I'm not as smart as I used to be... I don't learn as fast as I used to... I don't multitask well anymore... I have trouble hearing the changes in the music... I have a high risk of seizures under stress... I'm no where near in peak condition, I'm not sure I'll ever be as strong as I was... I have soooooo many excuses and reasons not to keep trying to teach Body Pump, but I still LOVE the program and how it helped me to believe in myself and set aside the excuses I used to use. BUT...
This battle of mine is NOT a Journey! So many people refer to some one's battle with cancer as a Journey. I think a journey is something that you want to do, something that will be a fun and maybe even a challenging experience. Like college kids backpack around Europe and call that a journey of a lifetime. Experienced climbers call making it to a peak, a worthwhile journey to the summit. Yet, in the Old Testament, Genesis 22 when Abraham was tested by God and told to climb a mountain to sacrifice his only son, do you think he would have for even a second called any part of the climb a journey? No. It was a test... a trial, one that no one wants to ever face. In the Old Testament, "trial" is a noun from the Hebrew word sara that probably means "bind, tie up, restrict". So a trial in that case is a time in life when one is bound or restricted. Yeah, my battle with cancer is no Journey, it's a TRIAL. But I can tell you this, my God is not threatened by my doubt nearly as much as He is glorified by my faith. So, knowing that I just keep praying Mark 9:24, "I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief."
I feel like it is VERY fitting that when I finally got brave enough to try to learn a new Body Pump release (I haven't even opened the last 4) that one of the instructors on the master DVD made the statement, "If it doesn't challenge you, then it won't change you." Has being diagnosed with cancer challenged me? Yes and more importantly, it has changed me. Sometimes I want to focus on all those negative changes in me that I listed instead of viewing them as challenges that have caused much personal grief and growth. Some of these changes have been for the better... I'm more determined to life life intentionally. I want to build strong relationships. I want to seek God for my strength. I don't grieve the time that passes as my children grow up and they change, I'm so very thankful to be witnessing and influencing them! I've heard people say, I don't want to turn 40... I just keep praying that I will get to see 40. God may not heal me on the terms that we selfishly and persistently pray for, but I will let him use me no matter what.
I finally have a real reason to learn this release too because one of the morning instructors has a broken finger and asked me if I would like to team teach the new release with her next week. I'm so excited to have some real motivation to move past all of those excuses and learn a new release with new music and new choreography! Am I having to work harder to learn everything than I ever had to before? Yes... but now I realize challenges aren't limits... they are opportunities to see positive changes in myself!
Body Pump 83 has my new favorite Bicep song, "Stronger [What Doesn't Kill You]" by Kelly Clarkson. Today at launch I was just there as a participant and much to my surprise the other instructors invited me to the stage for this song. Of the 70+ participants in that class today, only a small handful even know I am in this trial called brain cancer. Most of them also don't even know that I'm a certified instructor. But today, I "stood a little bit taller because" I really believe "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger!"
For those of you trying to keep up with my health details:
I have an oncologist checkup with extensive bloodwork on Oct 2nd; Chemo Round 14 (of 18) starts on October 7th; an ultrasound of my uterus on Oct 11th (chemo has my hormones confused so this is just a precaution because my periods have changed and I'm dealing with anemia); Next MRI followed by Oncologist visit on October 30th; Chemo Round 15 on November 4th. I do weekly bloodwork and am also seeing a Physical Therapist to help with some balance issues and left side weakness that have been frustrating me. It would be so nice to just wake up one morning and not have to think about cancer and doctors and bloodwork and all the expesnses associated with all of this. Some days just keeping up with my household chores, all these specialist appointments, and taxi-ing the kids to and from school is daunting and I appreciate your prayers. Lately for some reason, Wednesday evenings have been very hard on me... physically and emotionally, so if you think about me will you please pray for me.