It has now been seven years since I started this blog. How quickly time goes by! We are many members but we are one in the body of Christ. Therefore you do not journey alone! Hopefully through this site you will be encouraged by the fact that many things you are going through in your own walk, others are going through (or have gone through) as well. Sometimes we think we are "going through things alone." But we are not. God said that "He would Never Leave Nor Forsake Us." (Hebrews 13:5) and that "There is Nothing New Under The Sun." (Ecclesiastes 1:9). No man is an island. It's easy to forget that. May the words in this blog help you to think, encourage you in whatever spiritual state you are in and may the Lord use them to help us to grow in Him! He is the Author and Finisher of our faith!

I don’t want any readers to think that I am “promoting” being a prodigal. I definitely am not. But what I am hoping to do – is to encourage those of us who either have had or are currently experiencing a hard time in our walk to be honest about it. Personal conviction is a powerful thing, especially if you truly love the Lord. I think that sometimes the Body of Christ critiques and judges to the point where the person who is at the other end of that pointing finger feels ostracized, alienated and alone. I don't think that that is what Jesus intended. When I read through my Bible - I see a firm yet gentle restoration that Jesus ministered to those around Him. Look at John 21:15-19. When Peter who was at an all time low point in his walk - he was firmly, yet lovingly restored by Jesus. He didn't tear him down, or yell or make him feel any worse then he already did. He spoke to him lovingly and gently - and in doing so, Peter was able to repent and minister in a much more powerful, humble and confident way and it became one of the largest ministries ever.

Please note that I am only a vessel, my calling - to write. I dedicate this blog to the Lord and ask that He use it to reach out and touch whoever needs a special, loving, personal touch from Him. My hope is that the Holy Spirit allows you to see Him through the words (and not me). We go through things so that we can extend our right hand of fellowship behind us to assist and help someone else. Our Bible is the same today, as it was yesterday as it will be tomorrow. (I am far from perfect and do not profess to have all the answers...) but the good news is - Our Heavenly Father does! His love, forgiveness, grace and mercy is real!Nothing you are experiencing in your walk comes as a surprise to Him! May He be glorified through this blog and may God bless you at whatever stage in your walk you are in!~

I am a Breast Cancer Survivor

I am a Breast Cancer Survivor
I was diagnosed with early stage triple negative breast cancer on June 24th, 2010 - I have been cancer free for 7 years now. It was only a chapter in my life - NOT my life, but the impact is one that has changed my life forever. Its important for women to know that 80% of the breast cancer diagnosis come from women who don't have a history of it in their family (My family didn't). Early detection is the key. For more information please click on the pink ribbon above. It could save your life.


February 26, 2011

"Rumors of my premature demise are greatly exaggerated..."

The Pain is REAL
and we have to allow ourselves to FEEL. It's okay to feel. God gave us emotions for a reason.

Have you ever heard the story of "Footprints?" No? Well, it goes like this:  
One Night a man had a dream. He dreamed he was walking along the beach with the Lord. Across the sky flashed scenes from his life. For each scene, he noticed two sets of footprints in the sand; one belonged to him and the other to the Lord.
When the last scene of his life flashed before him, he looked back at the footprints in the sand. He noticed that many times along the path of his life there was only one set of footprints. He also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in his life.
This really bothered him and he questioned the Lord about it. "Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you you'd walk with me all the way, but I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life, there is only one set of footprints. I don't understand why when I needed you most you would leave me." The Lord replied, "My precious, precious child, I love you and would never leave you. During your times of trial and suffering when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you."

My emotions are running high... Radiation is completed. Treatment is over. After 8 months of diagnosis, surgery, chemotherapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, radiation - treatment is O V E R.  I have my life back.  I've been given a second chance....

A second chance... The children have spent this week, February vacation visiting their father. The house has been quiet.  But my thoughts haven't.  All of a sudden I'm feeling a thawing of a deep freeze of emotion.  Emotions I was able to put aside - because I HAD to get through each moment, each minute, each hour, each day - Step by step.  I guess I went into automatic pilot.  With the kids around me - I had to focus on schedules. On them. On getting up each day going to Dana-Farber.  Dropping them off at school, picking them up... This week I found myself - alone. In a quiet house.  And all of a sudden the feelings came flooding forward.  And I realize - I'm almost as afraid to live as I was to think of dying...

I'm looking around me and thinking... "Okay, now what?" I am uncertain of myself. And it HURTS. Before all this there was confidence in my step. (Singing: "I can bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan and never never never never let you forget YOUR a man.. Cuz I'm a woman...." )Remember that commercial?  That was ME.  Now my step is hesitant. I'm uncertain - second guessing, not trusting myself - unsure which way to turn.  Like waking up from a deep slumber I'm looking around at the aftermath of the Tsunami called "breast cancer" that struck a mess in my life. That turned my already crazy jam packed world - upside down.  What a mess!

I had an ass of a boss - who because he had a small company of only 11 employees was "able" to "unofficially" make me have to let go of my job due to my diagnosis.  What he did - the position he put me in was MORALLY wrong - yet legally he got away with it.  I had planned to work through treatment. To commute back and forth upstate NY to my childhood home in Boston where I was receiving treatment at Dana-Farber. It wasn't to be.

Stooping down to pick up the shattered mess of my career. Yep - struck by breast cancer.  Leaning forward to look at this piece of the puzzle - that was my family. Surprising to see WHO is really there for you and who is NOT.... How ironic to see people who ran away from me like I had got the "plague" contact me now that treatment is over.  "Rumors of my premature demise are greatly exaggerated..." (Said dripping with sarcasm). Treatment may be over - but ALL that has happened to me - has changed me.  That will never go away.  There are scars other than under my arm and my lumpectomy scar that is on the INSIDE of me. And I know that there are certain things I WILL NOT ACCEPT EVER EVER EVER EVER AGAIN.

Bitter? No. That would defeat the purpose of given a second chance. I won't live in bitterness. I've learned not to judge. I pray that some of the people who turned away from me - or shy'd away will never have to experience what I've gone through for themselves. Because honestly, you TRULY don't KNOW unless you go through it yourself.

My walk with God? Honestly - I'm working on that. I'm so thankful He has given me a second chance - but there is so much that was happening prior to that that I need to get right with Him.  Not sure how to go about that yet... But at least I know that my Bible says "He knows my thoughts before I even think them." So honestly - He KNOWS.  I just need to unfreeze all those feelings.  I have to allow myself to do that. But its so much easier to turn up the volume of the TV. So much easier to not face it.  But in order to move forward - I know I need to. Piece by piece I need to pick up the pieces of my life.  The old puzzle doesn't fit anymore. It's been altered.  I'm standing before the Lord with my arms stretched out and my palms facing forward. I feel the tears inside of me. But I'm not unfrozen enough to shed them.  They ache deep inside me - like thunder before the storm - they are close by - I know it - I feel them.  I realize that I'm afraid to live. Here I've been given this second chance and I don't know how to go about utilizing it.  Yes I know - pay it forward (and I will). Yes I know - don't waste it (and I won't).  Yes I know - do all you can for your body so that you can lessen the chances of having a reoccurence (working on that...). Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah. I know it.  My head does. My heart doesn't.  I don't know HOW.

Like a baby taking my first steps - I guess there are certain things I'll have to learn all over again... You know, like perhaps - when you were a teenager, and you were in High School and there were certain classes you "just tolerated" because you HAD to take them. "Required courses." Perhaps you sat there behind the desk in your seat - the teacher droning on and on. You're sitting there doodling doodles on the page... And now flash forward - years older - you realize how important that class was - you wished you'd paid better attention in it - it would have "benefited you more now." So perhaps you decide to take an "Adult education class?" And this time - you're sitting forward. Pad of paper and pencil ready to jot down notes.  Not gonna miss a beat.  You understand better now... You're wiser. This time you're gonna do ALL you can to get as MUCH as you can.  Apply it. Use it. Live it. Love it...

Hmmmmm - are you getting this too? Yes? Me too... Class dismissed! Time to go on to the next life lesson...

No comments: