Thursday, January 16, 2014

So Brave

Cycle 13, Day 2 - For reasons unknown to me, as I sat down to journal today, it became important to document the cycle and day of my chemo treatment. The month is also officially half-way over. The year began with much trepidation and after days like Tuesday, it's no wonder.

As I was driving home from shopping this evening, I was giving much thought about the future and plans and I realized that I really have no choice, but to live by God's words to live from day to day and not worry about the future. There are moments when the future scares me more than anyone can know. Can I walk this path? Can I deal with what possibly is ahead? And then I do the only thing I can do, let it go, because I don't know what's ahead and I just pray that God would take me as I sleep. But not today and not tomorrow. Not this year.

I've been struggling a lot the last week. Though I smile and pretend that everything is okay, I grow weary of this "new" normal. I hate every step I take, my head perpetually pointed downward, unable to look anyone in the eyes from a standing position, shuffling my hunched body in such a way that people look pitifully at me or pitifully away. I long…hurt…wish…pray…for the days when walking from my car to the office, or wherever my destination, was done without a thought.

I've been asking God to help me find that place of thankfulness where my mind is in sync with the outward show that I display to convince my co-workers, family and strangers that I'm okay. I'm such a faker. Today's devotional verse helped a lot.

"Do not be discouraged, for the Lord, your God, will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9

I thought of these words as I began my hated walk from the car to the lab this morning, silently cursing the nitwits who thought it was a good idea to put as much distance between the two by needlessly separating them with empty space and not one, but two water fountains.

These thoughts do me no good, but the truth is, they are there. But today as I finally arrived at the entrance to the medical office, I realized I had made the walk in less pain than previous weeks and I had not needed to stop to catch my breath. Never mind, that I must have looked a like a horrible sight because a lovely couple stopped to ask me if I needed them to get me a wheelchair. I smiled and thanked them for the kind offer. I am always thankful for the kindness of strangers. I am learning that there are many, many kind strangers in this world still.

At the Lab, the blood draw was incredibly painless. I didn't feel the needle slip into my vein at all. I complimented the technician, thanking her for being so good at her job. She simply responded, "You are so brave". I am? Her response made me want to cry. No, not really. Not this past week. I've been an insolent baby. Not as I sat in the lab chair, where I look away each time my blood is about to be drawn, refusing to look at the needle poking into my skin because if I look, I might have to run away. I was not brave on Tuesday, as I drove home, fear taunting me the whole ride home.

No I am not brave, I'm just doing what I need to do to survive, but it was sweet of her for telling me that I am anyway.

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