In the Waiting

20 Sep

Yesterday was Monday and it was…good! How often can you say that about a Monday?? I felt good all day, had plenty of energy and minimal nausea. I even did a little baking last night. Yay!! Oswald Chambers said, “it is the sick person who truly knows what health is.” Oh, how true this is. You just don’t appreciate the simple things like having the energy to bake fudge bars until you don’t have the energy for simple things like that. So grateful for the good moments!

Once your ears hear the word “cancer,” things seem to quickly spin out of control. Questions begin racing through your head at NASCAR speed. The fear of what may or may not happen keeps you awake at night. The uncertainty can make you feel as if you are going crazy.

Source: ThinkStockPhotos.com

And then there’s the waiting. Oh, the waiting can seem to drive you insane. Even after you endure what seems like endless days and weeks of waiting for a diagnosis, a new stage of waiting begins. For me, we are now waiting to see if the chemotherapy will be successful in putting the lymphoma into remission.

The waiting is full of fear, uncertainty and doubt which can all be paralyzing. Waiting can make you angry or bitter or depressed.  Before you know it, you are spiraling downward in a cyclone of negative emotions and feelings. You see where I’m going with this and it’s not pretty.

The waiting can also be a place of peace – if you choose to make it such. It has to be a choice, though, because our natural inclination is to grow impatient, frustrated, and irritated when we have to wait.

Sure, I have a diagnosis and have started treatment, but I still have a whole lot of waiting ahead of me. Right now, I’m waiting to see if the chemo is doing anything at all. Next Monday, I will have a CT scan of the kidney to see if there is any change and I sure hope there is! But even beyond that, there will be more waiting: waiting to see if the chemo has been completely successful in putting the lymphoma into remission. If it has been successful, we will begin a new form of waiting: waiting to see how long it stays in remission.

For a girl who’s historically not been known for her patience (although she has made significant improvements in this area in recent years!), all this waiting can get a little bit annoying.

But you eventually come to a place where you have to make a choice. Or maybe the better way to say it is you can make a choice. You don’t have to make a choice. You can certainly stay right there in the cold, muddy pit of fear and doubt or you can climb out and grab hold of something positive. Because the reality of the situation is, the waiting isn’t going anywhere and you can’t speed up the process.

Your choice is:

To remain paralyzed, afraid, angry, or bitter by the circumstances.

or

To stand up to the cancer and make the choice to live each day without fear, confident that God and medicine are going to put the cancer into remission, choosing to be joyful and grateful for the good AND bad days.

I think the latter sounds like a much better choice, don’t you? Making this choice doesn’t mean it will always be easy, and I assure you there are days when it is not easy for me – just ask Barry. He’ll tell you that the tears definitely flow from time to time!  :) But that’s all a part of it, and I think a good cry here and there is cleansing and allows you to pick yourself up with even more determination than before.

Choose Faith.

Choose Joy.

Choose Gratitude.

Choose God.

By doing so, you are taking back some of the control cancer has taken from you and saying to the little monster that it is no longer in charge of how you feel.

Isaiah 40:31: Yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.

One of my very favorite songs for a while has been John Waller’s While I’m Waiting from the movie FireProof. This song holds special meaning for me now.

While I’m Waiting

I’m waiting
I’m waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I’m waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Takeing every step in obedience
While I’m waiting
I will serve You
While I’m waiting
I will worship
While I’m waiting
I will not faint
I’ll be running the race
Even while I wait

I’m waiting
I’m waiting on You, Lord
And I am peaceful
I’m waiting on You, Lord
Though it’s not easy
But faithfully, I will wait
Yes, I will wait
I will serve You while I’m waiting
I will worship while I’m waiting
I will serve You while I’m waiting
I will worship while I’m waiting
I will serve you while I’m waiting
I will worship while I’m waiting on You, Lord

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2 Responses to “In the Waiting”

  1. Kathy September 20, 2011 at 9:55 pm #

    To my sweet, sweet sister – It’s interesting to me that you used the word paralyzed today because I used that very same word with someone today. You’re right, it’s about choices. Although the brain could cut us all some slack sometimes and not play so many games with us. Kind of makes me wonder sometimes who’s controling who (us or our brains) and if we really are all one in the same. It’s a new experience to have my brain take me places I was not intending to go, so I can relate well to what you’re experiencing. You just have a much better way of putting it all into words.

    It occured to me while I was reading about your tears that you really are actually helping your weakened kidney by expelling that excess liquid through your tear ducts. Now, how’s that for puttin’ a spin on things! When someone sees you crying you can tell them that you’re not crying…you’re “eliminating” ! Or not, maybe you can just snicker to yourself about our little inside joke. I love you girl, with every beat of my heart. Hang tough.

    Love, Kathy OX

    • rachturner September 21, 2011 at 1:14 pm #

      Yeah, my brain takes me places I don’t want to go, too, sometimes. Thankfully, I’m able to reign it back it pretty quickly. I love the tear rationalization – classic Kathy if I’ve ever heard it! :) Love you very, very much!!

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