Thursday, July 22, 2010

Random Things I Think I Think

Deryl says.........Kelley and I went to the North Texas Gilda's club last night. Gilda's Club is a community for cancer patients, their families, and survivors. It is named in honor of Gilda Radner of Saturday Night Live fame. We were invited by our friend Michael. Michael is the gentleman I mentioned in an earlier post that we met at Sing For the Cure and was wearing a pink suit, well really pink everything from head to toe. Michael is a breast cancer survivor himself and has stayed in contact with us ever since we met him. He has been a great source of encouragement and Kelley and I are both so glad he invited us last night. It was a meeting called Sisters but a few men were allowed. Cancer patients, caretakers, and survivors all took turns sharing there stories. It was emotional and inspiring and everyone was so positive and hopeful. Some were scared as well. We met a young lady who is having a mastectomy next week. She is only 28 years old. Michael told us about a girl who is 15 and was recently diagnosed with breast cancer.
Kelley and I both shared some of our story with the group. We talked with many people after the meeting was over. When you listen to the stories you realize how precious life is and how radically it can change in a moment. Maybe that is why Jesus said "take no thought for tomorrow" to encourage us to focus on today and let tomorrow take care of itself.
I have learned so much about myself, my wife, my daughters, and others during this time. I thought it would be fun to list them here. So here are some thoughts I have about life:
  • I love my wife more than I thought I ever could
  • That God is the greatest comforter if you choose to let him
  • That everyone is much stronger than they give themselves credit for
  • That a cancer diagnosis only magnifies the type of relationship you have with your spouse whether good or bad
  • That cancer does not care about your race, sex, social status, religious beliefs or anything else
  • That we have higher rates of cancer today than in the past because overall we eat poor nutritionally, we don't exercise enough, we don't manage our stress well, and we take too much medication
  • I don't think all of those things are the cause of cancer but I do thing they all contribute to it
  • Heather and Rachel are more responsible and thoughtful than I realized
  • That seemingly bad things happen to really nice people for no apparent reason
  • That everything we think is bad is not always bad it just feels bad for awhile
  • That you can discover your life's purpose in your darkest moments
  • That you can still have fun and laugh even during a crisis
  • That things can always get worse.....or better
  • That you can turn scary moments into fun moments
  • That the fear of most things are worse than the actual things themselves
  • That I have yet to find a creature stronger than a single mother raising young children while fighting cancer
  • That what is right for you is not necessarily for me and vice versa
  • That judging people is pointless and if you knew the person's story you would probably feel compassion for them and feel guilty for judging them
  • That people can say really silly things when they don't know what to say
  • That most people are good and want to help
  • That most women's biggest fear after a cancer diagnosis is losing their hair
  • That I appreciate my family and friends more now than before
  • That I wish I would have appreciated them more before
  • That life is really good and worth the trouble it sometimes gives you
  • That it is more gratifying to help someone than to be helped
  • That doctors should be appreciated for their dedication and discipline to become good at what they do
  • That doctors are humans and they cannot tell the future
  • That we are all connected whether we know it or not
  • That the greatest healer of all things is true divine love
You know people tell us all the time how we are handling this so well and how we are an inspiration. And we appreciate that people feel inspired by our story. I think the difference between us and many others going though this is that we are openly sharing our experience. But that is what works for us. There are many others that are equally strong and inspiring. They just do it quietly and share their experience with a select few. Neither one is better than the other. They are just different ways of handling life's opportunities. Everyone has the same spirit and strength within them. They only need to be awakened to it. Some one asked Kelley today if she would give this cancer and its treatment back if she were able and she said no for the same reason I would say no. We are both better people than we were before. We both have more compassionate and open hearts to others. We love more than we did before. You can only measure how well you understand a subject with a test. This is just our test to measure how much we understand what is really important in life. We have not scored an A+ but I feel that we are doing better than average. God is good and He loves us so immensely that we would be shocked and overwhelmed if we would take the time to quiet our minds and just allow ourselves to experience it. So many times we blame God for our bad choices or the bad choices of others. We get upset thinking He should have protected us or our loved one. The thing is, if I look back on my life honestly there were many times I felt a tug in my heart that I ignored. God was communicating to me but I didn't listen. I wonder how many times we all do that. You are all loved with such a great love. Kelley and I talk often about how fortunate we are to know so many of you. You are an encouragement to us and we hope that we can be as much of a blessing to you as you are to us.


  1. Deryl,
    I loved reading your thoughts! You and Kelley do so inspire me! Love you and your family so much and am so greatful God has brought our families to do life together!