So as many of you know today marks three years since I heard one word that would drastically change our lives forever. Three years ago I was told my little girl had a 30% chance of surving this one word. Three years ago, because of this one word, I was told she may never walk again, she may not live to see her next birthday, she may never feel her lower extremities again, she may never be able to go to the bathroom on her own again, she would probably be confined to a wheelchair, etc, etc…..the odds she was facing was nothing short of devastating and seemed pretty much impossible. Even if she did pull through, this one word would forever be a part of our lives… as long or as short that may be.
What they didn’t tell us three years ago is that because of this one word we would really start to understand the meaning of what it is to really LIVE. No one could ever be prepared for how drastically your life can change all because of one word. Despite the advice from doctors, nurses, blogs of other patients, pamphlets,etc….you are never truly prepared for life with this one word. It is a very humbling experience as you go through the emotions of each phase of the journey. The absolute heart break you feel at times seems almost unbearable, but then there are those times that your heart literally could burst from all the joy and happiness you feel….watching her breathe on her own after hours of surgery, watching her stand on her own for the first time, watching her take her ”second” first steps, hearing her tell you how much she loves you after you have been cleaning her puke because she has been so sick from the chemo she is receiving, watching her comfort other kids going through the same thing she is while being is hooked up to numerous bags of chemo, waching her explain to clueless children and parents why she no longer has hair or why she is in a wheelchair, seeing her smile and laugh as you are shaving her hair into a mohawk because the chemo has made it fall out again for the 4th time, seeing her order nurses and doctors out of her room because she doesn’t want to be bothered then turning to me and saying “momma please come lay with me so I can rest”, seeing her take handfuls of pills when only a few shorts years ago she couldn’t even swallow one pill, seeing her keep up with schoolwork while laying in a hospital bed becasue she doesn’t want to fall behind, watching her celebrate holidays at a Ronald McDonald house thousands of miles away from home with a smile on her face because she understands what is necessary to keep her here with us, etc, etc, etc. Your patience is thoroughly put to the test as you learn to rely on complete strangers to save the life of your child. People you have never met are now literally holding your child’s life in their hands. There are days when you feel complete sadness for the hand you have been dealt in this life, but then there are those days that you couldn’t picture life any other way. You realize what is really important in this life and some of the sadness comes from wishing you had realized these things much sooner.
Day to day living is so much different now. Three years ago we were not sure how to make it through the next hour much less the next day. As I reflect on where we are now compared to where we were three years ago…I am overhwhelmed. It hit me like a ton of bricks on my way to work and of course the water works started (as some of you know I am really not an emotional person whatsoever but how can you not get emotional today when you really realize what an amazing little girl you have!). Not only is she still here with us but she has surpassed almost every obstacle that seemed impossible three years ago. She is really LIVING life and living it to the fullest! My little girl has beat this awful disease 4 times in three years…How awsome is that! I am truly in awe of her strength, her will to live and mostly her faith. She believes in her healing and she believes that God will see to it that she lives a long and healthy life….what more could I ask for in this life than to have a little girl with such big faith like that!
So today as always, I will not allow that one word to steal our joy. We will not look at this day as the day our lives forever changed for the worse….we will look at this day as the day we really started living. We will give thanks and praise GOD for how far He has brought us. We will celebrate three years and counting … because we have faith that so many better things are in store. NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE!