Monday, November 30, 2009

Today's Uterine Ablation

This post is being shared in an effort to share this journey with honesty. I hope you are reading this because you are my friend and not because you are searching blogs for some ray of hope about Lymphoma. If the latter is true of you, please be sure to read more than just this single blog entry.

Last night as I was preparing stuff for today's outpatient procedure, I realized that I had failed to get the ordered blood work done last week. I was supposed to do it 1-2 days before today's uterine ablation and somehow I forgot.

I'd like to use the excuse that I was so busy or stressed, but really. I was sitting in a hospital room with nothing to do but read, knit, and hang out with Ryan. I could have taken 10 minutes to walk down to the 1st floor to do the blood work. Really. I hate it when I don't stay on top of stuff. I'm normally very, very good at details and it seems lately I don't do details well at all. This frustrates me.

If you know me well, you know I tend to be just a little uptight and a little bit of a perfectionist. I try really, really hard to pretend that I'm not. My children think I have a touch of OCD ... you know, "Obsessive Compulsive Disorder." I really don't. I just have a lot of high expectations. Not so much of you, but of me. So, when I forget things or fail to do things that I'm supposed to do, I feel very frustrated by it.

This morning, the frustration of my failure, and I suppose the anxiety of another crazy busy week of dr's appointments and the unknown really got to me. I called my ob/gyn's office to see if we could still do the procedure today. Part of me was hoping that they'd say we needed to reschedule, the other part of me was nervous about trying to fit in an appointment on any other given day. After the sweetest nurse was so understanding and said it would be no problem to go ahead and do it today, I hung up the phone feeling mixed emotions. Then I sat and cried as my children asked me about juice. (Really? Two refrigerators, a pantry, and a food storage with plenty of juice. Pick a juice and have some.)

I cried because I don't want to be poked any more. I cried because this really is only the beginning of more pokes and I don't see an end in sight. I cried because "this gift" has never really felt like a gift. Why is our body a gift to us? I've never understood that idea? Don't get me wrong. I'm thankful for all the things that my body allows me to do. But, I also feel frustrated by all of it's shortcomings (pun intended.)

After a couple of minutes, I realized that I had too much to do and am too blessed to feel sorry for myself. So, I picked myself up and got busy. I did fairly well until I realized that the boys' bathroom was not only full of dirty clothes (even though I had asked them to put their dirty clothes in the laundry at least 3 times), and that there was dried vomit on the toilet still from last week's fight with the flu. REALLY? Dried puke. That's disgusting. Why hasn't anyone done their chores? I called the boys in to remind them that they had been asked 3 times and shouldn't have to be asked ever to do their daily chores. But, what would normally be a calm tone with me stating the expectations and declaring a fair consequence became me raising my voice at the boys and threatening to throw away everything they own. And, then crying.

I immediately went to my room recognizing that I was not handling things well. I said a prayer and pleaded for peace ... and forgiveness. The boys hadn't done what they were expected to do, but they too deserve mercy and justice, not an irrational mom. Before the end of my prayer, my friend showed up to take Ryan for the morning and to drop me off at the hospital.

I asked my friend, "Why is it that I can handle big challenges like Cancer and a Special Needs Child, but really not-so-important* stuff can set me off?" My friend in her wisdom explained that it's probably because I'm reaching to control something. So much of my life is not in my control and how the house looks and how the boys do their daily chores is something that I might be able to control. Her answer felt right.

I've thought about that all day today...

My little guy, Ryan, truly feels like a gift from God. I've loved every baby and feel the heavens near with every little baby that I've ever held. But, with Ryan ... 16 months after his birth I still feel that I am in the presence of a great little spirit and I frequently still feel the heavens near. I'm honored to be his Mother.

The Cancer is a much harder task, but only because the medical stuff scares me a bit. I do think it's an opportunity to become a better person. To be refined. Purified.

The every day routines, the every day challenges of teaching and raising 6 amazing children ... maybe I need to see those as the gifts they really are also.

Thankfully, tomorrow promises to provide lots of opportunities.

Tomorrow also brings another appointment with the Oncologist and hopefully a treatment plan.

Someday I promise this blog will not be all about me.

*Not-so-important stuff: While I don't think the house being spotless is the most important thing, I do believe in teaching children to work and to obey. I think chores are a great way to do it. I believe that if we teach children to work and to obey then they will grow up to be better citizens and better disciples of Christ. And, I believe it will bless their lives.

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