(…my cancer journey… cont.)
"I hope you are writing these things down. You've never been funnier." This was the response of one of my closest friends as I shared with her the enormous depth of grief I was feeling. As trivial as it might sound, my despair was inspired by a shopping trip I had been on that day. The goal of the trip was to find a swimsuit for me, which in and of itself can be traumatic. However, in a moment of insanity, I had invited two friends to "assist" me- two, size 3 friends. It was the perfect set-up for a breakdown.
Ever since completing the radiation treatments, not to mention having four surgeries in seven months, I seem to have this extra layer of puffiness. My waist is gone and my overall dimensions- swollen. I recently asked my surgeon for an explanation. He just grinned, telling me how great I looked. Upon further whining (by me) he again encouraged me to embrace the puff. In fact as I expressed my desire to be rid of the swollen look he profoundly remarked, "Be careful what you wish for."
This was definitely a foreshadowing of what my next doctor's appointment would hold. Little did I know that in three days I would be making the decision to have chemotherapy treatment.
I really thought I was home free. Out of my four main doctors, three had landed on the side of no chemo. I only had to get clearance from one more to be at peace with the thought I had done all that was needed.
As this final "clearance" appointment approached, Eddie and I had prayed for clarity. We desperately wanted to make the right decision. This was our third time of meeting with this doctor, and for the sake of being at peace, we knew we had to land on the chemo debate. Settle it once and for all and move forward.
This particular doctor is very warm and caring as well as brilliant and thorough. We began again discussing all options, pros and cons, and seemed to be heading for the usual stalemate. I was silently pleading for help and direction when he made the deciding statement. "If the cancer comes back, it will be fatal." Talk about clarity. I felt like saying, "Okay God. Message received- loud and clear."
Both Eddie and I told the doctor we were in – let's go for it. I was actually saying the words, "I choose chemo." And you know what? I was at peace. This oxymoron (chemo-peace) I never thought possible, happened.
The puffiness and swimsuit shopping now seem so ridiculously trivial with what lies ahead. "Be careful what you wish for," continues to echo through my mind. There may come a day in the very near future where I will be longing for puffiness. It's true, perspective is everything.
Proverbs 14:30 says, "A heart at peace gives life to the body." I am at peace and I'm choosing life.
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