In my first post about our story, I want to give you all the facts. There are so many emotions associated and I will share some of these in future posts. It is often difficult to talk about as well as difficult to keep all those informed of updates – this becomes a way for us to share our feelings and news.
A little over 3 years ago, Aaron was diagnosed with a rare type of colon cancer. He was 30 at the time he was diagnosed. Needless to say, we were shocked. Elle was 2 1/2 years and Hudson 8 months at the time. I remember tucking them in the night Aaron was diagnosed and coming to our bedroom and collapsing to my knees in prayer. Not yet knowing the extent of his condition, I begged and pleaded with God to give us l more year with him. In that moment, I would never have dreamed that here we would be, 3 years later, now a family of 5 and continuing to celebrate our life together.
To say this journey has been difficult would be an obvious understatement. Aaron has battled his cancer on and off for three years – and done so with a strength that continues to amaze me. We would not have survived this as a family if he was not as amazing as he is. In June, we were devastated to find that Aaron’s cancer had returned to a couple small lymph nodes in his abdomen. These nodes are not removable and he restarted chemo with the goal of shrinking these affected areas. After only 4 treatments, we received the amazing news that the chemo was working and there is no evidence of disease. Aaron will continue with chemo to complete a total of 12 treatments over 6 months.
Our day to day life is pretty normal. We are a happy, busy, fun family of 5. Aaron coaches the kids’ soccer teams and owns a successful law practice (Husker Law). I work part time as a pharmacist and spend most my time running around like a mad women with the kids. Elle and Hudson understand that their Dad gets medicine to make him better and that this medicine makes him sick – but, at 5 and 3, are still too young to understand. Aaron receives chemo every other Monday. He is pretty sick until about Thursday and can function enough to work and that is pretty much it. Those days are our most difficult – I am essentially a single mom these days and the kids have a hard time understanding why Dad has to sleep or cannot play. But, we will both gladly give those 6 days out of the month, knowing it means keeping him well.
I have always been one to try to focus on the positives. Aaron is young, healthy and tolerating his treatment. And it’s successful!! We have our wonderful children that serve as motivation for both of us. And if there is any reason God has chosen this path for us, I truly believe it was for our Harper. We would not have her had we not gone down this journey. As cliche as it sounds, this journey has truly made us live life to its fullest and focus on what matters. We have crammed so many wonderful life experiences into the past 3 years…wonderful trips, simple nights at home, fun family outings…things we may not have chosen to do or put on our “later in life” list or simply not have appreciated them as much as we do.
Looking back, I think how arrogant I was. I am such a planner…I thought we would get married, have at least 4 kids, have a “normal” life. How arrogant was I to think that I actually controlled this? God has his plan and I have to pray each and every day to accept this plan and not try to question why or feel cheated. I pray every day to keep my mind away from feeling sorry for our situation or feeling unfair. And that is something I hope to show our kids…we will accept this life as part of God’s plan and we will glorify Him in it. We will continue to cherish each day with our Dad. And years from now, we will look back with him and be so grateful for this opportunity to live our life so fully.