Thursday, February 6, 2014

three years.

so my friend laura and i are pretty much the only people that actually remember my last day of chemotherapy. i am sure...i mean i guarantee it is because its her birthday 2.9.11. although the 9th is on sunday it was actually 3 years ago today (on a thursday) that justin and i got our final starbucks run on our way to treatment. i don't really remember anything about it anymore. i guess that is one more reason why this blog holds such a special place for me...because its the keeper of all my thoughts, memories, and emotions that have since faded. in some ways i am okay that it all doesn't feel so fresh and raw and real anymore. time does that. it heals. i am grateful for healing and that what i mostly remember about this day three years ago is that i slept. a lot. justin planned our nyc trip while i slept so not to ruin any surprises. sleep is good sometimes for that reason. my mind was able to rest and escape the smell, the room, the people, the sadness. a chemo room is sad. i would look around and wonder what stories were in that place. were they almost done like me? just starting? scared? alone? in pain? i did not really take the time in chemo to hear people's stories and get a glimpse of their hearts. i wish i had. but i couldn't. i didn't seem to have the energy to carry other people's heartache. i was trying to manage my own pain and fear. but this treatment. number 12. well it was a means to end for me. we knew that i was responding and that this would almost one hundred percent be it for me. so there was some joy for us that day. knowing that our cancer story was coming to a close that day. at least the chemo part. we said good bye to my nurse nora. i felt stronger today because i knew i could do one more. i had finally reached our finish line and i am so glad justin did THIS. or else i may keep forgetting.

i have shared our story many times and i hope to keep sharing it. i believe our stories matter and whatever they hold we need to keep sharing them. it matters. your life matters. i wrote for a magazine called mamalode a while back and last month they emailed and asked if they could run it again online. i was thankful because i have been absent from this place for a while and having a hard time finding my way back. then i got an email that it was running today. 3 years exactly from when we ended treatment. timing of things are funny sometimes. we don't always know why or if it matters. but re-reading what i wrote and thinking about our journey and where it has brought us took me the Lord. thanking Him for His everlasting faithfulness and love. He is in it with us. all of it. even when we feel alone and scared. i feel both those things often. my courage and joy comes from Him because without it i would prefer to curl up into bed and in turn might miss my life. but i don't want to miss my life. my hope is that i can live each day with purpose, love, patience, joy, and even when i feel like i can't do it all anymore. i wont beat myself up. i will give myself and those around me the grace to simply live. to not compare or feel lazy if our day is full of cartoons and food. but to really live in a place of contentment because i know that story that the Lord has for me and for you is not one that is consumed by insecurities and fear and heartache. of course all those exist and we live them out daily sometimes i hold firm to a greater hope. a hope that last forever. so instead i will choose life. cancer is real and scary and many of you are walking in the trenches of that now. for yourself or family or friends. cancer is everywhere and i hate that. but because our stories will be filled with life (our good friends had a little girl today and i will celebrate her new life along with the new life i was given in being free from cancer) and our stories will be filled with pain and the midst of it all i will choose Jesus. to rejoice with in life and cling to for hope and comfort in death. you see as the creator of life He can hold it all. wherever you are at today or tomorrow or last year or in ten years the creator of this world wants to walk in all of it with you. you are not alone. in the joy of new sweet baby ella and the sting of pop pop the same God is in it all. i am indebted. i need Him and you need Him too.

our story. if you've read it a hundred times or new to this place. this is where i believe my own story in many ways began. READ HERE. i don't usually do this but i think it matters. our stories. the happy ones and the sad ones they all matter. so share ours. share it because it's one of hope and pain and fear of death and life and healing and because suffering will happen. maybe not cancer but it will be something. sorry to be a downer and since easy was never guaranteed i do believe what we do with our pain and joy and grief and hurt and when life feels out of all matters. so lets enter into one another's stories. let's keep it real and raw and genuine and safe. i believe we all desire to be a part of something where we feel safe and accepted and heard and loved. so let's do that for one another and for ourselves. we are not alone. even if we feel it. it's a lie. so cling to what is true.

today i am reflecting on where we were three years ago today and in that place i have cried a lot and it is not even noon. but it has less to do with chemo and cancer and more to do with how deeply i seem to feel things now. cancer brought an already emotional girl to a whole new level. i am hopeful for sweet tears of joy today.


  1. I loved this! And Praise the Lord for HEALING! Amazing to see where the Lord has brought you these last 3 years =) Thanks for continuing to share your story. Love to you!

  2. Libby,
    Your story is one that I am so thankful you have shared. I hold you in prayer all the time, that you can continue to share your love and light of God, your faith and belief, your strength and determination with others, so that you and others can grow. I don't even know how I found your blog those many years ago, but I am so grateful I did. God works in mysterious and wondrous ways, powerful and uplifting ways, ways we will never fully comprehend. You are an amazing woman, wife, mother, believer. Thank you for your constant teachings and for living life to the fullest. Peace love and blessings to you!

  3. beautiful post libby. love following your words as the Spirit leads. thanks for continuing to share your story.


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