Today is Pink Out Day at Creed’s school and tonight the Conway Christian volleyball teams will be playing in honor of those who have fought, or are currently fighting breast cancer. When he came home yesterday he very excitedly announced that he gets to wear pink to school today for his mom. I told him I would look for his Team Tina shirt (from my first diagnosis two years ago) so he could wear it today.
After enduring such a long and arduous battle, then being elated a year later when I was declared cancer-free, you can’t even imagine the sheer joy and relief I felt when I packed away all of the pink reminders of those onerous 12 months during treatment.
I wondered, as I placed the shirts, cards, blankets, and several other items given by my sweet people, if there would ever be a time when I could look at the sea of pink in those crates and only think of the love and support I felt when I received those items, and not just the crushing weight of trauma and suffering I experienced during that time.
While packing and storing all things pink last summer, I prayed that in time, God would help me focus on the lessons and love that comforted, rather than the turmoil and turbulence that assaulted, during those long months.
Searching for Creed’s Team Tina shirt last night brought an unexpected onslaught of emotions as I combed through reminders of my first battle that were packed up in that crate.
I found his shirt, and as I held it up to see if it would still fit, the shock of being back in the ring fighting this familiar opponent so soon, quickly overtook me and threatened to steal my peace. It happened so fast it almost jolted me. I went from having a good afternoon with Patrick and the kids, straight to sadness and uncertainty.
Just like that, the peace I’ve had tucked in my heart since the beginning of this mess, was now in jeopardy. Digging through the contents of that crate replaced calm with fear and trust with oppression.
And it made me mad.
I was mad at cancer. I was mad I have to fight it again. I was mad for everyone else that has to fight it. I was mad that I had to get that crate out only a year after putting it up. I was mad Creed’s shirt had my name on it. I was mad at the color pink.
And I was mad that I was mad.
Mostly though, I was really mad that the enemy was attempting to use a special shirt and a special day, both of which were created out of love and kindness, to steal my peace.
Those shirts, and this day, exist for the sole purpose of giving hope, showing support, and displaying love to those who desperately need it as they battle this beast.
I refuse to fall for the schemes of the enemy of my soul. The Bible says the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. I recognized what was happening almost as quickly as it happened, and just as swiftly as my peace was stolen, I decided to get it back!
I carefully ironed Creed’s sweet shirt last night and as I ironed, I prayed that God would protect my heart and emotions and not allow anything or anyone to steal the peace He has given me.
Although I had to get that crate out sooner than I ever imagined, I asked God, again, to help me focus on the lessons and the love, not the turmoil and the turbulence.
I like the color pink, and will continue to, because in October, that color represents the gentle compassion and loving hearts of those God has graciously allowed in my life.
Today, I’m proudly sporting a big pink CCS Eagle and pink ribbon on my shirt. It is no longer going to be associated with scars, sickness, and the 12 months that turned my life upside down. I’ve chosen instead, to allow these things to remind me to pray for those who are battle weary, and to be grateful for those who create special shirts and special days to show us how much they love us.
If you are a regular reader of my blog, you know when I learn a lesson I like to pass it on.
Here it is:
Don’t let the enemy use something precious to steal your peace.
Recognize that he’ll use anything, even something given or said in love, to mess with your heart and fill your mind with fear.
I am adjusting to the meds as well as can be expected. I take them for 14 consecutive days, followed by a seven day break. The first round was a little bumpy and I was surprised to discover that the seven days I am not taking anything were my toughest.
I experienced fatigue and the first signs of Hand Foot Syndrome (common with this medication). I see my doctor on the seventh off day (which for the first round, was last Thursday) and he was very pleased. It appears that the meds are working and that was WONDERFUL news to hear!
Today I am exactly halfway through my second round and overall, I have felt better than I did the first round. Today I am dragging a bit, and the foot thing is bothering me, but as long as it works, I can handle side effects.
I will have scans in two months and those results will determine if I stay on this regimen or go back to Boston for a clinical trial.
I prefer to stay here. Please continue to pray, and I will continue to take my meds and drink those horrible juices Patrick makes (that are full of healing foods that taste awful) and we will believe together that I will receive great news from the scans.
Love you all, and thank you for all things pink!
The enemy will not use something precious to steal my peace.