Life circumstances certainly change us. For 25 years I shared life with someone. We went through wonderful times and dark ones. We supported each other through health and sickness. There wasn’t anything I couldn’t tell him or share with him and then our lives were forever changed in an instant. I preface my recounting of the events of the past 48 hours with this information because I believe it will shed light on my actions.
This weekend I found a lump on my breast. Now, I am usually a quick-to-react person, but for some reason I didn’t wish to borrow trouble and made an appointment with my doctor for Monday afternoon. I chose NOT to share this information with anyone except a close friend (who happens to have a nursing background) and my mother (because I needed some family medical history).
Following my visit with Dr. Walton a mammogram and ultrasound was ordered for first thing Tuesday morning. At the time, I was unsure if this was because she knew I was anxious or because she had serious health concerns. It is interesting the thoughts that went through my mind during this personal crisis.
That evening I mentally put my life in order. I knew my will was incomplete and needed to be filed. I even thought through how I would want to handle a crisis if, in fact, I heard the “c” word the next day. What surprised me was how pragmatic I became. My life became a laundry list of “things to do”. When it came down to it, my biggest concern was with my children. I never once shed a tear.
I spent the better part of the evening in a prayer-like state. I scoured scripture that might provide strength. John 14:1 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. I had that---peace, yet I still didn’t want to burden anyone else until I knew for sure what was going on. At first this seemed a selfless act, as I found later, that was not the case.
Following the tests on Tuesday morning, I went home and waited. It was storming outside – appropriate, I thought. Several hours later the physician’s assistant called with the outcome of the tests.
“The results are negative. There is no mass; it is most likely an enlarged lymph node.” I heard her say with a confidence that calmed me.
“Could you repeat that,” I replied and she obliged. As I hung up the phone, a great sense of relief engulfed me—then the tears started. Why now? I thought.
Now, I was able to share with friends and family the happenings of the past 48 hours. They were not exactly elated that I had not told them. One friend even said that I had robbed her of the opportunity to support me. How fortunate I am to have such love in my life.
I lived a lifetime these past 48 hours. I learned that I could face life situations alone (though I am never totally alone) and still derive strength from my faith. I learned that though I can go through crisis alone, there is no need to. God has placed a wonderful, support system in my life for a reason. I learned a great deal about myself and my ability to find peace in the midst of a pending storm.
48 hours can change your life—just ask me. It can also define it.
This I know for sure.
Writing Challenge - Forever Changed
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