I have had a heavy heart and silent blog for the past few weeks. My family received some news about four weeks ago that has reshaped our lives and how we choose to live it, but by anyone's standards, is not the most exciting positive news ever.
As many of you have surmised over the content of my blog, my relationship with my mother in law is pretty spectacular. For many years, she has been an infinite source of comfort and support and for all practical purposes, I see her as a mother figure in my life.
About six weeks ago, she awoke with a pain in her breast and decided to get it checked out. She had a mammogram, that came back abnormal and required a biopsy. Four weeks ago, her biopsy confirmed she has breast cancer.
In spite of incredible circumstances, my mother in law has had EXCEPTIONAL luck. In the doctors that are guiding her treatment and care. In the speed in which accompanying tests have been scheduled and executed. In the way the world has responded to this circumstance our family now faces.
My mother in law has cancer. The cancer does not have her.
Frankly, when news like this hits you, it usually feels like a gut punch. Your knees get weak. You cannot keep a cognitive thought in your head if your life depended on it. But, the stronger part of you starts drumming up a list of things that need to be done.
Upon consultation with my MIL, I decided not to write about this for a while. And it has been hard to keep this within me, when it has colored so many parts of my life. But it is not defining us.
Because, in spite of the ugliness of the word cancer, the gratitude within my heart cannot be explained in any rational way. I am grateful that this cancer has a worthy opponent. My MIL is no shrinking violet. She fights like a girl: proud, courageous, with a fierceness that can overcome anything. Her heart and mind are determined to beat this, and, if the last 20 years prove anything, my money is on her, 2:1.
I am grateful to those whose prayers and good wishes have so often lifted me throughout these last few weeks. Your kindness, compassion and willingness to do for our family is worth so much more to us than just the mere words that have left your mouths. They have sustained us, given us strength, given us comfort.
I am grateful for those people who have been involved so far in her care. She is so positive because the people around her are filled with hope. She has doctors that have involved her in every decision and are positive that she will be around for a long time.
I am grateful to this cancer for giving my family the opportunity to fuel ourselves with the wonder of each day, the wonder of our family.