Kindred Spirits

Sunday, June 5, 2011


Sweet friends, I want to begin by thanking you for the many words of encouragement, emails, phone calls, gifts, meals, cards, shared Scripture, hugs, love and prayers that continue to flood my heart.  I wish I could respond to each of you individually, but please know that every message is read...many times...and you are all ministering to me in very specific ways.  As I've often heard my friend Moira say, "I'm drinking from my saucer 'cause my cup has overflowed".
Friday was an extremely difficult day.  While at the hospital having the mammogram completed, Sunnybrook called with my first chemo appointment.  It begins tomorrow...Monday 8:30am.  I've been told to prepare to be at the Cancer Centre for 6-8 hours.  I won't deny, receiving the date so soon was a shock, yet I'm glad to quickly be continuing the healing process.  Thanks to my friend Elaine, I have been fuelled with resources to help navigate this journey, and although apprehensive, I feel better equipped to face the coming day.
I expect to be at the hospital until late afternoon, at which time, there is a possibility I might still see my two friends from North Carolina before they board their plane to head back home.  I am praying the Lord will make a way for a quick reunion and some time of prayer.  Oh to just hug their precious necks.
Diane will be taking me to the hospital tomorrow.  I don't know which one of us is for facing chemo, or Diane for driving on the 401 for the first time!  Having her here with me right now is a gift.  The Lord's timing is always perfect.  We've had many moments of laughter and smiles.
My next appointment is already scheduled for Wednesday, June 29th at 8am.  At that time it will be two treatments down, and four to go.  Doing the math, by Gord and my anniversary in October, this all will be behind me.  Trusting the Lord for complete healing.
I'm hoping that wig shopping will be on the agenda this week.  I had to laugh at some of your responses and suggestions for new hair colour and style.  I might not even recognize me!
With this treatment schedule comes some decisions that need to be made regarding activities that had previously been put in place for the summer.  I want to believe and trust that the Lord would keep me from any adverse side effects and that I would remain strong and active over the next few months, yet for the consideration of others involved, conclusions need to be reached and cancellations given if needed.  Please pray the Lord will guide me confidently through this process.  He liberally gives wisdom to those who ask.  Letting go of these plans will not be an easy surrender if that is what God asks of me...but I will trust Him and follow.
Friday also was a difficult day as my mom had to call 911 for my dad.  He is currently in the hospital battling pneumonia.  He is still in Intensive Care in Emergency.  As he is in isolation, I am unable to see him.  My mom and sisters have strongly advised me to stay away, but it is very tough.  Our family is an "army" when one is sick.  We rally around and offer support 24/7.  It is unbelievably hard listening to his updates, and unable to visit and give him a big hug and tell him of my love.  The medical staff keep telling us he is a very sick man.  He has virtually no strength and is unable to eat.  He is struggling with periods of delusion, but that could be a result of the fever and/or low oxygen levels.  The timing is extremely unfortunate...struggling to understand...but God.
I know I can count on your prayers as I continue this journey.  I pray I will get a good nights rest tonight and that tomorrow will be a good day.  Diane gave me a pedicure last night and we spent some precious time together over the past couple of days while my "boys" took a break and headed to Muskoka Bible Conference Centre for the weekend.
As I reflect back over the fears that have desired to undermine my joy and courage, I was so thankful for my Pastor reminding me to "Fear not, the Lord who is your light and your salvation will cover your head."  No wig or bandanna could come close to His covering.
I'll be sure to let you know how the day goes as I am able.  Please check back here for updates during the day as Diane will be posting them from the hospital if I give her a break from entertaining me  :)
Hugs and love to you all.
Continuing to trust His plan...choosing to follow,
Joy, "Faith"
Hee what do you think?  Do we look ready for a day in the big city tomorrow? Girls just wanna have fun  :)


elaine @ peace for the journey said...

We all have a "tomorrow", do we not?! I love you, sister. Thought of you today while speaking. I've posted it all at the blog.

Go in the strength you've been given, knowing that God and the love and prayers of the saints go with you.

It's going to be a good day. And... TAKE ALL YOUR MEDS! And... DRINK YOUR FLUIDS, CONSTANTLY. I'm counting on Dianne to shove a straw in your mouth continually. And... rest in the arms of Jesus. You're a mighty warrior. I love you.


Hope and Faith said...

Elaine, I will make sure of the fluids, you can count of that. So far she;s been very compliant with her healthy meals.(smile) We call them "happy plates." So far liquids haven't been a problem she has been a sponge.

Tonight we packed a "Chemo Survival Bag," complete with tissues, warm fuzzes, mints, Bose headphones, Ipod,gifts and other fun stuff.

Pray for a restful night tonight for the both of us. Tomorrow will be surrounded by His grace, mercy and love. We won't have any big deals and yes, it will be a good day.
Hugs and Blessings,
Diane "Hope"

Karen said...

Joy and Diane,

I am praying today. This is a very hard road and with the health of your Dad and (Diane) Mom on your minds as well, I know it must seem almost impossible.

“With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26

"5 Yes, my soul, find rest in God;
my hope comes from him.
6 Truly he is my rock and my salvation;
he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.
7 My salvation and my honor depend on God;
he is my mighty rock, my refuge.
8 Trust in him at all times, you people;
pour out your hearts to him,
for God is our refuge." Psalm 62:5-8

My prayers are with you both today.

Much love,


patricia e said...

my thoughts are with you today as the treatments begin ~ you have so many thinking and praying for you through this ~ what a blessing it is ~ wishing I had the words for you today ~ but I don't ~ I think when one of us suffers, we all do ~ praying for healing and strength for your endurance through this ~
{{hugs to you and Diane}}

Tracy said...

Be strong and courageous; do not be afraid nor dismayed...With us is the Lord our God to help us and to fight our battles.--2Chronicles 32:7-8
With Love and prayers - Tracy