Today’s post is one that I have thought about before and often rejected writing. So often, when I state the words that my experience with cancer blessed me it brings out the hate in people. I get it, I do. So today I ask if you are still battling cancer, have a loved one who is still sick, or perhaps it is still recent for you, consider skipping this post. In no way am I trying to minimize anyone’s pain. These are lessons and reflections from my journey with cancer.
I remember asking at least once after my diagnosis, “Why me?” Not long after that I began reading many different stories from people who had battled cancer or been by the side of someone battling cancer. One story stands out in my mind, I don’t remember what it was called or even what it was about. What I do remember is how the author said they had a choice. They could ask, “Why me,” or they could ask instead, “Why not me?” I contemplated this question, and I prayed over it. And yes I concluded why not me? What made me think that I was better than anyone else? I wasn’t. There wasn’t anything I did that caused this. It was, what it was, and I was no better than anyone else. The way I saw things after this was asking, “Why me,” was part of a whiny self-indulgent pity party. I did not want pity. Instead asking, “Why not me,” helped me to realize this could happen just as easily to me as to anyone else. Let me tell you I have found when I encounter tough moments in this in life, if I remember to keep this perspective then those tough things are just a little bit easier to deal with, because I can tackle the issue at hand and not instead throw a pity party.
It was also during this time that I found myself knocking on death’s door, or maybe instead death came knocking at my door, I am not sure which. Then again I am not sure it matters. Either way this point in my journey found me broken on my bedroom floor. Crying, I prayed to God. I told him I was done, I just couldn’t fight any more. It was then I felt his presence say it was okay. If I wanted to be done fighting I could go home. He nudged me back though with another thought, not just leaving it there. What about my husband, and my family? I answered that I didn’t want to leave them but I didn’t want to fight anymore. In that moment though I became convinced that I didn’t want to fight for myself, but I needed to fight for them. A peace fell over me when I came to that point. It was a peace that said everything would be alright, that with the Lord by my side I could battle through this.
The trust I had in my God in those months is honestly unlike anything I ever experienced before or after that time. I have been blessed to understand and experience a complete trust in our Lord. It is a trust that I can only hope to come close to again. In the meantime I know I have been blessed to know that sort of close connection.
This experience also sent me into early menopause. It was from that experience and the subsequent miracle of getting pregnant , that I can truly appreciate the miracle that is my children. If you want to read more about that experience you can read about it in last weeks post titled, From Menopause to Motherhood: The Blessings That Are Children.
If you want to read more about my experience from another perspective, my husband, wrote a touching piece titled, I’m thankful for my wife.
***The toughest moments in our lives can bless us, and be blessings to us if we learn from them. What are some of the lessons/ things you have learned during the tough times?***
If this post has touched your heart in any way, I would ask that you share it today. Thank you.
*** Disclaimer: While I claim cancer was a blessing in my life because of what I learned from it I am in no way wishing it upon anyone. It is one thing I sincerely wish that no one would ever have to go through. It is tough. It can be messy. It is hard. But for me I found there was blessing in it, that is all.***