I woke up Saturday morning to familiar sounds coming from the kitchen. It was the sound of muffled footsteps. The water was boiling, the cupboard where the coffee is kept was opened and closed, and then mugs coming out of another cupboard. These are all normal sounds that used to come from my kitchen on a weekend morning. I wasn't completely awake -- somewhere in that state where you hover between the real world and the dream world -- where reality hasn't quite made a complete upload into the brain. For a few blissful moments I was listening with contentment to my husband trying to be quiet as he made coffee on Saturday morning. I startled awake at that point. For another second I wondered if the last two years of my life were simply a nightmare....a very long nightmare....from which I was finally waking up. Could it be that it was all a horrible dream and that at that moment Marc was in the kitchen doing his usual morning routine?
As I fully awoke I remembered my brother and sister-in-law had spent the night to help the kids with a project. Paul was up and making tea for himself. I was back in the real world. I sighed and rolled over, irritated with myself for forgetting the reality of my life. What a let down. I looked outside. The weather reflected my emotions -- foggy, gray, dreary. Sigh.
It's been a hard couple of weeks. I hate days and weeks that I can remember exactly where I was a year ago. Two years ago. This week is not my favorite. Marc was diagnosed two years ago this week. A year ago we were in Washington D.C., hearing that Marc was not a candidate for surgery. Our hopes were dashed and our options diminishing. I can remember all the emotions and anguish so clearly. Remembering is hard. I don't like it.
I heard this week from a dear friend. His wife has been diagnosed with lung cancer. As I read his email I just sat and cried. Another, "Why Lord?" moment. I don't get it. I wrestled with that question all night, knowing my friends were likely asking the same question. The next day I had a chance to talk with my friend. Listening to him talk was like hearing an echo of myself two years ago. Every horrid emotion came rushing back. One would think after enduring Marc's cancer and losing him to that monster that I would have something helpful to say. I didn't. There are no words. I was suddenly in that position that so many of you have been in with us -- wanting to DO something. Wanting to say something, anything, that would bring comfort. There is nothing I can do to fix it. It made me mad. I have learned the difficult art of empathy. My heart hurts for my friends. It isn't fair.
Would you pray for them? I am not going to share their names. God knows who they are. Like Marc and myself, they are private people. They will need time to process all of this and to figure out when and how they will share their news. It isn't mine to share. But, I know many of you that visit us here have been praying for my family for months and years. Many of you often ask how you can be praying for me. Well, could you include them in your prayers for me? Please pray for her as she battles this cancer. Let her be an amazing statistic! Pray for her husband as he walks with her through this. Pray strength, grace, courage, and peace, for both of them. I know that they will shine in all of this. Pray for their kids. Draw them all closer.
While I am somewhat resentful of this week and all of its bad news and memories, I am hopeful that the gloom will pass. I wish I could go back and tell myself two years ago that I wouldn't always be hysterically crying on the bathroom floor. I would tell that girl that God is faithful and he provides more than she could imagine. I would explain that He would provide strength and courage when needed in the darkest of hours. I would name her friends and family and how they all would help carry her burden through that dark valley. She would not be forsaken. I would tell her she would find joy and peace again. No, she would still have moments of fear and anguish, but that there would be hope for tomorrow. I would tell myself not to give up and to keep fighting. Marc will need her to keep fighting. The fight will be so worth it. I don't know that I would tell her how it ends. Only God knew that at the time. He doesn't play odds or statistics. He knows how the story goes and has it all under control. I would tell her that she simply needs to trust...It will be okay.
Thanks again to all of you that continue to support and encourage us. We have needed it this week. You are all an amazing blessing to us.
With love and gratitude....