This past week has been quite a challenge. Some days I can’t find the words to express or describe how I feel. There can be such a vast array of feelings in one single moment that sometimes it just takes your breath away and you don’t know what they are. A lot of days there’s an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness because I can’t make my momma better or do anything about it. Life can hurt so bad at times.
Honest to goodness, some days are down right horrible and it’s always then that a sweet soul will come and ask how we’re doing. Sometimes I have to dig for that polite answer of “hanging in there.” Wanna know what I really want to say sometimes? Shitty. There, I said it. I know, I know someone’s gonna call the pc police because the children’s minister has lost her ever lovin’ mind and has said a potty word! But that’s truly how I feel and some days that’s how I really want to respond. Yeah. Just don’t tell me it’s all gonna be ok ’cause we’ve already been there and no one wants a repeat of that.
I’m sure by now you’ve seen the articles on the lady who also has glioblastoma multiforme and her decision to end her life on her terms. Can I be honest with you and tell you that I’m struggling with it because I understand where she’s coming from. On one hand I say “Yay for you girl, taking that beast by the horns and showing it who’s boss!” and then on the other it doesn’t sit well with my faith or my soul so I feel torn. I would love to sit and chat with her and find out who she is. I’d ask her questions like, how does your faith come into all of this or does it at all? Do you have a relationship with Jesus? Do you blame Him? Isn’t He big enough to handle the burden of it for you? What I would not say to her is (and you have to read this all whiny sounding) “He’ll never give you more than you can handle” cause that would just make me wanna punch someone in the mouth and I’m not all about getting my teeth knocked out.
I see where she’s coming from with wanting to have some control over the how and when she dies and not having to go through the horrific end that with this beast you will. I get that. But I also see the courage that one has to look cancer in the face, flip it the bird knowing full well that Jesus wins. Not the cancer. Cancer comes to seek and destroy – just like the enemy and in Jesus we DO have the final victory! It may not be the victory that we had envisioned or desired but we do get that victory. I also get the whole dignity thing I actually looked the definition of dignity up and it’s “the quality or state of being worthy of esteem or respect”. In the past two months I’ve done more for my mom than any daughter should ever have to do. I get it. But let me tell you – I would do them all over 100 times because I love my momma and taking care of her (while it can be hard) is easy in the sense that I want to be there for her and I want her to feel the love pour out of my fingers when I’m touching her and caring for her. It’s an honor to take care of her and do everything for her. Maybe the dignity part comes in when the person being cared for feels that they’ve become a burden on their caretakers and they feel pity. I don’t look at my momma with any less respect – but actually more. She’s a brave, brave soul and she’s embraced every moment of this. The good and the bad. Doesn’t God have our days numbered? If we take the reins into our own hands aren’t we telling him to get out of our way, that He’s not big enough to handle this?
I’m not judging her. We’re living through this same cancer nightmare right now. I know it from the caregivers perspective, and I’ve felt it to my very core when I listen to my momma describe how she’s feeling and what she’s afraid of. I know, we know the feeling of everything spiraling out of control and desperately trying to grab ahold of something, anything.
This life is hard, ugly, messy and yet it’s beautiful too. It was never a guaranteed easy. And yet even though I’ve seen the pain and fear in my mom, I’ve also seen her bathing in the peace that only God could give. For all of those ugly hurtful moments there’s also been the God moments when he’s given us joy, we’ve experienced a blessing, and have seen Him at work.
So maybe I understand now more about my own faith than I did before. I’d still love to sit down with Brittany and chat over some coffee or tea. I wish there were more people battling GBM or their caretakers that would come forward and speak out about their experiences.
I cherish every moment that I spend with my momma. Even the ones when she’s sleeping. I hold every kiss from her in my heart and will never, ever, be able to get enough of them. I just can’t imagine her life ending before His timing. Doesn’t He hold us all in His hands? There just may be that one huge revelation that He’s saving for us at the end. I don’t want to miss it. God knows at this point in the game he’s really having to yell at me so I’m sure it would flamboyant! Nah, all He offers is good. Who wants to miss out on some good?
As I rise, strength of God
Go before, lift me up
As I wake, eyes of God
Look upon, be my sight
As I wait, heart of God
Satisfy and sustain
As I hear, voice of God
Lead me on, be my guide
Be my guide
Above and below me
Before and behind me
In every eye that sees me
Christ be all around me
~ All Sons & Daughters