Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Mammogram


So I'll keep this "G" rated since I think my dad will be reading this (hi dad, love you!)...

I had a mammogram today, it's really not as bad as all those awful stories you hear.  Just really awkward!  I called two weeks ago to schedule this annual rite of passage (aging).  The gal asked if I had any pain and I said yes a little (I think I pulled a muscle trying to get rid of some downed limbs in the yard).  She said, "Oh, well then we need to stop right here.  I can't schedule just any normal mammogram, you need a diagnostic bilateral ultrasound mammogram".  Only the best for me!  I asked if I could hang up and call back and say, with my best Barbie impersonation, "no,  I don't have any pain" when asked again.  I felt too guilty, even though I was sure there was nothing wrong, so I agreed to call  my PCP and ask her to give me a referral for this increased torture, special procedure.

So I went in today.  After the imaging was done I was asked to wait to see if the radiologist was satisfied with the images.  They have you sit in a small room with four seats and three walls (don't know why that is important...).  I had that feeling again, that one I get every now and then since Dave's cancer diagnosis.  That one when you are quiet and you think, at any moment now, my world could be turned upside down.  What if she walks back in and says they found a lump?  Would she send me in for a biopsy, how could I fit in all those doctor appointments?  Would this take a year, two, three...out of my life, of my life? 

There are moments when I am acutely aware that I really am not in control of my life.  This was one of those moments.  For some it's a car accident, a death, a pink slip, spilled coffee...I thought, what in the world would I do if I have cancer?  Well, I figured we'd just deal with it, like we've done once before.  Fortunately I didn't wait long and Suzanne came back in and said everything looked great, no worries.  I almost laughed, okay then, that was anticlimactic!

I got out to the car and texted Dave that all was fine.  Then I almost cried.  A wash of relief flooded over me as I finally breathed out.  I think I had held my breath during that whole appointment and hadn't realized it.  I think if we hadn't experienced cancer first hand this last year, I would have put this appointment off for a good year or two.  Of course I'm glad (now) that I went.  So girls, if I can do this so can you!  Early detection...two of my new favorite words...get checked, be proactive with your health, we've got one life to live!  (And then after your mammogram, we can compare stories and laugh hysterically!)

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Dying

I wonder if God prepares us to experience His presence or is it as we draw near to Him that we recognize His presence more clearly? 

Yesterday was a strange day, I was frustrated by many things.  I chose to let my mind dwell on things above though instead of my circumstances.  I thought a lot about Joseph, how he was a regular guy, a real guy (sometimes I'll read about these people in scripture and forget that they were flesh and blood, not just a name in a grand story).  I wondered what he did when his brothers stripped him of his colorful coat and cruelly threw him in that pit.  He had just traveled quite a distance to find them and bring back a report to his dad and they do this?  I don't see in scriptures any indication on what he did or how he responded...it seems like if he had screamed or tried to get out it would have been noted.  Was he confused, after those dreams he had this didn't really fit in with his purpose in life.  Was he scared, lonely, hungry?  Did he sit in complete peace and trust that God would accomplish His will when circumstances dictated otherwise?

I didn't come up with too many answers, I decided he was probably pretty shaken up, but that he knew the Lord was with him, even in that pit.  I decided to take that stand.  There has been a swirl of activity around me that has me shaken...not just our circumstances, but of others around us also.  So much heart ache.  But I know the Lord is with me and that is enough right?  The One who created the universe, who spoke it into being, who spoke me into being, no that is not just enough...He is more than enough.

Today I chose to trust God, even though nothing had changed (except for me I guess).  I had a surprisingly sweet morning.  What I thought would be an uncomfortable, obligatory meeting ended up being a sweet time of fellowship with a dear woman I greatly admire.  I left thanking God that this morning was considerable different than yesterday.

Then I went to work.  I started in on my long list of tasks to complete when our office manager asked to speak to me privately (eek...that didn't sound good).  We went next door and she handed me a 'love gift' from an anonymous person.  I can't even say out loud (or type I guess) how much it was...let's just call it Extremely generous...yes, with a capital E.  I wept.  I have never felt more undeserving.  This is just one more picture of Christ's extravagant love for us.  (While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.)

Anyway, I tried to pull it together and went back to my office.  Niki said, "Are you okay?"  I nodded (since I couldn't talk yet).  She said something like "So no one died right?".  I said no, but then my heart twinged as I thought: no one died, but something did.  Ouch, what was that?  Oh yes, my pride...being pruned again.  This is not how I planned my life, is this what it means to be crucified with Christ?  The dying to pride, self-sufficiency (or the appearance of it), selfish dreams...oh to say it is no longer I who live, but Christ in me.

So once again I will choose as I think Joseph did, to set my mind on things above, not on the things that are on the earth.  I am intensely grateful for the sacrificial gift we received today and how it was a resounding declaration into my heart of the Lord's presence.

THANK YOU anonymous person(s)...the money is a great relief to us, the lesson...well, priceless.