It’s an understatement for my emotional well-being recently.
On the one hand I’m overwhelmed by how well I have been feeling physically. Then I get overwhelmed by all that I want to do because I feel better physically. Then I get overwhelmed by all that’s on my plate because even though I feel better physically, I still tire twice as quickly as I once did. Then I can’t get all that’s on my plate done, and I feel overwhelmed by all that’s still on my plate.
All of this, though, is fixable. I can lessen the things on my plate. I can say “no” more often even if it might disappoint people. I can prioritize my “to-do” list in a way that doesn’t put too much for me to do on any given day. I can “redeem the time because the days are evil.” And I can stop. worrying. so. stinking. much. about what other people think of me if I can’t be all things to all men.
It’s when I sit in the doctor’s office and he shakes his head in awe that I had yet another cancer 9 months ago and then strongly recommends two. more. surgeries. Yes, y’all, two more surgeries. (I still need to talk with my oncologist before we make that decision.)
It’s when I get the phone call from my geneticist at UVA who says they have three different syndromes they want to test me for and one of them… one of them… one of them is very serious.
Wait a minute.
What did you say?
Oh that part about if I have it I will want to get. my. kids. tested. right. away, because if I have this syndrome, it’s very serious. Can you repeat that?
If… then… get.kids.tested.right.away.
It’s called Li-Fraumeni (pronounced lee-fro-meenie) syndrome, and it pre-disposes a person to “a wide range of malignancies, with particularly high occurrences of breast cancer, brain tumors, acute leukemia, soft tissue sarcomas, bone sarcomas, and adrenal cortical carcinoma.”
Y’all, I spent all of Friday crying. Folding laundry, sniffing the scent of my children on stuffed animals as I placed them on their beds, wandering aimlessly around the house crying.
Crying because I’m completely overwhelmed, and completely undone, and I. DON’T. WANT. ANY. MORE. OF. THIS. Crying because I’m scared. Crying because I feel utterly alone in all this.
Did you hear what was missing from Friday?
I spent all day crying. But I didn’t spend any time crying out. I didn’t go to God with it because I didn’t want to go to God with it. I wanted to feel it all deeply and feel sorry for myself for a while.
And my kids listened to me snap at them mercilessly and stomp around trying to “get things done” and my sweet Bear finally sat down and said to me, “You’re mean voice is not fun, Mom.”
Yes. Feeling overwhelmed. It’s my “You’re A Meanie” Syndrome.
My Bear was the heart check I needed. The reminder that I was spending the entire day crying because I might have a syndrome that might lead to my children having this syndrome that might lead to cancer at an early age for them and I wasn’t spending any time WITH them, and I certainly wasn’t loving them.
And we found ourselves on the floor, the four or us, with me in the middle begging for forgiveness and telling them I had failed them, and Bella-girl stroked my hair and Ash-man said, “It’s okay, Mom. I get mean, too, sometimes.”
And then that weekend I sat with 150 or so of my brothers and sisters at church and worshipped.
And one of the songs we sang was “Beautiful One”.
Do y’all remember when we learned that my CAT scan was clear 4 1/2 years ago and that the cancer had not spread to my liver or bones or brain? Bri and I got in his Jeep and the song on his iPod that “just happened” to start up was “Beautiful One” and we turned it up and sang our hearts out?
Friday night I sang my heart out.
Overwhelmed with life, yes.
But even more overwhelmed.
By the Beautiful One I love. The Beautiful One I adore.
Christ has captured my heart, and no matter whether I have “You’re A Meanie” Syndrome or not, His Cross has spoken mercy over me. When my eyes are fixed on Him, then instead of crying all day, I am crying out for that mercy to cover me and give me strength.
And I look at the Cross.
And I am overwhelmed.
(Would you pray, my bloggy friends? For wisdom and peace and direction? We have a lot of decisions to make, and in case you didn’t figure it out, I’m a little overwhelmed. Thank you for your faithfulness to my family and me… I am loved.)