What battle are you currently fighting? Is it a physical one? Mental? Emotional? Spiritual? Relational?
We all have our battles and I don't think one battle is necessarily worse than another in the sense that battles often carry the same emotions of defeat, loss, grief, pain, and frustration. The circumstances just look different. The journeys, different.
I remember sitting on the lounge chairs by our pool this summer, joking with my husband Dan about my health (ya either have to laugh or cry), and saying, “Yeah, watch I come down with something other than heart failure, something like cancer.” It was a light-hearted moment that we can chuckle about now (again, either laugh or cry), but little did we know the battle that was coming.
After receiving the news of my leukemia diagnosis, I had no idea what was ahead—and to be honest, I still don’t. The battle seems long. Three more consolidation treatments yet? One has seemed like enough for a lifetime. The fight seems unending at times. I struggle with understanding why stage 3 heart failure and AML, all at the same time. Yet it’s not my life I live for, but for God’s legacy and His name to live on through this. And that’s when I have to keep giving the battle to God.
It’s been a bit of a rough go since coming home on Friday. Balancing the fatigue of heart failure and chemo is a lot. I can be emptying the dishwasher one minute and the next, having to sit down and sleep. One moment I’ll get the appetite to eat something and the next bite, I wonder why that even sounded good in the first place. On Saturday, Dan asked if I wanted to go for a short walk to the end of the block. We got to the end, turned around and I wasn’t sure I could make it back home. It felt like I was recovering from open heart surgery all over again!
What I’m failing to accept is the “battle” that God has me in right now. I’m still in denial at times. And the battle? To serve Him and love Him through my journey of leukemia and heart failure. There are times I feel like I’m done battling and just want to live a “normal” life. I reminisce often of what life used to be (still going through the stages of grief), and just wishing things were different.
But that’s not stepping out on the frontlines with God behind, beside, and in front of me. It’s me standing in the back, wishing I wasn’t in the battle. Oh and there’s definitely times I wished I wasn’t. Some hours are fairly difficult and I just want to sleep them away. But deep down, I know God has this grand plan. Though I can't see what it all entails, it’s a battle that belongs to Him, as long as I let Him fight it for me.
Like my sweet husband reminded me, “Do what you can at that moment, with no guilt. Your job is to fight cancer.” That’s a new job description for me; one that I haven’t fully accepted yet. Looking at my week and realizing all of the appointments I have, meds to take, ailments to manage, it’s like a full time job. I was told by a few nurses that my job is to fight cancer and I kept thinking, “Oh, there’s so much more to this…” but no, they were exactly right. Cancer takes an all out battle and thankfully God is daily fighting this battle for me too. I don’t know what this new season of life will all entail, and it’s scary at times, but like I said, God is fighting this battle too. What comfort!
I write this post for myself and maybe you can find yourself relating to it in some way too, no matter what battle you are going through. Your battle may be absolutely consuming you, but don’t give up. Maybe all you can do today is one thing. Maybe it’s emptying the dishwasher. But you are fighting. I’m letting the world tell me what I need to accomplish in order to win the battle (and it all has to do with “doing” something), but I need to let go and LET GOD. When those hours seem daunting and you wonder how you will get through the next, remember to give the battle to Him. And I’m teaching myself this lesson at this very moment, too.