Saturday, March 3, 2012

Life Interrupted: Discovering A New Normal

If you are new to Vicky's story, you may want to begin here.

Life Interrupted
The Journey of Jehovah Rapha's Daughter
by Victoria Overholt

I'm standing here in my living room Lord, looking at our family picture wall. I'm looking at the picture of my Ronnie and I with our granddaughter Paige. Last summer we were standing on our deck, the sun was shining on my hair and we were all smiling. As I look into the eyes of the woman that I was, I remember being very happy.

I wonder how I've changed since then. According to my doctor, I had cancer even then and didn't know. I've known people who have had cancer. Relatives have passed that I didn't even know, and some that I knew. Have I ever before really thought about how a cancer patient might feel?

I never knew what it was like to awaken from my warm bed at 4:00 AM to get ready to have a porta-cath surgically placed in my body.  This was yet another intruder I never asked for, but have to think of as a friend.  

Had I ever wondered about the many tests, MRI's, CT scans, bone scans, injected contrast dye, nuclear medicine, biopsies with needles? I would have much rather been waiting to give birth than to wait for the results of these tests.

Did I even know there was such a place as an Infusion Room with recliner chairs and TV's and packed lunches?  Lord there's so many catalogs of wigs, turbans, hats, eyebrow powder, eyelash adhesive. There are many different styles, shapes and sizes of breast prosthesis, with or without.......well You know. 

I can never go back to that bright summer day when I didn't realize that every other commercial on TV was about life insurance or cancer. It's like being a part of an exclusive club that you would never want to be asked to join.

As Clarice shared my new 'membership' with others, it was very evident that I wasn't alone in this club. Many women came forward as breast cancer survivors. These beautiful women celebrate their cancer-free birthdays, 15 years... 12 years... 5 years... 2 years.  Many offer their advice, information, their surgeons,oncologists, plastic surgeons for reconstructions. 

Many say they didn't have anyone to talk to when they were going through their journey. Some say they are better for having gone through it. Wow, I am amazed by them and their stories!

It was through a couple of those women that we found my second opinion doctor.  Lord, You know the doctor's plan, four treatments of chemotherapy every two weeks to shrink the tumors in the effort to at least try to avoid a more radical surgery.  She says it's too big to be able to have "clear margins", meaning without leaving cancer behind.

So after four treatments, they will re-evaluate, then their plan is surgery of some kind - lumpectomy or mastectomy.  After two to four weeks of healing, I will undergo thirty-five treatments of radiation.
It's totally up to You Lord. You can use their plan, or not... because, ultimately, whatever I have to walk through is Your plan. 

Heal me , O Lord , and I shall be healed, save me, and I shall be saved, for You are my praise. Jeremiah 17:14 

The Lord has declared that He will restore me to health and heal my wounds. 
Jeremiah 30:17

My light shall break forth like the morning, and my healing (my restoration and the power of a new life) shall spring forth speedily. 
Isaiah 58:8

I shall not die but live, and shall declare the works and recount the illustrious acts of the Lord.  
Psalm 118:17

He sends His Word and heals me and rescues me from the pit and destruction.  
Psalm 107:20

So, I'm no longer naive.   And I want to know more about cancer research and why this wretched club exists at all. I realize there are some therapies that get bad press etc.  And some are supposed to be great bacause they're 'natural'.  I can say for a fact that until you're inducted into this club, you don't know what you might do to live.

You might think you're going to go to your backyard and brew some tea from some herb you've planted and everything will be okay, but that's probably not going to happen.

You're going to go where they tell you to go and do what they tell you to do.
It's my prayer on this journey that as You comfort me Father, I can give Your comfort to others.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of sympathy (pity and mercy) and the God (Who is the Source) of every comfort (consolation and encouragement)
Who comforts (consoles and encourages) me in every trouble ( calamity and affliction), so that I may also be able to comfort (console and encourage) those who are
in any kind of trouble or distress, with the comfort (consolation and encouragement) with which I myself am comforted (consoled and encouraged) by God.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4

As the sky gets light on this very early morning and the birds are singing, You speak to me through my devotional:

Do not expect anyone to understand fully My ways with you, any more than you can comprehend My dealings with others. I am revealing to you the path of Life day by
day, and moment by moment. As I said to my disciple Peter, so I repeat to you: Follow Me

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Some family photos


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