Sunday, January 6, 2013

4 turns to 12

I thought I was halfway through. My doctor didn't tell me that the plan had changed after we found out my cancer was positive for the HER2 protein. But it did.

This week, I went in to get the first of my four remaining treatments on the new medicines and I was told that it would actually be twelve treatments; one per week.

I'm not feeling very positive about this and even though I keep trying not to throw myself a pity party, I keep finding that I have just thrown one, over and over again.

I want so badly to have energy to do normal things, like clean and organize all this stuff floating around our house. Or to take down the Christmas tree, or make a dinner I saw on Pinterest, or teach the kids something...maybe take them somewhere where they can get culture, or exercise. I feel like a complete failure at every single goal I had for myself and my family this year.
And I kept putting this blog away, because even though I wanted to update everyone, I feel like I have nothing worthwhile to say. And I have no pictures, which is not the way I like to do things. I know you don't need to hear my whining. I should be showing you how a "strong girl with faith" can get through this. Right?

Wrong. I'm not strong. I have little faith.

But I do know where to turn when I realize that I am out of control. And I am pretty sure that even though it completely goes against our cultural standards and against my own desires and will, "out of control" is exactly where He likes us to be when we come to Him.

I just read in the Book of Job, God's answer to Job, where He states all the things that He is in control of and questions Job as to why man thinks he is actually controlling things.

I didn't have a huge epiphany when I read the last five chapters of Job, but I do feel convicted to let go. To fully trust that my world isn't going to end if we use every single last dish and never ever wash them again. The police aren't going to come arrest me if my Christmas tree stays up until June. My kids are still going to know stuff even if they have to learn it off of the History Channel this year. God's love isn't going to change for me if I can't get up off the couch. And I hope my children's love won't change for me, too.
I have to trust Him that my life AND my death are known by Him, controlled by Him, used by Him and purposed for Him, by Him.

I think this process of surrender is going to be an ongoing one. So far, God has proved trustworthy in my life. He has constantly provided for me even when I haven't acknowledged it or been a good steward or been faithful to Him in any way.

Why is it so hard to give up control when I don't have it anyway?

For now, I am thinking about this conversation between Moses and God:

But Moses said to the LORD , "My Lord, I’ve never been able to speak well, not yesterday, not the day before, and certainly not now since you’ve been talking to your servant. I have a slow mouth and a thick tongue." Then the LORD said to him, "Who gives people the ability to speak? Who’s responsible for making them unable to speak or hard of hearing, sighted or blind? Isn’t it I, the LORD ? Now go! I’ll help you speak, and I’ll teach you what you should say."

And I am meditating on these true and beautiful words that a psalmist wrote:

You establish the mountains by your strength; you are dressed in raw power; you calm the roaring seas; calm the roaring waves, calm the noise of the nations. Those who dwell on the far edges stand in awe of your acts. You make the gateways of morning and evening sing for joy. You visit the earth and make it abundant, enriching it greatly by God’s stream, full of water. You provide people with grain because that is what you’ve decided. Drenching the earth’s furrows, leveling its ridges, you soften it with rain showers; you bless its growth. You crown the year with your goodness; your paths overflow with rich food. Even the desert pastures drip with it, and the hills are dressed in pure joy.

Yes, I am still afraid. And I still don't like the feeling of being out of control. But I want to trust. I just want to surrender to the One Who Can Control It All.

Lord help me.


Anonymous said...

You don't know me and I have never posted a comment, but I have followed your blog for years. I know,personally, of the cancer struggle. You will survive and be happy (and energetic) again. But there will be so many days when you don't believe it. You're in the thick of it now. Be kind to yourself, you're doing the best you can, and it IS good enough.

Ariana said...

Still praying and thinking of you.

*lisa* said...

I too have read your blog ever since I first purchased jewelry from you in Nashville, you made a custom necklace for me once and we have several mutual friends. I too have never left a comment, but I am following your story and even though we don't know each other personally, I am sending you love and lifting you & your sweet family up in prayer. As a mother of 4 also, homeschooling also, I cannot begin to imagine what you are going through. I have tears in my eyes every time I read your updates, I am humbled by your experience, your wisdom, your honesty and your struggle. Hang in there. Your faith is so strong, even when you feel it is weak. Please know so many people from near & far are holding you in their hearts. <3

Amanda Conley said...

Oh, friends, your comments encourage me so much. Thank you.

Amanda Conley said...

Oh, friends, your comments encourage me so much. Thank you.

Amanda Conley said...

Oh, friends, your comments encourage me so much. Thank you.

Cindy Chamberlain said...

Dear Amanda,

I'm so sorry your treatment plans changed, and I completely understand your frustration/disappointment. You are VERY strong in your faith, even when you don't feel like it. I remember the days when I would have to take a nap after taking a shower because I was completely worn out. But those will pass. It will get better. God knows the needs of your family and yourself better than you do. Trust Him even when you're not very happy with Him! It's okay to tell Him how you feel...He knows anyway. Thanks for what you are teaching me about control. I love you, pray for you all the time, and am here if you need an understanding shoulder to cry on.

Carrie, The Modern Housewife said...

although we hardly ever see one another, i will always feel a connection and bond. you continue to be in my prayers, and are on my heart daily. much love to you and your family as you go through this.

Remember, Suffering -> Perseverance -> Character -> Hope. (Romans 5)

Amanda Conley said...

Thank you, Cindy, for your encouragement. I know you have been here.