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!