神陪我們走過傷痛時

 

黃燦林.黎潔冰夫婦

 

 

 

 

1997 年三月我們夫婦帶著當時八歲的女兒惠慈 Esther 及五歲的兒子思俊 Jonathan 從香港移居加拿大的溫哥華,開始投入加國的生活,投入教會的事奉,並遵照聖經的教導:「教養孩童,使他走當行的道,就是到老他也不偏離。」(箴言廿二6)

 

平靜生活 突來考驗

 

2004 年九月廿五日,女兒惠慈開始發燒,起初以為是感冒,一個星期的消炎藥都未有好轉,而且面色蒼白,身體非常軟弱,腳眼,腳掌開始微腫。十月一日傍晚到家庭醫生處,由於是週末,醫生把我們轉介兒童醫院急症室驗血及檢查,驗血報告:她的血紅素(Hemoglobin)是 45(正常人是 117-149);血小板(Platelet)只有 27(正常人是165-397),初步診斷是血癌。十月四日抽骨髓化驗証實是「急性淋巴細胞性血癌」(Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia),屬高危(high risk),要接受約兩年半的化療,痊癒率大概是 75%,實在太突然了!以往參與善終服務,經常去探望末期病人,說盡一切安慰的話,好像派不上用場。我們最擔心及痛心的是年紀輕輕的惠慈,如何面對未來兩年半的療程所帶來身體及心靈的痛楚(她的療程至今年已完成)。

 

突然的遭遇起初真是難以接受,自問不是甚麼信心偉人,怎會被神選上要當時只有十五歲的惠慈及我們一家面對這個考驗?深信萬事非偶然,我們一家都是屬主的,信主三十年領受神的深恩,現在是向神向人交信心「功課」的時候,信心不是問為甚麼,而是問怎樣面對,所以執著神的說話:「應當一無掛慮。」仰望神是我們唯一的倚靠。

 

記得有一首詩歌「祂陪我走過」,其中歌詞是這樣的:「祂陪我走過變幻無定的風雨,無限善美未能看透,回望漸見主美意。祂慈愛牽引,每步伴在我路旁,奇妙大愛治療破碎,神是我所依,神是我拯救。就在落漠絕望祂指引我去路,在牢籠裡可作自由人,世態變化不息,但聖經真實長存,憑著信,內裡享平安。」神確實有恩典,有憐憫,回想過去的日子,若果不是神的陪伴,我們也不知怎能渡過。

 

治療過程 險象環生

 

今天惠慈的療程已告完結,回想整整 28 個月的化療,實在叫人驚訝。期間前後住院共 70 天,共抽骨髓4次,有記錄的抽血化驗 173 次,輸血 11 次,輸血小板 10 次,不同針藥的化療百多次(口服化療藥不計算在內),其中又有不同的副作用。治療過程中可以說是有艱難,有驚險,箇中滋味,畢生難忘:血小板過低,引致眼球後有瘀血,影響視力;免疫力過低,出水痘(Shingles),要入住隔離病房;免疫力低受細菌感染,住院 22 天;肝功能衰退,容易疲倦;藥物引致骨痛無比,用嗎啡才可勉強止痛;又曾因為高燒(40.9 度),血壓急降至下壓 20;血小板指數低至5(正常人是 165-397);化療第一針,護士錯把針藥打入血管……等等,神在我們還未察覺到的時候,已經帶領惠慈走過死蔭的幽谷。

 

如今癌細胞暫時受到控制,可是惠慈現在又要面對另一個難關,因為化療期間高劑量的類固醇令臗骨及肩胛骨枯乾,骨痛,舉步難行。西醫唯一的方法是動手術放入人造的髖骨,我們現在嘗試中醫療法:中藥,針灸及推拿,期望骨頭可以再生長。

 

神予考驗 樂觀面對

 

惠慈是一個很特別的女孩,她沒有因為這個病或治療過程的痛苦或脫髮而流淚,且帶著笑容樂觀面對;感謝神,惠慈從小認識神,八歲決志信主,從此神成為她的依靠;她面對生命的威脅,只有把生命交託神,平靜地去面對;她沒有埋怨神,卻積極面對生命的考驗,相信是神要用她,所以先鍛鍊她的信心,忍耐,忍受痛苦的能力。楊牧谷牧師曾經說過:試煉是生命成長的必經路,沒有試煉,生命的雜質就不能除去;沒有痛苦,生命潛藏的高貴品質也不能成熟,不能顯露出來。使徒保羅在哥林多前書十章13節有這樣的提醒:「神是信實的……,總要給你們開一條出路,叫你們能忍受得住。」

 

求學的年輕人可能會為著考試得不到理想成績而不快,為著生活上的小小錯折而落淚,為考琴而緊張憂慮,甚至為感情而埋入苦惱。然而,惠慈面對死亡以及化療帶來的痛苦卻有一份由上而來的縱容態度,她那份樂觀積極的生命力,確實成為很多人的鼓勵和祝福,她沒有因為自己的病而荒廢學業,相反成績比前更卓越;有年輕人因著她的病,猛然醒吾生命,決志信主;有人更積極去親近神,屬靈生命更長進。

 

家庭經歷 生命成長

 

另一方面,兒子思俊從小也認識神,他跟姊姊的感情很好,當知道惠慈患上癌症及親眼看到化療所帶來的痛苦而難過,起初他也懷疑神的真實和神的愛,甚至神的存在。一個當時只有十二歲剛上中學的男孩子,面對成長及家庭遭遇的衝擊,他學會了獨立免成父母的擔子;學會了盡心照顧姊姊並分擔家務;他不但沒有離開神,相反透過多讀聖經,對主的信心更堅固,屬靈生命更有所成長。

 

作為父母知道神是憐憫,大能,醫治……,心底裡不免擔心及痛心女兒在漫長的化療帶來身體及心靈的痛楚。但神卻使我們家庭關係更密切,惠慈自少在香港由工人照顧,這段時間因為身體極之軟弱,日常生活小節甚至洗澡都要協助,我們親手的照顧她,未嘗是一個很好的親子機會。每個家庭都經歷成長期的青少年問題,我們的家庭因著惠慈的病,全家的注意力集中在照顧她上面,越過了這個關卡。

 

前風聞主 今親見主

 

我們夫婦相信「若是你們的父不許,一個也不能掉在地上」,我們的經歷,不是徒然的。2007年一月卅一日,整個療程完成,回想整整28個月,神讓我們重整屬靈的生命,更深領受更深經歷神話語的實在。同時,我們不是在生命中發現恩典,所有生命的經歷,是要用信心的眼睛去看,便會發現生命本身就是恩典,成為我們前面事奉的資產。

 

生命在神的手裡,我們沒有甚麼可跨,年輕?才幹?只可誇主耶穌。人為自己作很多的安排,我們所信的神才是人生的主,聖經:「今夜必要你的靈魂,你所預備的要歸誰呢?」所以我們不應單為肉身作安排,要「常常竭力,多作主工」,為天國的福音齊心努力,活出神在我們生命中的召命。

 

人患病就只能求醫治嗎?為甚麼人生病不也是可以祈求神的名字得榮耀,別人得益處的時候?神在人身上有不同的計劃,人壽數的長短,是去彰顯祂的榮耀及計劃,長壽是要我們去見證神,生命短暫,是喚醒人去面對生命。同時,神所賜的平安,是真正的平安,那份平安不是去看結果──病得醫治,甚至病不能痊癒,也仍有平安。

 

「兒女是耶和華所賜的產業」,我們只是一個管家,所有我們以為自己擁有的甚至兒女皆屬於神,是神託管於我們,我們只管作一個良善忠心的管家。這是我們經過很多眼淚及難過學到的功課。「賞賜是耶和華,收取也是耶和華……」今天若神要接我們的兒女回天家,我們也會順服。

 

神讓我們透過主內弟兄姊妹經歷祂的大愛,我們一家在溫哥華沒有至親,世界各地我們所認識,所不認識的弟兄姊妹都為我們禱告,他們甚至為我們搜尋很多良方;介紹良醫;有弟兄姊妹願意資助健身的器材,甚至願意送上機票好讓惠慈回香港調理身體,這份厚愛深深的感動了我們,不是金錢,乃在基督裡的那份情誼,自問經歷神的深恩多而又多,也未必肯作出這份付出。「神為愛他的人所預備的,是眼睛未曾看見,耳朵未曾聽見,人心也未曾想到的。」

 

過去28個月對我們一家來說是特別,特別的地方不在女兒惠慈身患血癌惡疾,乃在身受鴻恩,神無比的愛以及家人弟兄姊妹至真至誠的愛,是我們一家所不配的。願一切的榮耀頌讚,歸予我們敬愛的父神!

 

 

 

 

主恩伴我走過血癌路

 

黃惠慈

 

 

 

不經不覺我已經病了一年多(十五個月),十多個月的密集療程(intensive treatment)都告一段落,現在的療程輕省得多,可以回到校園繼續我的學業。在過去的一年,我體會到很多東西,回想,有很多事情要感謝神。

 

  當我知道自己患上血癌(Leukemia),腦海是一片空白,有很多人問我有甚麼感受,我真的回答不到。很奇怪的是,心裡一點兒害怕的感覺都沒有,或許一切都發生得很快,加上我當時對這個病不太認識,所以沒有感到難過。我只明白到神有祂的安排,而且相信一切都掌管在祂手裡,把一切都交託給祂,祂會為我作安排。所以很快就接受了這個病,我亦沒有問神『為甚麼?』

 

  因著這個病,我明白到一切都不是必然的,也學會珍惜身邊的一切。後來我想……每個人都會經歷『生、老、病、死』,而我只不過是次序不同,沒有甚麼特別。再想……我比起其他在醫院裡的病童已經很幸運,我這種癌症不用動手術,每次化療都不用留院。我覺得那些病童比我更堅強。在醫院裡,知道很多病童和他們的親人都不認識主耶穌,我比起他們不是幸運得多嗎?再者,我又有很多教會的朋友,Uncle(s),Auntie(s)來探望我,令我在留院時不會感孤單。很多人認為住醫院不好過,對我來說也不是怎樣刻骨銘心的經歷。回想起在醫院裡也發生了不少趣事,也留給我不少回憶。現在每個月回到醫院接受化療時,我感到一份親切感,真是奇怪!莫名其妙!

 

  雖然我天生比較樂觀(某程度上),但是我也有不開心的時候。最不開心當然是要看著原來一把長頭髮,漸漸的脫落,再加上身體比以前軟弱得多,甚至連上樓梯都沒有能力,要家人的幫助,這對我的打擊也相當大,那時真的感到自己很多事都無能為力,也體會到做『老人家』的感覺。除了身體要面對的問題,心靈上也有很多掙扎。我失去了我的健康,同時也跟很多朋友疏遠了,因為我時常不舒適,跟他們(同年紀的朋友)經歷不同、話題又不太一樣,說話自然也少了。朋友疏遠,使我體會到那些才是真正的朋友,患病之前我不知道原來有那麼多朋友『咁』關心我,在我最辛苦時,他們給了我很多支持,我才捱得過。同時,這個病使我與家人的感情增進了不少,尤其是跟媽媽的關係。這個病使我有失又有得。很感謝神把我放在一個充滿愛的家庭(loving family),又把我放在一個充滿愛與關懷(love and care)的教會。

 

  現在我終於可以回到校園繼續我的學業,可以過一些比較平凡的生活。很感謝神在過去十五個月一直保守我,雖然我現在可以過回正常的生活,同時亦要面對很多困難,我相信神是我唯一的依靠,因為只有祂才完全明白我的感受。我沒有返學整整一個學年,好像停止了學習,其實從我的經歷裡學會及體會了很多書本裡學不到的知識,這是我與其他朋友不所同的地方。現在我常緊記『健健康康,平平安安的過每一天不是必然的』來提醒自己不要浪費時間和要好好珍惜身邊的一切。在此,我想感謝各位 Uncle,Auntie,朋友等的支持和祈禱,沒有你們的支持,我不可以那麼樂觀的面對病魔!

 

 

 

The Lord helped fight with Leukemia

 

Esther Wong

 

 

I cannot believe I have been sick for more than a year (15 months). Thankfully, all my intensive treatments are all over now. I am undergoing maintenance chemotheraphy treatment that is less intensive. I can finally return to school and continue my study. I have attained lots for the past year. And now, when I look back, I can see many blessings from our loving Father.

 

My mind was blank when I was told that I had Leukemia from the doctors. Many people asked how I felt, what I thought, but I was unable to answer them. It was not that I did not want to. It was because I did not know how I felt and what I thought. My mind was absolutely blank. It was weird that I did not feel afraid or anything. It was probably because everything happened so suddenly and came so fast, plus, I did not know much about Leukemia (blood cancer). I did not ask God "why?" because I believed that God had everything planned and that He would take care of everything.

 

Knowing that everything was in His hands comforted me and I quickly accepted this sickness. Because of the sickness, I realized that "everything is not just happened" and I also learned to treasure everything around me. I also realized that everyone would experience the Chinese saying about cycle of living: born to live, getting old, sick and die in the end. It was just that I fell sick at a younger age. NO BIG DEAL!! Furthermore, I was blessed compared to other cancer patients in the Children's Hospital. Firstly, I did not need to undergo surgery. I could not imagine of myself having a surgery. Secondly, I did not have to be admitted to the Hospital for chemotherapy treatments. I thought other cancer kids were much stronger as they had to go through much more complex treatments and/or surgeries. Thirdly, I realized that many of them do not know about Jesus. I had Jesus to depend on but whom would they depend on? Finally, I was blessed to have many brothers, sisters, uncles and aunties from church and other friends to visit me. They kept me accompanied so that I was not lonely. There were many memorable moments in the Hospital. It is strange that I felt homely every time I went back to the Hospital for treatment!

 

Although I could be considered as an optimistic person, there were times I felt upset and depressed. The saddest thing was to see myself losing hair and getting weaker and weaker. I felt bad and helpless when I needed assistance to climb up stairs or to get up from the bed. Besides physical suffering, I was also struggling with emotional problems. I was getting apart from my friends. I was too weak to talk to them. We were experiencing different things. We did not have common topics. But then, I identified who were my true friends. However, I learned that many of these friends who cared and loved me. They were my support during my miserable times. If they were not there, I thought I would not make it this far. My family gave me support all through and our relationship got very close. There were losses and gains in my sickness. Thank you my Heavenly Father for placing me in such a loving family and a church filled with love and care.

 

I can finally continue with my study and get back to my normal life. Thank you Father for watching and healing me for the past year. Although I am back to my normal life, there are still many issues and challenges to face. I believe that God is the only one that I can depend on because He is the only one who can totally understand me. I was away from school last year. It seemed like I didn't achieve much for the whole year, but I learned lessons beyond school from my sickness. Now, I always keep in mind that "we cannot take living healthy and safely for granted". I should treasure everything around me and not to waste my time.

 

I would like to thank all the brothers, sisters, uncles, aunties, friends and especially my family for prayers and support. Without you all, I would not be able to face this sickness optimistically.

 

(168期,20079月號)

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