Gilda Radner said,
“Cancer is probably the most unfunny thing in the world, but I’m a comedian, and even cancer couldn’t stop me from seeing the humor in what I went through.”
I want to share the humor portion of the day I found out I had cancer. Yes, there is some humor in that day.
After hearing those three words, “you have cancer,” I sat there, put down my phone and started to process what I just heard. After about 3 minutes, I decided to head to Target. Why? Target always makes me feel better. As I was walking aimlessly through the aisles, I heard my phone “ding” and I knew I received a text.
The text read,
“Angela, sorry, but you might want to check Ava’s head for lice. I am at Miracle Sisters Lice Removal with my daughter. Since the two girls are such close friends, I wanted to let you know.”
I paused, and then said to myself. “You have got to be kidding me!” There might have been another four letter word in that sentence but not appropriate for me to mention now.
I took a deep breath and thought to myself, “There is no possible way Ava could have lice. Not today. I was just diagnosed with cancer!” I should get a pass, right? I mean, seriously, how unlucky could one person be?
So, my escape to Target abruptly ended, and I headed to carpool pick up. I arrived at 3:00 pm and slowly counted down the next 30 minutes until school was released. I am not sure why I arrived so early, but I tried to pray and ponder my afternoon. Needless to say, nothing was working on getting my mind off the possibility of lice.
My younger three children jumped in the car and we headed home. After getting home, I got dinner together and just couldn’t bring myself to check Ava’s head. A little while later, I decided to grab two toothpicks and take my sweet daughter upstairs to carefully check her head.
My plan was to prove there was no lice! That plan failed after I found my first nit, then another… until I met the louse.
Yes, there was a louse in my house!
I carefully removed this louse, and then yelled down the stairs.
“There is a louse in our house, everyone line-up! I’m checking everyone’s head for lice.” Everyone came running up the stairs and, one by one, I checked each head for lice. One of my boys was chanting to himself while I was carefully picking through his hair,
“Please not me, please not me…”
After diligently looking, I told him he was clear. One by one, they were all clear except for my little peanut. I looked at her and she had this sweet smile…I think she was hoping she didn’t have to go to school the next day. I said to her, “Well, we have some work to do. We will make this as much fun as we can make it!”
For the next couple of hours, I took strand by strand and pulled out the nits. After that, I treated her hair and carefully followed the steps my pediatrician had given me. She was all clear, and after the bedding was changed and everything else taken care of, Ava fell soundly asleep.
After writing in my journal about the day, I cuddled into my bed and thought to myself…I am so grateful for the distraction! The cancer would still be there tomorrow and having this distraction empowered me. I was on a mission! This was God’s plan. He wanted me to feel empowered and further, find humor in what could have been the worst day of my life. I did! And ever since that day, I have just been moving forward.
Are there a few set backs? Yes!
Do I feel a scared at times? Yes!
However, I am still laughing every day. I am living, and I am figuring this out one day at a time. I also know God is with me. It could be through a text someone sent, maybe a hug, a phone call, gift, meal or prayers.
I am so blessed!
I have been preparing for my surgery this upcoming Monday. The surgery will be a little over 4 hours. I am almost done with my Christmas shopping, and I have been doing a lot of organizing. I stopped by the Cancer Action Center yesterday, which was amazing. I’ll be borrowing some things from them, free of charge, while I am healing from this surgery. I can’t get over the amount of resources that are available in Kansas City to help with the recovery. I also met with another breast cancer survivor who has also become a great friend. She gave me a few items that I wouldn’t have thought of, we laughed about things together and it brought me joy. I feel so loved!
I have to find laughter in all this mess! The cancer is nothing I can control, but my response is something I can control. God showed me that on November 13th when I found out I have cancer and a louse was in my house!
Laughter will be my best medicine!