Friday, December 20, 2013

What A Diner, Radiation and Errands Can Do For Your Marriage

We arrive early.
Yes, we were early. 
Gary assured the attendant at the desk that this would never happen again. 
We choose our seats. It is still quiet in this place. 
We gaze around the room. 
We are surprised to see a fully decorated Christmas Tree AND a table full of goodies.
Crackers and cheese. Various Christmas delicacies. 
This is our welcome to Day #1 of radiation.

They call Gary. 
He has a plate of food. 
They ask him if he wants them to come and get him later. 
He pauses. 
I assure them that we want him to go. . . now.
He can take the plate of food.
I want to treasure this moment.
I want to hold tight to each moment when he can eat and feels strong.
I am left alone in the waiting room. I take out the Word and I read.

I am in Job and Isaiah in the Old Testament. 
I am just about to finish my 5th time reading through the bible. I steady my breathing as I let the scriptures; those Ancient Promises wash over me. I feel Job's pain and wrestle with the same God he did. I think on Isaiah's message to a hurting people. He is still the same God. God's word is the same, yesterday, today and forever. 
Surprisingly, Gary is finished quickly and we have completed Day #1 of Radiation. 
We meet with the nurse just to touch base and make sure we are all on the same page. 
Our next stop is the infusion center to connect with the nurse there and to talk through the procedure's during chemo. It is extravagant grace that meets us there in that room. She too a believer in the living God.
 And right there in that hospital we lay it all before the Father. 

I Thessolonians 5:16-18
 Rejoice always,  pray without ceasing,  give thanks in all circumstances; 
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Our healer, Our provider. 
This is twice now. 
To think on the mercy and grace that has been sent our way is truly humbling. Once with the radiation oncologist nurse and now with the medical oncologist nurse. Both, stop. Both prayBoth are joy in the midst of deep, deep sorrow and a journey of the unknown. These are blessings. Gifts from the Lord;  a reminder that He too, is there. 

We finish at the hospital and head to run some errands.
We are both hungry and we begin the process of finding a mutual agreeable place.
He, my beloved husband, will eat anywhere. Or not at all.
This has been the basis of serious negative vibes in our marriage over the years.
Food can bring about alter personalities.
Meals are to be eaten; 3 of them; Everyday.
 Even on vacation.
Even more so on vacation, because I do not have to prepare. . .
 I digress. 
As we are seeking this perfect dining experience.
I notice the Parkway Diner sign. It appears to have lights on. My hopes are raised. 
I swear there is a neon open sign in the window.
My heart skips a beat as the realization that this place is open and I am about to enter.

 It meets every expectation I have.
There are lights around the windows.

Christmas music is playing and the woman behind the counter is perky
and brings me hot coffee. And repeats this task without me ever asking.
(Do you think they know how much I love coffee?)
And I pinch myself just to make sure I haven't stepped into a time warp.

 I think I am in love.
 And I calculate how many days until I can come again.

The rest of our day includes multiple stops for the farm and personal errands.
We need to get a mattress for Eleanor.
Repeatedly she has complained about her mattress being uncomfortable.
We always agree with her.
It is over 40 years old.
It's part of the territory.
It's not until we recline with her on the mentioned mattress that we discover there are springs poking through the mattress. We flip the mattress, because that is what every cheap family does; only to discover. . .somewhere along the line we had already
flipped this mattress because there were springs sticking out of that side as well.
Being the frugal mom I am I had already purchased a deal through one of the internet daily coupons.
(Sorry all guest room users, no new mattress there. You'll still have to roll to the middle)
 It is late when we finally turn toward home.
We are both tired.
We are ready to be home. 

Gary is the first to see it. He says the elves have been at it again.
It's then I see the boxes of food.
 Food left for us.
An abundance.
In the time it took for us to bring the food in to the house.
Another pile of food shows up at the door.
We never saw them.
We eat,  again,
(I really need to get my friend Carole Ann to start walking with me)
The kids are all out. So it is just my farmer and I.
We find it interesting how in the face of all the unknown;
doctors, radiation and chemo- that these times are so much fun for us.
We travel far south on a vacation to the warmth or get away for the evening and it's a disaster.
But put us at the hospital and we're like two kids, just starting to date.
It was this way with Elijah.
He resisted his way into this world with all he had.
We spent days and nights at the hospital trying to force his entry.
To no avail.
He was brought in against his will.
Funny how he was taken so quickly.
Yet these time together, my farmer and I are gifts and treasures.
We remember them fondly.
As Cedric used to say. . .It's all how you look at it. 

And do you see it?
Can you feel the Power moving slowly?
 It is the presence of the Holy Spirit ministering to our hurting hearts.
Can you see it moving?
I don't know why we are on this journey.
I still don't like it. 
And I miss my red headed boy with every fiber of my being. I yearn for him. My soul aches.
Yet, through the grief, there is God's presence.
He is there. He hasn't left.
He will be there.


  1. Praying for you and your farmer Tammy as you begin this journey. Thanking God with you for His provisions. :)

  2. I am so glad that you a surrounded by wonderful people. Obviously, you are deserving of all of it.

  3. Thank you for your words. I know that you share them as though they are a balm to your difficult walk. I see such strength as you are open and honest to all that has happened and is still going on. Praying for your family that you may keep walking and often times being carried in Our Saviors' arms.