I'm one of those people who really like to mark up their scriptures. You know the people I'm talking about - their scriptures are covered in that signature "LDS Scripture Marker" red. I think I've inherited this tendency from my daddy, whose scriptures are virtually unreadable in some places. I take it even a step further. My scriptures look like a multi-colored quilt and every color has an assigned meaning or time period. (I'm currently in my blue period.) I'm constantly writing notes and important happenings in the margins. Some of my friends think so much color is sacrilegious. I think it's awesome - I love looking back and seeing what scriptures meant a lot to me three years ago or where I was reading when so-and-so got their mission call.
Why the discussion of my polychromatic study habits? Well, there's one scripture in John that has reached the unreadable level, but it doesn't much matter, because I have it memorized. It has been one of my very favorite scriptures for a very long time. In it, Jesus Christ simply states, "I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you."
When I was younger, this scripture brought tranquility when I woke from a nightmare in the middle of the night. When I was a little bit older, it meant peace when girls were mean and I was lonely in those awkward junior high years. During my sophomore year of high school, it took on yet another meaning when my daddy suffered a relapse of his Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. I thought I was strong enough to deal with it on my own, and I hated to have people watch me struggle, so I told almost no one. I was really good at putting on a happy face, but I wanted so badly for someone to call me out, to realize that I was fighting for control of my life and my emotions...and loosing. But even then, I found comfort in the scriptures, knowing that I had an Older Brother and Savior who loves me deeply and personally. "I will not leave you..." That intimate phrase seemed directed right for me - my Savior was there by my side when I needed Him most.
And so that brings us to today. Commence Round Three. That little Lymphoma monster that has been sleeping for four years is back. We're still playing the waiting game with test results right now, but the tentative plan is for Daddy to start chemo within the next week. However, the tests that he's been doing for the past 2 weeks have given us many things to be grateful for and there are many treatment options that weren't available just four years ago. (For my good friends that are hearing about this for the first time through blog, I am so very sorry. I'm still not very good at telling people.)
In the last round, I refused to let my friends in when so many of them would have been more than happy to help me through a hard time. But I'm not going to hide behind a facade this time. Sometimes I can't keep my happy face, but I always keep my faith. I believe in the power of prayer. Already we've seen so many miracles and there is much to be grateful for. But my daddy could use your prayers and your positive thoughts.
Also, I know there are many others out there who are fighting similar battles. I'd like to help. I've been through this a few times now - sometimes I handle it really well, sometimes I don't. But I've learned a few things that I'd like to share:
-you can choose to be happy -your attitude is totally up to you
-there is always a silver lining
-hugs and friends are wonderful
-just knowing that people are pulling for you is very powerful
-miracles happen everyday
-laughter is the best medicine
-happiness can be shared
-Our Savior loves each of us and knows how to help us through any trial
-prayers are often answered through people - let them in!
Well, friends, now you know. A few of my blogs have already been about all of this, and I'm sure that many in the future will be, just so you know where I'm coming from. I love you all. Thank you for your support and prayers. Be happy - life is beautiful.