Faith really can move mountains.
A little over two years ago, my dear friend Kristen was given unimaginable news. She was diagnosed with Stage IV Colon cancer that had spread to her liver. It is hard for me to even imagine how she and her family processed this news. As her friends, we were shocked, scared, stunned really.
This is Kristen today:
Today, we celebrate her battle and her victory. Friends and family joined her to walk in the area’s first 5K in support of colorectal cancer research and funding, “Get Your Rear in Gear”. The team shirts say, “Rump Shakers – Never fear. We are here for Kristen’s rear.”
I don’t know how much you know about color cancer, but a stage IV diagnosis is about as bad of news as you can get. To many, it is a death sentence. But not Kristen. I could tell you what the odds were. Kristen doesn’t know this (until now) but I researched the odds. I did what you aren’t supposed to do researched on the internet to try to determine her chances. I cried my eyes out that day. I was devastated. I won’t mention the numbers I found because they didn’t mean anything to Kristen. Numbers are just averages, and she isn’t average. She was young, otherwise healthy and had the kind of faith that really can move a mountain. She decided that she was going to kick cancer’s ass, and that is just what she did. She had two MAJOR operations to remove the infected part of her colon and part of her liver, had setbacks with infection and healing, spent a combined several weeks in the hospital, and went through two separate rounds of chemo. During that time, she never stopped smiling, never stopped believing. The prevailing joke was that she made the whole “cancer” thing up for attention…that is how good she looked throughout.
She taught me that faith is everything. Believing is everything. The love and faith of family and friends is everything. I’m no dummy. I know there were times when she got discouraged and had doubts, but she had this massive contagious faith thing that she had spread to all the people around her. That faith grew in all of us, and I hope there were times that our belief carried her when hers was feeling shaky.
Sometimes when things seem absolutely impossible, you just have to believe. Believe in a truth that doesn’t make sense and defies conventional wisdom. Believe in the faith that sustains you and believe that you can spread that faith around. Miracles happen every day. Not only is Kristen my hero, but she is a walking talking SMILING miracle, not just because she beat this terrible thing, but because she inspired us, made us believe, increased our faith…and that gift IS one of life’s miracles.