Today started at 1:00am when Jonathan got home from his softball game. I had fallen asleep on the couch waiting for him. The team lost but they’d stayed out late celebrating anyway. It felt like we were already ushering the day in with joy and food and friends.
We went to Doughbot this morning for celebration doughnuts. I hate doughnuts but everyone says this place is amazing so I decided to be a sweet wife and go, for Jonathan’s sake. We both ate two fancy gourmet doughnuts, and they were every bit as wonderful as we’d been told. But don’t count me a convert quite yet.
On the way to the hospital I played our “chemo playlist.” We have listened to those songs countless times since that first treatment…160 days ago. I won’t ever forget our drive to his first chemo, listening to David Crowder’s How He Loves, and weeping.
“Cycle 6, Day 15,” said Dr. Cen when he entered the exam room.
It was doctor language for: “Today is the last day of treatment. The day you’ve been waiting for is finally here.”
Dr. Cen gave Jonathan the standard check-up, even though we already know the cancer is gone. Eye check, throat check, pulse check, lymph node check. He examined his skin and his feet, and asked how he’s feeling. I sat on the chair across the room like I always do.
I handed him a bag of tea we purchased at the mall yesterday. His nurses said he likes tea, so we bought a generous amount…because really… how can you appropriately thank someone that helped you fight for your life? Dr. Cen has never been one for lengthly conversations but he’s always given Jonathan attention, respect and care. We are so grateful for all three of those things.
Chemo followed the doctor’s appointment. We presented all of Jonathan’s nurses with flowers. They are lovely ladies–each so compassionate, funny and patient. It takes a special person to work with people who are very sick. We are incredibly grateful for them too.
Throughout the day, we felt the love of friends and family and even strangers. Everyday is worth celebrating, but somedays are even more important than others. Today is one of those days. I said this on Facebook but I’ll say it again here: from the very beginning of this journey through cancer, I felt God had given us an army. One morning last January, I literally saw a vision: us, holding a big shield up, ready for battle. And then…all of YOU behind us, stretching for miles and miles and miles.
You who called, and texted, and sent flowers.
I have a lot more thanking to do, and a lot more reflecting to do. I know Jonathan does too. Today may be a milestone on the cancer journey but I’m certainly not planning to stop writing about it. I just couldn’t go to sleep without telling you how full we are on God’s grace, His timing, His healing, His people.