It was a little over 2 years ago I heard those fateful words for the third time: “Your son has cancer. Again.” I still walk delicately at times around information and whether I see a news story on ESPN, read a tweet, or have a prayer request sent my way, the floods of emotions are always close.
The picture you see here is a little over 2 years ago right after he had his eye removed and discovering he’d need chemo numbers 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, and 17. The journey that seemed to be closing we found out would extend for at least another six months.
My family all left for LA for some follow-up appointments. Joncee met with his Retinoblastoma doctor today and tomorrow he gets a new prosthetic because he’s outgrown the old one. It’s not everyday you can say you know someone taking a trip to SoCal for a new eye!
I woke up fairly emotionless today and right around 8:00 this morning I prayed for my boy as he walked into an all too familiar environment. An environment he knows all too well and remembers now because he’s older.
The good news is everything around the location where tumors existed still looks good. There are zero new tumors anywhere. My heart is filled with gratitude. We found out Joncee does have a fairly significant stigmatism that the doctor believes can be corrected in the future as technology advances.
As I sit here in Washington reflecting on this news on a deeper level, my heart takes me to Psalm 124:8, “Our Help is in the name of the Lord. The maker of heaven and earth.” It also gets me thinking about the incredible amounts of heartache, concern, violence, hatred, etc. that fills our hearts and minds on nearly a daily basis through many different avenues.
We all are invited into a narrative that dwells on where our help comes from. Many of you reading this have people coming to mind who are walking in situations where they seek other avenues of help and the road deepens with unknown brokenness.
This also reminds how often I still seek help in other ways too or try to control things within my own strength until I grasp again for the source of my help. I’m grateful for people with gifts and talents who have helped my little boy and been instruments of help during some of my darkest days.
There are many in these moments saying goodbye to loved ones whose lives have ended in many different forms. To those I remind you that you are loved. Your emotions are real. As you walk through this time of loss, my hope is there will be a day you can look back and say, “even in the midst of my loss, my help is in the name of the Lord.”
To the friends of those walking through these difficult days, may I remind you of the power of your presence. Be cautious of empty words that come with good intentions. Your very presence could be a model of helping others to see visually their help is in the name of the Lord.
During the Lenten season as we journey to the cross where so often we see our paths different than the one we are invited to walk, may we on the path discover fresh and anew again that He is with us. Our Help is in
the name of the Lord. The very one who was hurt so we may be healed. The maker of heaven and earth.
You are loved.