Tuesday, April 10, 2012

My Third Anniversary!

April 10th is always a special day for me. A birthday of sorts --- a birthday I never really expected to be celebrating. It was April 10, 2009, that I finished my whole thing-a-ma-jig with the breast cancer treatments --- chemo, then surgery, then that awful radiation thing. April 10th, I walked out of that radiation room for the last time, burned to a crisp, happy it was over, but thinking that I would rather die than have to go through that again.
There was also that panic that balanced the seesaw of emotions --- wasn't there something else to do that would keep this nastiest of diseases away? Like maybe booster chemo treatments every so often? I wanted a list. Do's and don'ts. Not just, "You're done, girl -- go and find a life again!" I felt abandoned, like I had been kicked out to the street. Happy, but scared.
Thankful, but wanting more. Success, but no faith. Not in control, but wanting control over something. Up and down the seesaw goes.

But over the past few years, that seesaw has slowed down to almost a complete halt. I don't panic over ever ache and pain and lump of fat I find. I don't wonder if tomorrow it will all be changed. And all that scared me silly back then has become the "You can do it!" that I give to anyone else entering this
battle for the first time.

There is always a purpose in the mind of God when He brings us into these things. We may not see it in the darkness of those moments. We may think there is no way through, no answers, no comfort, no voice to lead us to where we should be. We worry, we cry, we make our lists of "what if's" and "what then's" and somehow we see a match being lit to all our dreams and expectatations of normal and nice. We create nightmare-material scenerios, tear-jerking, nose-blowing, stuff that would make five star movies for those who like to cry their way through a sad story. We could lay all of this out before the Lord, and you know what? He would just smile sadly and tell us how much time we have wasted ---- because none of it is in His plan.

Those of you going through this now are probably saying, "Yeah, it's ok for you to say these things when it's over and all is well for you. We don't know that yet." I understand. I'm looking at my life, my cancer journey, through the rear view mirror. I see the twists and turns in the road and now know where it was leading me. But I can tell you this, the same One who walked ahead of me and showed me my path is the same One who is walking ahead of YOU! Job once said so perfectly, "He knows the way that I take, and when He has tried me, I will come forth as gold." GOLD! That is what He sees for me. . . and for YOU!

Thank you, Lord, for grace. . . it's only by Your grace alone that I've been able to come this far, and because of this, it will only be by Your grace that I someday find my way Home!

Linking up with others who have something on their hearts today:


Linda Moser Winebrenner said...

Dear Cora, I just celebrated my own 20th anniversary in March. You captured so many emotions so clearly. We are so blessed to have had another spring...and another...and another. My fear lessened too, but mostly because I now know where to take my fear. He is able to bear us under His wings in any circumstances; that is a lesson learned that I will never regret. Linda

Debra said...

Oh bless you , Cora, and all of you dear dear ladies that are travelling this path.

From the Heart said...

Happy Anniversary. That is something to celebrate, shout about, praise the Lord about. God bless you and thanks for visiting and commenting on my blog.
I have a cousin who had a lumpectomy several weeks ago and she starts Chemo this week. I will tell her about you and that with God's help she can make it. She's a strong Christian and is ready to get rid of anything else that might be there. Your post blesses my heart.

Megan Wille said...

Happy sweet, blessed anniversary, Cora! I am so happy for you! The Lord truly has been with you :) I pray for many more anniversaries for you and opportunities for you to share your story with those who need it most!


Here to Find Him

Salina said...

Thank you for your post. My best friend will also be 3 years cancer free Aug 26, so as you probably understand, I cried all the way though this devotion.

God bless you for willingness to share, and thanks Megan for suggesting this site.

Eggs In My Pocket said...

Bless you Cora and may you celebrate many more years to come!

Vicky said...

I so glad you are celebrating your third anniversary! 3 years is amazing- well done! I for one am glad you its behind you and has been for so long now!!

And your are spot on- the very things I worried about and struggled with are the ones that strengthened me and made me realize I CAN do this and I will tell anyone who listens to me that they CAN too :)

I'm happy for you and I pray your continue on for years and years to come! You bless us all so much Cora! Thank you... love and hugs to you!

Stacy @Sweet Surrender said...

Amen!Praise God for His faithful hand always shaping us through life's battles! God bless you Cora.

Denise said...

God's sweetest blessings to you dear.

Andrea Dawn said...

So delighted to wish you happy anniversary, dear lady. You have so much wisdom and love to spread around and I am honoured to have crossed paths with you.

Craig said...

Cora, my friend, as I said in our e-mails I think following your inspiration to YOUR niche will make you happy. I think you have SO much to offer. God bless you my friend!

Kristin Bridgman said...

I agree with Craig, you have SO much to offer. Thank you for sharing yourself with us. I am blessed by you!
I am on a team for the Cancer Relay For Life coming in June. I will be thinking of you and Vicki and my other friends with cancer right now and my sister who has been cancer free now for 15 years.
Happy Anniversary Cora!
Love you:)

Maryann said...

Happy Anniversary Cora
Cancer has taught me to appreciate the small things, take advantage of every opportunity and treat every day as a gift. There is much wisdom for others in this post, thanks for sharing your heart

Lea said...

Happy Anniversary my friend!!
I'm SO THANKFUL and praising God for carrying you through dear Cora!
I'm thinking about what you shared about Job and .. also the time I spend worrying and fearful. But you're right... no matter what we're dealing with, God's with us.
I'm praising God today for healing you and so thankful that I get to call you my friend. God bless you Cora Eelman!! Eagle wings xoxo

Whimsey Creations said...

You're such a talented writer. Bless you for your posts!

dsblanchard said...

I thought about you today when I had my mammogram. Today is April 16. You wrote this on April 10. I was in New Jersey on your anniversary so I missed this. Happy Belated Anniversary! I am so happy you are celebrating. I will never get a mammogram with the same level of nonchalance ever again...because of you.

Much love,