As we watched Lane sleep our thoughts ran free and terrified. I held her hand and thought about the surgeon consultation that day.
“Will she have problems with her opening her mouth?”
“Will she be able to open her right eye?”
As I thought of the answer I held her hand tighter.
“We don’t know” the surgeon said.
See, her tumor was by her right temple. They had to get the whole tumor so how many vessels and nerves did that include? “We won’t know until we get in there”, the surgeon said. In all fairness I liked our surgeon. He was in this from the beginning, from the biopsy. He tried to exude hope and I was grateful for that. We told him we were praying for a miracle and he said he would do his very best. “I’m taking that to the bank”, I smiled. He echoed “Take it to the bank!” That moment brought us a much needed breathe of laughter. “Ok, (heavy sigh) we’ll see you tomorrow.”
She looked so little and so peaceful. I couldn’t help but cry as I watched her sleep. What would tomorrow bring? I thought of our second consultation that day. The plastic surgeons consultation. “Can you prepare us for what she will look like?” The answer was a black hole…”No, because I won’t know until it’s over”. If the tumor was attached to the skin they would have to take the skin. God, please help her. If it was in the bone they may have to take the bone. Lord this is too much. Our resolve for the day was dwindling quickly. With each word it melted away. Tears welled in my eyes as I realized we had no certainty to hold onto. Blind faith. This diagnosis has trapped us in the dark unknown. The decisions we are making for her could change her entire world. Are we doing the right thing? How do we make decisions on something we know nothing about? Excruciatingly out of our control.
With heavy eyes I stroked her hair and talked with God. I’m afraid Lord. Please bring her back safely to us.
Today was the day.
We told Lane she was getting her “bump” removed. She was so brave. All she ever cared about was getting it done and going home to play with the neighbors. So after the papers were signed and prep was done she was ready to go. “Treat her as if she were you own”, I reiterated to the doctors. As Greg walked with her into surgery I was escorted to the waiting room. I saw my family waiting. We hugged and cried. We cried a lot. I was so glad that they were there. Such comfort to a breaking heart. Greg joined us in the waiting room, his eyes stinging red, and we prayed together.
We’re giving her to you God. Please protect her.
Now we wait. We looked at every nurse that came into the waiting room, our eyes searching for news. We paced the halls. We talked. We prayed.
“Are you Lane’s family?”, said a nurse.
“Yes!” I cried.
“The doctor wanted me to let you know that Lane is doing great and they got it all out”
They got it ALL? No complications? My girl is ok?
She said the doctors would be out to talk with us soon. We rejoiced that she was ok. I wept as fear left and peace overwhelmed. Thank you God!
The first thing the surgeon said to us as he walked out of the operating room was
“Lane is still Lane!” Oh, what a beautiful statement.
He told us that she did well and was in recovery. No skin or large pieces of bone were removed. The plastic surgeon did a beautiful job. When I went to recovery I saw Lane. Yes, Lane the same way she was that morning.
21 stiches and a scar that wouldn’t be noticeable when her hair grew back. Amen.
Lane did so well that we were actually able to go home a few hours later. Lane went through a war today and she literally has the battle scars to prove it. Keep fighting my love. Thank you God for giving her the strength to forge ahead.
Greg and I did our best at fielding the days as they came. We tried to delay our concerns and tears for after the girls went to bed. We played soccer, laughed about silly things, baked cookies and lived. We searched for hope in every corner of every conversation. We started praying big. I mean, walking on water big. We knew that there would be another biopsy on the removed tumor. Which was the life of our new hope.
Lord, please remove the cancer from the tumor. No cancer, no chemo.
We prayed for it along with many others. We believed it. This test was, in our eyes, our last chance before chemo. We wanted complete healing and we begged for it. Ok, she was diagnosed yes. She had surgery to remove the tumor. Lord can’t this be enough? Of course we called into perspective the possibility of grief talking. We knew it sounded crazy but we asked for it anyway. We were 100% in.
We called and canceled all of her future appointments.
We charged the mountain.