It's really hard not knowing how to make this better. At the moment it is pretty bad -he wants to wear his sunglasses all the time, and does not want to be outside unless it's cloudy. And he responds to his discomfort the way a three year old does: with full blown tantrums. And it's exhausting. We are putting drops in his eyes every two hours, a process he protests with every bone in his body. In between his bouts of misery, JR is the happiest and sweetest little boy. He is so full of love for his family, or, as he calls us, his "people". He especially adores his sister, and the way he loves on her just fills my heart.
This is hard, but it's not cancer hard. I remind myself of that A LOT. It doesn't make the experience easier, but it does give me perspective and helps shift my mindset towards gratitude. JR will have his next scans in May (date TBD), and, God willing, on June 5th will celebrate two years cancer free. The growing passage of time since the end of JR's cancer treatment has been complicated. Here we are living a "normal" family life, with some added medical challenges. And the very abnormal cycle of scans every four months, that submerges me face first into a well of anxiety.
But in this day-to-day living, there is a deep well of emotion within me, that I don't really know how to cope with. There is pain, sadness and brokeness. It often rises to the surface when I am running and I truly get in touch with myself, without even meaning to. I suddenly find myself quietly weeping as I run along my neighborhood streets at 6:30am. Or the anger rises as I pound carelessly down a hill, literally screaming curses at the world inside my head. One time, I cried out loud like a child, "Life has not been fair to me!", somewhere in mile 3 of my 3-mile loop. I am fascinated by the way my emotions present themselves on a run, and thankful for it's therapeutic effects. I've been running since the age of 10, and at this point, it feels like home.
Suffering is part of the human experience. I believe that all humans endure great suffering while living on this planet. Each human story is unique, but suffering is a shared experience by all humans who have ever lived. When it comes to God, I don't have all the answers by any means. But I fiercely believe that He allows our suffering so that we may turn to Him. He will allow you to hit rock bottom so that you may discover through your deepest suffering that He is the ultimate source of strength and hope. God allows suffering and works through your suffering, with the ultimate goal of drawing you to Him.
This life is hard. This life is beautiful. This life has a purpose. Respond to your calling. Trust that He has a plan for you, and that it is perfect.