Things you can pray about…

Jun 17

Thanks for all the encouragement from my last two posts.  My community, my village, my people, my stranger friends: I am blessed by you.

Here’s a quick brain dump of what I’m thinking about, written mostly with very selfish motivations so that you can pray for me:

-Thank you for the encouragement about my last two posts.  Today is Chemo Day: I’m in the chairs now.  Please pray that the cancer would be diminished/reduced/eliminated!  I’m having a cancer/PET scan on Monday June 22; Rockstar confirmed it today.  Please pray that scanxiety would be absent for me and for those who love me: regardless of what the films show, we know that I am LIVING with cancer and LIVING well indeed.  I’m focusing on what I can control!

-To run, or not to run: that is the question.  I’m mulling over the marathon idea.  A great many things are making me think it is a great idea: friends offering to train with me, a general “you go girl” consensus from people who know me, and the buck-stops-here sense of defiance it leaves me with in regard to my cancer.  The things that are holding me back are fear (obviously working on that one), worry about my toes specifically, worries about my general health, and time/energy life balance.

-Overwhelmed with life: Brad and I are quick to prioritize the sweet stuff of life.  The minutae, however, is also important.  I try to ignore the hum of the not-important-stuff until I can address it, but between our busy palooza schedule and my lost time with treatment, the not-urgent-but-needs-to-be-done list is epic.  Will you help me to either energize for or set aside: weeding, fans in girls bedrooms, medical paperwork sort and bill pay, mulching, thank you notes.  There’s a bunch more but those are on my radar “for today”, which is totally unrealistic!

-Brad and I are prayerfully taking on an exercise where we metaphorically throw all our assumptions about our life into the air and want to be intentional with the ones we choose to catch.  We want to make sure our time, energy, money, and love are going to all the right places.  It is hard to do and I’m feeling challenged and wobbly as I am not a fan of change!  But, to God be the glory… that’s what I want my/our life to reflect.

-My poor little toes.  This is summer #4 with my big toes living in band-aids.  After four surgeries and an invested podiatrist, I still keep getting infections in my big toes.  It’s problematic for so many reasons.  It’s minor in the grand scheme of things, but I would still appreciate prayers for my toes to just. be. normal. and. healthy.  I miss pretty toes, especially in the summer!

-Maren and Greta.  How can I be the best mama to them?  What are their giftings and talents and challenges?  I want to call out their beauty and teach them to be brave and kind.  I love summer, and it is so wonderful to have them home so much during these long days.  My intention is to be present, intentional and fun with them: help me to follow through!

-My village.  I’m asking a lot of my people, so pray that all our communications would be strong.  I have to trust that people only say yes to what is energizing for them and that they are not letting me and my circumstances overtake them.  It is hard to ask for help!

Thank you for your prayers and happy thoughts; I so appreciate it!  It is so encouraging to have people rally around me in so many different ways.

I will send down showers in season; there will be showers of blessings.  — Ezekiel 34:26


  1. Strong and clear message. I love the exercise of choosing which assumptions to keep. Beautiful.

    Also, definitely, outsource the weeding to someone’s kids who want $10 for 2 hours of summer work. Or even better yet. Let your girls do it! My girls LOVE weeding and feel a sense of ownership over their property.

  2. Julie Talford /

    Praying….especially for pretty toes and no infections 🙂 Thanks for always being so honest….love you.

  3. Connie /

    You are such a strong woman- if you truly want to know what to do with the HUGE lists- I say- 1) sort medical paperwork and pay bills-(you won’t receive any annoying phn calls that way- 2) fans in the girls bedrooms- you will make their day- win/win!! Will pray for your toes to heal- And the rest of the list –

  4. Kim Rourke /

    Hmmmm! Seems I can hear and feel your stress in each of the concerns/thoughts you mention. I do not respond to the majority of your posts, but I ponder, and often grow myself from the reading of them.

    Your daily life is already a marathon, and I think you are rocking it and definitely taking the lead! Your village is gratefully there coaching, cheering, and shoring you up as you push forward because that is what they WANT to do.

    You worry about Maren and Greta and how to “call out their beauty and teach them to be brave and kind,” but I see you doing just that in so many of the posts you have shared about them.

    Your posts are all the thanks anyone needs from you!!!

    You and Brad have got this! I do pray that you can energize for the really big must does then throw to the wind the rest.

    I will also pray for your toes. We can put a man on the moon yet toes must live in band aids instead of polish??? Criminal!

    My mother’s heart aches for your worry over all of this! You are making all-the-right-choices because they are the ones that work best for you and yours!! My MI warriors will be adding their prayers for the 22nd too.

  5. Kristin Russo /

    Thinking of you Jen!!! Of course I want you to do the marathon!!! It is just the greatest sense of accomplishment when you are done! The NYC Marathon is coming up in the beginning of November (it’s awesome) and I know you can get entry if you run with a charity!! Praying for your toes for lots of reasons…including holding up during your training runs if you greenlight a marathon!! I lose toenails everytime I train for anything…so make sure you get your shoes bigger than you normally get because your feet swell during training (the running shoe experts would tell you that too)!

  6. Darlene Cliff /

    I’m praying you, Brad, Maren and Greta are the priorities in all your plans. Hope that your village can help with all those tasks for which they have notoriously accomplished in the past. Maybe letting the girls help make your toe bandages pretty will become an artistic little project. I pray for strength and love.

  7. Lisa Smith /

    I pray for you every time I catch myself complaining under my breath…. so yeah, that’s incessant. To be reminded of your toes in this post grates on me. To consider this problem along side my problems sparks a fury in me to do right by you (and of course our Creator). I am currently volunteering my time to help a new local art camp. As I wonder if I should continue, I realize that YES I absolutely should because it is the least I can do to help a newly single Mama run this camp to pay her bills. Trust me, I’m really great at enforcing my own boundaries–saying yes to only energizing things– I know it is good and right to stretch myself for this cause and I am even more sure of it now, having read your post. How many times do I need to be reminded?? If Jen can face her marathon fear with cancer and less-than-ideal-toes, I think I can continue on in my Normal Mommy life and give back to my community with joy and love. Love you Jen. Thank you for posting. Praying.

  8. Jennifer /

    Prayers and sweet wishes for all of the beauty, the fear and the wonder in this list. May you do today well. You have inspired me, once again, to do the same.

  9. Mary Jane (fellow runner and WARRIOR) /

    Hi Jen. As you already know, even if it’s buried inside deeper than usual, you can do anything you set your mind to. If you have ever seen the finish line of a marathon, you know there are all body types, ages, fitness levels and various new normal conditions, some of which we can see with our eyes, some of which we know with our heart.
    I don’t hesitate to tell you to go for it. And be sure to let me know so that I may be blessed to run with you, training or otherwise. Your husband and girls, friends and family will look back, like they already do and think, Look at what she did. As a wise friend told me when I started chemo, Your marathon is the toughest.
    Marathon or no, you are an inspriration!