Thursday, November 20, 2014

focus



Its the Monday before infusion, and I am hustling through as many tasks as I can complete.  I manage to strip the sheets off the bed and dig out the winter comforter.  While stacks and piles of odds and ends abound everywhere, if the bed is made, somehow all is right in my world.

Its weird to me, that I can accept how the dust accumulates, and the clutter surrounds, but if I can tackle one thing and make a little order out of it, I barely notice the rest.

So I wake up Tuesday, ready to keep hustling on my way to infusion.

But somehow, everything is off kilter this day and oh boy- its going to be one of those days!  First I check the calendar and realize it's not this infusion day that I see Dr. Panwalkar, but the next one.

Soon, Rick announces he forgot to tell me he needs to leave early for a meeting.  I guess I'll be driving today?  Hadn't planned on that.  And Nolan needs a ride to school from the rink, but its after the time I'll need to leave… my mind starts racing.

As I scurry about, Colton announces he needs help with his STEM homework.  We muddle our way through tackling the invention of the ballpoint pen- and chronicling the invention all the way through the ages.  Half an hour marches by… and Nolan needs… but then the dog barks...

I see a glimpse of yellow outside, and gasp as I hear the bus coming. I literally shove the little man out the door.  I need to leave, NOW!

But what was that thing I needed to do?  It floods over me as I recall- I haven't put the numbing cream on my port!!  It needs an hour to fully work.  I'm officially running late.  And today?  I've scheduled my blood work to be done through my port.

I grab the keys to the van, and thinking I'll just bypass the newly restored astro start key fob- thing-a-ma-bob,  I merely insert the key to unlock the door and open it… then bam!

I set off the blaring security alarm!  Oh boy… how do I shut this off?  I get in and start clicking buttons, and low and behold, it goes off.  Until I try to start the car.

As time ticks, I hurriedly try to figure out the right combination to shut off the alarm again.

But each time I get it silenced, the very next move I make, turns the blaring right on again.

I am getting so frustrated… my mind whirls with everything that has gone wrong.  Why did Rick schedule a meeting on a chemo day?  Why didn't I know about Nolan's meeting he needed to get to?  How on earth did Colton not do his homework? Why can I not make order out of this day?

It was so easy to blame everything on everybody.  I angrily worked my way through finding the keys for the truck.  It was almost 9 and I had a 15-20 minute drive.

As I turned down the side street, hoping to fly along the back roads with less traffic, I once again realize I never helped Nolan.  I'm near tears now,  feeling like I've let him down.  And yet- he hasn't called me.

So I just start to breathe… in and out, sending a quick prayer up, to help me so I can ignore everything else and focus on driving this big truck…

And as I do…

I slow long enough to listen to those last words… "help me ignore everything else so I can focus…"





Because, who is really in charge?

Not my dear Superman.  Not the kids and their crazy schedules.  Not me…

HE is in control.  HE has this. Oh boy…  how do I get so caught up in what was never under my control anyway?

So I keep breathing in clarity, and breathing out nonsense… and slowly, calm descends.

I apologize for being late, to my infusion nurse, Livia, and she merely smiles.  "Oh, it gave me some time to just sit and chat a bit."  Don't worry, it happens to us all.

Suddenly with a deep peacefulness, I sit earnestly as gratitude tumbles out onto my journal.

Names, blessings, observations of kindness, feelings of joy, physical gifts, today- the gift of yet, one more day.

Livia comes in to ask how I get the results of my tumor markers?

I tell her I haven't for awhile.  And I haven't bothered to ask for them.  Last I heard they were rising.

Later, at home, my phone buzzes with a message from Sanford's MyChart system.

I'm astonished- Livia must have conveyed to Dr. Panwalkar that I didn't know the status of my tumor marker so he ordered the results to be sent to me.

The last I had seen- they were at 41.1 (normal is 31 or less).

Yesterday?  They were at  34.3.

What?  How?  I will still have to wait for more of an explanation… but I'll just savor the idea it went down.

I smile as I think to count one last gift for the day… a lower tumor maker.  Clearly this day, someone else was in control, all along.
















40 comments:

  1. GREAT post. Oh man, when you described the alarm, I was getting frustrated right along with you! I am rejoicing about the number going down.

    He's got this. Lord, help us to remember.

    Bless you, Vicky

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    1. Thank you Susan- Rick had tried to explain it to me, but somehow I just thought if I bypassed using the astro start I'd be good. NOW, I get what he tried to tell me. Happy it was about so much more than I could have guessed. Blessings and love to you Susan!

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  2. P.S. I love the new header/design :-)

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    1. My friend, Karen @ This old house 2, does it for me- she is exceptional in her design abilities and gifts me with a fresh look often!

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  3. Oh my! What a morning! I could feel your frustration as if it was happening to me! Your reactions were me! And, the next time I feel panic setting in, I am going to remember the quote you posted because that is all any of us can do. We just have to remember that God is in control!

    Hugs and blessings, dear friend!

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    1. Eileen- my brain and emotions just go into overtime when it seems I'm not able to function in the way I deem necessary. I'm so glad I finally got it- so simple- but so easy to be distracted from too! Hugs and love to you, friend!

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  4. Whew. Your morning makes me want to take a big deep breath for you!! :)

    Well, now that is fantastic news about your tumor markers - and isn't it better because it's so unexpected? Hurray!!

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    1. Exactly- so unexpected- I didn't for a second think I'd hear anything, and if I did, wasn't expecting it to be good like it was- huge gift!

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  5. Girl, with all that, I would have been too numb to drive, or to drive safely! You are amazing! Great news on the markers! Woohoo!

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    1. Oh no- you would have done what I did. When your back is against the wall- you find there is another gear and you go- I know you would have! Thank you for being joyful in my news along with me!

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  6. Wow ! I remember those days when when you needed more than 24 hours to keep up.
    It was harder to be a stay at home Mom than going to work.
    My kids were sticky. I needed to be around but then one day they told me to stay home lol
    That's why I always wonder how working Mothers do it.
    You can't do and be in 50 places at one time.
    It will get easier.
    Today I wish they still needed me but now I understand it's because I need them.
    This was when I was at my best and the happiest.

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    1. Such wisdom in your words, Vic! I truly relish and cherish this time with them and the fact they still need me.

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  7. Such a beautiful reminder that we can be the best planners and organizers but ultimately WE ARE NOT IN CONTROL…and at times…I'm so happy we aren't!

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    1. Isn't that the truth? I forget, often, and yet the reminders are always there when I need them!

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  8. I rode that roller coaster with you. And....I must say, I took one curve in anger....the next in frustration....another curve filled with sadness. And then, I see the hill and the turn toward home....and those markers being down.... BAM! Hands up on the coaster ride. Way to go, Lord!! Thank you for being the One in control.
    Love my friend Vicky! Absoutely!!!

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    1. Jackie- its so great to see you here! The roller coaster metaphor is perfect- its exactly what it feels like :) Love you sweet friend!

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  9. Rejoicing with you that the markers are down. The photo is a real winner, too.

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    1. Thank you, Susan. That is a high compliment on my photo- from someone with such talent in their own photography. Blessings to you!

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  10. Although you had such a rough and tough day, there is so much to love in this post. First of all...the pic of Colton and Crosby is beyond adorable. I miss that boy. He was always a bright spot in my day! And then the good news about your tumor markers, and the realization that one needs to let go of all the worry and stress, and "focus" on trusting in God. Such a good reminder for all of us. I am praying that your days are a little less stressful, and that you feel the love and prayers that surround you, always!

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    1. I am so fortunate in that mostly Rick is able to do the "running" and my days are a bit more tranquil overall. I completely rely on him, and feel his absence when he is needed at a school or group event or function. Usually we communicate pretty well about who will go where and how, but this day just got away from both of us! I miss your days with Colton too- the sweet notes about things he'd do or so- they meant the world to me!

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  11. My dear sweet friend, Vicky,
    This post is a God-send and I am so grateful for the simple, yet profound reminder...
    Focus on what matters, Let go of what doesn't!
    My last two days have been much like yours, not the same crazy, horn-honking scenario,
    homework racing scenario with twists and turns that kept me saying , "Oh, no!"....
    yet gut-renching and sad and hurtful. Not my usual. And I have been praying every five minutes it seems. Hard to shake it off and see His hand in it.

    And then, a gift. Such a gift! I read your bog and saw your day and that quotation...and the reminder shot peace into my soul. And if that wasn't enough of a gift...to find out that your tumor markers were DOWN! Yes, DOWN!!! Thank you God, for prayers answered. Prayers by thousands and thousands of prayer warriors who love you and have not stopped praying. Thank you God for the reminder that You are in control, no matter how crazy a day may seem.

    A balm to my tired soul, my friend. Such JOY at your good news.
    Loves and hugs and prayers! To the moon and back!
    Linda

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    1. It truly is simple, isn't it? And simple to forget too, in my case. I'm so sorry for your hard days and what you have been going through. So true that sometimes in the midst of it, we can't see His hand, or what "good" is supposed to come out of it… I will pray for the strength to get through and the faith that He still has you and all the hard- even when it isn't evident right now.

      And if some peace came your way through something I said- then I feel very blessed and humbled. So much love to you- and many prayers!

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  12. OH MY GOODNESS!!! I was crying from the start of this post - thinking about all the things in your morning! And the message : Focus on what matters and let go of what doesn't ...oh Vicky, that's a message I need right now. And then to get to the end and find out your markers are lower!!! I am just thrilled! So thankful today and Dr.Panwalker...THANK YOU for sending us the results :) oxoxox

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    1. Thankful to have you visit today, Robin. You mentor me so well in looking for these moments and I'm truly grateful to you for your spiritual guidance through your written words and prayers for me. And yes- those types of results are never given in our online chart- so it was Dr. P's specific order that made that happen for me! Love right back to you!

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  13. Awesome. A prayer answered, and you weren't even asking. :-)

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    1. True- I wasn't asking or even worrying or thinking about it. So it truly was a pure gift!

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  14. Vicky, I was living this with you as I read....hurrying, worrying to get to the end, loving the beauty of your writing and your honesty, and then at the end, you gave each of us a gift. Something universal. Or rather, Someone universal.

    Thank you. You always draw me back to my Father.

    P.S. LOVE the new colors of the blog and the black and white pics. You're so very talented.

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    1. Thank you, Julie, for helping me, through your own viewpoint, to look for our Father in the every day. My friend, Karen, provided the make over for me- such a gift!

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  15. Ah, I missed this beautiful post while hunkered down yesterday but am so glad to find it now. Yes, the pause. This is all about being human though, Vicky. We all do this. Okay, I do at least! I have to tell you...the bed that is made being enough? I'm there too. Oh my heavens, am I there. Another thing we have in common sweet friend. I look forward to the next time we can enjoy a warm cup of something together. Hopefully next time we won't have to sip each others' drinks to figure out what's what (smile). I hope you have a relaxing, refreshing weekend. Hugs and more hugs...

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    1. True, Roxane- it is very much about being human. So human, my brain, and emotions get so overblown and reactionary, and then finally the lesson. I can't control what happens to me, only how I choose to respond. Till next time!! Hugs right back to you!

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  16. (That picture of Colton and his furry friend!!!)

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  17. Praise God for good numbers you received.

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  18. My dear Vicky, I am so thrilled that your tumor markers went down! Praise God! You are such an amazing human being. I love your posts, keeping us up to date on your life, sharing everything through your remarkable writing pen. :) You are a gifted writer, and I thank you for taking me along your journey. I will continue to fervently pray for you every single day. I send all my love to you today. Love, Ricka

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  19. I am late in catching up with you! Upon reading that your markers went down I clapped and yelled "YES" :)

    Asking and keep on asking - that is what our Pastor tells us - ask big and keep on asking - always rejoicing in everything He does!! I am rejoicing over this news and asking for more!

    xoxoxo

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  20. I felt like I was reading a novel which triggered my emotion. I can almist feel in your narration how you felt that day. In the end, you are right, we have to calm down to focus and leave it up to Him.

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  21. Happy Thanksgiving dear friend!
    Thinking of you this morning, sweet Vicky, and keeping you and your family in my prayers. I hope that all is well and that today is saturated with joy and love and peace and gratitude. I am so grateful for your friendship in my life!

    Love you to the moon and back again!
    Linda

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  22. Oh my gosh, Vicky, this was such an important post and I can't believe I DID miss this one. What an awful start to the day but so you to have figured out who is really in control. And the confirmation of that at the end of the day with those numbers? I'm thunderstruck. So GRATEFUL. What a praise. Thank you, Lord. I'll soaking in that news right now with such a grateful heart. Love you.

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