Weeks had passed and I was still walking around with my wig cap on.
I had been hearing ” you’re so strong” since my diagnosis, but I wasn’t feeling that strong. The truth is, I was scared. I felt silly for being so afraid of taking off my wig cap. I just couldn’t imagine looking in the mirror and seeing myself with a bald head.
Then one night it happened…
I finally broke down.
I was upstairs in my parents’ guestroom trying to sleep and my mind was going 100 mph. I was sad, I was tired, I was angry…I had questions. It was just past 1:00am and the house was silent. I tossed and turned for a while fighting back tears before I finally decided to get up.
I felt my way through the darkness, interrupting the quiet of the house with the sliding of my feet on the cold hardwood floor. My hand hadn’t even touched the bathroom door knob and I had tears rolling down my cheeks. I didn’t want to wake anyone up, I didn’t want to talk to anyone, I didn’t want to be comforted. All I wanted to do was cry.
I locked the door and turned on the light. I stood in front of the mirror and looked at myself. First, I looked down at the scar on my arm and shook my head. I just had surgery on my left elbow in August, now this?? I ran my finger across the bulge under my skin (my port) and the scar my port placement procedure had left behind.
I untied my scarf and looked at the wig cap. I thought about taking if off. I tried smoothing down the hair sticking from underneath my wig cap. I immediately realized that the hair was falling out the more I touched it.
I started crying even more and put my scarf back on. I was done looking in the mirror. I didn’t feel pretty, I didn’t feel like I looked like myself. I had bruises, my hair was coming out and my eyes were puffy and red from crying.
I sat on the bathroom floor crying. I cried and I talked to God.
“I don’t understand this! I’m 28 and I’m a mother! I have children to raise. This is too much! Haven’t I been through enough? I try to live right, I’m saved, I believe in You! I don’t understand why this is happening to me. My grandma had breast cancer, my mother had it and now me. Why me? Why now? God, I just need you to help me understand.”
I was upset. I didn’t have a cold, this wasn’t the flu, this was cancer. Why did it have to be cancer and why did it have to be me?
I literally curled up on my parents’ bathroom floor crying and praying. This was the first time I had broken down since my diagnosis. It was like I had been cut open and everything that I had been carrying around was being poured out.
One thing about God– when you ask Him questions, He gives you answers.
As I sat on the bathroom floor with my head buried in my hands, I heard Him. Just as clear as I hear the clicking of the keyboard while typing this post, God answered:
” It’s you because there are people who need to hear from you, people who need to see how you go through this. I’ve got you. I’m using this as a launching pad to propel you into your purpose. All you need to do is trust me and stand on My word.”
I lifted my head and begin wiping the tears from my eyes. “God you are amazing.” My weeping turned into worship. A few minutes ago I had poured everything out and in that moment God had filled me up. I felt refreshed, I had renewed strength and I wasn’t afraid.
I had a choice; I could be pitiful or I could be powerful.
I chose to be powerful.
I've always believed that we tend to be the most effective in areas where we have been the most affected. It's often our deepest pains that draw us closer to our purpose. Those words never really hit home until I was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer at the age of 28. I had watched both my mother and grandmother battle the disease, but never thought I would find myself in the same battle, especially not so young. I've learned through this journey that it's not what you go through, but how you go through it. I wanted to share my story in hopes that it will inspire someone to keep fighting, keep the faith and live on purpose.