One of Chase’s favorite things to do is to dance around the hospital room while listening to music. Even with his IV pole, chords, and tubes following him, it doesn’t matter, he loves music.
Yesterday, he had to take an antibiotic that gives him something called “red man’s syndrome” (he turns red and itchy) and Benadryl makes him better…and sleepy. So, after having Benadryl every 6 hours all day, it was 9:00pm and we were having a “dance party” in the middle of the Hematology/Oncology floor.
Sometimes, in moments like that, the cancer-ness of it all strikes me fresh. …I’m dancing…in a hospital room…with a radius of 2 feet because any further and a child’s arterial line is pulled…and he has the line because he has cancer…deadly, deadly cancer.
Then the words of the song we were listening to crept through my thoughts… (Chase was listening to “O Holy Night“)
And in His name all oppression shall cease…
As silly as it sounds, it brought tears to my eyes. Even though the verse refers to human oppression; as I held Chase is one hand and his IV tubes in the other, I thought of the oppressive nature of Chase’s cancer. More than just Chase’s cancer…of all cancer and all sickness and pain and all that is wrong and oppressive in this world.
As of this moment, the cancer has not stopped. For us, it has not ceased. In fact, quite the opposite… It is an intense, all-consuming thing with what seems like endless complications.
So what then? If, in this painful, broken life, the oppression never seems to end, there must be something other than the removal of the circumstance that brings peace!
There is. Of this, I am sure. We are not alone in our pain.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior…
In this moment, we await a single lab…one single test tomorrow morning which will inform the decision to send us home or keep us here for what will most likely be another central line surgery. When I dwell on the implication, after months of treatment and too many surgeries, it feels like the water, river, fire and flame rolled into one.
We will pass through because an all-knowing, loving God has promised to be with us.
Moment by moment.