Saturday, May 16, 2009

Farrah's Story

At first, I wasn't sure I wanted to watch this documentary on Farrah's journey with cancer. So many times, the life of the rich and famous stars are sensationalized and reality is hidden, and I didn't want just another tear-jerking movie about cancer! But I watched it anyways, and I'm so glad I did. This was definitely "reality TV" in the raw!

My reactions were so mixed with some of my reactions even surprising myself. I felt so sorry for Farrah right from the beginning, and her reactions to having cancer were so typical --- surprise, fear of the future, will try anything, must be positive, etc., etc. It was all there. Only those of us who have been through the horrors of chemo could relate to what she went through. I must be honest here, though, and say truthfully that I never had the terrible nausea that she had with hers. I only had that the day after my surgery!

I must say, Farrah was much more brave than I could have ever been. There is no way I could have had those procedures done on my liver and be wide awake and in that much pain! And to think she went back for that several times over. She definitely gets ALL my respect for going through that, believe me!

I came away from this program feeling somewhat sad -- almost depressed! With all the research, and all the money that has gone into cancer just in my lifetime, it seems that not much has changed. Yes, we have better means of detection, giving patients an earlier start on treatment. And yes, we have different chemos, better and more accurate radiation treatments, and maybe surgeons are more skilled, etc. But it still boils down to cutting it out, burning it out, and/or poisoning it with chemicals! And even with all you go through, there are no promises that it's gone. It only takes ONE little cell. . . .!!!!!

Another thing that came to the surface for me was the choices we have to make as cancer patients. Farrah's choice was to seek alternative treatment in Germany. You may correct me on this if I came away with the wrong impression ---- but I gathered from what was said throughout the documentary that Farrah chose treatment in Germany because she did not want a colostomy and live with a colostomy bag, and she did not want to lose her hair as that was what made her famous. Based on those two things, she passed up tried and true treatment here in the states, did not have the standard surgery and the standard chemo for her type of cancer. These are horrible things to have to live with -- wondering if you've made the right choices, should you change doctors, should you enter trials where new and promising drugs are being tested, etc., etc. All the "what if's" are always going through your head as you fight for your life.

And I felt her pain as she waited for test results to come back. Only cancer patients seem to understand that dreaded, nagging thought that is always in the back of your mind -- "I wonder if they got it all or if it will come back?" You become paranoid with every little ache, pain, headache, cough, and so on!

I came away from Farrah's Story with a big sigh. She fought so hard! I'm not sure I would go as far as she did, but that can change at any moment when it becomes MY fight for life. It is so hard to stand on the sidelines and watch someone else fight such an enormous battle like this. In the end of it all, there's not much anyone can do to help you except to cheer you on. . . . and PRAY!

I went to bed last night and whispered a prayer of thanks to the Lord for His presence in my life and for giving me the knowledge that He walks with me through anything that comes into my life. Sometimes we do not know the purpose of these diseases and we question God's love and care with that age old question, "WHY ME???"
I'll be honest, I've asked it!!! But somewhere deep in my soul comes back the question, "Why not you?" Am I better than anyone else who has been through cancer?
Is cancer a punishment? A strike against an innocent human being from a sadistic God?
Of course not! From the moment I was born, I was destined to die. . . from something.
I did not come with a guarantee that I would be free from disease, sadness, hurts, and pains. But I did come with a gift waiting for me . . . a gift I only had to accept by faith . . . that not only would eternal life would be mine one day, but His presence would go with me through whatever life was mine here on earth!

Those of you who have accepted that gift know the peace it brings you. If you do NOT know that peace, and you do NOT know where you would spend eternity if you were to die today, let me know and I would be honored to tell you all about it!


Roxanne said...

What a wonderful post. Thank You for sharing your heart and your faith!!

Leslie ~ HarvestHomePrimitives said...

Cora, after reading your post I think the thing that struck home to me most was your statement: 'why NOT me'? I have never looked at things in my life in that way and always asked 'WHY me, Lord?' Thank you for sharing this wonderful post with all of us!

I admire your strenth and faith with everything you have had to do through.

Have a great day!

Daria said...

Cora, what a great post ... I watched Farrah's Story too.

Many tears were shed ... she is a brave woman as we all are forced to be going through this journey.

LisaShaw said...

I didn't see her story but I remember her from Charlie's Angels days and I'm aware of her fight with cancer and I can't imagine all she's going through and been through. My prayers for her when I see something in the media about her is that of salvation in Jesus Name and for God's divine touch on her life even now.

Thank you for sharing her story with us Cora and I thank GOD for the ways he uses you even in the midst of what you're dealing with.

I pray for God's continued Hand upon your precious life.

God bless you.

Sue@CountryPleasures said...

I watched it too, and it left me crying and sad but I know more about cancer today than I did yesterday and that is a good thing! Great post!

Jennifer said...

Cora...I also watched Farrah's Story last night. I was amazed at her bravery, strength and positive attitude. I don't know if I could be that way in her shoes, much less, endure all the treatments that she has tried.

I don't understand why they haven't been able to find a cure for so many diseases including cancer but it will touch nearly every family at one time or another. My father died of cancer nearly 20 years ago.

I continually pray for you, my friend as you travel this journey also.


LisaShaw said...

I had to come back over to say I just watched the last hour of the program as it apparently is a rerun. Deeply moving! When her son was taken from prison to see her I was crying. I prayed for their son and for a CHANGE IN JESUS NAME for his life. That would be a great tribute to his Mom.

Julie said...

I wanted to watch that and totally forgot it was on. I had been watching some of the interviews and things on the Today Show. Do you know if it is being aired on the internet or anything. Once again, a very inspirational post, Cora. Julie

Bernie said...

Julie, Farrah's Story is being replayed on MSNBC tomorrow (Sunday) night. It is worth watching.
Cora, I too wrote about her story in my blog last night. So sad. I was very ill from the chemo, the radiation was like a sunbun to me. I wondered the same as you, what if she had gone with the colostomy when first diagnosed if her results would have been different. Something we will never know.
I cried through Redmond's visit, I cried as she vomited and I cried as she took her injections as I relived my own journey. I too never asked why me, I do know I would rather go through it than to watch anyone I love go through it. We both feel very much the same, let's keep her in our prayers as well as her father and her family.
Take care my friend and stay well
....:) Hugs

Claudia said...

I'm going to be blogging about Farrah, also. Hubz and I did watch it. She truly is amazing for sharing all of that with all of us.

I'm still struggling with my own mortality. I blame it on a few things that happened when I was a child - things that I was told. So I've always had a huge fear of death. But I'm working on it. I know it's inevitable. And unlike the women of The View who discussed death the other day and most of them said that they don't believe in a heaven or hell, I know that God exists and I know that my eternal life rests with Him.

*shrug* Some days I think I'm just too human. I'm working on that, too. ;)

KathyB. said...

Thank-you for such a truthful and wonderful post that ends with the invitation to find out how to know where one will spend eternity, for really, all of us are dying, some of us a bit sooner than others...and our eternal souls are just that, ETERNAL ! I love your blog, and your spirit!

ByLightOfMoon said...

I also watched this story with tears in my eyes for the pain she endured. I thought of you as I saw this and in a way, she has it better than you in that she never had to sit in pain and wait at Doctor's office for treatment as you talk about. She was chauffeured to and from treatments and could lie down enrooted.
But, I am sure you both share the agony of the pain and not knowing what tomorrow will bring but I pray for you Cora that you do not have the setbacks she has had.
May your treatments you have had be what was needed to kill those cells and you are a Survivor. Your faith will bring your through.

They (Local TV) interviewed Kate Jackson after the story aired on our local news, she lives here (Alabama) and CA both and Kate said “ Farrah had always been positive and had strength from the beginning that she would be cured.” Every treatment brought new hope of a cure with new technology that was not available in the US.

I had also hoped she would see Redmond again when she felt better after the one where he was allowed a prison visit that was so sad.

What I don' understand and this may not be true is how Ryan O'Neal could leave her in the condition she is in, and now they visit, but why move out? I hope I am wrong on this!

Smiles, Cyndi

ByLightOfMoon said...
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Dani said...

I didn't see the show but was moved by your dad died of cancer soon after we were married some 35 years ago...he got it from exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam,,and was very brave, suffered much and never complained.He is my hero.
I hope and pray they find a cure you know cancer was almost unheard of some 100 years ago? Doctors would come long distances to study someone who had it as it was so unusual....

UPON A HILL said...

My first visit to your blog & I enjoyed your post. JESUS is my savior, I know the peace that you are talking about.

Lelia Chealey said...

Very sweet and so heartfelft. Thank you for sharing this with us.
I think this would be so tough to go through especially without God.

Debra said...

Dear Cora,

I am always blessed by a visit with you. You share your hidden riches in a most lovely and real way.
Love, Debra

Oma aka Meme said...

I did not watch it- I could not - sigh- yes- papa had some of these tests and he always said it did not hurt but it hurt me- in side- I remember that he had to take needles in his swollen tummy and the nurses hated to do it so he got them to teach him to do it as he felt sorry for them--I noticed that the cancer patients at the chemo centre were all so brave- it seems that cancer gives courage and you too were so brave- Cora- and you have passed the courage on-
hugs Meme

Kay @ The Rustic Cottage said...

I could not watch the program. I really wanted to but just could not bring myself to do it. Thank you for your beautiful post and thank you for sharing the gospel!! Jesus is the peace that passes all understanding. I can't imagine having to face any trial in life without Him.

bethH said...

May GOD bless you on your path of service to him. I thank God for his work that he has created through you and your heart to share with others. I pray that your testamony, faith and love for God will shine brightly into the lives and hearts of the people that he is calling to him through you. I will pray for your wellness and continued success in all of your endeavors to serve our Lord and Blesses Savior.

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