Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Uncharted Territory


 You know when I sit and when I stand up, you discern my inclinations from afar,
 you scrutinize my daily activities. You are so familiar with all my ways 
 that before I speak even a word, ADONAI, you know all about it already. 
 You have hemmed me in both behind and in front and laid your hand on me. 
 Such wonderful knowledge is beyond me, far too high for me to reach. 
 Where can I go to escape your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? 
 If I climb up to heaven, you are there; if I lie down in Sh'ol, you are there. 
 If I fly away with the wings of the dawn and land beyond the sea, 
 even there your hand would lead me, your right hand would hold me fast. 
 If I say, "Let darkness surround me, let the light around me be night, 
even darkness like this is not too dark for you; rather, night is as clear as day, darkness and light are the same.
Psalm 139:2-12

"We have a problem, you have cancer."
Those words echoed over and over in my mind. I'm a looper. It can be a curse.
Some people take bad news, store it away in a mind box and pull it out only when needed. They don't feel it necessary to think about it until it's time. That's not me. I take a phrase or memory and put it in a mind hamster wheel. Then I throw in the little beastie and watch it run...and run...and run. 

By the time the sun arose the morning after "the news", I'd gone through all five stages of grief - several times. I denied it. Maybe Dr P spoke out of turn and only thought she saw something wrong. Next came anger. How dare she destroy my life in a few moments. How cruel can someone be? Followed by the "if only" game. If only I'd had this checked out sooner. If only I'd chosen another doctor to run the test. If only... Depression sunk me into another period of fitful tossing and turning. I have cancer. Will I die? Does G~d even hear me when I cry out to Him?
Then after a mostly sleepless night, I came to the conclusion that I could handle this. G~d is with me and will see me through. I'll just take one step at a time. Acceptance.
It was Shabbat. A day of rest for body, mind and soul. I determined to get up and try to be strong and brave. 
I knew I was now thrust on a new journey. Uncharted territory. Huge overwhelming mountains, deep valleys. I can do this. I can do this. I. Can. Do. This. 
Throughout the day I flopped between courage and fear. Like I said. I'm a looper.
Next: Tools for the battle.
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