Thursday, April 2, 2009

Some things just stink

Cancer stinks. Chemotherapy stinks. Nausea stinks.

Please excuse my understatement of these facts, but I'm trying really hard not to use the kinds of words that truly describe how I feel at this moment.

My mother has ovarian cancer and it stinks.

I am the only girl in my family. Mama and I have always been close, even through the rough teen years. We are still close, we are more best friends than mother/daughter. We can talk about anything ... except her cancer.

And that stinks.

I don't know why I want to talk about it. For her, not talking about it is the way she keeps from giving it power over her life ... at least that is what I think the reason is, but since we don't talk about it, I don't really know. For me, not talking about it seems to raise a wall between us that I can't penetrate. We can talk about every other issue under the sun, but the one thing that has changed both of our lives is forbidden, it seems.

I am not angry at Mama about this. I can't even begin to understand what she is going through and I certainly don't want to add any stress to her life, but the bottling of emotions for me is so hard. You see, for my whole life, my Mama has been my sounding board. Any time I have been angry, hurt, afraid, sad, etc. she was the first person I would call. Now I am experiencing all those emotions over and over again and I can't say a word to her.

And that just stinks.

I never knew before the summer of 2005 that cancer is a family disease, but it is.

And that stinks too.

I hope that this doesn't sound like I am whining. I am so thankful that after nearly 4 years of this, Mama is still with us and doing well. She is an amazing woman ... she still runs the business that she and my dad have built over the last 35 years and she still teaches the Sunday School class that she began teaching when I was a child. She has no question that God is daily granting her strength to endure this torture and she gives Him the glory for what she is able to do. And so do I. I also know that apart from my relationship with my heavenly Father, I would have no ability to cope with this situation. My faith has grown over the last four years. I can see God's hand moving in many ways through this. But, I cannot hide the fact that I still struggle, sometimes daily. I don't want to deal with this. I just don't. But, it seems, I don't have a choice.

I am not looking for sympathy, only a place to vent. And, perhaps, to find out that I am not the only person who has felt this way.

(I chose teal as the color for this post because it is the Ovarian Cancer awareness color)

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