Wednesday, August 28, 2013

This guy's been on my mind.

Wednesday the 14th was the big day.  I mean, really, probably THE biggest day of my life so far.  I woke up and I felt good.  I wasn't nervous.  I was actually a little nervous that I WASN'T feeling nervous...if that makes any sense!  I read my daily devotional, which said:

"I am yours for all eternity.  I am the Alpha and the Omega: the One who is and was and is to come.  The world you inhabit is a place of constant changes - more than your mind can absorb without going into shock.  Even the body you inhabit is changing relentlessly in spite of modern science's attempts to prolong youth and life indefinitely.  I, however, am the same yesterday and today and forever.

Because I never change, your relationship with Me provides a rock-solid foundation for your life.  I will never leave your side.  When you move on from this life to the next, My Presence beside you will shine brighter with each step.  You have nothing to fear because I am with you for all time and throughout eternity."

Revelation 1:8; Hebrews 13:8; Psalm 102:25-27; Psalm 48:14

This spoke directly to me.  It's amazing when that happens, and it always seems to happen when I really need it to.  Wednesday was definitely one of those days, as Brad and I were about to meet with my oncologist to get the results of my PET scan.

I had the scan on Monday to check on how well the chemotherapy was working.  When we originally had our meeting with the oncologist to discuss the chemo plans, I remember him saying we would do a scan after 3 rounds.  He said the scan would show 1 of 3 things...

1 - the cancer would be completely gone (not very likely, he said)
2 - the cancer would be shrinking, the chemo working and I would do 3 more rounds (this is what they expected)
3 - the cancer wouldn't be responding, at which point we would discuss what's next

I had been asked by many of my prayer warriors what they could specifically pray for.  I told them option number 1!

But, as the hour drew nearer, I braced myself for anything.  On the car ride in to Madison, I kept thinking about the last part of the devotional...God is with me.  "You have nothing to fear because I am with you for all time and throughout eternity."  I was praying, I really need you Jesus, right here, right now.  The closer we got to the hospital, the more anxious Brad and I were getting, and the more we needed to feel God's presence with us.  He's the only one who can get us through these situations that are FAR bigger than we are.

It's then that I pictured Him.  HIM!  My own personal Jesus.  He was right there in the car with us, sitting between us on the middle counsel.  Not a smaller version, just a hunched over version, with one foot on each of our seats.  He was wearing Birkenstock leather sandals, a soft tshirt, worn out jeans.  His hair was medium brown and long, in a pony tail, but not perfectly combed.  I told Brad that He was sitting there in between us.  We laughed because we decided maybe He was wearing Sperry's instead of Birkenstocks (isn't that what's popular now?!)  So, for the rest of the ride, I kept visualizing my Jesus, sitting there with us, looking so calm and peaceful.  It was all going to be ok, no matter what.

We arrived at the hospital and checked in.  Again, the anxiety kept creeping up.  Once we were sitting in the exam room, it got worse.  Our minds were everywhere, from option 1 to option 3 to everything in between.  Every time I saw footprints walk past our door, my heart stopped.  We were holding hands, Brad's were sweating.  My mouth was dry.  Once again, I needed Jesus.  I asked Brad, "Ok, so if Jesus is in here with us now, where is he?  Over there, in the exam chair?"  Brad said, "No, He's over there, by the door."  I said, "You're right!"  That's exactly where I had felt Him standing too.  Off to the side, but between us and the hallway door.  His hands were on His hips, like He was ready to intercept whatever entered.  He was still peaceful, so calm, almost grinning.  He gave me strength.  He gave us hope.

After 45 minutes, my oncologist entered.  He had a smile on his face.  I think he's genuinely a nice guy, and I completely trust him.  However, this smile wasn't totally comforting, as he has entered the room with warm hello's before, and told us very bad news.  He immediately started asking us if we've heard of the Globe-athon walk.  He told us that gynecological cancers are the number 1 killer of women around the world!  Not in the USA, but in the world it's #1.  (For more info on the walk, see link at bottom)

Anyway, Brad and I were holding our breaths while the doctor talked about the walk.  In my head I was screaming, "just tell us what my scan said!  I just need to know!".  He finally looked at us, and said, "Well, I have some great news for you.  Your scan showed no sign of cancer.  There is a spot that is a little hazy, but we think it is scaring from your surgery."  I couldn't believe it!  I mean, I could, because this is what we've been praying for, but I still couldn't!  I do believe in miracles, and I think this is one of a few that have happened to me lately!  I looked at Brad and we squeezed hands and smiled and laughed!  The dr said I'm basically in remission.  He told us that they want to do 3 more rounds of chemo just to be safe, and then another PET scan, and then I will start with regular 3 month check-ups again.  He said at some point, the cancer will come back, as it's considered incurable now.  I asked him what happens then.  He said more chemo, until the cancer becomes resistant, and then we would have bigger things to worry about.  But, let's not talk about that now!

I'm in remission!  I'm cancer free!  Right now!  Today!

I'm truly living for every day, as best as I can.  Nobody knows what their tomorrow will bring.  That's something I've always heard, but never really understood until now.  Live in the present.  Be with who you love.  BE who you love.  Help those less fortunate.  Share what you need to share.

We left the hospital.  I called my mom laughing, I called my dad almost crying.  Brad was texting.  My phone was buzzing.  We stood in the parking ramp letting everyone know the good news, I thought our phones might blow up.  So, again, thank you, thank you for your prayers!  Thank you for your support and your love!  It's working!  :)  Please, continue to pray for my health.  Pray that my remission lasts a long, long time.  Maybe I will prove those doctors wrong, and I will be cured, maybe the cancer will never come back.

And, thank you Jesus, for being with us so presently on Wednesday the 14th.  We couldn't have gotten through that day, or any other, without you.  You're always on my mind.


From the United States to Ghana, from Austria to Antarctica, from Peru to South Korea, people from all over the world are joining in the first ever international relay for GYN Cancers. On the weekend of September 29, 2013, participants in over 80 countries will make history by walking in solidarity with each other and with millions of women and families affected by gynecologic cancers. These cancers rob women of choices, of their identity as women, and rip families and relationships apart.
Global cancer statistics indicate that gynecologic cancers accounted for 19% of the 5.1 million estimated new cancer cases, 2.9 million cancer deaths and 13 million 5-year prevalent cancer cases among women in the world.  Each year, over 230,000 women are diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer worldwide. The majority of these women will die from the disease: Ovarian Cancer is responsible for an estimated 140,000 deaths per year, worldwide. Cervical Cancer is alarmingly on the rise in South and East Asia, Latin America and Africa with the incidence and death rate higher than it has been in 30 years.  These silent and deadly diseases are a major global priority.
Globe-athon is an unprecedented, international call-to-action that will shine a light on below the belt cancers. Join us.  Kickstart a movement long overdue. It takes just one step to make a world of difference!
We are planning on walking, for more information visit:

1 comment:

  1. What an inspiration you are Torri! As I was reading this I was smiling, laughing, anxious (even though I know the outcome--what a dope I am), and crying. You are such a great writer...keep up the blogs...I love reading them! I Love You and CAN'T WAIT to see you on the 7th.