This past weekend I had the privilege of watching my daughter Allie sing with her traveling show choir. These kids love to sing, act and dance and it is so much fun to watch them. One of the songs they are currently showcasing is “Think Positive” from Willy Wonka. Although you can probably get the general gist of the song from the title alone, here are a few of the lyrics:
You’ve nothing to lose so why not choose to think positive?
Whenever my luck is on the blink, I think positive!
Whenever I’m feeling down and out and don’t know what to do,
I never give way to fear and doubt,
‘Cos thinking positive sees me through!
It’s a fun and encouraging tune, and honestly, I live most of my life this way. Not because thinking positive is easy. And certainly not because my life is easy. I choose it. I choose to dwell on what I have instead of what I don’t. I choose to see the good that can come out of something instead of the bad. It’s not always easy when Shelby is seizing or not sleeping. It’s really hard when Allie is acting like a typical, self-absorbed pre-teen. It’s especially challenging when I get another speeding ticket or my husband is in “a mood”. But I still try my best to live with joy because life is better that way.
BUT in all honesty, I don’t have the energy today. This dance I’ve been doing with cancer, which is long from over, has had it’s ups and downs. And today, I’m down. It seems that not one thing has been easy since diagnosis. Every time I have been told “there’s just a slight chance that…” something worse could happen, it does. From finding invasive cancer when the doctor thought it was only non-invasive; from chemo being off the table to putting it front and center, to infection, to surgery wounds not healing correctly – it all kinda makes me want to take myself to bed. In the middle of the day.
At now 3 and a half weeks post double mastectomy, I am still lugging around a drain. Although I am thankful he doesn’t hurt me like Brutus did, I am tired of trying to finding clothes I can smuggle him underneath. We have named him Wilson, since he has become my constant companion (Cast Away reference).
The good news is my droopy, mopey perspective is temporary. It has to do with today’s doctor’s appointment not going the way I had hoped. And possibly this rainy weather. These too shall pass. Spending Easter weekend contemplating the suffering that my Savior went through FOR ME reminds me of how small my sufferings are in the grand scheme of what He has for me (and you). So I will leave you with these three verses I will be meditating on until the positive thoughts come back:
“He will cover you with His feathers and under His wings you will find refuge.” Psalm 91:4
“When my heart is overwhelmed lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” Psalm 61:2
“But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me.” 2 Timothy 4:17
Stacey Cartlidge says
Thank you so much for posting this, Lauren. I think there is this false idea out there that if you're suffering and you're a Christian, and you have down days that something is wrong with you. My experience is the same – good days and some horrible days. Sometimes I get the feeling that people are a little more impatient with my down days – that they are somehow disappointed if Keith and I are not bearing up with smiles on our faces. I think they are uncomfortable with our pain sometimes. But Jesus never is. He always has his arms open no matter our state of mind or heart. He gave us our emotions and he understands. Thank you for your courage to write the whole spectrum. Praying for you, sister.
Lauren Sparks says
I just went back and read this comment again. Jesus is never uncomfortable with our pain. I just had another surgery yesterday and so needed this word today. Thank you friend.