Preparing for Change

You know, if I were the guy assessing myself for volunteering for Emmaus Ministries (or for New Horizons), my attitude would be:

“So you’re a lonely, fat, disabled man who has given up on living a gay lifestyle and you want to go out onto the streets and work with young men who are prostituting themselves for survival.”

Uh.  Yeah.

“And you’re eager to go out onto the streets and build relationships with the young men out there and you’re in a wheelchair and get twitchy when you’re away from an accessible bathroom for too long.”

Well, yeah.

See, one of the reasons I know that this is a calling instead of an emotional rush caused by too much pain medication is that with all my inherent insecurities, with my near-godlike prowess at snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, I know all the weaknesses in my life that could keep me from going out and volunteering and not a damn bit of this intimidates me.  Not a bit of it.

So the first part of preparations began Tuesday.  I switched all of my medical care over from the University of Washington medical system to Swedish Hospital.  Tuesday I went to see Dr. Hogg and began the process of switching over.  I told him about the legs, about the chronic venous insufficiency and my suspicions that it was this and not leftover neuromuscular deficits from the surgery and coma, that was the thing that kept me in the wheelchair.  I told him about my weight issues and how the ultimate irony, that the gastric bypass to lose weight put me into a wheelchair where I was getting less exercise, was such an impediment to getting out of the wheelchair for good.  Waa, waaahhh, waaaaaaaahhhhhhhh….

We’re on our way.

The laser surgery to drastically improve the leg circulation will probably happen near or at the same time I go in for a lap band.  This weight loss surgery, in addition to the gastric bypass, will help me cut down enough to resume losing weight.  The combination of the laser surgery and the weight loss will give me an edge on getting out of this chair and back into the world.

Then there’s the training.

New Horizons has an incredible training program that prepares people who want to volunteer on the streets to work with the young men and women who have gotten involved in prostitution.  There are three 2-day sessions that you must take in order to volunteer with New Horizons.  The first one is in May and I’m preparing to take that one and kick off my training.  I still need to make calls to the New Horizons people and see what else I can do in my own meager way.  But that training is going to be extremely valuable to future work.  (Agencies in King County actually come out to New Horizons if their agency can’t afford the training in any other way, it’s that good.)

So those are the plans.  Lots of risk and big changes ahead.  And this is me, trusting in God, and miracle of miracles, really unafraid.


~ by WriterRand on April 9, 2008.

One Response to “Preparing for Change”

  1. “Expect great things from God, attempt great things for God.”
    –William Carey (missionary to India), 1792

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