Struggles & Truth

I know I usually post upbeat, I’m doing great, chemo isn’t keeping me down type posts but not today. I usually don’t share when I’m having issues or share the extent but today I feel called to share. Perhaps someone out there needs to see deep into my struggle? I have to get over my misconception that sharing the depths of the struggle is attention-seeking because I assure you, I am not. I have covered the fatigue and nausea on and off for weeks with a smile and pushed through. The house was a mess because I didn’t have the energy to clean as much as I did and meals…haha! Everyone has been fed but most of the time it’s something basic, barely thrown together.

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Today was the first time I responded truthfully when asked at church how I’m doing, “I’m here; it’s been a rough week.” Why do I always try to put on a happy face and gloss over the truth? Why am I so headstrong and unwilling to ask for help? You’d think I would have learned this lesson well. I did in Hawaii during my first round of chemo but I suppose I need to learn it again. Honestly, I felt convicted to share today because of the two sermons I heard today. The first was my Father-in-Love whom we listened to online, preaching about Job and his afflictions. The second was my pastor at our church preaching on 1 Peter 2 and our identity in Christ and as a family of believers, how our every day lives are meant to share the gospel and glorify God. This past week was rough.

Some of you may recall that when I was re-diagnosed 2 years ago and started on an oral chemotherapy, I ended up in the hospital because the chemo had given me uncontrollable diarrhea and my entire mucks lining in my stomach and GI system was basically gone. Unfortunately, the new chemo we added to my regimine is the active version of the oral chemo I was on and this week it again caused uncontrollable diarrhea two separate times but this time I knew what was happening so I didn’t end up in the hospital but I have been between the couch and toilet all weekend. It’s also been causing intermittent nausea for weeks, an anal fissure (sorry if that’s TMI), daily nosebleeds, sores on my scalp, sore dry hands, and sores in my mouth. My GI system is damaged again so all I’ve had by mouth for two days is aloe juice, water, protein shakes, and juice with chia seeds.

As I sat there, listening to my FIL talk about Job and others with afflictions, I could so strongly relate. Yesterday was a BAD day, a day where I thought, if this doesn’t get better, I don’t want to be alive. My mouth hurt, my scalp hurt, my entire insides hurt, my bottom end was on fire, and I was so hungry but couldn’t eat. I was in pain and so fatigued from a sleepless night and lack of nutrients that I couldn’t even get dressed. Despite all that, I knew that God still loves me, that he cares about my pain and suffering. I wasn’t alone…the Holy Spirit was with me, comforting me.

Not only that, today I realized I’ve run myself ragged when I have so many friends and family, our church body and beyond, who WANT to help, who WANT to be a blessing. By pretending “everything is awesome” I’m doing both myself and our family and friends a disservice. I need to be honest and swallow my pride about my struggles and allow God to use that to His glory. One of our church friends asked if we could benefit from a meal train….and I admitted we could. So many others have helped us with rides to chemo, watching our kiddos, donations, and so much more. I am so grateful for our friends and family who love us so well.

Another area we can use help is financially. My IV vitamin C treatments as well as upcoming HBOT treatments are all out of pocket. We are doing everything’s we can, pinching pennies, selling smoked cheese, selling crocheted items, doing a FB fundraiser, dog sitting through rover.com, trying to come up with it by ourselves. However, sometimes God works by providing when we can’t and will continue to trust His provision.

For anyone out there who can relate to my GI issues, I want to share the things that are helping me heal. Lily of the Desert makes a high quality pure aloe as well as a stomach formula that I’ve been using. The aloe and the herbs in the stomach formula help coat the GI lining and promote healing of it. Another helpful product is Throat Coat tea. It also has the herbs that heal that lining. For the diarrhea, apart from OTC anti-diarrhea meds, chia seeds soaked in water, juice, or aloe will help bind as well as give your body back much needed nutrients. I also ALWAYS put concentrace mineral drops in my water during chemo to bring my minerals back into balance, especially important when ones suffering from diarrhea. These mineral drops also help with the metallic taste chemo sometimes causes.

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So, there you have it…how I am REALLY doing. How God continues to comfort during the lows, and hopefully some info to help others!

8 thoughts on “Struggles & Truth

  1. Oh Cheryse, thank you for being honest. I’m sorry life has been so terribly hard lately. It’s hard to read and know our sister-in-Christ is suffering like this. I am praying more fervently for you and want to help you in all the above ways. I know there is a meal train started for you. Please let us know how to help financially…check, amazon page, etc. Our family is here to walk along side you and your family however we can! Love, Allison

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  2. You are a strong woman! Time to accept help. Friends and Family do genuinely want to help you. It helps them feel better to help someone they love and care for.
    If I lived closer I would be knocking on your door to help.
    I will continue to pray🙏🏼🙏🏼
    Doreen

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  3. Pride. For me it was pride that made me say, “I’m fine”. I am hard headed and it took the stage IV breast cancer with brain metastasis to get me to call out to God in desperation, humble myself, seek Him daily in His Word, and say “yes” to friends and family who wanted to help us. We don’t understand how or why He works the way He does, but I do know this… He is a good Father, who chastises and refines us in the ways He sees best. I learned to trust Him as the Good Potter and be a willing lump of clay that He can fashion how He likes. Really it became almost easy to trust Him through the scariness of cancer and harder to trust Him with my husband and children!

    I don’t know about you, but I can relate to someone who has suffered and yet has persevered and continued seeking Christ and bringing glory to God’s name. I can’t relate to people who are “fine” and have it all together, never need help, etc. I think you will find the blessing in making your suffering known. I pray you do!

    Ecclesiastes 7:2 It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting:
    That verse explains why I can relate to people SO much more who have suffered than people who are happy, clean house, organized, etc. I have had the privilege of hearing many people’s stories of suffering as a result.

    Praying for you, dear one, as you learn the lessons the Master has for you. And in the midst of the hard, hard times, may you find all your rest and comfort in Him.

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  4. Oh, and some people I know have had good results with a go fund me page. Just a thought. But I pray God provides in ways that show His mighty power!

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  5. I am listening to your F-I-L and it is a good sermon. I don’t want to come across like you are a sinner, like Job’s friends did to Job! We are all sinners, yes, but I don’t know why God allowed cancer in you. I personally always start there and ask the Lord to search my heart. But I don’t stay focused on the “why” question. And I want to be a friend who can sit with you in silence. I know much of the pain you are going through. I have had much of that too, even on low dose chemo. ((Hugs))

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  6. For mouth sores I have found a homeopathic remedy that helped me. It may not always work, right? But it is easy to find in health food stores and such. Those little blue vials…. it is called Mercurious Solibus. It usually took a couple days to work, but I never knew about this remedy when my mouth was full of sores, so not sure how fast or if it will work. I hope it does.

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  7. I listened to your father in laws sermon on Job today. Thank you for sharing that! It was an encouragement and it reminded me once again to be a better friend, listen more than I speak, that I am not God, and to let God be in charge. I shared it with some struggling friends. May it bless them too!

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