What a year it's been. I've come full circle. Happy Anniversary to me. As I write these words, I don’t think it’s possible to express the emotion I feel as I encounter for the first time the anniversary of the discovery of my tumor and subsequent cancer diagnosis. I don’t think you can hear the sarcasm…it’s not a ‘happy’ anniversary. And as I write that, I don’t think you can hear the confusion I’m feeling, because it actually is ‘happy’. I’M HERE to write about it. I’m feeling so many things that are hard to put into words, but I’ll give it a try! It is a combination of reflection on the past year and grief. It’s hard to recognize that the past year ever even occurred: the ups and downs; the trials and tribulations; the tests that strengthened my faith. But it did. With that reflection comes grief as well. I feel like I’m mourning a part of me that is lost forever. I’m mourning a part of my life and my children’s lives that we will never be able to get back. But with that, I realize (and I hope my family does as well) that the Holy Spirit filled that empty space completely. This was the journey I was supposed to take, not just for me, but for those around me as well. And maybe one day my children will understand the reason they had to experience it…and maybe they won’t. But it’s part of God’s perfect plan for their lives too.
The past year I feel like I have been so strong…I had to be. That strength was real. It was necessary. And let there be no doubt about where that came from. God made me strong. If I didn’t lean on the Lord for strength, I never could have made it through this with the tenacity and positivity that kept me going day after day. But now, looking back and being on the flip side, I realize that the Lord is giving me permission to be weak. I think I need that. I think I’ve earned that. I can grieve what has happened to me and my family.I was weak and dropped to my knee when I was diagnosed. I was strong and determined during treatment. And now I feel weak (or maybe it’s just more lament) once more. Everything comes full circle.
It’s interesting how God can speak so clearly to you when you’re heart is opened and ready to accept it. Ephesians 1:18-19 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparable great power for us who believe. I don’t believe in coincidences anymore. Coincidence is nothing more than God pointing out to you that He is with you and involved in every little detail of your life. God has a hand in all of it, as you’ll see from my anniversary timeline that follows.