Dear Breast Cancer,
You were an unwelcome guest. I didn’t even know that you were there, growing, changing, threatening. My first hint of your existence an ominous walnut shaped spot where no spot should be.
I recall when I learned your ugly secret, the way my heart skipped a beat, and my stomach clenched. The way my eyes filled and puddled over in fear and shock. I never thought you would come to me.
You crept silently into my left breast.
Don’t you know that my infants nursed at that very breast? I held my babies in my left arm, their little heads pillowed against my breast, echoing its soft curves. They could hear my heart beat, thump-thump, thump-thump. You would have extinguished that forever.
You changed my life. You showed me that I am more delicate than I know. You labeled me as sick, different, damaged.
You touched my children. They were frightened that they would have to grow up and grow old without a mother. Sure they think I nag, but you would have silenced my voice in their future.
You touched my marriage. I am no longer the smooth skinned bride that my husband touched with joy. You marked me. My scars reflect my determination to be rid of you.
Breast Cancer, I would not have chosen you, but, I have learned these things from our dance together.
You do not define me.
I am who I always have been, but more so.
I am not alone. My friends stood beside me with home baked meals and encouragement. More friends then I knew I had.
Our family was strengthened by your visit. They covered me with love and prayers. Crayoned cards and gentle kisses. Quiet times and boisterous parties with enough squabbles and mess to let me know that I am needed and wanted. Our family works harder to be there for each other than before you reared your ugliness.
My marriage is sweeter. My husband touches me with new found joy and appreciation. We whisper our love quietly heads together and argue loudly about nothing of consequence. We defer to each other and support each other.
Breast Cancer, I did not fight you like a girl, I fought you as a Warrior.
The battle for me was already won on Calvary’s cross.
I know that God loves me. I have seen His goodness in the land of the living.
Breast Cancer, you forcefully pointed out that narrow gate through which we all must pass. But I have learned this; the One who has led me all my life will not desert me. When the time comes for me to pass through the narrow gate, it will be just wide enough for me and my Savior together.
Thank you for your beautiful reminder that Christ has led you and did not desert you! Those are comforting words to many of us. I know your life and the lives of those around you changed significantly. Learning how to appreciate each beautiful moment. Thank you for this beautiful letter that was penned with such grace.
Have you or someone you know battled this awful enemy? If so, I’m sure you recognize how those precious lives around you were changed.
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