It was my 19th birthday when they wheeled my mom into the operating room. Just a couple weeks earlier she had discovered a lump in her breast tissue. Although her doctor had determined it was benign, she elected to have it removed and analyzed.
It was very early in the morning. Dad and I sipped coffee as we waited to hear how the operation went. We were so anxious – we didn’t sit. We stood outside the door and waited. As we were waiting – our pastor arrived. We visited for a bit and he prayed with us. When the double doors swung open, I couldn’t quite read the look on his face. Or maybe I didn’t want to read it. The biopsy had been misread, and the lump was malignant. My mom…mommy….friend……confidant. She was sick….really sick.
The tears started falling. The headache set in. The numbness set in. My mom has cancer. I had
to keep repeating it. It was one of those times when you can’t move, can’t speak. Breath – that’s it. That’s all I could muster. Everything seemed to be in slow motion.
I remember looking at our pastor – his eyes were over flowing. Our pastor’s wife was a dietitian at the hospital. I remember going to her office and crying, telling her what had happened. Together we called my employer to let them know I would not be at work that evening. Again – everything is moving in slow motion.
We were finally able to see her. She was hooked up to all these wires, and tubes. She was barely awake – still not fully aware of what had transpired.
In the days that followed mom gained a a full understanding for what was ahead of her. We worked with her to mentally, physically, and emotionally support her through the process of treatment and healing.
When the day came to prescribe her treatment regimen, we expected to hear chemo/radiation therapy for at least the next 6 months. What we heard was remarkable. Mom’s tumor was decimals of a centimeter away from what would have required chemotherapy. She would only require 6 months of radiation with routine follow ups. She was elated. She and I had the most memorable shopping trip of my life after that appointment. I still remember what she said to me…”Angie I am so happy I just might buy you this entire store!” ha! Just what a teenager wants to hear right?!
The lesson I learned from all of this is one that I surprised myself with. My mom asked me one day “Why does this have to happen to me?” My answer was this; “God knows you can handle it. And He needs people to relate to those who aren’t as strong”. Great answer right! I have no doubt that He put that answer on my heart that day.
I have never forgotten that answer. I have used it many times both for myself and for others.
It’s true you know. He allows us to go through trials sometimes because He needs people that can say “Hey – I know how you feel because I have been where you are.” Sometimes we may never know the full reasoning behind our trials, but this is always true…..God can and will use them for good.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose Romans 8:28
There is always hope. There is always light after the night. There is always ALWAYS a loving savior waiting for you to fall into His arms.
There’s a really good bible Study by Ann Voskamp called One Thousand Gifts. The study helps us learn to see all that God has provided us with. She challenges us with The Joy Dare and writing down 3 unexpected gifts each day and by the end of the year we have not only counted One Thousand Gifts, we have gained a new perspective. I am doing it, and it is amazing. You can buy the book here: http://tiny.cc/opd7tw.
Sometimes all we can do is just breath – and that’s okay. Grace…God’s grace….will get you through.