionship.
My biggest down fall after surgery was I couldn’t stop thinking about things. My doctor explained our brains are like computers and it would take time to get back to normal. I began to stutter when talking when excited are tired. I attended speech therapy and life went back to normal. This ordeal strengthened my faith and the Holy Spirit told me I have your back. I’m grateful God slowed down my thoughts and allowed me live a more spirit filled life. We are in a continuous learning process when we walk with Christ.
Fast forward several years later while at a restaurant I ran into an ex coworker that introduced me to his daughter that had between 4 to 6 aneurysm and we had the same neurosurgeon. She told me that our doctor told her he had never met anyone that had survived that number of aneurysms. My friend Betty Smith introduced me to someone that survived two aneurysms. Our doctor is now the Director of Neuroendovascular Surgery at both MedStar Hospitals. God is so good to us; all we need to do is be obedient to his word, trust and believe he is working things out for us. God is the Alpha and Omega, he knows what we need and when. Hallelujah to the Lamb of God.
Submitted by Vernell Williams-Brace