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Waiting with Prayers and Angels

“The results are sure to be in on Monday,” the nurse said. “Just enjoy the weekend.” How would I get through a weekend of waiting?

I was expecting some test results last week, possibly as early as Thursday. I called the doctor’s office three times on Friday, the last time just before it closed, but still no word. “The results are sure to be in on Monday,” the nurse said. “Just enjoy the weekend.”

Ha! How would I get through a weekend of waiting? I hate waiting! Even when odds are that everything’s fine. Give me bad news straight out, then I have something to do. Read up on it, talk to friends, gather all the information I can to make intelligent choices…. In other words, do my very best to try to control the situation. Just don’t make me wait—it makes me feel like I’m not in control. I seriously weighed which I’d choose: immediate bad news or an interminable wait for good news. It was a tough call.

I didn’t sleep a wink Friday night. By Saturday afternoon I was a basket case. And if you think I felt like marching with my little Evie in the Halloween parade in town that Saturday night, you’re wrong.

She’d had her costume planned for weeks: Madeline, the little French girl from the storybooks. The hat was spot-on Madeline; the rest of the outfit wasn’t. I made her a nametag in “French script” to make up for it. But at the last minute she proposed I dress as Madeline’s teacher, a nun. “Please, Mom. Then everyone will definitely know who I am!”

I felt so guilty about my distracted mood all weekend, I couldn’t say no. So in about 20 minutes I transformed myself into nun. I grabbed my favorite rosary beads and we were out the door.

Somewhere along the parade route, I found myself actually saying that rosary. Of course I was saying the prayers fast, too fast to really count, and all the while waving to friends in the crowd of 16,000 who recognized me and my Madeline. But with every bead my fingers passed over, I relaxed a little. Then I noticed all the angels in the crowd. It seemed to be one of the year’s most popular costumes—not just kids with wings and halos, but adults and dogs too! I held tight to my rosary and gave the angels an extra big wave. And I didn’t think I wanted to be here?

It was quite a Halloween parade. Quite a nice Sunday followed. By mid-morning Monday, when I got the doctor’s good news, I’d gotten better at waiting. Waiting with prayers and angels.

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