On Wednesday I took Big J to the doctors to have something that we thought was minor looked at. We went in at 3:10pm with no worries and I didn't even go into the exam room with him, instead I stayed in the lobby with a sleeping child in my arms and closed my eyes for a few minutes until I was awakened by the nurse telling me that my son was scheduled for an emergency ultrasound the next day. I looked at her with confusion and told her that tomorrow wouldn't work for us due to several tests Big J had that he could not miss. I was still somewhat groggy from my little nap. Her response was..."at this point school is not a priority and the doctor wants this done immediately." I am confused and search my son out in the room. As he appears I look to him in a state of panic and he quickly led me out the door to the car where he looked at me and said, "mom the word cancer was said several times."
And then the pause button was pushed.
My entire body went as cold as if I'd just landed in the coldest part of the universe. The world began shaking. Was it an earthquake? Was it the fact that I was freezing? Was it because my son had his hand on my shoulder and telling me, "don't worry mom, it's not cancer...I'm fine." I remember looking into his eyes with tears spilling out of mine and yelling at him...."IS THIS A JOKE?? Please tell me this is one of your silly jokes? Seriously tell me the truth!!!!" And he just looked at me and repeated the words again. I started to gag and cry harder. I can't move. I can only grab my sons hands and pray with him.
And I don't stop praying for 24 hours.
My momma heart becomes consumed with fear when only a few hours earlier my world was consumed with Big J's upcoming finals and Christmas just a few weeks away. Now I see nothing outside the windows as I drive home....I don't even remember driving home. I do remember and always will remember my child's calm. His utter calm. I asked him if he was okay and he says, "I'm fine mom and I just know it's not cancer and if it is I'll be okay, I am trusting God on this." His calm calms me. His reassurance gives me strength to stop begging but just try to trust. Trust that if this is the plan God has for my son, I will rest in Him and trust that He will get me through what ever lies ahead. It's difficult for me but I keep saying...I trust You. I trust You. Over and over and over and over again.
Ironically Big J's favorite dinner is being cooked that night but the table is silent and the food is bland. I can barely eat. Later that night we have to run our little cricket to urgent care because we fear she may have broken a finger or something. I'm completely lost at this point....what is going on I ask? My trust is failing to gain strength. What is going on!? I trust You! I remind myself. Thank goodness there is nothing wrong with our sprout except for maybe a bruised finger and we make the trek home. Sleep is pointless for any of us. I pray most of the night. I begin again to trust all will be okay. When dawn nears I get up to begin what I know will be an excruciatingly long day and wonder how I will make it until the ultrasound appointment at 2:30pm. Trust.
With my husband holding my hand and my son ahead of me, we walk into the building and again my faithful child tells me to stop worrying and that all is going to be okay whatever is found. They take him back at 2:20 and he walks back out to me what feels like decades later but the clock has only moved 17 minutes. The technician says she'll contact the doctor with the results and we are sent away to wait. I'm praying we don't have to wait through the weekend let alone through the night. I begin to beg again but then am led back to just trusting God by my son. He is so calm. Again he says, "This is God's plan." We had a few minutes to spare before taking him to his class at the community college so we go get his hair cut. My world is still void of color, the coldness in my soul is still there and my head is still full of prayer. I call those who are praying and waiting with us to keep them up to date. I sit and watch the stylist cut away my child's hair. I think of the first time he got his hair cut. He looked just as small to me then as he did all those years ago.
My phone rings.
I am outside all alone and say, "I trust you Lord" out loud before I answer.
Then the doctor says, "There is no cancer there."
The black pause vibrates with warmth and color and I run into the salon and grab my baby boy and hug him so hard and tell him the news. And of course his calm reply is, "I told you so mom!"
The relief is overwhelming for all of us. I am grateful for the doctors quick action and getting an answer for us in 24 hours and 13 minutes. I thank God for answered prayers. I hug my child again. I grab onto my husband because I just want to fall apart and I know he wont let me. I look around and see color and notice that life is moving once again around me. My bones are filling with warmth even though I know my child still has treatment ahead of him but it's not treatment for cancer.
The pause lifts slightly.
Life is short.
In those 24 hours and 13 minutes that my life was paused, I learned from my child to just trust in the Lord. Trust that whatever life gives you, embrace it. Good. Bad. Bitter. Joyful. Hateful. Darkness. Light....just trust in God. I've never really been able to do that until God paused my life this week. Even the wait for our daughter didn't give me that trust. But He showed me through my 16 year old son to have complete faith in Him because...
“Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5
Over the next few weeks we will find out what the next step is, either minor surgery or something else. Keep our boy in your prayers for healing and continued strength in the Lord. And today we are thankful for answered prayers and we are humbled as we know so many others in this world who have been or are now paused in life with cancer, including our family. We will take this Christmas season humbly forward and make more time to pray for those who need strength. And trust.