I return to chemo on Monday. I've only had three sessions so far but each round has been crazy hard for me. I recently realized that one of the differences from a year ago is that I used to write to you BEFORE I had chemo and ask for your prayers for a good session. Lately, I have been writing afterwards, which doesn't really give you a chance to pray and send good vibes.
So, for this round, I am writing BEFORE I go in, to ask for your prayers that the chemo kills the cancer cells, that my healthy cell stay strong and escort the cancer cells out of my body, and that I feel fine going through this round. (Feel free to make your prayers even more specific as you see fit.)
Often through my treatments, I feel like I am tracking with my 93-year-old father-in-law, who is not dealing with cancer but does have age-related issues. At various points in this journey, you might find both of us reclined in my family room, each needing a drink of water, but neither able to get up and get it. We would look longingly at the kitchen, which is just a few steps away but seemed to be at the other end of a football field. The silence was only broken by his words, "Will someone be here anytime soon?" We were so comically pathetic.
Each time, eventually, we both healed and were up and walking again.
When I returned from my recent hospital stay, he had also returned from a hospital stay. Together, we spent a week on clear liquid diets. And once again, we both healed.
The other day, he came to visit, and, on his way out the door, said something like, "I don't think I can hang on much longer."
I told him that I've felt that way before, then joked that he should hang on at least another week because his son was coming to visit. He looked at me, smiled and said, "Okay, I can do that."
As he left, I realized that I need him to hang on, even if only because the parallels are starting to freak me out. Almost every single person I meet who has dealt with cancer or anything difficult inspires me to keep going. It is kind of like running a marathon -- when I see others moving forward, I take one more step forward. And if they stop, I suddenly lose my momentum, too.
Thank you for sharing your trials with me - it helps me to step outside myself. Thank you for continuing forward in spite of them, and thank you for managing them every single day - it inspires me to keep going. Thank you for cheering from the sidelines - it feels like roar of the crowds alongside the Boston Marathon. Thank you for living a joyful life - it helps me to know that this world is full of so many good things. Every little positive action seems to magnify as it travels. Then you for sending yours my way!