Ok so it has been for ever since I have written. There is good reason for that , I have been busy doing radiation, raising 2 boys and working and that has made me absolutely exhausted. Every time I sat down to write I just couldn't. Couldn't remember what I wanted to say or how to say it. While I still am pooped I think it has given me a little boost to let you all know that I am done!! Done with radiation, And done with all the treatments that will put my world in a complete whirlwind. I am so glad to say it! Glad because I literally don't know if my body could take another thing. Radiation ended up being 25 days. Every single morning. I had my mother in law, Debby, Karen, Andrea, Pam all rotating days to help. A few times people would meet Newt and I there and he would play in their car for 20 min while I went in. It was chaos. Newt is over it lol. Poor little guy. Every day he walked up to me and asked "eave?" (which is leave in Newt talk) I would tell him 'yes' and he would cling to my leg crying. My skin was burned and blistered and peeling and very sore. It burned for 2 weeks after I finished radiation. Seriously BRUTAL. But now the burns are gone. What a relief. I have definitely had a few days where I wished that cancer was a person so I could punch him in the face! I am over it, my body is over it, my family is over it. My body has been beat up for sure, but the relief I feel that I am done will carry me through . The nurses and people I worked with through my radiation were so kind. I felt kind of sad leaving the office on my last day. They gave me a bag of cookies and a card they all signed and gave hugs and I was out of there. I bet they are so glad when someone is done, just knowing they have hopefully helped save someone's life.
As soon as I jumped in the car to go home my last day , until at least two weeks after , my mind was just flooded with emotions and images of what I have just been through. It has been a lot. I feel like as soon as I found the lump in my breast I put on a 500 pound backpack labeled cancer and I have been carrying it around the last 7 months, and I was finally allowed to take the backpack off. I'm exhausted like I've never felt and relieved. I just keep crying about it. It makes me sad. Sad that I went through all this. Sad that my family went through this, my boys, my husband, And sad that others will too. I can't help but look back at every memory, Every single step...I hate cancer. I really had no idea that I would burn the way I did with radiation and that changed me for a second.. My thankful thoughts and memories got swallowed up by this dread and sorrow. My body had just had enough really and maybe my positive attitude as well. I just wanted to run away from this last step and be done. The last thing I have wanted was to come out of this bitter but it is very hard. When it is all over , it's just over. You are bald, boobless, burned, numb, tired and left wondering what is next. How do you just wake up tomorrow and not fight the fight you've been fighting. It has made me angry. I guess not that I had to go through this but I guess kinda that I had to go through it. Mad that anyone has to go through it. I put my back pack down and cried and cried that I had to carry it. Mad that my husband had to go through it , and I mourned for him because what I once was to him physically is gone. We giggle at my bald head but the truth is everything about my looks has changed and that is hard. He's a great man and looks past it and hasn't shown me one ounce of weakness this whole last 7 months but it's easy to see that I have changed. I cried because my poor Noah boy had to carry this bag with me. I mean what child at his age should be worried his mom could die? none. Absolutely no child ever should have to face this. So I've mourned it . All of it and I'm sure there will be more of that. Paul says its like I'm facing it all at once after the battle is won. Its true. While I was going through it all I couldn't look too closely for fear of losing my strength. But now that it's done it's all coming out at once. Fear, sadness, anger, all of those. Some days I find myself pretending it didn't happen or just running from it all. It's just too much. Through all my treatment It was very very easy to say everyday that it could be worse. As soon as I walked in the door I could see people who were obviously worse off than I was and that kept my perspective. I lost that mentality for a second. I would imagine it will take some time to grieve it all but I know I beat the crap out of cancer and I am better for it. For that I am thankful. My memories have continued , the good the bad the ugly. But one seems to really stick in my mind and it is a very important one.
The memory that stands out the most is the day it was confirmed I had cancer. The day was spent telling everyone what was going on. But that night was mine. I was alone with it. I remember it was really rainy. I was crying all day and it occurred to me that in a very short time I was going to have surgery to remove my breasts. If anyone knows me all that did was bring up a whole list of things I have wanted to get done for the last year lol. So that night I painted my kitchen. Yes the whole thing. But that wasn't all . While I was taking comfort in getting this chore off my list I actually stayed in a deep meditation with God. I bawled and pleaded for this all to go away. In fact I had been doing this for at least a week before it was confirmed. I couldn't sleep, I just sat up talking with God about it and trying to understand. That night however, God spoke to my heart and told me that this was not something that he could take away from my life. That it was something I was meant to face. The odd part is, is that I already knew that. I could feel it.
My husband and I went through quite a few circumstances a few years back that led us to the conclusion that , It is in circumstance that God can reveal himself, not only that but it reveals your character as well. I have known that for quite some time. And in a weird way I have learned to look forward to trials and circumstances because that meant I could grow in faith and learn to trust God more. With that I Knew what I had to do. That rainy night I felt in my heart that this trial was mine to walk, I accepted it. I wanted it. Not cancer, but the experience of seeing God. I decided in that moment that if this was something I was going to face that I must use it to show my children that the struggles we face in life do not have to take us down. That just because we are facing something more scary than anything we have ever faced that we can still have a good time, we can still have faith, enjoy a movie, celebrate Christmas and Birthdays and snuggle and eat popcorn. I wanted to be hopeful and encouraging to them, I want them mostly to take each trial they face and say "well we got through cancer," or "my mom beat cancer I can do this or that". I don't know, I really don't know what they will take with them. But I do know that I experienced God. I have seen him. All around me, in me, in you, in your donations , your words, your thoughts, your prayers, your hopes, late at night in my thoughts, in my nurses, I saw him that night painting my kitchen. He asked me to take his hand and trust that he would walk through this fight with me. That is exactly what he has done. It was his strength that has carried me every day down this path. I feel so grateful to have experienced that. It was because of him that I could see beauty even while going through such a horrible diagnosis. It is because of God that I could learn about the power of prayer , which meant nothing to me before. I will never ever be the same. I have said that time and time again but I mean it. The compassion that you all have shown me is the greatest gift I could ever receive. That is what life is about, nurturing one another. I feel it. God isn't the only one who heals. We heal. We were made for each other and we can heal each other. That is how it was intended to be. How else can we experience who God is. You have healed me and I will never forget you all for that. I will never forget that night in my kitchen.
So last night I went to bed wondering and trying to figure out what's next.? The big stuff is over. I laid my 500 pound bag down and now I can rest. I think I'm done mourning what I had to go through... It feels like a little like spring. Not outside. well today did, lol but I mean in me. A new beginning. A new life. Second chance. Revival. I'm starting to feel strong again. Things are starting to feel normal around my house. Newt and I took a walk today and I felt peace. Noah smiled at me and it was genuine and full of relief. Paul giggled. It's going to be ok. It really could be worse. I know deep in my soul that this was for a reason. I may never know the exact purpose behind my suffering but I know that it will be used in Gods timing and in his perfect way and for that I am thankful. There is more for me as far as treatment goes. None that is as invasive as chemo or radiation, but follow up really for the next 5 years. Will keep you posted as I go through all that. I will pray, for my family and for yours as I have learned to do. And I guess start on my taxes lol it is that time again. My friend Rita could use prayers, so for all my warriors out there keep her in yours. She has surgery Tuesday. And Noah has a friend at school whose mom shares my same diagnosis, so toss one in for her as well. Thanks for your support and for listening. Blessings Bes.