September 24, 2007

Remember when my surgeon said I should not go on any roller coasters? Well, he should have given that medical advice to the rest of my doctors, because they have me on one! This last year has tested me more emotionally and spiritually than I ever would have imagined. I don't know how people get through trials without faith.

After my MRI was complete, I headed over to the hospital. It was about a 20 minute drive from the neurosurgeon's office. My oncologist started out by telling me that the tests highly suggest that this is cancer that has spread into my sternum and my neck. She let me know that this is an incurable condition and that there are medicines they will try in order to shrink the tumors size and also stop them from spreading. The medicines will not necessarily be chemotherapy. They will wait to see how I respond to these other treatments first. She said they are not leaning in the direction of surgery on my neck. She said that after speaking to the neurosurgeon, it was decided that my neck does not need reinforcements and it is easier to perform a biopsy on the sternum, so that is what they are going to do. That is scheduled for October 4. I have a follow up appointment on October 9. She also let me know that the biopsy I had on Friday came back showing the same cancer as the first time, with the same characteristics. That is not all bad news, because I did respond so well to treatment the first time.  I will not undergo any other surgeries right now until they can see how my body responds to other treatments. I will be on these treatments indefinitely or as long as my body responds to them.

Now that I have said all that mumbo jumbo, I can tell you what I really think.

I have never claimed not to be human through this. I obviously have the same emotions that everyone else has. In my mind, I want to look over my shoulder and say "Are you talking to that guy over there 'cause you can't be talking to me..." As I sit in those little rooms on the little examining tables, I realize how impersonal it all is. I am constantly reminding myself that the options I receive from the doctors are not my first choice. My first choice will always remain in my Savior. He is not the creator of sickness, it in no way comes from Him. I don't believe He has afflicted me to teach me about faith. I know that it is Satan's mission to steal, kill, and destroy. My mission is to fight that with God's word, which makes Satan cringe. The doctors are not there to give me hope. And that is why my hope does not rest on them. I let my doctor know today that the pain in my chest has diminished significantly. She replied "I don't know what would make that happen." Well, I do. There is no guarantee in medicine. All the doctors can do is administer it, and it is up to God to work through it. He can also choose to heal. I will continue to pray for healing. Last night, God was really speaking to me about total healing. What would that mean for me? He urged to me ask for any signs to be removed from me... scars and incisions and all. Imagine the doctors saying " I don't know what would make that happen." And I would say "Well, I do!" What the doctors tell me do not line up with this, and therefore is not my final diagnosis. I won't make light of this and say this is an easy battle. I fight it every second of every day. I may sound like I am strong, but the truth is that I am so weak and so tired. But He promises to step in and He has been faithful to me. Sometimes I imagine me standing in a field, and Satan strolls up with his little army, ready to attack me. He laughs and bullies, thinking that he has me overpowered this time for sure. Then, I envision (just like in the movies) the ground rumbles and behind me comes this massive army, shields out and swords drawn. My Savior is leading the pack. The enemy then realizes it is he who has been overpowered and retreats to save himself. The enemy is a coward. I am not afraid to publicly denounce him. There is a peace in my soul, but a fire in my spirit. Enough is enough. I just recently purchased a t-shirt to raise money for breast cancer. It reads "I fight like a girl". You better believe I do. Proudly.

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