This round of radiation has been…a thousand times better than last time! Praise God! I was kind of waiting for that awful moment where I wake up with hot skin melting off my neck, and here we are nearly a month later and the worst of the worst was some crispy peeling! Ew. Using those words to describe skin, uhhh kind of horrible sounding. Anyway, the mouth is still dry as a bone and my taste hasn’t come back. I only have a few pesky sores on my tongue and throat and I still have tumors. Yes, unfortunately they haven’t magically dissolved.
To clear things up, I know a lot of you saw my post about wanting to go work in an orphanage. I was so hopeful that radiation was going to get rid of my tumors. I mean heck I had 60 treatments! I was encouraged to see that my golf ball tumor went down to a grape tumor so I thought that maybe, just maybe I’d have some time off. So as I prayed about how to use my free month, the Lord brought a mission trip to my heart. I guess it was just, I mean for the last 2 years I’ve been poured into. I’ve been the “charity” case. People have served me and done kind things for me and I feel like it’s time for me to pour out, to serve, and I know that I do that in some ways through my blog. I also just LOVE kids, and I love culture and it just seemed like a good move! Anyway, through the course of a week I had reached out to 10 orphanages based off your recommendations (thank you). It was really coming together and I was getting pretty excited! But there was one issue, as my hand reached up to assess the pesky little, life-threatening lump in my neck, it was bigger. It was bigger and it was hard as a rock. We all know by now that this is a bad thing.
So radiation didn’t work, all the way. I refuse to have the heart crushing thought that radiation was all for nothing, so I’m choosing to believe that radiation was just meant to shrink the tumors. I mean, surgery on a grape is MUCH better than surgery on a golf ball! But I’m not going to pretend that I wasn’t devastated. It’s so hard to hear that yet another thing didn’t work. This also means that I won’t be going on a missions trip, which was also very sad for me. Instead I will make my way to Seattle on Monday for a scan and a new plan.
Surgery doesn’t work, Radiation doesn’t work, Chemo doesn’t work, and the Clinical Trial doesn’t work. I have to admit that these facts have terrified me the last few weeks. I feel as though I have no back-up plan. Like they are just keeping me alive, not that I’m going to live. I really am afraid that this cancer is going to kill me. I know we are all going to die, someday. And as I think about death more and more I have to ask, if you don’t have God, then what are you living for? What would you say to me, a 23 year old woman with possibly not long to live, who, in the last year and a half has been through 12 weeks of radiation, 2 major surgeries, one clinical trial, 7 biopsies, and is now looking at another face altering surgery that may not even save my life. Why should I persevere, why should I keep fighting? Because as I wrestle with the desire to live for me and the desire to live for God all that I can say is that I should keep fighting because this life isn’t about ME. It’s not about being happy and comfortable, it’s not about being the prettiest or the most successful, because nothing in this world will sustain. Not if I choose to live for my husband, or my parents, not for my photography or my white picket fence dreams. Those will all fail me, they will all perish, and they are not a guaranteed constant. God is the only thing that is outside of myself, that I can choose to live for that will never leave me or forsake me, He will never fail me or stop loving me, He will never stop fighting by my side, He will never stop wanting the best for me, He will cry with me and He will bless me, He himself gave His life up for me, HE DIED FOR ME, and that my friends, is someone to live for.
Just a reminder visual to prove I wasn’t being dramatic about my skin melting off last time…