Today I have been thinking quite a lot about miracles and what they mean to me. This is a word that I hear quite a lot now, mostly from people I love and who care about me. They want me to have a miracle. They want me to be ok. And, you know what? I want that too. But, sometimes we have to accept that we are not going to get the BIG miracle. But, that doesn't mean that I'm not appreciative of the small ones. In fact, I think sometimes I learn more from the small miracles, especially when I have to work really hard to get them.
About a month ago I got the 'ole "use it or lose it" speech from my oncologist. If you don't use your muscles you will lose them. And, in the back of my mind I knew she was right. But, I was so fatigued, I didn't want to do it. But, out the door I went every day because being the determined woman I am, I refuse to let this stupid disease defeat me.
It is really hard to explain true fatigue to people. I honestly didn't understand it myself until it happened to me. It's not just an ordinary tired feeling. It feels like you are wading through a vat of molasses all of the time. I kept thinking every day as I was making my way slowly around the block about that oldie but goodie children's story I used to read to my kids... "The tortoise and the hare"... slow and steady, steady and slow... that's the only way to go! And, that was my attitude. I wasn't doing it fast, but I was doing it... and that's all that really mattered.
It really is hard to get out and do something like this every day knowing that not too long ago you were able to jog the same distance and longer without a care in the world. I had to put my pride away and try not to think about where I had been, only on where I was going.
After a couple of weeks I built up a little more stamina. I still wasn't able to go fast but I was noticing I was able to go a little longer. It was still hard work but I wasn't giving up.
Today I walked out the front door and smelled the cool fresh air. This is a treasured moment in Texas because we have so many hot days. It felt really good. And for whatever reason my body just kicked into gear and I was able to pick up the pace a little on my walk. I walked 3 miles.. and I did it with an ease that I haven't felt in a while. When you haven't felt good in a really long time these little moments of success are truly moments to treasure and yes, it was my own personal small miracle. I didn't think I'd ever be able to walk like that again. But, it just shows you what determination and perseverance can get you when you want something bad enough.
I know that I cannot be cured of my cancer. And, I don't actually ask for that miracle. Maybe that surprises some people to hear me say that. But, the reason I don't ask for it for myself is because I don't want it only for me, I want it for everyone. I do think a cure will be found someday, and if it's too late for me that's okay. It will make me happy to simply have played a small role in helping us get there. Each generation has a job to do with the cards we've been dealt. And the way I look at it, it's my job to hopefully pave the way for a cancer free future for those we leave behind. So, that's what I'm going to do... with my loud voice and my persistent nature.
Even though I won't be getting the big miracle, I will still get up every day and try to look for all of the small miracles that each day has to offer. These moments are so much easier to find now than they used to be. I am grateful for that. And, I hope that everyone around me sees the beauty that each day has to offer for them and takes full advantage of their own personal miracles. They happen every day for everyone if you just take the time to look.