"Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the Lord your God... Since you are precious and honored in my sight, and because I love you... Do not be afraid, for I am with you." Isaiah 43:1-5 NIV
I am overwhelmed and humbled by your love and encouragement. Thank you. Thank you for loving us; thank you for caring about us; thank you for spurring us on to follow the path Christ has laid before us; thank you for your faithful prayers. We thank God for each of you.
Last night may have been the hardest night yet for me. We finally told our beloved Young Life kids about the cancer. And it was so hard, but so beautiful. I first told my darling sophomore girls during campaigners before club. We went over the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in Daniel 3, and how when they were thrown into the fire, there was a 4th man in the fire with them: Jesus. Today, especially, I am clinging to the truth that Jesus is in this fire with us and that he will not allow a hair on our heads to be burned. That's my Jesus, my rescuer; my hero. I am comforted every day that I am loved more than I can imagine by the King of the universe; and I am thankful that the Victory is already His. I know how the story ends and it is wonderful! Nonetheless, telling my girls that I know Jesus loves me and has an incredible plan for my life, even though I have cancer, was so hard. It is hard to explain how deep my love runs for these girls. I hate to see them cry and be sad, especially on account of me. For a year and half, I have been telling these girls how much Jesus loves them, the amazing plans He has for their life, and how true beauty comes from within. Last night, they reminded me of all these beautiful truths. How blessed I am to be loved by them. Then Matt and I told probably 200 YL kids about the cancer during club. Matt was a pillar of strength, as always. I am certain his faith could move mountains:) What a privilege it was to get to tell those kids that God is Good all the time, even when times don't seem that good. I felt our sweet Lord holding us up last night, directing our every word. Our prayer is that kids wouldn't have heard about cancer, but about Christ and the crazy, awesome love He has for them. Our amazing Young Life team then handed out pink bracelets for all the kids to wear to remind them to pray for us. It is so humbling to know that so many people are praying for us. Thank you.
Since my last post, there is quite a bit to update y'all on! On Thursday, we met with the breast surgeon and oncologist at UT Southwestern and the breast surgeon at Baylor. It was a long day and we were thoroughly confused at the end of the day! All the Doctors seem so knowledgeable, and as I was stressing about which team to choose, Matt gently reminded me that we were so blessed to be able to choose from some of the best Doctors in the country. After praying all weekend about it, we decided to go with Dr. Grant from Baylor. He loves the Lord, which is a huge bonus and comfort. When we were with him, I felt peaceful and hopeful. Very different from the feelings of anxiety and fear that overwhelmed me every where else. So, it feels great to have that decision made. How thankful I am that the Lord cares about every little decision and adores me amidst my fear and anxiety. Once I told Dr. Grant that we would be going with him, the ball started rolling. We meet with the plastic surgeon, Dr. William Carpenter, next Tuesday and then next Friday I have my sentinel lymph node biopsy procedure. I guess this is an outpatient surgery where they will take out some of my lymph nodes to test them and see if the cancer has spread. They don't want any surprises once they get to the big surgery. So then the big, bilateral mastectomy surgery is scheduled for Tuesday, November 29th. This is the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. I am so thankful that I will get to celebrate Thanksgiving before the surgery. The decision to get a double mastectomy was hard, because as I explained in an earlier post, this means that I won't ever get to breast feed again. My heart breaks for this, but Matt and I really feel like it is a wise decision to remove as much tissue as we can now, so that we have a much lower chance of getting cancer again. I am so thankful God has kept our hearts on the same page through all this. I am sure that I will mourn for the loss of that blessing when and if we do get to have another baby. But in the meantime, I am just praying so hard that God will allow us to have another baby. Please pray for that with us.
As for chemotherapy, many pathology tests will be run on the actual tumor after it is taken out, so we will know a lot more about the specific chemo regime then. It would appear that chemotherapy will start 4 weeks after surgery, which is the 1st week in January. What a blessing that I will hopefully feel great for Christmas! Thank you, Lord. As always, His timing is perfect.
I think that is all I have to update y'all with today. We love you:)
Joyfully in HIM~