Beyond Blue

From “The Healing Touch of Mary: Real Life Stories From Those Touched by Mary” by Cheri Lomonte:

It was the spring of 2002 and I was doing research for my final project before graduation when I found it. I have always had a special devotion to Our Lady, so when I found the beautiful bookmark of Our Lady of Guadalupe in the law book, I was thrilled. I remember feeling very lucky for my find.
I also remember feeling very lucky again when my blood work from my annual physical exam came back “perfect.” I was healthy and ready to finish my degree and concentrate on my daughter’s summer wedding. And that is exactly what I did.
But after the wedding, I began to notice something was not right. I felt tired and overwhelmed by the slightest things. And that bookmark kept popping in to my mind for no apparent reason.

I decided to go back to my doctor, and this time I asked to see the complete report from my annual physical. And what I saw shocked me.
My urinalysis was off, and my white blood count was high. The doctors had not been concerned, they said, because my numbers had only been “very slightly off.” But I persisted, to my surprise. I am normally not one to push, but something kept gnawing at me. And again the bookmark of Our Lady of Guadalupe kept resurfacing in my mind.
I asked my doctor for a referral to see a urologist, and after much persuasion, he agreed. He again insisted that I was fine, but if it would make me feel better, he thought I should see Dr. Vistro.
The CAT scan showed a mass on my ovary. And further tests showed it was cancer.
The first thing I did when I got home that day was find the bookmark and place it on my nightstand. Every night for the next six months as I went through a hysterectomy and then chemotherapy, I prayed. I prayed to Our Lady and I cherished the bookmark. I knew that there had to be a connection.
A few weeks after my last treatment, as I dropped in to see my department chair, an amazing thing happened. Her door was open but she was nowhere in sight. I figured that she would be right back so I sat down to wait for her. I was looking at the bookshelf behind her desk when my eyes wandered to the poster. I had been in Dr. Shevsky’s office a million times, but I had never noticed the poster of Our Lady of Guadalupe, with the caption that said, “Our Lady, the window of health.”
“Oh, my God,” I said aloud, “how dumb can I be?”
That night, like every night since my first diagnosis, I reached for the bookmark on my nightstand. This time, however, I wanted to really look at her face and thank her for saving my life.
But the bookmark was gone.
That was almost two years ago, and I am still cancer free. I continue to thank Mary, Mother of God, for saving my life and, believe it or not, I continue to look for the bookmark of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
–Liz P.

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