Thursday, August 09, 2012

And Yet

You know how I wrote about Dearest One just wanting our old life back?

Today he got his wish. Kind of. If this past week has not changed me for the better then God help me. I am feeling incredibly humbled tonight. There is no going back to our old life but.....

Late this afternoon my family doctor called to tell me that they had sent my biopsy samples to city far away to be tested for hormone receptors. The pathologist there looked at my slides and declared there are no cancer cells in them. None.

The pathologist here thinks she may have been looking at someone else's slides and marked down those results on my report by mistake.

I was scheduled for a mastectomy next Wednesday.

They are sending everything to a third pathologist to make sure there is no cancer. I am having a breast MRI on Monday to doubly make sure. I feel like I stepped off a merry go round and am still spinning.

Please offer up a prayer for that pathologist who got it so wrong. My doctor said when she talked to her that she was in near tears. Distraught. Some may snarkily say 'and well she should be'. But snarky is so far removed from where I want to live my life from. At this moment I can't even be angry with her. I don't have the energy and even if I did, what would that do? Be angry for me if you must but then look in the mirror at how human and flawed you are and remember the many who have been wounded by your humanity. Maybe another day I will be angry. Had I lost my breast I certainly would be. For a time. And yet. If I hold anyone's humanity against them then I must also hold my own against myself. And that has never increased my love and compassion for my fellow human being or for myself.

And for the woman who may think she is cancer free and is not. Please say a prayer for her, too. She will get the opposite shock that I received today. Her joy will turn to mourning. I cannot imagine being in her place.

We so like to make sense of things. Of wrapping life up in neat tidy boxes. Friends are already posting things on my social networking page about how prayer and faith work miracles. Please. I don't dispute what God can do - and I can totally believe those pathology slides of mine could have been changed by the hand of God in transit - but I tread so carefully when it comes to thinking I know what God did or did not do. Or what affect the prayers of many made. As if I could ever know just how the Great Mystery that I call God works and wills His way through my life. I feel so humbled that my journey is taking this turn. It increases my belief that I know nothing.

I've spent the past two days with one of my closest friends who had her own diagnosis of breast cancer recently. I went with her to a medical appointment and she came with me to my own. We've travelled 1000 miles in two days. She has a multitude of people praying for her. She has incredible faith. She still has cancer. She still is going to lose a breast. I felt guilty telling her my good news. Who wouldn't yearn for their own miracle in return?

The other day while I was sitting in the surgeon's office I watched the traffic going by below and when my shakes stopped so instantly I looked at a blue pick up truck winding its way down the street and asked God if the driver had anyone praying for them and I lifted that stranger up in prayer for whatever their needs may have been.

I want to jump for joy and cry deep gulping tears at the same time. I hope I never forget how I feel tonight.


Mary LA said...

Such a relief -- you're in my thoughts Hope.

owenswain said...

Since your first email I have been praying and trying to comment here (...) Thanks be to God for this news. Who can fathom the nature or reason for this path with the outcome? On the other hand, who even wants to ask those questions? A change has overcome you both and now with extra thanks one says, no, happily there is no going back.

Peter said...

"As if I could ever know just how the Great Mystery that I call God works and wills His way through my life. I feel so humbled that my journey is taking this turn. It increases my belief that I know nothing."

Amen, and keep on swimming, swimming, Hopester. This is wonderful news, and yet, I know exactly what you mean by the above, and how you aren't quite getting your old life back...


Chuck Sigars said...

I have a longstanding battle with intercession, and you expressed the conundrum perfectly. Gratitude is mostly all we can express; comprehension is not going to happen.

But getting a do-over? Such joy here for you both.

Jim said...

Read your words earlier this morning and linked to them in a new post, so much of what you say here just going to one's heart.

spookyrach said...


And your writing is fantastic. :)

annie said...

Such wise words here, Hope.

Beth said...

What incredible news.

But also, what incredible writing. This gift flows through you.

Thank you, and praise God.

Sober Julie said...

I've been away from your blog for too long...I'm sorry, sorry I haven't been here but oh so glad I came.

you have given me hope and reminded me to pray

Lisa said...

such wonderful news. love and hugs to you, and prayers for the one who will get the opposite news.