Thursday, January 7, 2021

Stripped to Bare Bones

My sixteen-year-old ran away about a week before I found out that I have cancer. She’s living with her dad now—and seems to be really happy—but the entire situation has left a hole in my heart that doesn’t feel like it’ll ever heal.

I guess I deserve it. I ran away from home when I was seventeen, became a homeless street musician, and lived on the beaches of Hawaii for a while.

I talked with my mom the other day, and it’s a bit odd how we could relate on yet another level. My voice turned heavy with regret, and I told her how sorry I am for doing that to her. “I just didn’t understand how much I hurt you...not until now.”

Anyway, last night I had a dream that my daughter ran away again, but this time it was to come back to MY house. I beamed, so happy to have her home, hold her in my arms, and tell her how much I’ve missed her. 

When I woke up she still wasn’t here, but the cancer is.... I sleep so much and have such a hard time getting around, I probably can’t offer her what her dad can anyway. And even months before I found out I had cancer (before she ran away) I was only sleeping an hour each night because of the pain. And I’m sure I wasn’t fun and bouncy like I used to be.... The cancer had changed me before we even knew it had taken hold.

So today, instead of feeling strong, I feel pathetic, rejected, and weak. I know things will get better—they have to—but today is hard. 

People keep telling me that teenagers are tough to raise, and the best thing we can do is show love. I love each of my children so much more than they know. I guess if I do die in two years, like some doctors have projected, the kids will have some things left from me, like the books I’ve written; if they miss me, they can read those and remember. I just hope they’ll know how very much I love them. I’m honestly starting to think the best thing I could leave behind isn’t books though, or even money, or any of that. It’s really just love.

I don’t know what will happen tomorrow, but the doctor said I need to stop focusing on anything that could cause stress. Once again, I’m trying to learn to “cast my cares on Him because He cares for us.” Today I’m not strong enough to carry all of this alone. I know He has much bigger things to worry about, but I sure hope God will somehow help me—and all of us.

I do think I’m being stripped of things for a reason (health, pride, even family). Once you get to the bare bones of a situation, then you can learn more about it. I’m learning an awful lot about myself, even through the pain....


  1. Oh my the pain you are suffering I wish I could do something but sadly I can't, hang in there take deep breaths and know you are stronger then this.