Gotta keep on keepin' on.......

Cancer again...that's 3 times in 2 years. This time it’s not breast cancer, but a new one called squamous cell carcinoma. New cancer, same old fighting spirit! My blog is still named for one of many songs that kept me going the first time around. Driving home from an upsetting appointment, I turned on the radio just as this line from Steve Miller Band's Jet Airliner was playing: "I've got to keep on keepin' on"....so I did just that. And I'll do it again.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Cheating a little....

I am going to be AWOL for a few weeks. I'm not sick, not depressed, not anything.....just really busy! This is a very crazy time of year for us, with Emma's and Frances' birthday within 13 days of each other. And on top of that, I made the mistake of signing up to host Bunko the end of January. What was I thinking?

So, I am frosting cupcakes to send to Emma's 3rd grade class and frantically sending out party invitations for her "Hannah Montana/Rock Star" themed party that I haven't quite worked out all the activities for (I'm thinking we'll host a "Singing Bee" game show using Disney songs, and maybe do some crafts or cookie decorating.....or do I just lock all 10 of these 8- and 9-year-olds in the playroom and let them do each others' hair and makeup?)

While I am busy with that, I need to decide whether to have a big party for soon-to-be-4-year-old Frances and her preschool friends here at the house. I'll make those plans while I sneeze from all the dust I've kicked up unearthing the dining room table, which we need to play Bunko, plus the kitchen table and a table in the family room. And somewhere in there, I need to plan the menu for my Bunko friends....and most important, buy the booze....

It hit me the other day that all these events were stacked on top of each other, and as it is I hardly have time to eat! How will I have time to blog?

So I decided to cheat and use some filler. Below is a devotional I wrote for our church's Advent Devotional Calendar in December 2007. I had volunteered to edit the submissions, 1 for each day of the month, but when we ended up short, I scribbled this out last minute. I was rather pleased with it, although of the 31 in the book, mine was the only one with a typo. And no, the irony was not lost on me, the editor.

Here it is, for your enjoyment. I hope to be up and posting sometime mid-February. Meanwhile, off to finish frosting Emma's cake. Her birthday is tomorrow and she will be 9. My first baby, such a big girl already.

Am I digressing? I guess I'm just stalling, I've never written this kind of piece before so it's a bit hard to share here. It was a daunting task, writing a devotional. Yes, I do believe in God, and yes, I do pray daily, but I am not overly familiar with the Bible. So the whole time I was writing it, I wondered if I had somehow misinterpreted the verse I had chosen, and feared that when the members of my church read it, they'd finally figure out what a fraud I am! But so far...and I'm not saying this to brag but to make a point...I've only received praise. One elderly, home-bound church member even called me to tell me how much she liked it. We chatted for about 20 minutes. That was really cool.

So now, here it is. I hope you like. See you in February! Katie

December 30
Read Isaiah 40:21-31
Key Verse: Isaiah 40:29-31
"He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint."


I discovered this passage in the wee hours one September morning last year. I had had my first chemo treatment that day and could not get to sleep. I wasn’t upset that night so much as anxious. The drug they had given me to ward off nausea was working, but it made me hyper and unable to sleep. My breast cancer diagnosis that September had taken me by complete surprise. Things like this just didn’t happen in our family. I trusted my doctors and looked forward to completing treatment, but still I wondered: What exactly does God have in mind for me now?

While I did not read it regularly, I always kept my red leather Bible in my nightstand. It was a gift from my church when I was in 3rd grade. Something that night/morning led me to reach for my Bible and open it. My eyes fell on the words from Isaiah 40. When I reached verse 29 "He gives strength to the weary..." I stopped reading for a moment and cried. I was weary; I felt like a walking definition of the word! And, I was tired. I was scared. I was anxious. I wasn’t sure what was in store for me but the thought of it made me even wearier.

By the time I read through to verse 31 "but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint," I knew God was telling me something. I dried my tears, turned out the light, and got the rest I needed.

Since that moment, Isaiah 40:29-31 has been my fight song. Every time I face a challenge or feel a little down, I pull this passage out of my purse (I printed out a wallet-sized copy, and I carry extra in case someone I meet needs a lift) and I remember that God is always there for me.

As we come to the end of this calendar year, let us remember that no matter what the year was like for us, no matter how many events or conversations or whatever we want to forget, we went through it all for a reason. I know that sounds corny, but it is true. Almost every day I meet someone, or learn something, or do something that I wouldn’t normally meet, learn, or do had I not had cancer. Almost every day I think, "Oh, so that’s what God had in mind for me!"

And as the new year approaches, let us remember that we don’t need to be fearful of what the next year brings; instead, we need to go forward with the knowledge that God will give us what we need to face anything. Find your fight song and keep going!

7 Comments:

  • At 1/20/08, 4:12 PM, Blogger Jayne said…

    Enjoy being AWOL and all of that frosting :)

     
  • At 1/21/08, 1:36 PM, Blogger Jenster said…

    I LOVED that devotional, KT. It was beautifully written and I could relate on such a personal level. Like you were talking about me.

    I also know what you mean about people finding out you're a fraud. But you're not. You're about as real as it gets!

    Enjoy your time doing all that stuff that needs to be done and know you'll be missed!!

     
  • At 1/22/08, 3:12 AM, Blogger lahdeedah said…

    Wow, I'll miss you, Katie! Your girls are so lucky to have a mom who prioritizes :)

    I totally love that you found your "fight song." And I love how you wrote about it. Exactly how you write here: with intelligence, love and grace.

    My experience mirrors yours: Through cancer, God has moved me in astonishing new directions. My heart is full of gratitude, peace, hope and joy.

    Thanks so much for sharing this, Katie.

    Much love,

    Jill

     
  • At 1/22/08, 1:47 PM, Blogger Sherry said…

    Beautiful devotional Katie!
    And enjoy every minute of this time with your family and away from blogging...this is a good thing..you are moving back into the regular stream of your life and that fills me with pleasure for you.

    You'll be missed here but often thought of. I'm smiling ear to ear for you!!!

    Enjoy the kiddos birthdays..and frost cupcakes -- make sure you get some yourself!!!

     
  • At 2/8/08, 6:30 PM, Blogger SweetAnnee said…

    PRAYING for you and thank you
    for caring!!
    fondly, Deena

     
  • At 2/9/08, 1:09 PM, Blogger Jenster said…

    Hey Girl!! I miss you!! Hope to see you around soon - after all the "stuff" is over. :o)

     
  • At 2/15/08, 4:12 PM, Blogger SweetAnnee said…

    Just checking in to see how you are .. Hoping you're creatinG!!
    a bit at least..
    and having fun
    deena

     

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