Cancer Journey HEALTH Spiritual

7 Years Surviving Cancer | A Slow, Steady, Apprehensive Dance of Celebration

7 years.

Thank you, Lord, for 7 years.

 

I feel overwhelmed when I think of all the life lived in 7 years.

So much growth. Many growing pains.

 

You are faithful through it all, by my side, guiding, whispering, present.

You know my thoughts… how I find it confusing to know how to feel about 7 years.

 

So many feelings. I’ve seen my marriage, friendships, and precious girls grow.

An unspeakable gift!

 

I know I’ve gained wisdom, my time with you has not returned void. {Isaiah 55:11}

Yet…I feel less resilient than in my younger years.

 

Life lived can take its toll.

 

I’ve seen much beauty and I’ve seen much pain. I see how often it comes in a pair and does a horrific beautiful dance.

The ashes Lord, the beautiful ashes. I hold tight to your promise of trade. {Isaiah 61:3}

 

Maybe my perceived lack of resilience is evidence and subconscious acknowledgment of my weakness and need for you? For when I am weak, I am strong. {2 Corinthians 12:9-11}

 

Stories swirl when thinking of 7 years. Some stories sting–the beautiful painful.

Luisa.

Ty & Terri

Paul.

You know their names, and there are more.

 

Pieces of my heart, some here, some taken, when I think of them a physical ache comes. Holes in my heart.

These holes really are a longing for you, {Psalm 63:1} for answers, for wholeness– for Heaven. {2 Corinthians 5:2}

 

We long for Heaven, yet, we long to live.

We want years. A God-given desire.

We want Life. {Psalm 84:2}

That is why you gave yours. {John 3:16}

 

7 years is so close to 10.

I’ve never thought beyond the 10…not really.

When told “a 50/50 chance of being alive in 10 years” the apprehension comes and seems to grow when I think of how quickly that number is coming.

 

I can’t make much sense of it, this curious vague apprehension.

 

Is it the knowledge that days are numbered?

If so, this is a good thing, for all of ours are. {Job 14:5}

 

Life is but a breath. A vapor. {James 4:14}

 

Is it that I let quickly pass the glorious thoughts of weddings and grandchildren and wrinkles and gray hair?

Oh the magnificent thought of growing old with my Love and Lovelies! I hold it loosely.

 

My Teagan just turned 18, a legal adult in some states. She blows out candles and I am in awe that I get to see the day, a prayer of mine answered. I watch her fall in what could be love and I recognize weddings are not too far away. Could I really have the privilege?

 

I am cautious in my longings, keeping them in check all these 7 years.

 

I’ve practiced a “come what may” lifestyle, hands open. A learned trust.

So why the apprehension and hesitation if I’m so schooled in trust?

 

I know You are good {Psalm 136:1}

I know you are trustworthy. {Psalm 33:4}

 

Trust with all your heart

 

I also have known and seen suffering and pain, how at any moment the other shoe can drop and along with it hopes and dreams. My human-ness comes and I feel frustrated that celebration can so easily come with a vague “what-if?”

 

I know you know. You are acquainted with grief and familiar with suffering. {Isaiah 53:3}

 

You whisper reminders of your apprehension of the cross, your moments spent in that garden. {Matthew 26:39} I focus my wandering thoughts. I find all the answers I need. It is enough, more than enough.

 

Your arms opened wide spread on a tree carved for me. You’ve got it all and hold it all, the whole of the world right in your hand.

 

I look closer and find myself. My life. My story. My moments.

Closer still and I see my hairs numbered {Luke 12:7} and your thoughts of me so vast it outweighs the all of the grains of sand! {Psalm 139:17,18} You see me. Fully known, fully loved.

 

It frees the apprehension. I breathe easy and feel a lightness, my thoughts once again free to dance, and you along with them, dancing over me, {Zephaniah 3:17} all the while holding me right there in your palm.

 

My joy slows and settles. I lay my head on the shoulder of Father God – just you and me, we dance.

I exhale release the past 7 years, all of it.

The joy. The pain.

 

I release the 10-year mark.

I release the years of life beyond, Lord-willing.

 

Help me to keep releasing the unknown whole. {Proverbs 3:5-6}

Remind me to let go because I am held, then help me to keep dancing, a dance only with and for You.

 

Thank you, Lord, for 7 years.


WE DANCE – Staffany Gretzinger

“You steady me, slow and sweet, we sway–take the lead and I will follow”

“Finally ready now, to close my eyes and just believe that you won’t lead me where you don’t go”

“We dance, just you and me.”

“It’s nice to know, I’m not alone, I’ve found my home here in your arms.”

 

 

14 Comments

  • Reply Dee Tracy September 5, 2017 at 11:59 am

    What a beautifully written post, Amy! Your God-given strength shows through and is sure to encourage others who are facing a health crisis. Your feelings truly resonated with me as my journey with cancer began 15 years ago this week. Each day is such a gift! I will continue to keep you in my prayers.

    • Reply AmyNewNostalgia September 11, 2017 at 3:41 pm

      I always love reading of those big numbers! 15 years is amazing and I’m so thankful you are healthy. Yes, life is such a gift. <3

  • Reply Laura Lane September 5, 2017 at 12:49 am

    Oh my, what an insightful and heart touching post. Tomorrow I will see my oncologist. Wednesday will be my last chemo for breast cancer. Surgery and radiation await this fall and winter.

    Everyone assumes I caught it early. No. But God. I’m living in so much trust in his promises. By his stripes I am healed. I will live and not die and declare the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Psalm 118.
    But your post really touched the reality of it all. There are no guarantees, but many hopes.

    I praise God for your seven years and many more. I thank God in faith for mine as well.
    Interestingly enough, I just scheduled a post for tomorrow morning with the same Proverbs scripture. It’s so applicable.

    Do drop in and say hello!
    Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage
    http://harvestlanecottage.com

    • Reply AmyNewNostalgia September 11, 2017 at 3:40 pm

      Oh Laura, you are in the thick of it. Keep holding on! Your trust in His promises is beautiful. Yes, yes…many hopes. I will drop in and say hi for sure!

  • Reply Sandy Folden September 4, 2017 at 10:35 am

    Amy ,such beautiful person you are . Wonderful words ,payers to God our Father . Many more blessed years for you . always love and prayers to you.

    • Reply AmyNewNostalgia September 11, 2017 at 3:38 pm

      Thank you, Sandy, for love, prayers and kind words!

  • Reply Nancy September 2, 2017 at 3:13 pm

    Beautiful love letter to the Heavenly Father…. II thank no this speaks for a lot of us….. just dealing with the uncertainties of life … of everyday living and trusting and walking the faith… it seems so simple to say, but the actual practice is another story.

    • Reply AmyNewNostalgia September 11, 2017 at 3:36 pm

      YES…I know so many live with uncertainty staring at them. Especially in this day and age. It does seem so simple, but yes, the practice takes…well much practice!

  • Reply Liz cooper September 2, 2017 at 2:42 pm

    That is just BEAUTIFUL, Amy!!! I am so Blessed and thankful to call you my friend❤️

    • Reply AmyNewNostalgia September 11, 2017 at 3:35 pm

      Thank you Liz! You bless me. So thankful for YOU.

  • Reply kathy September 2, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    I am so happy to celebrate life with you.

    • Reply AmyNewNostalgia September 11, 2017 at 3:35 pm

      Such a sweet thing to say. Thank you!

  • Reply Alison Rash September 2, 2017 at 9:41 am

    Love this so much, friend. 💕

    • Reply AmyNewNostalgia September 11, 2017 at 3:34 pm

      Love YOU.

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