Best Laid Plans

Here’s the inside of our cute Winnebago. We named her Winnie. Not very original, but it works for us.


We planned to go camping near Mt. Rainier last Friday. We had reservations at a very nice RV resort and fully stocked our trailer fridge with goodies for breakfast, lunch and dinner for four days under the shadow of the sublime mountain.


But on Wednesday, I woke up with a sore spot on my head, right in front of my ear. About the size of a bean. But quite sore.

Hmm. well, it’ll go away in a few days. I ignored the sore spot.

Until Thursday. This is what the pain looked like:


My painful spot had grown from a bean to a small plum and was approaching the early stages of agony. I told myself, “Doggone it, this thing must go away on its own. I’m not going to miss our camping trip.”

I took a couple of ibuprofen and went to bed. The pain had now grow so bad it was like someone had bludgeoned me with a two-by-four.  But I’m a stubborn gal. I toughed it out until 4 am.

“Ow, ow!” I can’t stand it anymore,” I told my husband. “I’m going to the ER.”

I thought, maybe I’ll get right in and the doctor will say it’s nothing: “It’s just a bug bite. Here, take some aspirin.”

Bruce dropped me off in front of the ER entrance and went to park. After the guard at the ER entrance took my temperature and asked me if I had any of “these covid symptoms” and I said, “no . . . no . . . no . . . no, ” etc. to his list, he let me go inside.

Amazingly, they took me right in and the intake nurse did all the usual intake stuff. Another nurse put me in a ‘room,’ and asked me more questions. Finally, the ER doctor came in and I told him how painful my plum-size spot was.

“Hmm,” he said, “yes, it does look significantly bigger than the other side of your head.” Then he pressed firmly on my spot. I’m usually very spartan about pain, but the doc’s poking felt like another wham of the two-by-four.

“Ow, ow, ow!”

At my outburst, the compassionate nurse made a compassionate sound and the creasing of her skin above her mask told me she understood. The doctor said, “You’ve got an inflamed lymph node and you’ll need a CT scan with contrast so we can see what’s going on in there.”

The nurse gave me two oxycodone for the pain.

They gowned me and rolled me on a gurney through a labyrinth of halls until we reached radiology. After that was done, we rolled back to my curtained cubicle to wait for the doctor. And the whole time, I was thinking, “Doggone it, I’m going on this camping trip if it kills me. We’ve been waiting for months to do this and I’m not gonna let a little lymph node boss me around!”

Bruce came inside and sat down to help me wait.

“How’re you doing?” the nurse asked me.

“I’m feeling no pain. in fact, I feel kind of wonderful right now.”

“Yes, that oxycodone is a very effective painkiller.”

Just then the doctor arrived. “Well, it looks like you’ve probably got some sort of infection somewhere in your body and the lymph node is trying to fight it off. So, I’m going to write you a prescription for an antibiotic . . . oh, and some more oxycodone.”

“Ok, ” I said kind of meekly, “but I still wanna go camping this weekend.”

The doctor’s eyes went round and his eyebrows shot upward. “Well, I guess you can go, as long as you’re pretty near a medical facility in case you need it.” He handed me the prescriptions, and I thanked him.

I changed into my street clothes and followed Bruce out. That’s when I realized I could barely walk straight under the influence of the oxycodone. Plus, nausea was threatening to send me running for the nearest restroom.

What was I thinking, insisting on camping while popping pain pills? Bruce helped me down the steps and into the car. “Bruce, I’m so, so sorry for this, ” I said as I struggled to buckle my car seat. “I know you were really excited to go camping.”

He smiled kind of sadly. “That’s ok. You get better and we’ll find another weekend to go camping.”

So our lovely Mt Rainier trip got cancelled. Actually, we postponed it till next summer.

And I spent the weekend sprawled on my bed, ‘watching’ TV. And Link stayed close by as my feline personal nurse.


I don’t know why the Lord allowed this to happen. Yet, it’s not the end of the world, just a minor disappointment.

However, I learned a bit more about making plans.

Life is uncertain. Yes, I know that. Plans can fail. Yep, I know that, too. God has not given us the gift of seeing what’s around the corner. Uh huh. But He has given us the promise of His abiding presence and never-failing love.

I felt Him near that weekend as I slowly recovered. I read the Word and prayed for others, and slept for hours at a time, like a two-year-old.

That was God’s plan.




6 thoughts on “Best Laid Plans”

  1. Oh no, Dena. Sorry your plans were canceled, but glad you could see that God had/ has something else in store. Mt. Rainier will always be there. So take the time to take care of yourself my sweet friend, and let us know if we can help in any way. <3 Erin

  2. Excellent. I remember a similar situation years ago. We were all packed and I was ready to get in the car and my husband came down with a very bad flu. I remember sitting on the packed luggage, feeling sorry for myself, until God tweaked my attitude. I had a suffering husband there. Are you well now? That would have really scared me. Bless you, Dena. <3

    1. Thanks, Crystal. I’m doing much better. We have another trip planned in
      August, and I sure hope and pray that Bruce and I stay healthy for this one. Have a great day!

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