Monday, June 9, 2014

C'mon... Can't we Just Have Normal Cancer?


I laugh right now.  Because sometimes you just have to laugh at life.  And also the title.  What is normal cancer?  Isn't it where you get a diagnosis, you treat it with a few rounds of chemo and hope that it all works out?  So much for that dream!

I guess that is what I had in my mind.  Oh, sure, there are those moments in between treatments that are pure joy... when she has energy or when she has the big smile on her face.  And yes, we have had a good number of those days.  But just when things are supposed to be getting better, she starts to have days like yesterday.  And today.  And probably tomorrow too.

She is in some excruciating pain.  Debilitating pain.  The pain where she can't decide if it is better to sit down, lay down, stand up or walk around.  Each comes with its own kind of pain. 

Last Thursday she started to complain about some achiness in her joints, specifically her hips and knees.  This was a little concerning, but we were hoping it was truly because she had spent some time walking around with some friends. (BTW, friends, we are pretty sure that has nothing to do with what she is going through, I truly hope you can come and take her for walks and outings again).  But that would be more in her muscles, not her joints.  And with what happened at Christmas this last year, we have to believe there was a flare up of some sort to start causing this.  However, she lasted through Friday OK, and Saturday it seemed to flare up a little bit more.  She wanted to get to the Temple as she never is quite sure when she will get her next chance, and so after my siblings took the kids off for a night away, we took off to the temple.  On the way home she felt her pain start to come back a little stronger.  Sunday, she awoke to even greater pain, this time, debilitating pain.  She got up and got dressed, trying to go to church, but after doing so, the pain was just too hard to bare.  So she stayed home and rested - hoping to alleviate the pain in some way.

Well, day turned to night, and night turned into a nightmare for her.  She awoke at 3 am to some awful pain and took some pain medication to help.  But this time, it did absolutely nothing for her, didn't touch the pain, which to say was excruciating.  She woke me up and after some prayers, blessings, and a call to the doctor, we finally got some relief from a combination of all three by about 5 am.  And then she slept peacefully until late into the morning.  She has continued to have the pain and agony all day - but kept at bay with medication and a lot of faith. 

And so today - as I try to get through it sleep deprived and busy, I pose the question - Can't we just have normal cancer?

And the answer is - I think this is normal.  I would not be justified to suggest there is anything normal any cancer patient and family go through. But therein lies the crazy truth about cancer - there is no such thing as normal, I guess what we are going through is just par for the course - never really sure where things are going, until we get there. 

So Tiffany has been using the hymn, Lead Kindly Light, as fodder for her faith.  The line where it says, 'one step enough for me', has caused her to know that we take this journey, one step at a time, until we come to the 'calm light of everlasting life'.  A day she looks forward to with increasing intensity.

As I close this post, may God grant unto you your daily steps in this journey through life, I leave you with the full words to the Hymn...

Lead, Kindly Light
"Lead, Kindly Light, amidst th'encircling gloom,
Lead Thou me on!
The night is dark, and I am far from home,
Lead Thou me on!
Keep Thou my feet; I do not ask to see
The distant scene; one step enough for me.
I was not ever thus, nor prayed that Thou
Shouldst lead me on;
I loved to choose and see my path; but now
Lead Thou me on!
I loved the garish day, and, spite of fears,
Pride ruled my will. Remember not past years!
So long Thy power hath blest me, sure it still
Will lead me on.
O'er moor and fen, o'er crag and torrent, till
The night is gone,
And with the morn those angel faces smile,
Which I have loved long since, and lost awhile!
Meantime, along the narrow rugged path,
Thyself hast trod,
Lead, Saviour, lead me home in childlike faith,
Home to my God.
To rest forever after earthly strife
In the calm light of everlasting life."



1 comment:

  1. Oh no... I'm so sorry to hear she's been in so much pain. I've thought of your family often since I found your blog last week and please know I will add my faith and prayers to yours. She left such a sweet comment on my blog last week about wishing she could hop on a plane and come hug me... will you please tell her for me that I feel exactly the same for her! Thank you for your words today... very inspired.