This morning Rod and I went to the Gelre Hospital in Apeldoorn to go through pre- surgical screening meet  and then meet with Dr. van Praagh.  Both of us hit a panic moment when we were sitting with the pre-surgical nurse who was struggling with her english. She asked Rod what he was allergic to and Rod said  "Iodine" .  "What is that?" she inquired, "how do you spell it?"  In a strange way both of us were hit with the realization that we had come half way around the world to have surgery done in a country where we didn't speak the language and many of the meds had different names.  As we waited to see Dr. van Praagh, we exchanged doubtful glances and took a deep breath.

As soon as we entered Dr. van Praagh's room, we were offered a cup of tea or coffee.  "I have read all about you and it is good to finally meet you" says v. Praagh as he shakes our hands.  We apologize that he has had to read so much... to which he assured us that it had been very helpful to have all the reports.

Without a doubt Dr. van Praagh is an extreme gentleman and immediately puts his patients at ease.  He had obviously read and was thoroughly acquainted with Rod's history.  The ensuing discussion put any lingering doubts we may have had to the side.  Dr. van Praagh was thorough in his explanation of the procedure and his technique, was open to questions, and went out of his way to make sure we understood the upcoming procedure.

When we returned to our little house in the woods, it was with a renewed sense of assurance that we had made the right choice.  Now Rod has one more day to rest before the surgery.  Yesterday Rod's had an 8 hour stretch of stabbing pain, which thankfully did not last through the night.  Rod says:  "I am ready, let's get this over with!"

A big thanks to Alice de Tombe (Tante Tobia's friend) who drove us to the hospital and waited for the morning.  Tante Tobia is quite ill with a cold/flu bug and really regrets not being able to be with us today.


Judy and Mark

We are SO GLAD your time of torture is coming to an end!!! And what a reassuring encounter with your surgeon - as you well know, not all are so skilled in the art of listening and understanding. We continue to hold you up as we wait for news. Much love...


I am so thankful for the blog and for continued answers to prayers. Wish I could be with you. You are in my constant thoughts and prayers.
Will you have to put under? Will you go home the same day?

Anne Boehlig

Henry and I are praying for you several times a day now! Thank you so much for keeping us updated; we so hope and pray that every detail of the surgery will go even better than anyone could even anticipate. God is with you, as are we, in spirit.

Bette-Ann Bruulsema

It looks like surgery is tomorrow. Good to hear the meeting with the surgeon gives you confidence. Many blessings and prayers for success and peace through the process.

Cam & Gaylene

You have been in our thoughts and prayers. Cam & I are fasting to be more focused and intentional in our prayers for you today. I am remembering the story from Tori's Sunday school class last Sunday, where Jesus healed Bartimeus in response to his cry, "Lord, have mercy!" That has been my prayer for you today. We trust God to answer with compassion, as he did for Bartimeus. We love you!

Peter, Areni, Wojamo, Ciara and Rochelle

Dear Susan and Rod, it is nearing 10:30 p.m. here, on March 14th which we know means you are already several hours into the 15th there in the Netherlands, and the day for your procedure. Know that we are remembering you in prayer and we are trusting God that all will go well today, and that you will find tremendous relief in the days, weeks and months ahead as a result. With our love and prayers, Peter for all of us.


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    Rod and Susan

    "If Pain is the ring, Frodo is to Rod as Sam is to Susan."
    (see 02/07/12 for an explanation)

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