Monday, October 13, 2008

Winning a Cruise!

I'm entering a contest to win a Girl's Getaway Cruise...wow wouldn't that be amazing!

For the last couple of years it seems like I've been living someone else's life. I will try and explain why a friend and I need a cruise.

When you hear the words from the doctor that your husband has a brain tumor...it can't happen to us, that happens to other people.

When the neurosurgeon says that it is inoperable...you think that it can't be real.

When the oncologist tells you that it is terminal...you think but God is bigger than that.

When God decided to take your beloved home...you are numb.
In December of 2006 when Ron was diagnosed (at age 36) our lives were turned upside down, but even at that point you have no idea what any of it means. We were on our way to a city when he could have treatment (1300 kms from home). We didn't know that our Christmas spent in a hospital TV room would be our last...we were so blessed to be together.

He was so strong and felt really great while he was going through his treatments, when he became critically ill with an infection so suddenly we were in shock. I never left him at the hospital...I stayed by him every night caring for him. When the doctors told us he only had days to live we were crushed, this was only 2 months after his diagnoses...we would never get home together again. The doctors told us they could air ambulance him to the hospital back home for him to die...I wanted to be back home and was so happy for the chance.

God was smiling on us, once we were back home in our small town hospital...Ron flourished. He was in a palliative care room and I was able to stay with him (other than running home to shower and change) all of the time. The doctors and nurses were amazing to us and after a month there we were able to take Ron home, he started to improve so much. He had lost his sight and was only partially mobile, but we were able to sleep in our own bed (he refused a hospital bed at home).

I had home support come in once a day to care for him and let me get out for shopping and such. Otherwise it was our daughter and I caring for Ron, we also had friends and family that would come and spend time with him...his recovery was nothing short of a miracle. Michaela loved to help her daddy, she was always there to help him have a little walk to stretch his legs...or cuddle with him.

Sadly after a couple of months at home Ron's health began to decline. While he had already lost his sight he then lost his hearing and seizures became a daily part of our lives...the doctor decided that Ron had to stay in the hospital again....the tumor had grown out of control.
Ron and Michaela during Canadian Cancer Society's Relay for Life.

My me and my family joined by a pipe band, during the Relay for Life. Ron said this was the happiest day since he'd been sick.


For the last six weeks of Ron's life I stayed at the hospital with him, most nights so did Michaela...she was so happy to just be with him. I was with him to help him with even the most intimate details of his life and care. To feed him, help wash him...just to care for my husband in the best way possible. While we never stopped praying for a miracle I did have to explain to Michaela that maybe daddy wouldn't be getting better...and may go to Heaven. I don't think I will ever have to say anything more difficult that that.

After Ron passed away (July 28, 2007), I was lost, numb, angry...brokenhearted. I had a hard time getting my life back in order, I just wanted to run away...but I had Michaela to take care of. Thankfully I have an amazing family, group of friends and church who have been with us every step of the way.

I'm feeling more comfortable in my new role as single mum and going on this cruise would be something for just me. To spend it with amazing Christian women, loving the Lord and growing in Him..what a dream. To see speakers that I would never have the chance to see otherwise (and see it all on a luxury ship)...that would be crazy good!!

Now please don't think that through all of this that I did not see the blessing that God gave me, He carried us through all of this. His gifts were very evident through all of the situations and I know that Ron is with our Lord living in glory. I draw closer to God because of the goodness and grace He continues to give me every day.

The hard part is choosing a friend to bring with me, I have been blessed with amazing women in my life...some are sisters by birth and some are sisters in Christ and I love them all.

The woman I would bring is my friend Tamara, she has been by my side every step of these last couple of years. She is my prayer warrior, she lifts me when I'm having a bad day, she will cry with me when I need it and laugh even harder afterwards. We have only known each other for 2 1/2 years, yet I can't imagine my life without her. She will speak honestly to me when needed...but always with love and grace. Her family has become mine and for that I'm so thankful. God knew that I would need her and her family and dropped me in their midst.

I pray for God to lead you to the person who will benefit and be enriched by this cruise, He knows above all who that is.

6 comments:

Laury said...

Oh Annie, your story touched me. You have a powerful testimony.

Org Junkie said...

You've been through so much, more than anyone should ever have too but through it all you have held strong to God's promises and love. That's been an incredible thing to witness and I am honored to call you friend.

I think we'd have such an amazing time on this cruise ;)

Mrs. Wilson said...

Wow dude. I'm so glad you see the blessings and goodness of God, but I'm so sorry you had to lose your dear husband.

I miss you!

Jenny said...

Annie, this post made me bawl. I certainly hope that you win a cruise.
You have been so inspirational. I'm in awe of your faith, dedication and strength.
Now...how do we get you to get this cruise??? Do we vote somewhere??

Karen said...

If I could afford to give a cruise myself, I would. You really do deserve it.

Tanya said...

Hey Annie!

What a wonderful post! Tamara is a pretty awesome lady that is for sure...she has such an amazing gift. I'm sorry that you had to go through all of this...I remember it well. Although I never did get to meet Ron...I know that he was an amazing husband, father and friend. Its nice to see that you are continuing to lean on God for all he has to offer you and your daughter!

Take care!