Miracle Stories

I received the “Hero for Hope” award tonight from The Ride for Hope (www.therideforhope.com). In my acceptance I stumbled over my words and didn’t say exactly what I had planned, but Yaacov says it was good so I’m not going to worry about it. They surprised me by having Dr. Crooms come to present me with the award. He was literally between surgeries–after finishing one he put on a suit and raced to the fairgrounds, then back to TMH for the next procedure.  It was so nice. Plus, I actually saw him yesterday for the post-op visit and he didn’t clue me in that he’d be there.

Tonight was great. We couldn’t get a sitter so took the girls with us. They were a bit ansy because it spilled over to bedtime, but I can’t tell you how sweet it was to sit up on the stage and watch them. Abigail was cheering me on and making faces to entertain me. Naomi was walking around, eating Cheetos (anything to keep her quiet!) and smiling with true joy. This is what I’ve been fighting for. TOTALLY worth it.

The organization honors someone new every year. It was set up in honor of a man named Lou Farrah. If I understand correctly, he had some type of really bad, inoperable cancer (not sure if he’d been fighting already or it came out of nowhere), and everyone said there was nothing that could be done, he was going to die really soon. Then he saw Dr. Crooms. It was really late at night and Crooms checked him out and left for a minute. He came back into the room and said, “I can operate but it has to be right now”. So surgery started at something like 10pm and was successful. He lived three years or so more because of Dr. Crooms taking the chance on him. Dr. Crooms was the first recipient of the Hero for Hope award, and I think Lou was able to present it to him. I met Mrs. Farrah today and she was putting on a brave face. She is very kind but misses him terribly. She said she should be over it (I think it’s been 7 years or so), but it’s still very hard.

I have been hearing a lot of stories like this, and they get me thinking. A few people have mentioned how nice it would be to document things like that. It leaves a legacy, which seems comforting. Maybe it would give Mrs. Farrah great joy to tell Lou’s story again and have tons of strangers read it. The stories also give people hope and it’s good to get all the details on paper to distribute rather than let them get distorted through word of mouth. I’m not sure I can do the stories justice, or what kind of format to put them in, but maybe I’ll start collecting them then figure it out. I might be able to submit them as articles to magazines or put them in a book at some point. So, if you’re reading this and have a cool miracle story, please email me at epetscher@gmail.com.

I am so happy. Overjoyed by all my blessings. Abigail prayed for salvation the other night. Do you know how bittersweet and heart-wrenching that would have been if I still had cancer? One of the things I had prayed for through cancer was to see that moment before I died, so it would have felt like one box marked off the to-do list before I ascend into heaven. As it was I got to truly enjoy the moment instead of thinking like that.

Abigail’s always been a happy “Christian”, but we weren’t sure when to make it official. We wanted to make sure she understood what she was praying, but there’s no magic age we could decide on. So, because of all the questions she’s been asking lately, salvation came up a lot. She jumped at the chance to secure hers and we went for it. We videotaped it so at least she’ll have that if she doesn’t happen to remember it as an adult. I thought maybe once per year we would have an anniversary celebration of that day and watch the video and reminisce. Not that I (or any of us) have assurance that I’ll be around next year, but I also don’t see anything getting in the way. Certainly not cancer!!!!

    “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21)

PET Results and Whatnot

I guess I never got around to reporting my most recent PET scan results–ALL CLEAR, hooray! At this point it’s not exactly a surprise because I already knew I was healed. But it is great, great confirmation!

I am still praying about having radiation and taking the Tamoxifen. These are expected by my healthcare providers but I have a hard time doing it while knowing I’m healed. However, the more I pray, the more I believe God wants me to keep it up. So, we’ll keep praying and planning  on it. The short version of the reason to do it is that these things keep the cancer from coming back. I just have a hard time with God wanting me to do it, because that hints again that there’s a chance it will come back. But I felt the same way about finishing chemo and He showed me some other good reasons to go through with it, such as the people I got to speak to because of it. 
There’s a fundraiser this weekend called the Ride for Hope (www.therideforhope.com). They are going to recognize me tomorrow because I’m supposedly a “Hero for Hope”. I am still wrapping my head around this. It is one of the nicest things man has ever done for me, but I’m just accepting the honor on God’s behalf. 
It will be a great chance to tell people about true Hope, the God of Hope. Hope that is more powerful than circumstances. The great Hope that opens more doors than any man can. The Hope that saw me through this mess, and will see anyone else through theirs. No matter how bad it seems. Or even how minor the situation can appear to other people. God gives this hope freely, we just have to ask. And believe. He will give anyone hope, the only problem is that it doesn’t always look the way we want or expect it to. I think it can be really scary to hope in things we do not see because it’s giving up control. But if you do it right, it’s exhilarating to release that control, especially as it’s a perceived notion anyway–none of us really have control, we just think we do.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” Romans 15:13 
Romans 8:24-25, “For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.”
That took a different direction than I originally intended. But it’s all true so maybe someone needed to read it. Blessings to you all!