I’ve been a little MIA lately so I know a lot of you are begging for an update! Well, the update is, the pill isn’t working. I’ve slowly but surely been getting sicker and weaker and my tumors, them nasty tumors, are growing and rearing their ugly heads in new places. Man I hate those things. Adam and I always joke around about wishing we could just pop them right out. Actually, now that I’m visualizing that, I’m glad that’s not possible, ew! Anyway, I definitely feel the effects of my cancer more than ever. I’m not sleeping but a few hours at night, I’m in constant pain from my tumors pushing on nerves, I have a harder time swallowing because of my throat tumor, I’ve lost a bunch of weight and can’t seem to keep any of it on, and I’m so dang tired and have low energy all the time. It’s not good and it’s not fun.
Lately it’s been kind of difficult because I feel like I don’t recognize myself. This weak, sickly version of me is actually kind of new. My family has noticed my slow deterioration as well, and it’s been especially hard on them because they feel like helpless spectators. It’s hard for me because I so badly want to say, “The old Hayden is still here, she’s still the lively, bubbly, adventurous, giggly person, she’s just being overshadowed by the cancer Hayden.” I have to fight feeling almost guilty for not feeling like or being “me”. But this is my new normal, and it’s not my fault and it’s not in my control and I have to give myself grace for that. It’s kind of like when someone has the flu and they aren’t themselves and you just kind of dismiss it because you know they aren’t feeling well, only this time it feels more permanent.
I head back to Seattle tomorrow with Adam and we will attend the Merkel Dinner! I’m so excited to see old friends and make some new friends, the dinner is always so wonderful, even though I’m always the youngest one. And this year I’m a speaker for it! My doctors asked me to speak because they think that I’m inspiring, which is just so humbling. After the dinner I will get an infusion of immunotherapy. I have to be honest, I don’t have a lot of hope in immunotherapy anymore. In fact, I really struggle with having any hope at all these days. It seems so impossible to envision myself healed. I have over 20 tumors and as they grow I feel less and less hopeful for a cure. But God is teaching me that instead of expecting him to do the things that I want, or the things that seem like they’d be right, I should just expect more of Him. Like, instead of sitting here placing all my hope in healing and expecting Him to perform a miracle. I want to expect that God is a powerful God, capable of miracles, I want to expect that He will never leave me or never stop loving me, I want to expect that He knows whats best for me, etc. It’s not about WHAT he will do, but WHO he is. I hope that makes sense. I expect things of God’s character, not of His actions because who can know the mind of the Lord? I have an understanding that He is powerful enough that He CAN heal me, but I also accept that if He chooses not to (on this Earth) then that’s because it’s not what’s best for me.
Oh, side note, actually kind of a big side note, ADAM and I ARE GOING TO EUROPE! So it was a very last minute decision but I kind of figured, if these are potentially my last days, weeks, months of life, then I want to have my last hurrah. I’ve always dreamed of going to Greece and Adam has always wanted to go to France. So the Lord opened the door and our last hurrah (maybe) will be a trip from Seattle to Frankfurt to Athens to Thessaloniki to Paris to Nice where we will rent a car and drive the French Riviera/Coast, then back to Frankfurt and home! We leave Tuesday the 12th and get back on the 25th. I am so excited you guys! Please pray for a supernatural energy for me and also for me to give myself grace and patience because I’m still sick and won’t be able to do a million miles a minute like I used to. I am so beyond blessed by this and I can’t wait to share the moments with you all!