A Life More Beautiful

"'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord." Jeremiah 29:11

Six long months ago…..

on January 24, 2017

It’s so hard for me to believe how much has changed in the last six months!

Six months ago tonight, my mom and I had just gotten home from taking my girls to my aunt that was going to watch them during my first surgery for breast cancer. I fought tears as I kissed them bye because I was terrified of something going wrong during the surgery.

Six months ago tonight, I was thankful for the ambien that my doctor had prescribed to help my overly anxious mind sleep the night before surgery! I had such a hard time turning off my brain that night, and poor Jason was so sweet as he promised me for the 1,495th time that God was in control. I’m eternally grateful that God blessed me with a hubby that is so much better at trusting and resting in God’s plan than I am!!

Six months ago, I had my first semi-successful surgery. My lymph node tested negative for cancer (MAJOR answer to prayers!!), but the initial surgery didn’t get all of the cancer as we had hoped. I had another surgery in December that (thankfully) removed the last bits of this invader.

Long story short-ish, we’ve officially been given the “cancer-free” announcement that made my new year! I quite literally had to hold on to the exam table to keep myself from lunging at my surgeon to give him an enormous hug when he gave me the news!

While these six months have been trying, to say the least, I have to say that we have been met over and over with God’s grace, love and strength in the most amazing and unexpected ways….from random encouraging texts from friends, a best friend holding my hand while I told my boss that this was definitely cancer, to my very best friend dropping everything to drive across town with FIVE kids and hold me as I cried over the news that chemo was a distinct possibility. We’ve had friends call to pray with us, bring meals to us, give the girls incredibly thoughtful gifts and hold our hand along this painful and eye-opening journey! We’ve experienced supernatural peace and strength through more doctor’s appointments than I care to recount. We’ve learned our ways around the maze that is Brookwood Hospital and met some of the most caring and compassionate doctors that I could have imagined!

As He seems to do with me, God tends to get my attention through songs when I least expect it. One day around the time of my first surgery, Brynlee was in her room playing a cd and this song caught my attention.

The chorus of the song says:

“‘Cause I know that You are who You say You are
And I know that You are God alone
So I’ll stand on every promise You have made to me
‘Cause I believe who You say You are!”

This song became a prayer for me. There were SO many days that I would listen to this song on my drive to and from work. I had to remind myself so often that I know God is who He says He is! His Word promises that He is our Healer, our Peace, our Strong Tower, our Refuge, and our Friend. I can assure you He has literally been every one of those to Jason and myself!

As much as I love the chorus, my favorite part of the song says,

“I may not understand
Everything You have planned
But You hold my world with steady hands;
I will trust You!!”

As unsteady as our world has felt, I can’t explain the peace that we have felt just knowing that NO MATTER WHAT He holds our world!! Our names are engraved on the palms of His hands, and as our pastor said on Sunday, “He is madly in love with US!!!” The God of the universe is jealously in love with our little family! He knew exactly what 2016 would bring to our doorstep……BUT He also knew the blessing that would be ushered in with 2017!!!

He knew that as our world was being rocked by a cancer diagnosis, we were being prepared to bring a new life into this world again. As we were debating the pros and cons of chemo vs. radiation, He was setting the stage for a little boy to shock us with the news that he was on the way!! My plan of being a  “girl-mom” was going to have a little man thrown into the mix! He knew our shock and disbelief would turn into amazement and LOTS of laughter.

And He knew that at the end of December, we would be told that there was a chance that this little miracle had Down’s Syndrome. Through tears, I told four trusted friends and asked that they help us pray. Again, I listened to this song over and over again. I knew that either way, we would adore this new addition, but as every mom, I prayed that Cayden would be born completely healthy! A blood test and high risk ultrasound later, we’ve been assured that our little man is perfectly healthy and has an extra wide foot like his Nanna 🙂

Jason looked at me as we left the high risk OB’s office, just like he did after my surgeries, and said, “I told you everything would be okay! God is taking care of us!!”

And you know what?? HE IS!! Through good news, bad news and all of the in between news we’ve received, God is taking care of us!! 2016 was a year that we will NEVER forget, but with God’s grace and healing, we made it through…stronger, closer to each other and with a testimony that we didn’t have in 2015!

“So I’ll stand on every promise You have made to me
‘Cause I believe who You say You are!”

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