Do you know Him? How I pray you do. I couldn't face today or any other day without Him. He guides. He Provides. He lifts me up. He lights my steps. He understands. He extends mercy and courage, grace and comfort.
I've experienced Him in all these ways before, but as you heal and get better it feels more difficult to go back to the intimately known territory than brings pain, sickness, loss, humility and hardship all around you. I know the look in my husbands eyes when he's hurting for me. I hear the pain in my Daddy's voice. I see the determination and courage in my siblings features. I see the disappointment and confusion in my children. I feel the warm concern of my Mama. I experience the generosity of so many through food, visits, messages and cards, financial gifts and tokens to bring me joy and entertainment. It's all too familiar this time, but yet it's not.
I have been through chemo before, and dealt with extreme fatigue and nausea, even losing half of my hair post surgery. Yet, the visual that I'm sick once again was a hard hit, while also spending 4 days in bed this weekend.
I felt so terrible on Saturday I knew we should cut my hair off as half of it was gone, but I didn't have the mental or physical capacity. Sunday night as I showered another 1/4 of my hair washed out and left matted tangles that my mom came to brush out as I struggled with nausea and vomiting around midnight. Still my hair was matted again with no repair Monday morning. My sisters, Amy & Katy, came to do the dreaded dead of shaving my head. They were so brave and gentle. They helped me dress and go get fluids and anti nausea meds in my new wig. Billy says he thinks I'm beautiful on the inside and that makes me beautiful on the outside too. He's so sweet to me. Alyssa wanted to see my bald head and touch it and talk about it while she tried on my wig and danced around looking fabulous! Isaiah says he likes the wig and knows he'll get used to it like a new hair cut, but he's not ready to see my bald head yet. He holds my hand, at almost 13, and says he just knows I'll feel better tomorrow. I can see the hope to encourage me in his young eyes.
My body may ache and sickness may rule over the day, but my heart is full. I am treated like the daughter of The King. I may not be happy, but Joy is mine to claim. I fight to choose it each day. This day more difficult to express outwardly, but it's there in my heart, where He lives.