Our precious little girl was born with a tumor on her spinal cord. The journey to discovering her ailment was long and difficult, but now that we know what is keeping our little one from being able to lift her own head and moving her left arm as much as her right, we are determined to help our adorable daughter fight that tumor to its death. Right now we are in a heart wrenching process titled "Wait and See." Thankfully, Cadence does not currently experience any pain as a result of the tumor, but that has not stopped her mommy and daddy from going through a tortuous amount of pain for her. Due to the fact that my wonderful husband was promoted when I was 8 months pregnant, we found ourselves in a brand new city (a brand new state, for that matter), in unfamiliar surroundings and a sea of strangers when our little girl came into the world. This has made me especially thankful for the outpouring of support that we have received from our new community. We have been lovingly embraced as family by people who don't know a thing about us, but we believe that maybe God told them that we really could use a friend at this particular moment in life. I don't know anyone very well here in Texas yet, but I do know this much: there are people here with big hearts.
One instance of this big hearted-ness came to us in a chance meeting after church. We are lucky enough to have found a church to call home very quickly after the move, and we met this woman (who I won't name, since she doesn't know that I'm writing about her online) and her oldest daughter in the narthex of our new church, and found ourselves talking until the person who needed to lock up kicked us out. Since then, this woman has not only become a close friend, but the nearest thing I have to family in a 1,000 mile radius. I had known this friend for about 2 months when we found out about Cadence's tumor. The news was, of course, devastating. My friend invited me to join her Bible study the same week. It was perfect timing, because they were starting a new book that week. I wasn't sure if I could commit to a weekly meeting with the uncertainty of my daughter's health, but I went anyway.
The book we started that week is called "Fearless" by Max Lucado. I hadn't purchased the book yet, and therefore hadn't read the chapter to prepare for that week's study, but she assured me that it didn't matter and that I should come anyway. I arrived that evening expecting to meet some nice women and hoping to hear and read a few things that might be relevant to my life. I did not expect for God to change my life that night. The chapter we discussed that evening was about dealing with fear in our lives. We discussed the fears we each were facing, and I shared with the other women that a mom's biggest fear, losing her child, was becoming a possible reality for me. We proceeded to go over the main points of the chapter, which served as a way to catch me up. When a few Bible verses were listed, we went around the circle, taking turns reading them aloud. My verse was the following:
Do not be afraid. Just believe, and your daughter will be well. (Luke 8:50 NCV)
I was absolutely amazed. For the first time in a long time, I began to spend some time in prayer each day. The only communication I had had with God since we began the journey was to yell at Him and to express my anger. It seemed so unfair and so unjust that such a tiny innocent person should have to go through something like this. She had done nothing wrong. That night I prayed over my little girl as I held her. And my faith grew. Our journey has only just begun, but one thing I know is true: We will continue to fight this tumor to its death, only now, we have God on our side.
Take that, tumor.