Wednesday, April 04, 2007

48 Hours!

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.


Anonymous said...

My dear friend ~

I am so very relieved to read your good news. I'm sorry that you had to face those uncertain days. How frightening. I know that you didn't want to needlessly worry us, but do know that we are here for you. In any way that you need us. (I mean that!)

I love you, Marsha.

Stephanie said...

Wow! I am so relieved for you that the news came back negative. I also would not have said anything to anyone in order to lessen the drama and allow me to, like you, assess the situation.

Glad you got the feed working, so I knew right away when you posted.


Tanja said...

((Marsha)) time plays such a huge factor in our lives. Reading your blog I was counting the hours. I'm so glad that you are ok. I'm thankful I made a new friend.


Marsha said...

Oh my goodness,
Thank you three for making my point for me. What would I do without my young widow friends? Linda, well girl I love you too. You Chicago widas are my lifeline. Stephanie, thank you for validating my crazy thought process and Pentha, once again, I thank you for a new friendship I already treasure.

48 hours---things can change in a lot less time than that----don't we all know it, but strength does come.

Pentha said...

ugh... I'm sorry you had to endure that anxiety, and sorrier you chose to do so alone.

I went through a similar scare with an abnormal pap, followed by a second one, and needing a biopsy. All is well, but oh the thoughts that go through our widowed-mother heads.

I did share the fear though, and it was a huge relief to be able to call my mother and sister and SO and say, "I'm okay!"

Hugs to you, my sister, and prayers of thanksgiving.

Marsha said...

Remembering that time is this huge factor to us now---why do we have so little control over it? I too have charrished this new friendship---thank you for sharing your blog with me.