Fortnights and Haircuts
A lot can happen in a fortnight.
Two weeks ago today we found out my diagnosis of cancer, and to be honest, I am not sure we have fully wrapped our heads around the significance of it all. Everything had to happen so quickly with starting the intense chemo treatment almost immediately, that now it seems crazy that it was only 14 days ago that all of this began.
The two weeks have been filled with anxiety, discomfort, sickness, the chemo room, and an overwhelming sense of community and love that I will spend the rest of my days retelling. Stories of love, grace and compassion that have come from people near and far have blown us away. Allison and I knew that we were going to need people to be beside us if we were going to make it through this and the way people responded has been extremely humbling and borderline overwhelming in the best way possible.
Thank you for your support, for your encouragement, for your prayers, for your messages, for your stories of conquering, for your cards, for your meals, for your gifts, for your texts and visits. Thank you for your understanding when responses have been slow or we’ve indicated that we need a quiet day of no visitors. Thank you for the graciousness with which you have walked beside us as we deal with the physical and emotional effects of treating cancer.
One of the side effects no one prepared me for was hiccups. And not just hiccups, but “remember that girl who was on the Today Show because of her hiccups” hiccups. Hours of annoying “chemo” hiccups. Turns out it’s an uncommon side effect. So glad that we are keeping the uncommon going. Ever see a grown man hiccup for hours? It’s uncomfortable for everyone. I sound like a disney character that swallowed a bunch of bubbles. Who knew.
One of the other side effects has been my hair. The anxiety and waiting for it fall out in clumps this week has been one of the harder aspects emotionally for me, so instead of just waiting, we went ahead and buzzed it. My glorious locks hit the ground rendering me to the look of a naked sheep, freshly shorn from his wool coat – cold, confused, and slightly exposed. We tried to make a video of it but it didn’t turn out that great, but even still, you can see it here.
I’ve been thinking a lot about the seasons changing as October has finally relented into autumn in Nashville, with the temperatures dropping and the leaves falling, cascading in their wayward manner to the hardening ground. If I had to pick a season to be diagnosed and begin treatment, I think it would be the start of fall. Fall has always been a symbol of change, and while the beauty of the season is not lost, we know that fall leads to winter and in the season of winter is where deep roots are entrenched, where trees and plants regroup, where healing can take place so that when the time comes they can grow stronger and more vibrant than before.
Winter is a necessary season, and we don’t want to hibernate through this. So that has been one of my prayers – that during this time that deep roots would go further, that healing would take place in every aspect of life and that when the time has come at the first hint of spring and new life that there will be such an overwhelming joy and expectation and understanding as we look back on what could be seen as a barren season, we will see the depth of life that is fully life.
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