“There’s a growth, a nodule” —okay, not a tumor, he did not say tumor, this is good—“in your right lung. Probably related to the chest radiation you received” Dangit. Do I cry? Lucy is reading right here next to me & she knows more than a six-year-old should about the words “scan” and “oncologist” and “tumor”. No tears yet.
The radiologist recommended another scan in 6-12 months to monitor growth. Is this supposed to bring me peace, this lack of urgency? Because this feels a little more rage-y. Do they know my sister died of brain cancer at fourteen? Do they know I’ve had cancer twice before? Do they know the four little babies need a mama to kiss them goodnight? I feel like if they knew these things waiting four days would seem too long…
“You guys aren’t worried about this little growth turning into Hodgkins again?”
“This doesn’t look like Hodgkins.” He assures me.
“What does it look like then?” Rage, officially at rage.
“A growth, in your lung. Small and glassy” He pauses and his old, smart breathing comforts my heart a little. “You know what, let’s say four months. I’ll have Krista call you to schedule.”
“Okay.” She sees my tears.
“Okay. See you soon.” I wonder what he thinks about when he hangs up. Because I feel strangled by thoughts like: who will pay for my kid’s therapy and organic food after I die? Or, How will I do chemo and four kids?
So now we wait. David and I have begun the process of second opinions, bronchoscopies, and menacing the insurance company to cover a more expensive (and accurate) PET scan. But still—waiting.
I have a book packed up in the basement begging to be written. A story about waiting, and falling, and flying. It’s mapped out, and I kept assuring my little writer hiding deep inside that she could resurface once school starts. Phone calls and scan results can change things though, that radiology report painted a new reality—one where time may not play on my team.
That story, my story, is about God’s Goodhardgood-ness. How better to prove that God is Good, Hard, Wild, and Loving than while I wait to find out just how Good, Hard, Wild, and Loving God actually is?
This story exists for cancer warriors, and the ones who sat in their waiting rooms. For young mamas, and for those praying every prayer and injecting every hormone in hopes of becoming mamas. It’s a story for addicts, the abused— and the abuser. My story is for recovering humans, chronic pain sufferers, the wounded, the weary.
The Love Hulks.
What would I do if, in four months, this nodule beefed up into a bonafide tumor? What if these four months are the last ones chemo-free? My four wonderful monsters need proof God isn’t a dick. They need to know God isn’t a dick.
I can prove it.
My plan is to post a chapter or two a week. The book consists of four parts, which aligns nicely with four months. We will see where the timeline falls and how it all works out, but my gut tells me that by the end of the book we will have a new ending than the one I originally penned.
Either: “I don’t have cancer, isn’t God goodhardgood!” Or: “I have cancer again, watch how goodhardgood God is about to get!”
Does that sound cool? Are we all okay with that? Faith in action, faith undeterred, faith in real life—for my children, and for anyone else who wants a taste of the goodhardgood life.
So here it is, the biggest leap of faith I’ve ever taken. Be kind, because my little writer will need a month or two to bulk up.