|—||Blue Like Jazz (via theillusivedream)|
I have a funny habit. While on vacation or just a pretty day at the beach I have collected shells for years. When our lives changed and Daisy got sick those days were few and far between, becoming a sprinkling of beauty in a life that had become one filled with hospitals, pain, fear. I decided to put those tiny tokens of natural beauty in places that would both give me pleasure to look at them and remind me the future won’t always be flavored bitterly. I leave them in purses, pockets, drawers, my car; always waiting for me to discover them, waiting to whisper of beauty to come.
A couple of days ago I came across one of my secret treasure chests in a bag containing chapstick and sunscreen. I had spent a sunny day with great friends, hiking, swimming, holding a precious newborn. With my handful of shells such a display of simple pleasure, I was so thankful to have spent an entire day full of simple pleasure. Life is so different now,the days flavored with a different type of bitter, yet peppered with a different type of beauty. The beauty of anticipation.
My daughter lives, not here with me but in a different country. One containing loveliness unimaginable. Like my shells whisper of sweet days spent in the sun, my home whispers of sweet days spent with my sunshine. Her drawings are everywhere, hilarious ones all over her schoolwork, adding mustaches and buzzing flies to the characters teaching her phonics. Some have anchor tattoos, others clever sayings in bubbles extended from their little cartoon heads. Her secret placement of plastic mice in nooks, waiting to frighten someone. Her tiny leopard print leggings folded on the dryer, her toothbrush in the cup. Her artful arrangement of painted pinecones, the barn she made out of a cardboard box with happy ponies sticking fuzzy heads through the window, and her Teddy bear tucked safely into my bed. I leave these tokens of sweet times to remind me it won’t always be this way. I won’t always be without her, and my days won’t always be shrouded with a sense of sorrow and longing. There is more joy and laughter with her to come. So I continue to keep tangible reminders, little sneak peeks into our glorious future and reunion. They remind me of truth, and encourage me to live and love.
|—||C.S. Lewis (via meggielynne)|
Many things go through my head as I’m procrastinating the last minute scramble to get ready to leave. Things like wishing our circumstances were different, feeling stretched to the max. I’m also thanking God that we get another chance, we get more time with Daisy. Feelings can waver hourly so I must continue to think about what is true, what is good, what is beautiful.
We are convinced God does much more behind the visible stage of each person’s lives. He speaks and it’s up to us to hear. We are also convinced family and human relationship is a precious and fragile gift. It’s up to us to listen to each other. It’s up to us to nurture each other.
As we go on this pivotal journey halfway around the world seeking a cure for our daughter one thing is sure in a sea of unknowns: that is we don’t want to miss a thing. Not one inside joke, not one grimace while trying new food. Not one chance to hear the gentle sounds of each other’s musings.
We feel God has much to say to us, we want to listen. We pray and please join us in this prayer, that not only will He heal our girl but that He will heal our hearts as well.
That said, we are leaving our phones in the US and bringing one computer. We won’t have Internet or any screens in our apartment. We will not be checking email either. We want to be present, we want to be fully there. Not “m hm’ing” when our kids tell us stories while we manage our social media. Not staring at a screen instead of breathing in the history and beauty of the land.
We will however be posting weekly updates on what’s going on. (after we find an internet cafe!) We will be as thorough as possible so you can continue to pray with purpose.
You have all been a huge part of our lives since our girl ended up in the ER in September of 2009. Thank you. Thank you for praying, encouraging, loving, caring. We love you and look forward to sharing good news weekly over the next few months. Goodbyes are hard for us so we prefer to say “see you soon!”
We have the appointment!!!!!! We leave this Friday!
After long weeks of so many unknowns we have our appointment in Israel. Sometimes it’s nice to just know one thing. I don’t know what the future holds but I know when to show up at the cell therapy clinic in Tel Aviv. I don’t know how long we will live in Israel (at least 3 months) but I know what day I get there. I choose to be glad when I get little answers and leave the rest in God’s hands. And so begins our next phase of treatment.
We leave on Friday…. Let’s do this!
P.S. This is the back of a note Daisy sent a family friend. Love.
noun - the trait of showing determination and courage in spite of possible loss or injury
Daisy can’t walk very well from various pains and difficulties from her treatments but she will make sure she bombs the hill.
“Flying down the hill makes me feel so free”
This morning I am praying for Daisy’s lungs. Yesterday our doc looked over the CT results and found a couple of spots on them. Thankfully they didn’t light up on the PET scan (which shows active cancerous activity) but they did show up on her CT as unidentifiable nodules. They could be one of three things: inflammatory infection, fungal infection, or more cancer. As they are too small to biopsy, we can’t be sure. Daisy will begin being treated as if it’s a fungal infection and we will re-scan after several weeks. So please join me in praying that these nodules disappear.
We are on pins and needles waiting to hear our next step and packing our suitcases. I feel like I have been living someone else’s life these last three years. There’s a certain mourning of your old life that is a lingering sentiment some days. (hence the old picture) My sweet friend who has lost her husband and I were chatting about life yesterday and feeling so many of these same feelings. We both agreed that life is fragile and meant to be lived and enjoyed despite the circumstances. That said, as soon as I’m finished praying that Daisy has a fungal infection and not more cancer in her lungs I’m going to lay in bed and snuggle her as long as I like, feeling her fuzzy head under my chin. Then I’m having extra cream in my coffee followed by some fort building, a beach day, and dinner with friends. And I’m going to enjoy it.
Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom.
After a long day at the cancer center we got to see our favorite oncologist who let us know that the preliminary scan results were clear!!! Hooray!
On the way home I told Daisy she had completed all the hard things needed before we depart for her next treatment phase. She said “it wasn’t that hard”. Um, come again? She has endured so much in the last 3 1/2 months, I’m so unbelievably in awe of her sunny disposition and strength. My girl is a total warrior!
As soon as we know our departure date I will update y’all. And maybe I’ll write more sappy revelations or confessions of weakness. But for today, we celebrate a small victory! Thanks for “hearing” us and fighting with us. Love!