These are the Moments…

Written Sep 4, 2013 2:24pm by Cindy McMurry

These are the moments I get tickled and laugh at the things we take for granted. These are the moments I’m in wonder at the goodness of God. These are the moments that the change in my body distresses me. These are the moments that I try to process what our tomorrows will look like while being eternally grateful for our today.

I’m healing. Thanks be to God. There are some obvious challenges and some obvious changes. There are also obvious blessings.

John gave me a shower today and I realized washing my own hair was something I took for granted. Now my husband is learning how to care for me in a way I hadn’t expected and demonstrating love for me in new ways. Receiving care from others that we expect to provide for ourselves is both humbling and a blessing. John has teased me that I “have more skin surface” than he does even though he “is nearly double my body weight”… and has wondered if all girls wash their ankles. 🙂 I’m amazed at how tenderly he’s caring for me.

Yesterday John left quickly for work, before making himself a cup of coffee. I discovered the coffee maker hadn’t been plugged in since we returned home and there was no water in it. Not being able to reach or being steady with either hand made plugging it in rather interesting. Essentially I hiked my belly on the counter, braced my left arm with my right hand and the counter just to get the thing plugged in. Then I had to add water and hit the button on top to turn it on… I’m sorry you missed it. I’m sure you would have laughed… I’m learning to contort my body to meet our needs in ways you would be amazed. Yoga friends… beware. I’m going to need you.

Eating is not too rough. I brace my arm on the table and move my mouth to the fork instead of the fork to my mouth. I’m not sure if everyone else enjoys my meal that way, but I’ve found the food tastes the same… it’s also more work so perhaps I will eat less. I might be starting a new diet trend, who knows?

When I had my left scapulectomy I was much younger and it worried me that I “looked like a ballerina on one side and a football player on the other” because of the way my muscles adapted to accommodate my needs. Well… I don’t match this time either. I took a good look in the mirror today and I’ve lost my corner… no more sharp turn at my shoulder. It’s a lot more like a slope. Who knows how clothes will fit… most of my time right now is in pajamas.

My Mom is here and doing her best to help every way she can and our friends are preparing meals. I continue to be in awe of the sweetness, kindness and generosity of our family and friends. Just today we had three visitors, a fresh pineapple from Hawaii and flowers from my Rotary friends and a girlfriend.

In the middle of these moments I’ve been reminded that in 1987 a physician told me that my life expectancy was less than 5 years. F.I.V.E. Y.E.A.R.S. When I struggle to relearn to function and when I get discouraged because of the changes I remind myself what a glorious gift the last 26 years have been, even the struggle itself is a gift.. I may have to relearn to function in some areas, but I’m alive.

In those 26 years there have been more gifts and blessings than I could begin to mention… Derrick grew from a toddler to a man. He became a husband and a father, he serves our country with honor and dignity. Our girl Bethany came into our life and through her struggles has taught all of us to be better people and what courage it takes to face the challenge of everyday life. I met and married John who is an extraordinary human being. My Father has beaten bladder cancer and been a trooper through many accidents. All of my nieces and nephews have been born and grown into fine young men and women. And our grandchildren… Alex and Emma… let’s just say John says I have “Grandmother Derangement Syndrome.” What a gift they are to us. I’ve had the honor of serving God in churches as pastor and youth minister. We’ve been richly blessed with relationships that have challenged us to grow in faith, courage and strength.

Today I am not the same girl I was when I received that scary diagnosis 26 years ago and the prediction that my life expectancy would be less than 5 years. No way. Today I’m so blessed it’s hard to fathom. The fact that I CAN plug in the coffee maker is a gift. My shoulder may slope, but it’s still a shoulder and moves and will learn to do more. These are moments I will treasure, reminding myself that I CAN and if I can’t, there are others who will. What a great life I have.

I love you,
Cindy

And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. 1Timothy 1:14

Home…

Written Aug 13, 2013 8:25am by Cindy McMurry

We are so thankful to just be home.  That’s not to say that there aren’t a couple little people (namely Alex and Emma) that we would love to be snuggling with right about now.  But we’re happy to be together, with our animals, near our friends and in our own bed for a few days.

We feel pretty confident that most of the tests I will need have been completed.  I’ve been poked, prodded, injected, scanned, x-rayed, examined, questioned and now finally we get to rest.  Much to our relief!  Hopefully we will hear results soon.  I’ll keep you posted.

Yesterdays tests… that’s all they were.  Just tests.  I slept through most of them.  I know many of you prayed for me… God’s grace and peace were palpable.  Thank you!  I had dye injected for the first time… let’s say that was a bit unusual.  But, John and I got some laughter out of it.

We’ve gotten some good news too.  John passed his board recertification.  Thank God!  Derrick is coming home to the states soon.  Thank God!  Bethany is being interviewed by an Adult Living Program.  Thank God!  Jeff and Taylor’s wedding is in a few weeks and we will get to celebrate with them.  Thank God!  My nephew Ben was in a motorcycle accident and only experienced minor injuries.  Thank God!  Did I mention Derrick will be home soon?  Oh, I did?  Sorry.  😉  I will be so thankful to have him back stateside.

We also have some family and friends who are dealing with difficult times in their lives.  Some are facing illnesses, some grief, some personal sadness, some just seem to be under attack and others are facing change… please pray for them.  Our hearts are heavy for them today.

“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” James 5:16

We are so grateful to be experiencing God’s peace, presence, forgiveness, comfort and joy in the midst of this storm.  We pray the same for you.

We love you,
Cindy and John