I have this friend who is dying. A year ago she went to the doctor for her yearly physical and found out that she was healthy. A month later she had pneumonia and after a few tests she found out she had stage 4 lung cancer. From the moment she found out she was sick she took the diagnosis on full force and she refused to let the doctor tell her when she would die. She decided that she would fight the cancer with all she has and fight she HAS, she has been fighting with everything she’s got for almost a year now.
She has spent most of this past year in and out of the hospital and most of the time she has been very very sick. I have seen her take her chemo therapy bravely never once complaining and she always seems to me to be determined to not to let the cancer control her. I admire her so much because she is not just trying to live another day, but she also seems determined to live each day as a good day. No matter what setback she has she posts inspirational messages publicly praising God and thanking Him for each day, she seems to be always taking notice of the good things and always collecting each and every one of her blessings, determined not to miss a single one of them.
Lisa has been my friend since I was a young girl. She was my best friend during the disco era. We were teenagers then and we knew the words to every song on the radio and spent a lot of time singing and dancing together. We knew all the moves to every dance and we must have watched Saturday Night Fever a hundred times to get all the dance moves down pat.
We lost touch for a lot of years after we both got married, but about 6 years ago we met back up again on Facebook. Even though we both had changed and had lived totally different lives we still jumped right back into our friendship and to me it feels as if nothing has changed in our friendship when we get together. We are still comfortable together, can’t stop talking and still have this sisterly bond that will always tie us together, I love her so much.. Now days as adults we have always joked about how we will be old ladies one day and still be dancing. We occasionally post goofy dance videos on each other’s Facebook time lines.
Today as I sat with Lisa I realized that she is so sick that most likely she won’t be dancing on this earth anymore. It’s so hard for me to think about that and it makes me feel so sad as I write it here, it just seems so unfair that she has to leave so soon. I am not ready for her to leave and just can’t imagine life without her in it, we were supposed to be dancing old ladies one day. She has kids and grand kids and a husband and I feel like she is supposed to be here with them longer too…at least that’s what my brain says, but what I see with my eyes tells me differently.
I am not sure why some people get more time than others or what the reason is for all of this but it’s so hard to see her body fail her, and to have watched her health deteriorate so quickly over this past year. In only one years time her body has given out and it just seems somehow so unfair.
It is hard for her to talk because she gasps to breathe as she speaks, at one point today she whispered, “I don’t get all of this” then she just shrugged her shoulders as a look of sadness and defeat crossed her face and she turned her eyes upward as if asking God for an answer. I was at a loss of words, I because I don’t know the answer either and I agree… I also ‘don’t get all of this’ only God knows the reason for all of this. The one thing that I do know is that one day my friend will dance again and I have a feeling it’s going to be real soon that she will be dancing in Heaven. Her body may be wasting away here on earth but her new body is waiting for her in heaven. I know her new body will be strong and full of life and ready for a lot of dancing. I have a feeling when she meets Jesus she will forget all about how sick she is right now, and she will forget about having to leave anyone behind. I also have a feeling that once she meets him she will most likely ‘get all of this.’
I leave for Haiti in 2 days, it was hard to say goodbye to Lisa today, I felt as if it was probably the last time we may see each other until Heaven. I worry she may go to Heaven while I am gone and I won’t know until I get home. As I left her today she told me to come see her as soon as I get home and I promised her that I will. The selfish side of me wants her to still be here when I get back home but I also want her to be well and pain free.. I also I know that if she leaves before I return that today was not the last time I will see my friend, I know that one day I will see her again in Heaven and who knows maybe we will do a few of our old dance moves as we celebrate. I wonder if they have disco dancing in Heaven…. I sure hope so.