Living in faith

Nov 04

Living in faith

I’m getting my hair cut today.  It’s just getting long in the back; I looked in the mirror this morning and asked myself, “Is that the start of a mullet?” and that is how I know it is time for a hair cut.  A hair cut is something I’ve put off since I got the result of the PET scan because if the spot is cancer, then I start chemo (and will be bald) this month.  Spending money on a hair cut doesn’t make sense for someone who is soon-to-be-bald.

But today, I am healthy Jen, Mama Jen, and happy Jen.  I’m getting a hair cut on faith that the spot’s not cancer.

Is this really how my brain works?  Does this make any sense at all?

Sometimes I just shake my head in disbelief that this is really my life.  This morning I am running around getting the girls ready for school, driving Maren’s lunch to school since she forgot it, packing Greta’s bag for Phenom’s house since it is Herceptin Monday.  And then, whammo, on Thursday I’ll be sedated and on morphine drip for most of the day and days to come.

I’m ready for the surgery.  While I acknowledge that it is major surgery, a lot of my focus is on that all important diagnostic result.  Is it cancer?  I’m hoping for a relaxing 6 week vacation post-op recovery with a huge smile plastered to my face as a I revel in the non-cancer-ness of that spot.

I have been advised that I will not be allowed to have fresh flowers or fruit–somehow these present a risk of infection.  Infection after lung surgery is something that we want to avoid at all costs.  Visitors are probably going to be restricted also, so contact Brad before you try to visit.  After my hospital stay, I’ll be going to my parent’s house to convalesce.  Since I can’t hold Greta for 6 weeks, we’ve decided it will be best for us to stay separate until I am physically recovered enough for her to at least climb on me. If I were in the same house with her, I envision it would be painful and tearful for both of us.  I’m going to write, work on digital photo/memory books for the girls, Xmas shop online, read (whole books!), and, well, heal.

SuperGramma (Brad’s mom) arrives on Wednesday, and much of the heavy lifting of my Mom Job falls to her.  To make her job a wee bit easier, friends have set up a calendar for meals for SuperGramma, Brad, Maren and Greta: if you are interested in that you can email our friends and help coordinators at help4andersons(at)gmail(dot)com.  They are pretty great at finding ways for people who want to help to do so.  Thank you.

I’m off to continue being Normal Jen today: haircut, errands, Herceptin, and a fun family dinner tonight.  We celebrate the normal days, the happy days, the blessed days.  Thank you for your prayers and well-wishes.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.  –John 14:27


(Photo taken by a dear friend summer 2013–a record of our happy family.  This is what I’m fighting for.)


  1. Marlayne Skeens /

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the photo !!!!!!!!! Enjoy that Haircut !!!!!! If we lived closer, I’d cut it for FREE 🙂 Hugs & Prayers that Thursday does well <3

  2. Jen, ever since I read your last blog post you’ve been top of my prayer/positive thought list. I actually spent several hours in the quiet of the night concentrating on God’s finger that is healing that spot. Your blogisphere family has circled around you…we’re all holding each other’s hands (yes, that’s possible in theory) protecting you with our armor of prayer and love. Now feel free to be just normal mom jen for the next few days. We’ve got you covered! ♥ PS…incredibly happy family pic 🙂

  3. Jen,

    I am a stranger to you, but I want you to know that I admire you as a writer, a mother and a survivor. I am praying for you, your family and for a serious-no-question-no-cancer-diagnosis! Blessings to you and yours.



  4. Patty Wheeler /

    Thinking of you this week and thinking positively!

  5. aunt Annie /

    Adorable family pic – especially Greta’s hair style! Praying for you!

  6. Ldj6nd /

    We’ve never met, but I’ve followed your journey since the beginning (found through Momastery). We’re just about the same age, and you were my motivation to get my fibrocystic breasts checked, and to take charge of my health. You’re an inspiration and an encouragement. I’ll be praying for you all week. “And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.” Romans 5:5.

  7. If Greta’s topknot doesn’t just say it all: sassy, silly, solid. It’ll work out for the best, Jen. Holding you up.

  8. Melissa Pizzato /

    Good on you for getting your hair cut Jen and good luck on Thursday! As someone who’s had short hair more than long, I know all about the ‘mullet’ phase – yes, you think it may be getting a bit scruffy then BAM one day you wake up and it’s exploded into a full on mullet and MUST be attended to ASAP 😉 I’m sure today’s new do will fix those scrappy bits and have you looking and feeling fantastic! Regarding your surgery on Thursday, all your Pizzato cousins in Australia are hoping for a cancer-free outcome and hope your recovery is quick, easy and as pain free as possible. We all love you so much xxxooo

  9. Shannon Weiss /

    I love your positivity Jen! Thinking of you guys!! P.S. I think your pixie cut is cute!! 😉

  10. Rebecca /

    Sending lots of prayers your way! Sister on!

  11. I have continued to follow your family journey in part because reading what you write strengthens my faith. When I read your posts I feel that strong, slow, soothing breath of God. And so it is with gratitude that I offer up my prayers for you; for hope, healing, and peace.

  12. Well I finally found you. Grateful to be able to spend time with you today. On my way home God and I had a heart to heart talk, and I do believe in the power of prayer. Feeling optimistic that there will be positive news following your surgery. I will never admit that this is the life I wanted years ago, but I am ever so “thankful” for all the friendships I have made in that large circle of rocking chairs.
    God Bless;

  13. Hillary S. /

    Amen from your swimmer stranger friend in Delaware! Thinking and praying for you daily. Hope the next few weeks are nothing short of miracles and great news. Please continue with your amazing positivism and faith. Legions are sending their love and prayers! (not to mention your gorgeous family, gorgeous photo, love it!)

  14. Marion /

    Hi Jen-
    I saw this scripture just today and thought of you: “But the Lord stood with me and gave me strength.” -2 Timothy 4:17
    I am praying for you, girl. We ended up making that move that was forecasted a year ago, so I am not physically able to help you out there, but I can sure pray. Now, you have prayer going up for you from the UK! Thinking about you!

  15. I don’t know if I’ve ever commented before or even how I found your blog, but I am well acquainted with cancer and how it can affect us and our families. My sister was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 29 with twin baby boys. Six years later, 2011, I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer at 35 with 2 small children of my own. She is currently 6 years cancer-free, and while I am not cancer-free, I am stable and not undergoing treatment at this time. I just wanted to tell you that I am praying for you and that I appreciate your calm and faith in the midst of these storms.