Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Long overdue but happy!

I just realized HOW LONG it's been since we've updated our blog. Sorry!

I'll be honest... I kept waiting for Jonas to write something because I found myself in a place of real discouragement and didn't feel like I had anything uplifting or helpful to write. I didn't want to come across as contradicting everything I had previously written.....but I was finding myself OVERWHELMED. Strange how I started out my journey full of peace and confidence and assurance (I'm sure also due to all of your prayers!!!!) but I'm ending my journey overwhelmed and discouraged. (or... I WAS feeling that way a few weeks ago, but I believe things have changed and my focus is back where it needs to be). I guess it started when I had heard the news about my mom. It was just one of those blows that once again reminded me that we are NOT immune to danger, sickness, etc. I used to feel SO naively safe from all harm until, of course, it hit me. And then my mom. (by the way, my mom is doing well. She had a successful lumpectomy and will be starting chemo possibly next week and after maybe 6 cycles will then have radiation. Pray, please, for her to not feel much pain with all the pricks of shots and chemo treatments. And that she'll also adjust well to losing her hair, which is never an easy thing to face.)
   Then it was as if every day we were hearing bad after friends and family. Cancer, divorces, health problems, death....I felt like attacks were flying at us and near us from all angles and I became so fearful! I was so afraid something else was going to hit my little family. I started focusing on all of the bad around me, all of the scary, negative news and I felt like I was sinking. I was an emotional wreck! And it was hard for me because I've never experienced that before in my life where I was so burdened by other's problems to the point where it was driving fear into me. I felt like I was losing my footing somehow and I felt so vulnerable. BUT! It's like the story in the Bible where Peter (I hope I'm remembering this story right) :) stepped out of the boat and began walking to Jesus on water.... but as soon as he took his eyes of off Jesus and on the "fear" of the water around him, he began to sink. That's what I was doing. I lost my focus temporarily and it sent me into a place I don't want to go again! I'm not sure if it's just me, though, because several friends of mine have also expressed this same problem lately of feeling overwhelmed and fearful of the bad news happening in their lives. So maybe it's not just me.
     I also was reading in Job and was reminded of a few things that really encouraged me. First of all, I guess I was needing assurance that there IS protection in God and I read in the first chapter where Satan was talking to God about Job and how there was a hedge of protection placed around Job, preventing harm to fall on him. That was so encouraging to me! If anything breaks through (or I should say, is allowed through) that hedge of protection, it's on God's terms! And then when I was reading about the bad news that Job was horrible thing right after another.... his first reaction was to fall on his knees in WORSHIP and he PRAISED GOD! Which reminded me of that first gut feeling God gave me at the begining of all of this. I remember hearing that I had cancer and my first instinct was " I need to praise God."  Just as Job was feeling overwhelmed and discouraged by the horrible events that happened to him, his first reaction was the right one and somehow I lost that direction the past month. So I'm refocusing and trying to remember NOT to focus on the bad around me... but to focus on God and the blessings he's given me in my own situation. And to praise Him and know that I CAN trust Him even when I feel like I'm confused, overwhelmed, discouraged, etc.
Our good news is that I had my LAST SESSION OF CHEMO this week!!! It's done! I still have the lovely poison going through my body this month, so I don't feel any different, but I think it'll hit me that it's over with next month when I don't have to go back for more. I DO want to celebrate but I'm cautiously waiting for the results of my next PETscan in 6 weeks. And again, please pray that I don't have that haunting thought in the back of my mind that it all may come back. I want to say "I'M DONE WITH CHEMO FOR GOOD!" but there IS that small voice that then follows up with "but are you really?" It's hard to celebrate when you can't seem to shake that little voice. So I'd appreciate your prayers with COMPLETE health for the future (no lymphoma, no breast cancer since that's now something in my family history... etc) and no fear as I live out my life.

This verse was encouraging to me. "The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." Deuteronomy 31:8

Side note: For the past month and a half my hair has been growing back! About a quarter of an inch or so... I was so excited! and with the past 2 treatments it wasn't falling out! But... I've noticed with the last  and final treatment, it's starting to fall out again :(  I'm hoping it grows back quickly. And lusciously :)

Thank you for your continued prayer! I still need it :)