"I'm so sorry, the cancer has moved further into your lymph nodes."
As I heard the Oncologist's words in January of this year, I was not surprised. When I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer in 2009,
the reality that I had cancer forced me to look at the reality of my mortality.
My personal experience in the "valley of the shadow of death," after our son, Kevin's sudden death in 2002, set me on a journey through grief
that began at the edge of the tomband has led me to now living life at the edge of Eternity.
In 2009, I decided that I would take the road of least resistance and go through the surgeries that included a mastectomy, the removal of several lymph nodes and reconstruction, followed by months of chemo therapy. Radiation was prescribed, but I opted out of that treatment.
The reality then, as it is now, is that the cancer made it's way into my lymphatic system, which is definitely not good news.
Especially given that the type of cancer that I have is "irratic and fast growing."
There is no easy decision concerning conventional or alternative cancer treatments. This is a dreaded disease and though much money is being designated for breast cancer research, those of us who have it must make up our minds as to what treatment approach we will take.
After much prayer and seeking wisdom from my Heavenly Father and people that I know pray for God's wisdom and guidance, I have decided that I will discontinue any further chemo treatments. I have gone through 4 of the 8 prescribed chemo treatments for this second reoccurence of cancer, but I am ready to consider alternative treatment options.
Though this decision has taken time and attention, I believe this is the right decison, and that the best medicine for me right now is to focus on good stewardship of my heart, soul, mind and body, and to be intentional about living a life where I am fully present in each moment, yielded and still and leaving the rest in God's ever-loving, sovereign hands.
A precious friend, Diane Herman's, daughter, Hope, headed off to Heaven at age 9 after several years of hoping for a cure for cancer. Though I did not know Diane at the time, she has shared stories of Hope's faith with me, and the incredible testimony of this young girl's life so beautifully summed up in one of her favorite songs "Christ Alone." This song is also one of my life's anthems, and I identify with Hope's faith - it's the same faith that I have had since I was 8 years old!
I am committed to living each and every moment with more passion and joy, as I continue to make healthy choices and do what I can to to preserve and promote my overall health. I have come to a place in the road where I believe that
"My hope is built on nothing less, than Jesus' blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus' Name. On Christ the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand - all other ground in sinking sand."
I am trusting "Christ Alone" to lead and guide me concerning every aspect of my life. Of course, I believe in the power of prayer and so I would appreciate any thought you have concerning me to become a prayer for my well-being. And, if God decides that I am not to be physically healed of this sickness, then at least I know for sure that "it is well with my soul!"
Standing on Solid Ground with an Eternal Perspective,
Angie "a mom like you"