I've been trying very hard to be cheerful this Christmas season. All things considered, we are so very blessed. But some days, oh, some days it's just not easy to think about the blessings. Some days I get distracted by the fact that Jason doesn't have a job, hasn't been getting sub calls, and even my teaching schedule at school next semester looks a bit tenuous.
I wake up in the middle of the night, hoping and praying nothing happens to Jason since he doesn't have health insurance. I wonder how we'll be able to get through the summer even though we won't be receiving a single paycheck. Every month our bills are much higher than what we're bringing in, but we knew that would be the case this school year.
We knew, and we committed to not worrying about it.
I'm not worried.
But I'm not always feeling very thankful either.
Some days I work so hard at not being stressed about our situation that I end up getting blindsided by a reminder of my grandmas, and I just wish they were here with me this Christmas. I'd even settle for having my sweet dog by my side, but even she isn't here anymore.
And here, seven paragraphs later, you might be wondering where the good news is. Certainly, none of the above is good news. It's not new terrible news. It's not anything more than what we've already been enduring kind of news. But it sure isn't good, and it most definitely doesn't feel very great.
Yet, good news abounds.
- We had a lovely weekend with Jason's parents up near Mt. Hood, despite the fact that it was rainy not snowing.
- We are all healthy.
- Jason got some good news about a local school district hiring lots of social studies teachers next year.
- We spent a wonderful evening with friends, watching So You Think You Can Dance. I love me some good friends.
- We have a roof over our head, a furnace that works, and a laptop that connects to the Internet.
Even with all these blessings, all this pales in comparison to the best news we heard today. My uncle, who was diagnosed with glioblastoma last summer, received great news from the doctor today: after the newest round of treatment the tumor has shrunk.
The tumor has shrunk!
In the words of the doctor, this is remarkable and amazing. It would have been enough if the tumor hadn't grown, but more than that, the tumor has gotten smaller. The results are entirely unexpected. Left untreated, an individual with glioblastoma has three months to live. The power of medicine and the power of prayer has given us more than three months. It has given us six months, and the new MRI shows that the treatment promises to give us even more.
When I heard the news--when I read it on my uncle's CaringBridge page--I cried. For all the blessings we have, I think it's fair to say that this has been the year of bad news. But today! Today we finally got some good news, and it couldn't have come at a better time.
Whatever else we have to endure the rest of this year, one thing is sure: today we got very good news.