A Personal Story: Perseverance and Healing
It's hard to make this short but I'll try. In 1993 I did my usual breast examination and felt a mass on my right breast. I called the doctor who then sent me to Toronto Western for a mammogram. It showed nothing. My instincts told me something was wrong so I asked for another mammogram. It showed nothing. I still felt something wrong and figured this is God nudging me to look further into it. I asked for a needle biopsy it showed nothing. The nurse said that can sometimes be caused by not getting the infected cells. I asked for another one; it showed nothing. I asked for an ultrasound; it showed nothing. By this time I thought, “Great, it's nothing”. Then the right breast started to really burn and I was nudged again by God. “Get to the bottom of this now!” I went in and yelled at the oncologist, "I want a physical biopsy and I want you to prove there is nothing wrong". He said “Fine”, and booked it.
I felt the whole biopsy which the surgeon told me I didn't. I had to yell at him to give me another freezing needle. He did and threw the needle up in the air and onto the floor. I still felt it. Then I had to wait two weeks to get the results. He told me, "I'm so glad we did the biopsy”, and again I raised my voice and said "WE??" He continued, “Because you do have breast cancer and it's Stage IV and aggressive and it is in the lymph nodes also”.
I felt God with me giving me strength and I said, "Well what's the next step?" He said a partial mastectomy, which then healed and then I had a full mastectomy because there was cancer around the outside edges of the partial mastectomy. Then double dose chemotherapy for 20 weeks and radiation every day for 5 weeks.
All through it though I felt God's strength pushing me on. I remember one night after 5 rounds of chemotherapy telling God, "If you want me to finish chemo you better do something amazing right now". He said, "You are so selfish! Don’t you realize that around the world there are millions of people suffering in pain every minute of every day? All that you have to get through is nausea; you are such a baby! Get out of that tub now and finish your chemo and quit whining!" I got up right then and there and finished the last 5 chemo treatments, which probably saved my life.
Ten years of examinations went by and my oncologist casually mentioned, "The type of cancer you had usually travels to the other breast after 10 years". Again I raised my voice and said, "WHAT? WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME WHEN I HAD THE OTHER ONE REMOVED?" His answer, "It is not Hospital Policy". I said, "Well book me into surgery to have the other one removed immediately; I won't be a sitting duck!" He did. I had the other breast removed too. What a relief!
I'm glad I listened to God and my own instincts which I now believe was God's voice whispering to me. He gave me such good advice along my journey and pushed me to do more and more. I thank him every day for an extra 22 years of life so far. Cancer taught me to enjoy every day and never waste a second of it with meaningless arguing. I always say, "Do you want to be right or do you want to be at peace?"
Thank you for reading this. It was very therapeutic for me to write about it.
We all have seen Canada Geese fly in their “V formation” with one leg of the V formation longer than the other leg. Why do they fly in
the V formation? The lead goose is making it easier for the other geese who are following his lead. He is moving the wind resistance of the
other geese following him. The rest are cruising. But after awhile the lead goose gets tired and drops back and the next goose moves up.
Engineers in their wind tunnel experiments have discovered that geese flying in the V formation can fly 72% further than by themselves
flying alone. Geese flying in the V formation illustrate the necessity and advantages of practicing both leadership and fellowship.
"The Best of Dr Adrian Rogers"