If it wasn’t enough when they found it in my own body (and mom’s), it seems cancer is showing up closer and closer to my heart. More and more families are experiencing that dreaded feeling of the blood leaving your face as news is delivered and the absolute dread that deafens the room after. It’s not fair, but I don’t think it’s supposed to be. But the good part of it all, is the sovereignty and protection of the Lord, even though “good” is hard to swallow through circumstances such as these.
Last week was my first week back in the office full time instead of splitting my 8 hours between home and there as I was through the end of treatment and there after. I had missed my coworkers and feeling a part of things, and I missed the feeling of having a productive day that wasn’t interrupted by getting ready and driving downtown. I’ve been so anxious to get back to normalcy that I ran full force at it and filled my days with everything they used to be filled with. I went to the gym, I danced, I went to bed late, and I just kept going. Even the weekend before was filled with company, football games, traveling, and bike rides through fall air, too.
But at some point during the week I started to experience “the lull” that was so accurately explained to me on Friday. It’s that period of time shortly after you finish treatment. The time past the days you’ve fought through while various agents worked to actively kill cancer cells in your body. The days that are filled with healing, naps, and catching up on all the things you might have missed out on. But this lull brings a sense of fear with it that somehow coincides with healing and understanding you’re healed. It’s a fear that it’s coming back, that it’s not all gone, and that something still isn’t right. And it’s a strange feeling after such joyous celebration just a few weeks prior.
As much as radiation sucked at times, there was a peace and comfort in knowing something was actively being done about your disease is gone, but the thoughts and emotions don’t stop when treatment does. It’s harder than I’m comfortable admitting to remember all the wonderful blessings and the great prognosis I have and the perfect health I have otherwise, not to mention, the fact that a tumor that took over 7 years to grow was only 10% cancerous. 90% healthy cells.
And as I visited my surgeon’s office this morning for a post-radiation checkup, we also talked through the lull. How no matter how much time passes, the fear still creeps in. I almost giggle at how my pulse is always just a smidge above normal at those visits, but no matter how many times I get scared, there is truly no high like the feeling of hearing you’re free and clear…one. more. time.
So while some days are still hard, some days wear me out, and some days I feel like I’m prancing around on clouds, the lull is just another season that I will one day look back on and be thankful to have experienced. It will grow me. It will strengthen my faith. And I will be a better woman, wife, friend, employee, sister, and daughter because of it. Praise the Lord for the lull, this life, and for the opportunity to love.
Onward and forever upward!