overwhelming gratitude

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Today, I woke up with thoughts of thankfulness.  First of all, for what seems very menial to most.  Would you like to hear it? Would you like to hear my very selfish wave of thankfulness that in the whole scheme of life means absolutely nothing?  Well, here it goes…

 I was NOT called in to the hospital at 3:00 am this morning like I was almost certain I would be.  Now don’t get me wrong.  I love my job.   But, these last two weeks have been overwhelming.  And coming off a busy weekend of work, gatherings, and little sleep—let’s just say, I was thankful to have woken up in a jolt at 4:30 am to find my phone WITHOUT a missed call.  Thank you, thank you, thank you work girls! 

As many know, my PLANNER is my life all wrapped up nicely in a spiral notebook.  I buy purses that fit my planner.  There are some who believe this may be a sickness?  I have tried to convert over to my droid–but there is NO way.  I love to write things down.  And more than that, I love to look back at my planners and calendars through the years to see what has happened in my life.  It is almost a diary, as many times I’ll jot little things down that I don’t want to forget.  And it has been very useful as we plan holiday gatherings between our many families– because if anyone knows who did what for what holiday, it would be me and my planner.

I pulled out my planner to begin to figure out what we had done last year to help in making Thanksgiving plans.  In my mind, I knew what I would see and I just didn’t want to go there. 

 
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Last year, my Dad was diagnosed with Thymus cancer.   Honestly, I knew there was a thymus—but had no idea what in the world this meant for him.  Did you know you don’t even need a THYMUS?  But yet, it can be overtaken with cancer and cause cancer to spread to the rest of your body.  Did you know that in order to remove the thymus you would have to have a surgery in which you open up the chest cavity to remove it?  This diagnosis rocked our world. Hearing the word cancer  immediately sets your mind  to chemotherapy, radiation, sickness, and a questionable quality of life that may or may not provide healing or remission.  Thoughts of the unknown our scary.  Even with the strongest of faith, this type of testing does make you question so much.  I can tell you—it  brought us all to our knees in prayer.  Fervent prayer.  The kind of desperate  pleading with God that leaves you consumed.  One year ago, we were in the midst of bustling for the holidays.  But had looming thoughts of what was to come for my Dad.  

The surgery was scheduled in December and was one of the most difficult experiences probably my stepmom, brothers and I have ever had to face.  Waiting for hours (it felt like forever) in pre-op with my Dad.  Anxiety is just a touch of what everyone was feeling.  A dangerous surgery, no doubt–and that was just the beginning.  Just the tip of the iceberg, as after making it through this surgery–there was still the diagnosis of cancer to face. 

We knew following the surgery that day, the thymus cancer looked as if was contained.  Meaning–the surgery was the only treatment needed.  We were overjoyed that day—first of all,  that he made it through surgery, and it looked like the best possible scenario we could be facing.  Still we had the nagging reality that it still could have spread or originated in a different place in his body.  The recovery seemed a bit easier to be able to tell my Dad, when he woke up, that it looked contained!  That was so awesome—I can’t imagine having to tell him anything different.  And praised God we did not have to.

The day before Christmas last year we received the phone call that my Dad was clear.  To really feel a skip in your step?  I DID!!  I seriously felt so light, so on top of the world, so abundantly blessed. 

My kids are blessed.  Three sets of grandparents (one more than most!) who love them and are here to help raise and guide them along with Steve and I.  I know this experience last year is most likely not the last of what we may endure in our lifetime.  But I can’t help as I read the many things others are thankful for, to rewind my life and go there.  Again.  Overwhelming gratitude—a new meaning to thankfulness for me. 

 
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Makes being NOT being called in to work at 3:00 am pale in comparison to things I am thankful for today.

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