5th Anniversary of a sacrifice

If you have not already read my early writings, please check them out on my website, here’s the first one. I have written about the process and journey of becoming a live liver donor for a friend’s husband.

October 22, 2020 will have been 5 years since we had surgeries. Here’s our update and story.

Can you believe that it’s been 5 years since I donated part of my liver to Lupe? Me neither – only it feels much longer than 5 years! Time is a strange thing.

Last I heard, Lupe is still cancer-free. He was permitted to go to work, but with him having a sensitive immune system, he is not working because of covid-19 in our world. He still has pain daily but has a good attitude. He’s also very grateful for each day he gets with his family and friends – and for each opportunity he has to share Jesus with someone.

Since the last update, I am still having abdominal pain as well as back pain. I was not approved for back surgery and doctors say that there is no way to really see if I am allergic to titanium. SIGH! I am still using a cane and have been unable to drive since February 2019. I have been blessed with SSDI and also In Home Support Services has allowed me to have care providers come into the house where I live to help with laundry, bed changing, errands, cooking and taking me to appointments. I would have never imagined being in pain for 5 years, being this young and needing care providers, not being able to drive or even walk very far by myself – BUT GOD…

GOD is faithful, GOD has not left me and I know that GOD loves me. I know that GOD is sovereign, GOD is in control and that GOD has a plan. I’m not sure why He has allowed this for me, but I trust GOD completely – more than I did 5 years ago. More than anything now, my prayer is that GOD will be glorified in and through all we have been through.

If you haven’t known GOD or JESUS personally, I would encourage you to seek Him while He can be found. Your life won’t become suddenly easy, but you will know a peace that surpasses all understanding. You will know that the GOD who created you still holds you in His hand and He loves you more than you can ever imagine.

Waiting on God was worth it….

Oh my goodness, it’s been two months since I was on here! I am still in school at De Anza College getting my Accounting certificate. I am in my second of four quarters, well God-willing I will be able to finish in a year.

It’s been 19 months since I donated 60% of my liver to a friend’s husband and I still have pain daily in my incision – of course, it’s something that you can never plan for! I was supposed to be without pain after 3-4 months. My pain specialist told me last month, “I don’t want to bring you down Michelle, but this may be your ‘new normal!'” Sigh!!! I am doing all to trust God, knowing He must have a good plan in store despite the pain.

I have been out of work since October 20, 2015 except for a little work here and there. I had received short-term disability for exactly a year but Social Security and Unemployment both decided that I do not qualify for their funds because I am “employable with limitations”.  Between that and school, it was extremely hard to find work. It was really starting to get hard to live financially without a job when I sent my resume to my school counselors and teacher.

Finally on Wednesday, May 3, my OTI (Occupational Training Institute) counselor at De Anza contacted me to ask if I would like to interview for an accounting internship on Stevens Creek in Cupertino. I was excited because I could ride the bus if I needed to, so I said yes to the interview.

In my last post, “Encouraged to write another Psalm“, I posted a video of eleven cars God provided for me from June of 2015 to March 20 of 2017 while I did not own a car of my own. By the time of my interview, I was driving car number 12 that God had provided but I had been taking the bus to class when no car was available to me.

When I “Google-mapped” where the interview was, I found out that it was not on Stevens Creek and it was not in Cupertino! Instead I found out that it was on Bascom in Campbell which was not going to be an easy bus ride! In fact, it would take me over an hour and a half each way – possibly more! Ugh!

I went to the interview anyway since I had a car to get to it. It is in an area that is very familiar to me. The lady I interviewed with was pretty awesome. I think we laughed more than anything during the 45 (ish) minutes that I was there. She told me that she usually isn’t so forth-coming but said that she really wanted to hire me but needed to talk to the owner – I’d be getting my job offer by 5pm that day – if she got her way.

Ok! A job, an accounting internship, with a decent pay and hours that would be worked around schooling was most-likely going to be offered to me. On the drive home, I was scared! I cried out to God, “LORD, I don’t know if I can handle riding the bus to work, working 5-6 hours, then riding the bus home or to school! I have pain as it is…will it increase with that much more activity and sitting?” At that point, I could see something in my heart and life that I had not seen before. “LORD, please forgive me of the fear I have had inside of me. Please forgive me for not looking for a car as I should have because I have been so afraid that I would get another lemon! Please forgive me. Thank You so much for providing the 12 cars despite the fear I have had. LORD, will You please bring me a car?”

Within about 15 minutes of getting home (about 30 minutes of praying that prayer), my housemate sent me a text saying that she had sent out information about me needing a car to a group that she is connected with AND a friend of hers had a car for sale in my price range….did I want to see the car???

I got God-bumps all over my body! I had forgotten that my housemate and I talked that morning about what would happen if I got a job across town. She also knew that it would probably be too much on me to try to take the bus, so she posted my need.

I started texting with her friend trying to say I could come to her, but she insisted on bringing the car to me. At the same time, I received an offer email from the lady I had interviewed with. I called her to let her know I have a disability. When she answered the phone, she sounded depressed. I asked her what was wrong. She told me that no one called her when she offered a job, they always respond to her email – she thought that I would not be taking the job. I said, “no, I am excited about the job – I want the job!” She cheered up immediately then asked why I called. I let her know of the pain that I have and let her know that I would need a sit to stand desk or something compatible to that. She had no problem with that request, so I got the job!

And, on Sunday after church, my housemate’s friend brought the car to me….Let me rephrase it….GOD BROUGHT THE CAR TO ME!

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I knew immediately when I saw the silver car drive up that I was supposed to buy it. I got into the car to test drive it and the owner, sitting in the passenger seat opened the glove box to show me the paperwork. Everything was clean and orderly! She was very impressed with my knowledge of cars as I opened the hood to check everything out, turned the wheels to check the axle and struts, and looked under it as best as I could. It had not been steam cleaned, it was just 14 years of dust – no liquid spills or leaks, new struts, good tires…it was the best looking car I have seen since I started looking for one in May of 2015! And it was an excellent price! Yes, I knew it was from God.

I’m not going to tell you that all has been easy since then. In fact, I was not able to get the car for several days, I had to go to Department of Motor Vehicles twice because I didn’t have enough money to pay the taxes the first time (but praise God the car was already smogged and registered only weeks before so I didn’t have to pay for either of those!), I have had higher pain levels (ranging between 5-6 sometimes) because my standing work station hasn’t been put in yet, and I won’t get paid until June 15th!

But, waiting on God for a job and car has been worth it…Actually, I can say waiting on Him for housing has been worth it too! My housemate has been a very special blessing to me.

And today I learned again that waiting on God for finances is worth the wait too! I was not sure how to pay for my storage unit so I have been waiting on God for direction. Today I felt I was supposed to go to my Chase credit card which meant I would need to pay $100 for it to be enough credit available to pay the rent. When I got on-line, I found out that I had over 10,000 points on my card which meant that I had $101+ change to credit to my account! I couldn’t imagine why I had the points, but I was praising God for the unexpected money to pay for the storage shed. Turns out that two of my friends took up the invitation to get themselves a Chase card with $50 for them and $50 for me! So cool! Thank you whoever it was that helped me out! If anyone reading this wants to get yourself a Chase card with $50 for you and $50 for me, let me know…hee hee! I still have half a month til I get paid!  But I know God will provide! Maybe I’ll even have another story about what He will do.