As I reread my devotional, I’m struck by how much time has passed since our son’s diagnosis in 2009. In some ways it feels like an eternity, but in others it feels like only yesterday.
When our family woke up in Glacier National Park on July 29th this year, my wife and I realized we’d marked the 10-year anniversary of our youngest son’s leukemia diagnosis. We hadn’t forgotten about it—we never will—but the date carries different significance.
A decade ago, we started on a journey that opened our eyes to the abundant blessings around us. We said prayers of thanks for selfless people who donated platelets and whole blood that kept our son alive. We stood in awe of the children and their parents who volunteered for clinical trials to push medicine closer and closer to cures. Friends, physicians, caregivers, and parents of other childhood cancer patients were like angels to us.
This July 29th, however, we were just a normal family on vacation like any other family, which is its own incredible blessing.
As much as everyone wants a “normal” life, there really is no such thing—there’s just the life God gives us, whatever it may be. And we are called to live it in communion with God, wherever it may take us.
There’s still survivor clinic for our son, and there are still concerns about late effects. Scars also remain from the toll cancer took on our oldest son, who struggled as a 7-year-old to process the impact of cancer on his brother and his family.
But Christ is there in all of it. He was always there, in everything, even when we did not realize it. And only Christ can continue to take our old wounds and scars and turn them into something good.