Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Look Good...Feel Better

I spent last week with my sister Judy. It was the first time I've seen her since she lost her hair. She's bald...and cute as a button. She looks like a little pixie elf, just like she did when she was a little girl. Its funny because she looks years younger. Judy has these beautiful big brown eyes, a doe's eyes. With her hair away from her face, in her case gone completely, it accentuates her eyes. Bald becomes her.

I am amazed at the grace and bravery that she shows in her battle against ovarian cancer. She has so much determination, and peace about her. Her constant comment is "I can use this as a ministry to others. God has a purpose in this for me." And she did that on Wednesday when we spent the day at the hospital for her third chemo session. Now Judy, being the southern girl that she is, was not about to go off to the hospital, or anywhere else for that matter, without being properly "made up." So we left her house early that morning, looking like we were ready for a shopping spree in Atlanta instead of a day of needles and bags full of chemotherapy. Judy wore this darling blue hat with a cute little flower on the side, it was precious. And a bright blue sweater. Her make up was soft and beautiful. I remember thinking that she literally glowed. How does one glow in the midst of cancer and chemo? She was gorgeous. There was a lady, Camille, that we met that day who was also spending the day in the same room with Judy, getting chemo treatment for breast cancer. Camille was a talker. And, Camille was bald as she could be. After properly making small talk, and chatting about their common issues with cancer and chemo, Camille begins to ask Judy about her makeup, her hat and sweater, and how in the world does she find it in her, in the midst of all her trials, to "fix herself up." Camille said, "I haven't had make up on since I was diagnosed in October." Judy begins to share with Camille about how others will see her as a reflection of cancer, and in doing things that are normal for her, like putting on make up, going to work, etc, she is able to overcome and not be defeated by the cancer. Judy told Camille that God will use people's inquiries and comments as a door for Judy to spread His love and what He has done for her. She began to tell Camille about the Look Good Feel Better program, that works with women who are going through chemo, in doing makeovers, skin care, etc, and how much fun she had at the program when she attended. Not to mention all the cool free make up she received from companies such as Estee Lauder, Lancome, Clinque, Mary Kay, and others. She gave Camille tips on make up and skin care for a cancer patient. Judy complimented Camille on her beautiful clear, creamy complexion, on the bright blue of her eyes, and how to play that up with her make up. By the end of the day, Camille was making plans to attend the next program, and leaving the hospital to go buy new makeup.

Judy's doing well I think. It humbles me that she is so gracious and serene. I want to scream and yell and cry, and beg God to make her well, not to let her die. I want to shake everyone and shout "How can this be happening to her?? WHY is this happening to her?" She is too sweet for this. Why not someone like me, who is not nearly as pure in heart as she is. Yet, I am so proud of her. She is so beautiful, even in the face of cancer. She refuses to be defeated.

I love this verse. Notice how its speaking to a female. God gave me this verse last week while I was at Judy's house. I think it was meant for her.

God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early.

I especially love the "that right early." part. He comes before we call. Praise Him.

Look Good...Feel Better http://www.lookgoodfeelbetter.org/


kathi said...

Rebecca, I know your feelings well. I wonder "why" so many times myself but then I remember it's God's plan, for what ever reason. I lost my sister-in-law to cancer last August, it was fast, my dad has mantel cell lymphoma, he's survived past the "survival rate" it's been a long, long three years but I continue to say my dad's a miracle just like Judy will be, a miracle of God's work. You are in my prayers.

kathi said...

You're in my thoughts and prayers today....Kathi :)

Cathy said...

Beautiful! I am so moved, I don't know what to say. Joy, in the midst of the storm...God is so good!

You know I'm praying.


Beaufort Belle said...

I am so happy for you and Judy. It sounds like a great week for the 2 of you. I am so impressed by Judy and how she is handling her illness. She is truly a gift from God.

It's also great to know that she is part of the "Look Good...Feel Better" program. Years ago, I was working as an image consultant when the program first started. I loved sharing that program with women who were battling cancer.

Continued prayer for you and Judy!

justabeachkat said...

What a sweet sweet post about your sister. As a cancer survivor myself, I know how important it is to think postively and use our circumstances to be an example. Your post was so well written and I know is proud of you too. I'll keep her in my prayers.


justabeachkat said...

I forgot to mention...I think the small gardening place you mentioned in your comment on my blog is The Gourd Garden. I love it too. Sometime when you're visiting your sister in Panama City if you girls come to Destin to shop, let me know...I'd love to meet you for lunch.