Tuesday, March 31, 2015

11 Years Ago

11 years ago I was undergoing the battle of my life. Hospitalized nearly an entire 3 months, I left a completely different person. I looked young, but at the age of 23 I knew why I was alive and my purpose was rooted deeply. Little did I know that I would cherish this season to be one of rawness and reality that would shape and make me who I am today. Although I was diagnosed with the most severe type of Lupus that merely 25 years earlier would have left me 100% fatal, I never once accepted and allowed Lupus to be who I was. My journey did not end when I finally was released from my hospital stay. I continued with an aggressive treatment of chemotherapy for another 3 months (6 months total) and then another 2 years of it would follow. God taught me so many things during this time. Friendships and the love of others literally held up my arms when I was too weak to do it on my own. I learned that although life isn't fair, that it all carries beauty, even the pain, even the doubts and confusion. Every ounce of my struggle had purpose and the ability to praise God if I allowed it to. 

This photo may just seem like any other floating out there on blogs or Instagram or pages. In fact most will probably just pass it by. But as I know being a photographer, every photo tells a story. Every photo tells a book and this one speaks endlessly. See, 11 years ago a sweet friend of mine brought me a care basket during one of my chemotherapy treatments and this blanket was in it. I remember going through my treatment that day wrapped up in this cozy snugly blanket wondering what my life was going to be like. I wondered if I was even going to make it. I wondered where God was and what He was doing. I wondered when I was going to begin vomiting and if I was going to be able to stop without beig admitted again. I asked so many questions, and snuggled up in my blankety hug I never imagined my beautiful miracle 1.2 lb daughter (who is working her way to 30 lbs now!!!) would beg me to snuggle in it for her nap. She doesn't know the history yet, and perhaps the blanket won't make it to the day where she truly will comprehend, but I will not be one who forgets. My heart and soul cry out with thankfulness and as I see that smiling face of hers surrounded by the "hug" I know that He is so Faithful and my knees give way as I step out in faith for future I can't yet see. Thank You Jesus. 

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