On Thursday evenings this fall, I have been attending a gathering of 20 somethings (yes that is the name) at the church where I attend. I figured it might be good to connect with others, meet new people but more importantly reconnect with my faith. Church has been for sometime a very hard place for me to walk into.
Anytime this past year I went to church, I immediately became emotional. I found myself often sitting with tears streaming. Trust me nobody wants to be the girl sitting alone crying at church. I have my theory as to why this happens…. but I think deep down the reason is that if I believed all to be true about the Bible and who God is, then I have to embrace the hard part of my story. I have to believe and trust that it is my story, one shaping me and one that even a “good God” allowed to happen. And truthfully that has been hard. So instead of going, I often forgo church for my bed on Sunday mornings or better yet sitting outside on the back porch.
But back to Thursday. During our small group gathering, I cried. For the first time in a long time, I cried about the past year. (I have become so used to speaking about it I almost never cry). We were talking about the verse where we are reminded that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. How God promises to have his hand on us each step of our days and this brought back a memory. The day my mom and I attended chemo camp and got a tour of the infusion room. We sat with the nurse learned all about the next three months and then she gave us a tour. I remember walking into the room and it was filled with patients, hooked up to IV’s. Some reading, some sitting with family, others sleeping. Most of them much older than I. Wrapped in blankets and often resting their heads back. I remember looking at my mom and we both took a deep breath. In two days I would be sitting there. With an IV. With chemo flushing to my veins. My heart hurt and our fear was evident in our eyes. So why you may ask did that verse make me think of that day? Well the truth is, I cry knowing that in that day, when we walked into the infusion room God walked alongside us. That when I was afraid and when he had every power to change the story, he walked next to me. He never left my side and while I wish at times he would have just rewritten this part of my story, or changed the narrative. He didn’t. But he was there. With his hand on me.
Seven months ago, I had my last round of chemotherapy. My body as I have mentioned has been wrecked because of it. And it is hard. Somedays worse than others. I take a nap nearly every day. I sleep close to nine hours at night and my energy level starts to drop in the early afternoon. Many of you would say that that seems pretty normal given what I have been through. But for the go getter that I am. I absolutely stink at giving myself permission to rest. Naps I have always viewed as a sign of weakness. I was NEVER a napper. And guess what… not only do I nap now. My body craves a nap. My body needs a good nap.
Tomorrow I am flying to California for a work conference and then on to Cincinnati to celebrate Brittany Anderson’s Bachelorette Party. After a weekend in Cinci I will be in Louisville for twenty four hours before heading back to Denver. Then next Friday is my surgery. (Whew). I think I need a nap thinking about it all. I am excited but nervous. Afraid I will be tired. Afraid I won’t be able to keep up. But all in all reminding myself of grace. Granting myself grace for the moment and to only do what I can do.
Hope this find you well on your Monday.
The picture below I took one day in the infusion room while I was receiving hydration. My body would get really cold so I always covered up with a lot of blankets.