“Make new friends but keep the old. One is silver the other gold.”
Whether you are a silver or gold friend, whether we are ‘meeting’ for the first time, or we already enjoy a history of memories, we love and appreciate you. Both have tremendous value and have priceless worth.
For those of you who are personal friends, you know that I, (Joy, aka“Faith”) have been on quite the journey for the past 16 months. I want to briefly share my story for our “silver” friends and explain what will happen over the next little while.
Back in January of 2010, a cyst was discovered on my left ovary. Tests were completed and my family Dr. was not overly concerned about its existence. My heart rested in his knowledge and whenever pain would flair I would tell myself it was a simple cyst and not to be concerned…until…September when I began to experience other symptoms as well that sent me back to my Doctor. Thus began months of tests.
In the middle of this, after a routine mammogram, I was contacted to have a needle biopsy done. December 24th found me clad in a beautiful hospital gown, being poked and prodded. Merry Christmas to me. Actually, the Lord’s timing in this was incredible. Diane, (aka “Hope”), and I were together during this time as she was spending Christmas with my family. She lightened the mood by taking glamour shots in the hallway as we sat together during recovery. Unfortunately, the results to those tests came back inconclusive, and I return in June to have them completed again. The fun never stops.
To make a long story shorter, it was finally decided at the beginning of this year that I would see a Gynaecologist. Upon being examined in her office, she immediately walked me over to see the surgeon and I was promised immediate, urgent attention. At this point it was decided that I would have a complete hysterectomy to remove the mass that had continued to grow. This surgery was scheduled for March 22, 2011.
As I was leaving the surgeon’s office, he suggested I have a CA 125 blood test done to screen for cancer. He sent me downstairs to the clinic where the test was completed. The results came back “extremely elevated”. The next thing I knew I had an appointment booked with an Oncologist in the Cancer Center. After spending about three hours there and being thoroughly examined, he quite matter-of-factly informed me that, in his opinion, everything was pointing towards cancer and the surgery, originally scheduled at the local hospital, would be cancelled, and I would have the operation performed at a more specialized facility. Although this news was a shock, the move to this new location was/is a blessing. The mass will be biopsied during surgery and if benign only my left ovary will be removed. If however the findings are not favourable, they will proceed to check lymph nodes and anything else they deem needful at the time. This surgery is now scheduled for Tuesday, May 3rd.
After having my pre-op Tuesday, I now know to expect to be in the hospital for four days. Our prayer is that all will proceed without any difficulty and I will be home to rest and recover soon. As I will not have access to Internet during my hospital stay, I was longing for a way to connect with so many who have faithfully been praying and walking with me on this journey. I want you to receive updates as quickly as possible so that you can continue in prayer and praise with us.
Diane and I have been contemplating the creation of a shared Friendship blog for some time. Suddenly need intersected with desire and within a couple of days “Hope and Faith International” was birthed. It will serve double purpose. We trust that as we share our friendship journey and all that God is doing in our lives, your hearts will be blessed. We also wanted a place where our “silver” and “gold” friends can come and read updates concerning my health. Diane will be in constant contact with my family and she has lovingly and willingly agreed to keep you all informed as to my progress. Even after arriving back home, I may not have the energy to post here for some time, but she will share my heart and hers with you.
Many of you reading this may have already received an email detailing much of what I’ve written here, but we wanted any “silver” friends stopping by for a visit to understand the situation and the depth of friendship that would extend such kindness to another. I ask that all of you would keep my precious friend in your prayers as well. Distance at times like this is difficult. We long to be side-by-each, holding the other’s hand…there to wipe a tear…offer encouragement…pray. Often times just the sound of a friend’s voice or her silent presence in the room brings a calm that ushers in rest.
We are so thankful that we share the friendship of another Friend. A Friend who will never leave us or forsake us. A friend Who’s presence speaks peace over anxious hearts. He stands between us today holding both our hands, joining us in love and calling us to trust in Him.