Sunday, February 26, 2017

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways.

When I woke up this morning, I realized that is was February 26th.  It's been my pass code on my phone since Christmas.  The date of my first full marathon.

It's a good reminder that we can make plans, but we can't control the future. We can't control much at all, really.

I'm not sad that I trained.  That 19 mile run (my last long Saturday run before everything changed) was awful and wonderful, both.  Gave me the idea that maybe it is possible.  It's still on my list of things I will do someday.

But this Sunday morning, I'm in Houston with my son.  The Coach left yesterday to spend some time at home with the kids.  I miss him.  But they needed him.  We've never been away from our kids for this long.  Ever.

They've done so well.  I'm so proud of all of them.  We've had precious friends and family step in to help care for things at home.  And provide graciously for us, here, as well.  But our troops have been amazing.

So today isn't what I planned for February 26, 2017.  But I'm thankful.

Thankful for the beautiful weather and this morning's (short) run.
Thankful that we all slept well last night.
Thankful for our kind hosts and their gracious care for us.
Thankful that the Coach is getting some time at home and at school.
Thankful for Pastor Mark's sermons online.
Thankful for coffee, hot showers, clean laundry, and Pride and Prejudice on DVD.
Thankful that my boy is feeling well.  Hasn't gotten sick.  Is less nauseous.
Thankful that he hasn't needed a transfusion in 10 days.
Thankful that he still has his hair (even if it's just for a little while longer).
Thankful for one more week of rest and quiet before round 2 of chemo starts.
Thankful for Spring Break plans and the hope of seeing ALL of the troops soon.
Thankful for God's Word and how it strengthens us, guides us, and gives us hope.
Thankful for the prayers of SO many.  Please keep praying!

When life doesn't take you where you thought it would (does it ever?), be thankful that there is no where you can go that is out of God's presence.  We are learning that He is enough.  God is so faithful.

"From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I".  Psalm 61:2

Friday, February 17, 2017

Pray for our boy

Since January 27th, I've wondered how I would write this.  Is there a right or wrong way?  Will something I say or not say be misunderstood?  And since things are changing so quickly, should I just wait to write anything at all?

But here we are, February 17, and it needs to be done.

Our 18 year old son has Acute Lymphoblastic Lymphoma.

I can't even type that without tears and disbelief.  How did we get here?  How is this US?  How is this happening to our family?

I may never know.

Our lives will never be the same.  I don't know every way in which they will change, but I know they are already fundamentally different.  We can't go back to our lives as they were.  How I wish we could.  How I miss that life.  I even asked the doctor if we could turn around, walk out, and pretend like this never happened.  His answer wasn't encouraging.

So the Coach and I are with Son (#3) in Houston at MD Anderson receiving treatment.  Our other 5 non-college troops are at home.  This particular type of lymphoma is nasty and horrible (as is ALL cancer!) and our doctors at home wouldn't touch it.  The chemo is also nasty and horrible and apparently quite complex and continuously adjusted.  We already hate what it's doing to our boy.  And yet we are so thankful that it will give him an opportunity for a long, healthy life.

We have been overwhelmed with the outpouring of love, prayers, and HELP.  Our kids have been cared for, fed yummy dinners, had groceries taken care of, rides to practises and games, and friends to stay with them.

The Coach, Son (#3) and I have been abundantly cared for as well.  I'm already realizing that I do not have the capacity to thank everyone personally.  But I pray that the Lord will bless everyone that has helped make this journey more bearable.  We are so thankful.

Every day brings another opportunity.  To choose joy.  To choose to be thankful.  There are people all around us, other patients,
nurses, doctors, caregivers, to whom we need to be thankful and kind.  There are circumstances every minute of every day that give us the chance to choose to be thankful and to trust the Lord.  So much trusting the Lord.

Some moments, the desire to see the kids and be HOME (we were hospitalized for a week there before we came here) overwhelms me.  The longing for the "before" is more than I can bear.  The pain my son is experiencing seems impossible.  The next six month stretch of 10 inpatient chemo treatments is before us like a mountain we can't climb.

But GOD.

He continues to give us strength.  All 10 of us in different and loving ways.
He continues to give grace for each adjustment in plans, treatments, and results.
He continues to show us His love, through the love of SO many others - praying, reaching out, helping.
He continues to give us HOPE, through his Word and the comfort of his presence with us.

As much as I want to go back to before this devastating diagnosis, I DO trust the Lord to continue to give us what we need and provide for us as we go.  He's gone before, he's prepared a way, He's with us today, and He holds the future.

Will you join us in praying for complete healing for our boy?