Thank you for all the love and encouragement this week as I headed into radiation. The week has been so busy since beginning radiation and therapy for my chest and arms. Everything is going pretty well - no side effects to report yet. I will try to smuggle my camera into radiation sometime soon so I can give you a sneak peek. I can't thank you enough for the cards, texts, emails and messages of support as I headed into this next round of treatment.
I would also like to thank everyone for the extra prayers and concern for my friend, Janet that I mentioned in last weeks post. It is with a heavy heart that I have to share that Janet lost her brave battle with colon cancer last Thursday. I cannot possibly explain how hard this is- even though we were only friends for a short time, we shared a special bond that only few people can understand. I am so heartbroken for her family and devastated that this awful disease has robbed the world of such a beautiful person. This has been one of the first times I have actually felt angry - angry that cancer has taken the lives of so many people I care about - angry that Janet never had the chance to marry her fiance' and grow old together - and angry that despite feeling like I have always tried to do the right things in life, this disease might just take it all away from me.
I have always believed that everything happens for a reason. I have said it countless times throughout my life. I have always held on to the belief that God has a plan for us and throughout these past 8 1/2 months, I have desperately tried to stay focused on that. But, I would by lying if I denied that it is a huge struggle to not question that plan sometimes. To not ask "why is this happening?"...I don't ever ask that about myself and what is happening to me but I do question it for the other people in my life. Like, "why did Janet have to be taken from us so quickly", or "why does my husband have to watch his wife go through this after losing his mom to cancer". My dear friend Meredith often helps me work through these emotions and she reminds me that God is good all of the time - that when bad things happen to good people, it doesn't mean God is punishing them, and it doesn't mean He loves them any less. Every day I remind myself that God is with me - that He is looking out for me and those I love - that he won't abandon me or my family when times get really hard. I feel such comfort in knowing that but during tough times like this, after losing a friend, it is easy to feel discouraged and try to question His plan.
Tonight I will head to the funeral home to say goodbye to Janet and pay my respects to her family. Selfishly, I am a little worried about how I will handle it. This is the fourth person I have lost due to cancer since my own diagnosis, and this one just hits the closest to home. I think of her grieving mom and I think of my mom, I will see her heartbroken fiance' and I will think of Mike, I will watch her best friends struggle with this loss and I will think of my best friends.
I am so sad that cancer took Janet from us, but I am relieved that the great suffering she endured is now over. My mom always reminds me that for the person that has died, they have received the ultimate reward - a place in Heaven - and it is those of us that are left behind that struggle and grieve. Janet is in a better place and I am thankful for that. I will honor her memory by continuing to live each day to the fullest and remind myself that every day is truly a blessing.
Please continue to keep her family in your thoughts and prayers during this extremely difficult time.
I have spent a lot of time with many different friends this week and I just hope you all know how much you mean to me and how grateful I am to have you in my life. I am so blessed to have such amazing friends and I cannot thank you enough for always checking on me, taking the time to call or visit, and for the fun times we have when we are together. I am so thankful for each of you!
Grateful that Janet will be another special guardian angel looking out for us...
My blog to keep you all