Tomorrow I will board a plane for the first time in two and a half years and I am apprehensive. Life has become very difficult for me these days but although difficult I continue to do my best to continue living and refuse to give up. However I know my capabilities these days and I have to adjust to them and ask for help. I will travel using wheelchair assist and hope all will go well.
I am travelling out to UCLA not for me this time but to help a severely injured woman by giving her support when she goes for her consult with Dr. Raz. Has husband also has compromised health issues, so they asked if I would go instead of him and I said yes I would. I have got to know this woman well and feel she is so badly compromised by her mesh injuries and she needs to find out what happened to her during her many partial removal surgeries.
The journey will not be easy for either of us, but we have asked for wheelchair assistance which I know will make our journey much easier. I have made this journey four times before and I understand the consequences and how to get through it the best way possible. I have learned what I can and can’t do and asking for help is something I have had to accept and be willing to do.
I have not seen Dr. Raz since he removed my mesh three years ago this month and I am looking forward to it. While there I intend to present him with a special award from all the women he has helped and never gave up on regardless of the mess other doctors have left them in. Now I am going to share with you close up photos before I pack everything for the journey.
I told my daughter Kim that I wanted to take him something special and I asked her to design and make an award as a thank you for all he has done to help women. She designed the award called The Light of Hope, with angel wings layered in a deep frame that I hope his family and staff, especially his wife will be proud of. Kim also designed a special Light the Way candle and a wonderful card. All I had to do was write poems to show how I feel about all he has done to help women and she did the rest.
Here is a close-up of the candle, which is now carefully wrapped ready to go.
My daughter is a very talented person who has many skills including computer skills. I knew whatever she made would be absolutely beautiful and I had no input in it. There are four layers of angel wings in shades and sheers and the angel comes to life in a deep frame. This is the poem I wrote.
Light of Hope
On days of utter sadness
When darkness hides the light
We search for ways to carry on
And grasp with all our might
And you stood in the shadows
To give us love and care
At last we saw a light of hope
Thank God that you were there
This is the card. My daughter makes the most wonderful cards and we have been sending them out along with a gift when women have surgeries. This one was designed and made especially for Dr. Raz.
Here you can see the inside of the card and once again Kim asked me to write a special poem.
Our Guiding Light
You’ve saved the lives of many
Who couldn’t find their way
They found your light to Guide them
To live another day
Through many days of darkness
And pain throughout the night
While waiting long to go to you
They saw your guiding light
From all the injured women
Who felt they couldn’t cope
Thank you for your gift of care
You’ve given them such hope
When I come home and I have rested from the journey I will finished this blog with a photo of Dr. Raz as I present it to him. I am very grateful this man has never retired and still works hard to help the women of the world and this is my way to honor him.
Saturday October 24, 2015
I just got back from UCLA this morning and although I am tired from the trip, I wanted to finish this blog and post it this evening. Even though it is difficult for me to travel, it was a wonderful trip where I met many mesh injured women I have known a long time and others who had read my blog, but I did not know them. Before I left, Kim my daughter who designs everything and makes most of it, handed me a pile of Mesh Angel gifts for women I knew that I knew I would meet and others I did not know I would. I can tell you this that when I handed them a gift pack, tears rolled down their faces and they wanted to know how much it was. I explained there was no charge and we were doing this from our own money and donations because we know how traumatic these surgeries are, whether it was mesh removal or reconstruction.
I do want to thank those women who have made a donation towards our project and I can tell you that we make it go a long, long way. Your help is valuable and you make women feel very special. I personally want to yell what wonderful Mesh Angels you are and how much I appreciate your participation.
I never got a photo with Dr. Raz three years ago when I went to him and had all my mesh removed. When I was invited by a mesh injured friend from my area, to travel with her for her consult, I knew it would be a perfect time to honor him personally. When I handed him this award, he was very pleased and had a big smile on his face when I thanked him for helping all the women who have been his patients.
Now for a brief write-up of why I went out there. I ‘meet’ many women from all over the world because of my blog and it is nice when I meet some from my own area of Houston Texas and surrounding areas. Several months ago a woman from this area contacted me and when my daughter and I met her we loved her and we became close friends. She like many women was not living her life anymore and had not been for six years, spending most of it in bed suffering. She has had many partial removal surgeries and yet most of the mesh is still in her body and believe me I was shocked at how much there was when Dr. Raz went over all her records with her and asked her questions. He could not understand why any surgeon would do the things that was done to her and was very baffled. But the gist of it is, by removing all the mesh he will help her live a better life and she will have surgery in a few months. I thank God for keeping Dr. Raz safe and healthy so that he can continue on with his work. He has now done thirteen hundred removals and I can tell you that most are extremely difficult removals because so many women go to him just like my friend, because they have been butchered by other doctors.
Another friend I have known a long time but never met before this trip asked me “Linda you have not seen him for three years, so what do you think of his health and his mind?” I answered “He has not changed one bit and he is sharp as a tack”. I know this because I was in the room for the consult with my friend and I watched him read her records and ask her certain things so that he could determine how he could help her.
Dr. Raz has never been an arrogant man and yet he really cares and will do all he can to help women live a better life. This is why we gave him the award, which was from all mesh injured women, not just from me. It was my privilege to present him the first Mesh Angel award of its kind and hopefully next year we will find someone else who deserves it, which may not be a doctor. This award is for anyone who does all they can to help injured women through a very difficult time in their lives. It is for any good humanitarian. I hope you have enjoyed this blog and see the man who does all he can to give us a better life. Thank you Dr. Raz.