01 March, 2011

Buying Time

LJ is home from work today. He's getting a rotten head cold and since the roads weren't all that great this morning (even though is LOOKS beautiful outside). He figured he would stay home and try to nip the sinusitis in the bud. At any rate, it's affording me a while to write, something I'm finally ready to do.

All the Sunday Six posts and posts about playdates, video links, and the mundane things of life (while important to me in a certain light - and I really do HATE abortion; and I'm pretty sure I *really* do *need* these shoes, these boots, and this bag) - well they've all just been a distraction, a bit of a ruse, a trick I've been playing on myself so that I won't have to write about Real Life.

Real Life is Cancer. My Mom has cancer. She's had it once before a few years ago. She had surgery just before we moved back to Canada, and that was supposed to fix the problem. But something wasn't right and she could feel it. Then her leg started to swell...and swell. Then they found The Tumour. And The Blood Clot right beside The Tumour. Which is right beside a major artery or something so it can't just be removed, no quick fix. So all summer, she had radiation. Then it took forever to get a CT to see if the radiation had done anything besides reduce the swelling incredibly. It hadn't really. And now there are Spots on the liver.

The good news is that while one of the spots has increased in size, two of the others have shrunk somewhat, and the fourth is hardly visible at all on the CT. The bad news is that chemo...well...it doesn't necessarily guarantee a cure or remission or any of those good things. What it does, bluntly, is buy time. How much time? There's no telling that at this point. As long as the tumour and spots are shrinking, it's buying lots of time, but it's still not a guarantee. There are still three more chemo treatments left before the next CT and the next re-evaluation and a lot could happen between now and then....

We all get to a certain age where we realize that some day we're going to die. That's a near surety. By accident, old age, or some wretched disease, unless the glorious return of Christ happens before then, "It" will happen. It's a reassurance to me that the Sovereign God of our universe knows EXACTLY when I will draw my last breath. My 'fate' if you will, was decided long ago. But there's something about confronting it head-on, or in this case, with a beloved family member, that brings that cutting reality home in a more real and painful way then most of us will ever admit being ready to deal with. When our grandparents pass on, it's a horrible thing. Often, we have loved them like second parents, we have learned from them, grown with them (even though they never really seemed to age)....And then one day they're gone and death is one generation closer to us. To ME.

In the meantime, while we're buying time with drugs and praying for a miracle all the same (knowing that God will do exactly as He wills - nothing more, nothing less - Oh, how we would be so completely lost without God's sweet, sweet Grace!), we wait. We try our best to treat every trip like it's the last, every holiday like it's the last....and I mean every 'I love you', Mom, like it's the most important phrase I'll ever say to you. I have no idea how to tell you Mom, how very much you mean to me, how very much I love you, and how I have no idea what I'll ever do without you. For now, thank you for being so strong, for persevering, for sharing with us what God is teaching you through this, and for fighting. I - WE - love you.


I know you maybe didn't want me to write about this, Mom, but thanks for understanding that I need to. I've needed to for a long time.

6 comments:

EG said...

Oh Bren, I'm so sorry. It would be hard to deal with such uncertainty. Prayers for you, your mom, and your family!

Jodie | Velour said...

I'm so glad you finally did this. Not for us, but for you. These are such tough things to think about, and wretched to walk through. I am thankful for you and your family that nothing has happened suddenly, and that you have this time... and you know how precious it is. THAT is a gift. I know personally, I blow through my days like none of them is significant.
All of this brings to mind these words I copied into my journal from a post I read yesterday:
"Eucharisteo - that is Christ command. Eucharisteo, that Greek word that expresses what Christ did at the Last Supper: take the bread of pain as grace. Give thanks for that which is hard. Counting one thousand gifts means counting the hard things - otherwise I've miscounted. Outside of comfort's warmth, gifts unfurling underneath, and signs of radical change emerging everywhere, winter being overturned, of eucharisteo in the midst of hard things, of a revolution of thanks in all things to the God of all things." (Ann Voskamp of A Holy Experience)
I know that those are just words on a page, but words can be so comforting. I hope that they are. hugs and love

Julia said...

I don't know if you know this, but I've been there. For real. You ever need to talk, you know where I am.

Brenda said...

I hope it helped to write it out. You have our prayers, Bren!

Fernando's Adventures said...

Brenda,
Thanks for sharing this. Our prayers continue to be with your family.
God bless.

minnesotamom said...

I'm choking up right now. I am so sorry to hear this, Bren. It is really difficult to see someone else experiencing the heartache I've felt. My prayers are with you and your mom.