Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Turning Point

When was the last time that you approached a junction that you knew could irreversibly alter the course of your life from that moment forward? Perhaps it was a potential job offer, or a marriage proposal, or an acceptance by a University. We all have faced several such moments in life. The date and time of your moment with destiny is typically known well beforehand. You are reduced to counting down the weeks, days, hours, and minutes in your mind. You live only to mark time as you march toward your fate. You run through the possible outcomes over and over again until your mind is overwhelmed and your body is saturated with feelings of anxiety and restlessness. You suffer from upset stomach, loss of appetite, insufferability, and maybe listlessness or panic. I'm not sure if the pattern of the cycle that we go through depends on what we are faced with. I'm not sure if it even matters how much certainty there is in the outcome. There is always a chance something different, something unexpected might happen. However, when the outcome is completely unpredictable and out of our control, the pressure can be far too much to handle alone.

Today I am marking time until Tuesday, January 27, 2009 at 1:00 p.m.. At that moment my oncologist will examine me and determine if my cancer has come back. If I am still clear of the disease, I rejoice briefly, knowing that I bought a little more time, but another moment of destiny is just around the corner. At least I can go back to making the most of my life and to a sense of normalcy as I experience it. If the beast has returned, I can expect immediate surgery and probably the return to the horrors of weekly chemotherapy. There is no advanced warning of what will happen. My cancer is not of a sort that announces its return with shouts or flashing lights. It is insidious and secretive. It comes back every so often in a part of my body very near the gateway to the lymphatic system. If it ever gets there, my journey is, for all intents and purposes, over.

The important thing for us all to understand in the times leading up to and away from these fateful moments, is that we are not alone. "In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God" (Phillipians 4:6).