What is a Saint ?
When I think of someone as a Saint, my mind immediately goes to Viola Williams, Eric’s Mom. In my eyes she could do no wrong, she actively would seek out the weak and weary and take them into her home for comfort from their worldly worries. Many times, the knock on the door was in the midst of the early morning, or late night, but she never turned anyone away, she loved unconditionally. Life to her was beautiful, she was raised in humble circumstances, served a mission in Hawaii, and married the love her life Ray Williams. Ray was a postal worker, and she was an accountant. I never saw them quarrel, they learned the art of laughter and happiness together as they struggled through life’s challenges together, I miss them both dearly. I look to Vi as my ultimate example, and know without a doubt I will feel her loving arms around me again when I leave this life and start my new journey.
I recently had someone say to me “you are a saint” to that person I said “I am not a Saint, unless you think of a Saint as a sinner who just keeps trying to be better than they were the day before”
Honestly, I keep tracing the steps of where I’ve been these past 5 years and cannot comprehend how I’ve been able to continue on. I read some of my old blog posts, and I can see the Lord’s hand writing those words, He has been with me every step.
With this past trial I am trying to deal with, there are times I feel very vulnerable, it’s hard to speak sometimes to people, my eyes tear up. The aching of this is so real to me, I remember not being able to get the Villain out of my head, it was a day to day struggle, fighting to stay alive. I have poured out my heart and soul to the Lord at times feeling his loving arms around me, and at times feeling deserted and alone. The feeling of peace, and knowing His grace remains with me, has certainly gotten me through some unbearable times.
While talking to Doctor Northfelt, I told him it’s hard for me to look in the mirror, and be ok with what I see. This is a change even I have to get used to seeing, and right now I am dealing with it my own way. It’s hard to feel attractive for my husband, in my head I wonder if I am sexy to him anymore. Will I be able to live with this face if I have to? I asked Eric if he is embarrassed to walk with me or hold my hand in public, knowing already what his answer would be I still needed to ask. This transitional period is hard, very hard. I’m grateful for Dr. Northfelt, although not all of what I just shared here I shared with him, but he is always so good at listening.
The people who know me, know my heart and that has not changed. I do feel a sense of loneliness sometimes, when I was going through chemo and radiation I had a support group, people I could talk to, who were either going through it themselves or had already been down that road. We all had similar feelings and could help each other get through the bad days. I don’t have anyone to talk to, I don’t know anyone who has or is going through this life altering trauma. I do my best to keep positive, but smiling is hard, because it looks so weird, one side smiles while the other is “normal” Even when I am happy I catch a glimpse of what I look like when I smile and it is hideous to look at. So this leaves me in a predicament, do I never smile or laugh again? No, it does mean that I need to learn to smile with my eyes, and listen with my heart, knowing others who love me don’t see that ugly smile they see the heart of the same ole’ ‘say it like it is’ Monya.
I quit trying to understand why, or how this happened. I instead have been focusing on happiness, what does happy mean to me? In December after my 1st ear surgery a dear friend called me, and invited me to hear about her new home based business. I think the 1st three times I said I’d be there but either forgot, or simply didn’t want to know what it was. I don’t remember, but Shelli reminds me of it. Finally, she invited Eric and I to the Barrett Jackson event, I really didn’t want to go, but Eric wanted to get me out of the house. I was still feeling post surgical pain, so I sat with the girls in Shelli’s booth, I sat and observed (you know how I love to people watch) there were a ton of men coming up and buying her anti aging cream, at the time I thought they were probably just coming back because all of these girls were drop dead gorgeous. I observed the interaction these girls had with people, then I was approached by Liz Decker she said “so what do you know about our products?” I said “Nothing, but I want in, it’s time for me to get out of this cancer world and I heard you mention you are all going to St Louis in April, sign me up for that too, I need a girls trip” I went to St. Louis had an incredible time watching person after person serve and help each other. It really was quite amazing, EVERYONE was so happy. This was exactly what I needed, get out of my cancer world and start living my life with friends I had excluded because of my diagnosis. Shortly later I had the emergency surgeries at Mayo Clinic, the new friends I had met came to visit me. It pierced my heart knowing these people are REALLY genuine. Then when I went to Cleveland Clinic for 7 weeks, they were so supportive and kept in touch with me. I continued to share my thoughts about this new home based business I started with people and even shared enough that I was able to sign up a partner from a bed with my computer. I gave magazines to everyone, day by day I could see and feel myself gaining confidence in who I was. When I came home, I was welcomed back with open arms and tearful eyes. We took off again just where I left off, not skipping a beat, or feeling vulnerable at all with them, my face was different, I thought it would be a deterrent and was afraid to face them, still I wasn’t sure how I could represent a business in the beauty industry knowing I was not feeling beautiful. Now that I look back on that, I can see the Lord’s hand leading me and guiding me to this place I thought I could never be in. With that I have to say “thank you” to all my friends and family, who have truly loved m. I may not be moving as quickly as I had originally expected to, but I’ve learned the goal is still the same, the timing is just different, and finally I’ve learned that those who truly love you will never leave you, this my friends is unconditional love. Saint I may never be, but trying to be better day by day, yes I can do that.