One funny thing that happened to me this week was that my eyesight improved. This was another chemo side effect dissipating. The funny part was that I saw my eyebrows for the first time in more detail. I looked like a cancer patient! It's funny how the denial is slowly challenged. Having cancer is so surreal. By the time I finally accept it, I'll be cured. Praise God!
Another amusing thing is the change to spring. I had a regular head wardrobe figured out and it was working fine. As fun as the wig is, it's not comfortable, so I only wear it for big gatherings. I like the hats and scarves better. Well, spring has sprung and most of my regulars are now too hot to wear comfortably. I think I'll be wearing the baseball cap look for daily wear before too long. If you are one of the generous women who gave me a winter scarf and would like it back for next year, please let me know. They were all great and I loved having a scarf for each of my sweaters!
I am very grateful to God that we got to go to Easter Sunday festivities at James and Katie's house (my daughter and son-in-law). I had my mother, sister, nephew, 3 daughters and sons-in-laws, and 14 grandchildren there. My grandson, Michael, received First Communion at morning Mass. What a treasure and what a blast to be together for the day! My feet were hurting but it didn't distract me from the fun we all had! Here's my mom massaging my foot while my sister, mom, and I chat. What blessed time! Aren't moms great?
And here's Michael opening his gifts.
As I said, I am so grateful I could be there. You just don't know how much I've been missing. So, I'm back home and ready to start radiation. I've got two weeks more to wait. I'm going to exercise and get stronger and probably grow some more hair. I'll enjoy spring. And I'll remember that the victory is already ours in Jesus Christ. It is true. He is risen. I wish all people would believe it. Last Sunday's gospel was the story of Thomas. Thomas wasn't there when the rest of the disciples saw the risen Jesus. Here's how it is written in John 20:
But he said to them,
“Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands
and put my finger into the nailmarks
and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
Now a week later his disciples were again inside
and Thomas was with them.
Jesus came, although the doors were locked,
and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.”
A week later! Can you imagine being with the disciples the first week after being with the risen Christ and not believing? To be in a room with people giddy with excitement over the the fact that the world had just changed for all eternity and not experience the joy is a bad experience at best. And so it was with Thomas. His best friends had just come to realize Jesus was the expected savior heralded by the Jewish people. But Thomas couldn't believe. He saw the world around him. Sin and suffering was everywhere. How could Jesus be the Christ? Poor Thomas. It must have been very frustrating and intensely isolating. It's no wonder Jesus' first words to Thomas were, "Peace be with you." He certainly needed peace! But note what else Thomas needed. He didn't just want to set eyes on the risen Lord, he wanted to put his finger into the nail marks and his hand into his side that was pierced. I hear him saying, "Are you kidding me? You who carried the cross and suffered excrutiating trials- you are the same person who stands here alive as Savior?" Or, "Is there really victory over the grave?" Or, "You mean, we really have nothing to be afraid of?" Or as the psalmist said, "Oh death where is your sting?" I am sure Thomas wasn't at Jesus' first visit after the resurrection for a good reason. People like me need to hear his story again and again. When I'm in pain I doubt there's a good reason for it. Even though I am surrounded by loved ones who pray for my healing, I don't see it happening and am frustrated by the things I can't do. But then I think about Thomas and Jesus. Jesus showed Thomas that the road of suffering was real and that the victory was his. He invites us to follow him. We are free to follow him. We can choose to give him our suffering - we can even ask him to use it for the benefit of someone else who is in trouble or suffering. We can do that and know that if we are united with Jesus in suffering, we will be united with him in the victory. The resurrection is ours to enjoy. It's the end of the story for all who believe. With Jesus living in me my feet are a little less a bother. With Jesus I have no fear of radiation. With Jesus I look forward to the time when I announce I am healed. It feels like a long road right now, but Jesus is with me and in me every step of the way.
Thanks for listening to my rambling. If you have something you want me to pray for, please let me know. I'm bringing a lot up in prayer lately. I will make you my priority. Christ is risen! Alleluia!