Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Rejoice in Today

Last Wednesday, I had my 6th and final chemotherapy treatment.  I woke that morning with the desire to dig my heels into the floor and refuse to go. It is hard to describe the feelings I get by simply walking into the Infusion Center. It really is a lovely place filled with lovely people but it has a smell and feeling that immediately bring on waves of nausea for me. Reluctantly, I went through with my chemo-morning rituals of showering, drinking plenty of water (and not coffe-blah!) and eating my baked potato. But another important thing happened that morning. Blake read the devotional from Jesus Calling outloud to me and prayed for my last treatment in the quiet of our kitchen (before the kids had started to stir). The devotional was about speaking your requests to the Lord with thankfulness at the way He was already putting into motion how He would answer them. I quickly realized that He had been so faithful to bring me through my chemotherapy journey thus far that why would He abandon me now on my last one? Confirmation of this came quickly. That morning I wondered who my nurse would be since I had a different nurse for each of my treatment sessions. One of the nurses who had been through breast cancer treatment about a year before popped into my head, and I thought it would be really neat if she were the one for the day. I arrived at the Infusion Center and was quickly taken back to get my weight and vitals taken. Of course, I looked down on my chart to see a little sticky note with the same nurse's name and my room number written on it.  Not only was I comforted and congratulated by the nurse that knew better than any other what it was like to go through it but I also had a corner room that was near to the bathroom and had plenty of light coming in the windows. I also had a few great friends visit me while I was there!

In the time since my last chemotherapy, my mind has started to wander to what's next.  I am eager to have the second phase of the reconstruction behind me and have started reading all the information in preparation for it. I am reading about shelf lives of implants and the differences between silicone and saline, not to mention all the potential complications that can come with having the implants. I have also been thinking a bit about the potential side effects of Tamoxifen, the drug that I will soon begin taking and need to take for the next five years to block estrogen and progesterone that has shown to drive my kind of cancer.  The potential side effects are hot flashes and mood swings but I am assuming in my case there is always the potential for nausea and vomiting. When I let my mind wander to these next steps, I start to get frightened that perhaps the chemotherapy that is now behind me was not the worst part of my journey.  But Jesus Calling continues to speak so clearly that I must rejoice in this day that the Lord has made (Psalm 118:24) and refuse to worry about tomorrow.  "Rehearsing your troubles results in experiencing them many times, whereas you are meant to go through them only when they actually occur. Do not multiply your suffering this way!"  So as I was shown at the very beginning of this journey, I will take each step as they come and choose to relax in His Presence as I reflect on all that He has brought me through so far. 

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