Have I ever mentioned my complete inability to meal-plan? If not, good. Because it’s not true. I’m not unable; I am unwilling. I really hate the thought of knowing what I’m going to eat next Tuesday. And, I know, you don’t have to assign the meals to a certain day. But really, I don’t even want to know that I can’t do something spontaneous for supper for the next few days or else the hamburger and lettuce will go bad.
I thought of this the other day when I had another minor meltdown pre-surgery. I told Michael, “I feel so uncertain about everything.” It was so easy to find God and goodness and kindness and love the first time I was diagnosed. It was all so powerful and overwhelming, it was almost possible to confuse the illness as a gift. The second time, I felt all that again only with new friends added to my life. And it was a bigger, uglier process, too, the chemo making it feel like a whole new experience with ick, the new friends making a whole new experience with wonderful. In March 2013, we did it again. Another bad news day, another surgery and recovery, another encouraging convo with the doctors that maybe this was it. This year, I’m here again and, frankly, I’m a little more what-the-heck about the whole thing.
It’s so easy to think you sort of have a hold on life. I’m going to do this and get that and go here and make plans. I’m going to be this kind of person and it’s all going to end a long time from now. And for a little while now, I’ve lost all that. I don’t feel afraid. I just feel uncertain. I don’t know how far ahead to plan, and I struggle with the desire to give any kind of importance to anything other than the really obvious, most important things – you know, family, friends…cake.
It’s a lost kind of feeling, being on a ride for who-knows-how-long and not sure where the curves are. Or being the poor little kid in the back seat who has no idea where they’re going ever; they just keep getting put in the car and ending up at the store or Grandma’s house or – God forbid – a place where they give you shots. (I always felt so sorry for my toddlers pre-conversational skills.) Now, I’m the lost one – at least for a little bit – at least until I’m through surgery and recovery and the first check-up or so beyond. And that whole meal-planning personality reminded me, this isn’t so terrible. Life is uncertain. It’s sometimes short and sometimes long, occasionally terrible but often wonderful. You never really know which you’re going to get when. You totally have to deal with both at some point. You basically have NO idea what tomorrow holds. And the thing is, that means it could hold something really, really good. You don’t know! It might be the day you make the best decision ever, the day the perfect job falls in your lap, the LAST DAY YOU EVER HAVE TO HAVE CANCER CUT OUT OF YOU. It could be one of those!
Uncertainty is okay. You just have to find some kind of ground beneath your feet – your own personal hover board on which to navigate the crazy. I can totally do that. Uncertain life, unfailing hover board – it’s made of true love and Being Mama and writing and a good book now and then and – yes – occasional cake. All my belief about a gigantic, always-faithful, always kind God who never leaves me – the hover board is made of that, too. And, I mean, you get the picture right? It’s a hover board. Those things fly. And that’s a mode of life-navigating I can get behind.