It is a windy, rainy, and cold day here in San Diego and I am making the most of it by working from home in my pajamas with warm candlelight glowing in my office. Today’s post is mainly an update on my health. First, I want to say that it means the world to me to receive all your messages, comments, emails, texts, and phone calls. Thanks for checking in, giving me encouragement and strength, and for praying. It amazes me when I receive a message from someone who I had no idea was following my blog. I will never know everyone who reads it or is impacted by it, but that is not for me—because the whole purpose is to glorify and point to Jesus in all that I say and do. As always, I encourage you to send my information to anyone who needs support as they battle cancer—the survivor as well as the family. I love being able to help and answer questions about the cancer culture.
2019 began with my radiation schedule—five days per week for six weeks. I also take eight chemotherapy pills per day along with my treatment. My insurance denied the chemo pill (versus infusion) three times before my doctors got it approved. I continue my treatment at the renowned Moore’s Cancer Center at UCSD and I am in wise and capable hands. Radiation itself only takes about 20 minutes, but it is the drive there and back that makes it a two hour plus adventure each day. I make the most out of it by returning phone calls and listening to podcasts. Many have asked about driving me to my appointments, but as of this week I still have the strength to do it myself. If the fatigue and side effects hit, my friend Kathy will be in charge of the schedule. I am also grateful for all those who are sending meals on the meal train. This is so helpful, although with all these desserts, we are all getting fat and it’s only a week in. As much as I might complain about insurance, I am grateful that I have insurance, health care, and a hospital close by to get my treatments. I am well aware that many in our nation and the world do not have these opportunities. I always try to put everything in perspective and the best way to do that is to have a sincere attitude of gratitude. It puts me in my place!
Last night I was praying and thanking God for all He has given me and I couldn’t stop finding things I am grateful for. He has provided me with so much, starting with my amazing community of friends. As an introvert, I sometimes feel overloaded with people in my life. The inner critic in me tries to say that I am not going deep enough or giving back enough or being the loyal friend I want to be. Also as an introvert, I need lots of rest, balance, and down time, and sometimes with so many friends it is hard to keep up. Yet, I am incredibly grateful for all the friends in my life-- so please keep up with the encouragement even though I may not respond to a message. I really do have the most generous, loving, compassionate, funny, crazy set of friends out there!
Since I am now in my fourth round of cancer, I have learned much about priorities. I have chosen two words for myself to put into thought and practice this year. The words are INTENTION and TRUST. I want to be even more intentional about my time—spending it wisely and saying NO to things that aren’t life giving to me. I want to be intentional about my friendships—spending quality moments as well as spur of the moment things like a quick walk or an impromptu coffee date. I want to be more intentional about my family—besides Jesus, they are my rock solid foundation. I love spending time with my boys and Greg, whether it is walking the dogs, eating sushi, cooking together, watching movies or sports, or playing games. Lastly, I want to be intentional about knowing Jesus more. That is where intention and trust converge. This is not a check off list. I had quiet time—check. I prayed—check. I read my Bible—check. I went to church—check. No, this is an absolute desire and craving to know Jesus more, not so I know about Him, but to truly know Him.
In this six year journey, I have also learned that, shockingly, I am not in control. My desire to know God more clearly comes from understanding that I am not in control and learning to trust the ONE who truly is. It is always a work in progress, this journey with Jesus. We don’t wake up one day and say, “I got it” and then move on from Him. (Well maybe some people think that is how it works). It is a daily process, a daily surrender. As I face this next trial, that is what I want more of—surrender, trust, process, intention.
As you begin this new year 2019, I pray you will define your priorities, be intentional with your time and friends, and be grateful for all that you have. I pray also that you will desire to trust and to know Jesus more dearly and clearly in this thing we call life.