sunday, july 21, 2013.

After returning from our trip, my blood work shows that my hCG is up slightly (hCG 3084). I really don't want to go to surgery, and I'm not sure why I'm going or what I hope it will accomplish, knowing my womb is already empty and the growth is buried deep and cannot be scraped away... but I go anyway.

The surgery is delayed for several hours (from 1030am to 2pm). We wait. We chat. We giggle. We snuggle up in a tiny recliner and take a nap together. We pray. It is quite a nice little date actually, except for the fact that I am wearing a hospital gown and haven't had anything to eat or drink since midnight. When the time finally comes, the surgery itself lasts all of 9 minutes. I wake up calm and coherent and am discharged quickly. I recover quite well and sleep long and deep. Doctor Two calls the next day and informs me he didn't get much, if anything. He tells me I shouldn't get my hopes up, and I need to be thinking about chemo and preparing myself to start the following week, because he doesn't anticipate my levels taking a dramatic drop. I can only say, "I understand" and "thank you." I can only cry a little and pray a lot.

So many questions. We sometimes wonder aloud to each other why is this the story that God is writing with our lives? And, well... is this the story, or are we not doing it right? Are we not hearing right? Are we not obeying? Are we freaking nuts? Why wander around the wilderness like this? Why all the suspense? Why all the humiliation? And why dodge chemo, only to have surgery?

We still don't have answers, but we still have peace. We know God is in this because we are being changed -- completely transformed, actually. This winding road seems unlikely at best and suspicious at worst, but neither one of us can deny the fruit in our lives. I mean, don't some of you wonder what the heck is happening to your friends? Where did the party people go? Why isn't Mama guzzling a bottle of pink champagne and swearing like a sailor? When did it become perfectly natural to talk openly about Jesus? How are we so at peace and so filled with joy in the midst of cancer, of all things? It's surprising how much we don't miss the things we are being stripped of, even things we don't really want to let go of: our comfy little life with everything just so, predictable routines, caring what other people think, and so on and so forth.

As for this unlikely road, with all its ridiculous twists and turns, would we now be transformed if we'd never gotten pregnant in January? If we'd hadn't had a miscarriage in April? If I wasn't diagnosed with cancer in May? Would our lives now be truly changed if I'd been instantly healed at any point in the last few months? If I'd had surgery sooner? If I'd gone to chemo? Who then would we now be and someday become? Where then would we now be and someday end up? Would we still be stuck in survival mode (those of you with toddlers know what I'm talking about)? Would we have gone to Cali and been launched in this new direction in our lives? Would cancer be the new beginning that it has become? And where would you be? Would your life have been touched by our suffering? Would you have wondered, even if only for a moment, if God will really heal me? Would you have prayed? Hoped? Held your breath? Would you someday dare to ask for your own miracle, your own healing, your own revelation, your own transformation? Would we have dared ask, if we hadn't been so desperate? But we are so, so desperate, and we have asked, and we are still asking...