Monday, September 10, 2007

The Banco Popular Chicago Half Marathon

Yesterday, my sister-in-law, Fiona and I ran the Banco Popular Chicago Half Marathon. I had run this marathon back in 2004 but it had an entirely different feel to it this year. In 2004, I had Rod and my parents, sister, niece, brother, Fiona, in-laws, and Nikelle all there cheering me on. This year, Fiona was running with me and we had no one on the sidelines because this is just another training for our big event in October.

Running the half felt good. We did a 6:2 interval (ran 6 minutes: walked 2 minutes) throughout the event. At 2 miles remaining, Fiona was not feeling well and told me to go ahead and we’d meet at the finish line. I remember wondering where the finish line was in 2004. I was so exhausted and couldn’t wait to get done. How different to be able to speed up and complete the event strong this year. Even though Fiona wasn’t feeling well, she only finished about 2 minutes behind me. What an incredible feeling to have this event down and know the marathon is only 4 weeks away.

Stretching before we got in the car to go home, I struggled with my emotions. Running just for the fun of it would be nice. With Dad back in the hospital right now, our inspiration is all to clear.

I’ve been imagining the completion of the marathon. Everyone there cheering me on: Rod, the girls, my brother, possibly my sister and some of her kids, some friends, my parents, Rod’s parents, more family.

Dad hugging me at the finish line of the marathon is something I continue to picture in my mind. Not likely. Now he’s fighting for his life.

Currently, Dad is in the intensive care unit. Mom said it’s a good thing that he’s there. If he’s in the heart ward they’re overly concerned about his heart. If he’s in the cancer ward, they’re not concerned enough about his heart. In the ICU, they’ll be giving both the cancer and his heart the attention that is needed.

Fluid continues to build around his heart. As Fiona explained it to me (she went to school for nursing), with the lymph nodes working so hard, that is where the extra fluid is coming from. They drained the fluid a couple of days ago and complications followed. Now they are telling him if the chemotherapy he is currently on doesn’t reduce the amount of fluid, they will have to do open heart surgery to fix the situation.

I find myself shaking my head a lot. How can the cancer be back? He seemed so healthy for a while. This really is an aggressive disease. It’s scary. I refuse to be consumed with it and I am so glad that I am able to invest my energies into the marathon to cope with the situation.

There is a big concern with what is going on with his eye, too. We know something isn’t right because his eye has been protruding out of the socket. However, doctors just don’t give many details. They still haven’t said directly, “the lymphoma has returned”. They just tell him that they’ve found “blasts” in the fluid around his heart. He was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic lymphoma so the blasts must be part of that cancer.

Mind-boggling. Complicated is the word my mom uses to describe the situation. Everything is just complicated. We really don’t know what is going on. So I look up Bible verses on hope. In Romans 5:5, the Bible says that hope does not disappoint us because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. And Romans 12:12 tells us to
be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

Joyful in hope.
Patient in affliction.
Faithful in prayer.

Pretty applicable for my life at this moment.

1 comment:

  1. Congrats on completing the half marathon. Just think, in a few weeks that will look like an "easy" race to you.
    I continue to keep you in my prayers.

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