Well, this pretty much sucks.

by - Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Before I can write about anything else, I need to briefly talk about what is happened with my family in the last 48 hours. Yesterday morning, my Aunt Ann went in for a biopsy to check out some lumps she had in her abdomen which were giving her a little bit of pain. She has been looking into this stuff since before Christmas, but I think we all figured it was related to our family's general lumpiness. Instead, my mom, uncle, and cousin were told that she had cancer (specifically Primary Peritoneal Cancer). This has to be the scariest news you can get, and just that word breaks my heart.

This kind of news, of course, is always really bad, and our family has a lot of history with Cancer to grapple with genetically and emotionally. As the hours have continued, we have gotten a lot of good news- they were able to remove 90-95% of the cancer (she had a tumor the size of a folded washcloth), they caught it earlier than they ever catch it, and what is left of the cancer has essentially not attached to any organs. There is a lot to be excited and hopeful about.

Obviously, there is still a tough road ahead, a road paved primarily in chemo. My Aunt Ann is the consummate peacemaker, always taking care of everyone else and their feelings, so I think that makes it even harder for people to cope with seeing her go through so much pain.

The miracle in all of this is that they found it so early/ it is going to be so treatable. It's also a huge blessing that my mom could be with her through this. It's amazing how much more powerful/effective second string appreciation is. Only once the blessings we take for granted (health, planes on schedule, whatever) are taken away does every morsel of hope and positivity become so truly appreciated. Not to mention how we often lose the plot of how huge a blessing it is to be there for each other. That is what I am feeling right now. Sad, scared, and deeply blessed (how weird is that?) We all have a lot of hope, for good reason, but according to my mom the third day is the most difficult for recovery, so tomorrow might be rough.

So, now I am here in Tennessee, sleeping in my cousin/bff's soon to be baby's room, chomping at the bit to go give my aunt and mother hugs. I will try to keep this up to date while respecting Shell and Aunt Ann's privacy, but it would be too weird to pretend everything is hunky dory. To list 5 things I love, i think they would all be about my aunt and my family (not that this is ridiculously out of the norm). But life is all about this, appreciating every baby step, and being together right now. Please keep our family, especially Ann, Rob, and Shelly in your prayers!

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