So, I’ve been thinking, while in the many waiting rooms I have sat in lately, that the time spent waiting is so much more enjoyable when I’m not looking at my phone. When I’m not going through texts or emails but rather imagining and enjoying what is right in front of me. Sit in the silence and reminisce. I have been given some pretty overwhelming news that I have cancer. This news knocked me off my feet, but it also provided me an opportunity to be patient with the wait and utilize it to my benefit; to look at what is truly meaningful to me in my life.

Music has brought so much inspiration to me in my life. My mom and dad were both music teachers, so music was always playing. We sang in choirs, performed in musicals, sang in the car, and played instruments. I knew at an early age that when I was troubled, I could escape for a few minutes into song. It was my release from the pressures of life. It still is today, and I don’t even have to hear the song out loud, I can just sing or hum it to myself.

I saw Barry Manilow with my parents when I was a little girl, it was a great performance that kept us all on our feet! Music is a way for me to celebrate life, but also find comfort and healing in a difficult time. I can’t help, when I listen to Barry Manilow, thinking back to my parents jamming to “Copacabana” and picturing Barry playing on his white grand piano. He was decked out in light blue clothing from head to toe with shiny white shoes. Today, I was patiently waiting by myself in the ultrasound room for the radiologist to let me know if I could leave.

Suddenly, I felt my body start to shimmy, I heard maracas in my head and thought about Lola and I couldn’t help but feel the beat of “Copacabana.”

This huge smile came across my face. It brought joy to me to think back to such a fond memory.  This memory brought me such joy, and if I had been buried in my phone I would have missed this opportunity.

There is a music artist by the name of Lauren Daigle who recently released a song called “Rescue”– the song speaks to me and where I am in my life.

Here are the lyrics that hit home for me. I hope you have a chance to listen to the entire song. There is so much depth to the lyrics:

“I will send out an army

to find you in the middle of the darkest

night is true, I will rescue you.”

It brings me so much comfort in knowing that even through all this brokenness and  pain, God is with me. He is sending his army of people who are lifting me up immeasurably. We all want to feel we are loved. As news of my cancer has spread, the amount of cards, prayers, hugs, text messages and emails I’ve received has been so powerful, and it keeps me going. I am so thankful you are each listening to the call to lift me up.

To catch everyone up since my last blog post, I had a meeting with my oncologist who just might despise cancer more than I do because her specialty is to destroy it! Let me just say, I wouldn’t mess with her.

She is exactly what you want in an oncologist! She is spunky and determined, but does it with a smile.

I won’t know my complete treatment plan until after my surgery, which will include a bi-lateral (double) mastectomy on December 10th, with removal of the sentinel lymph node on the right side. I also had an MRI which showed another mass, only this time on the left side. I had an ultrasound today, but they weren’t able to get to the mass to perform the biopsy, so I will have the privilege of rolling back into an MRI where they will conduct a guided MRI biopsy this Monday. They need to know if there is additional cancer before surgery so they know if they need to remove the sentinel lymph node on the left side as well.

They started gene testing last Wednesday, so I should know the results in a few weeks. I also met with the lymphedema specialist who educated me on the possible risks associated with removal of lymph nodes; a side effect being lymphedema. I feel as if, over the last two weeks, I have had a crash course on breast cancer. It’s a lot to take in, but I am managing it; mostly because of the blessings that just keep coming my way.

I am grateful for the army God has sent me. I am grateful for the doctors that are on my cancer team who plan to take care of business. I’m thankful we all have a choice to reminisce about our childhood, and when given the opportunity, I hope you choose to do that rather than bury yourself in your phone. You never know if you might miss a Copacabana moment. Lastly, I am thankful to Barry Manilow who, today, made me smile and shimmy while I was in the breast imaging waiting room!

16 thoughts on “Copacabana

  1. I love reading your blog. I to love to listen to music and how at the time it relates to what’s happening in life. I heard the song, “I will survive” and I immediately thought of you.
    I love you and I’m praying for you and kids.


  2. Music reaches the soul and I’m so glad that your soul can here it in waiting rooms. God appears in the ordinary. . . Like waiting rooms. Prayers.


  3. You writing is beautiful, thank you for sharing. God speaks to each of us in unique ways, I am thankful you can feel and hear his messages. Sharing those examples is a great reminder for all of us. Continued prayers for all of you.


  4. Angela,

    You are one strong lady! You are going to kick cancers butt and come out shaking those maracas!! We are all praying for you and will be in deep prayer on 12/10.


  5. Angela,
    You are amazing. I would love for you to listen to Jason Mraz… I Want You To Have It All. That is my wish for you. Prayers and hugs. Thanks for inspiring me😘


  6. God bless Barry Manilow!! Stay strong mama. You have massive amounts of people praying for you! And thanks for the reminder to put down the phone!! Hugs to you!!


  7. You have been in my thoughts (and your brothers) so much lately. This piece brought joy and peace to me and I will read it to to Aaron when I get home. You are one of the strongest women I’ve ever met, and I have all the confidence in the world that you are going to kick cancers ass…all whith a shimmy and a smile. Please let us know if we can do anything. We love you.


  8. Thank you so much for starting this blog! Please keep writing! I miss you and I would love to rekindle our friendship. I cannot believe cancer has found you…I do believe in my heart of hearts you will kick this in the face, but I am so impressed by the courage that is coming through in your words! I love you and owe so much of my life and my musical knowledge to you. You pushed me beyond what I thought I could do
    …musically, physically, emotionally. When I watch my 3 children go through Jr High, it only makes me appreciate your presence in my life that much more! So much was going on in my life, and you were a parenting influence, even though we were the same age…I needed you, and God placed you and your family in my life to save me. For that…I am eternally grateful. I will always love you, Angela Joy!


  9. Thank you so much for writing! You have so much wisdom to share and have already touched so many lives with your witness through the Holy Spirit! I’ve been praying for you daily and will continue to do so. Stay strong!!


  10. Oh Angela… I saw your news on FB from your sister. First – holding you and your family in my heart & prayers. Second – your perspective and grace are amazing. You’ve got this!!


  11. So here you are with your pink boxing gloves on and Barry in the background, ready to kick some cancer ass! Just know that we are all in your corner and we got you…
    Remember that Foorprints poem when there was only one set of footprints in the sand? God is carrying you lady, you are in His hands. Hold Him close, hug Him tight through this. I am praying for you ❤️


  12. Angela! You have been on my mind daily. God has been whispering you into my ear in my daily meditation with Him. You are His. I am so thankful you have your faith, and your beautiful spirit! God’s grace is pouring out over you even in these circumstances and I can think of NO ONE better to be open to receiving them than you! Thank God for you! Thank God for your decision to be fruitful and multiply yours and all of our strength in Him, through you. Thank you for being His beautiful vessel. Much love to you:)


  13. Love your posts and you! You are a very strong women and loved by family and friends. Stay strong and you will kick this! We all will continue to keep you in our prayers 🙏🙏🙏


  14. Angela – I’m so sorry to hear that you are going through all of these challenges. But, I am not surprised that you have such a positive way to view them. I will keep you and your family in my prayers. If there is ever anything that I can do, please let me know.


  15. Angela, I work with your sister, Alyssa. She shared your story and blog with me today. Stay strong and know that there are those whom you’ve never even met who are lifting you up in prayer and healing. I am now part of your army.


  16. Angela,
    You are such a strong, courageous and inspiring lady!! You ALWAYS see the positive in life and I know that will help guide you through this. You are such an inspiration and I am blessed to call you my friend!
    We will all be praying for you!


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