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I love to create, be a mom, a wife, a teacher, and a Jesus follower. These are just some of the musings about who I am!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Vancouver, the First Half

In 2009 we moved away from the big city to a tiny rural community.
I missed the city, a lot.  Slowly, slowly, the country grew on me.

Fast forward to 2016.  We're in the city again.  I was thrilled to return.
Now, after 3 weeks here, I'm ready to head home.  The bright lights and throngs of people have lost their charm and I'm longing for my slow days to return!

So, what has this time been like?  I'll tell you!
Each day (Monday-Friday) I have to travel to the cancer clinic to receive radiation.  They are trying to turn me in to the Hulk!!  Really though,  I walk a few blocks, catch one bus, transfer to another bus, walk a few more blocks, and head in to the clinic.  Once there, I greet all the grandparents who are also receiving treatment.  Seriously, where are all the other young people with cancer?  I know they exist, but I never see them!  I change into this little wrap shirt that is hung on a hanger in a bag with my number on it...among the hundred or so other patient bags.

Once I'm ready I wait to be called.  I have to lay down on a long bed under this mega machine.  They line me up with lasers (sort of like those cool laser levels that some handy-men use).  That is why I am now the owner of three new tattoos.  Yes, I have three tiny (but noticeable) tattoos on my chest, courtesy of the BCCA.  Once I'm all lined up, the machine maneuvers around me for about 2 minutes while I listen to bad music.  Then, I'm done!

So far the side effects have been minimal.  It is like I have a sun burn on the right side of my chest.  It doesn't really hurt, but is a little sensitive.  And my energy levels have been great!  I'm not sure if they will continue to be this high, but I'm hoping so.

Ok, so that's about an hour out of every day.  What about the rest of the time??
Well, we are doing schooling with the boys and really trying to see all of Vancouver!

We have gone to museums, visited old friends, eaten lots of good food, and spent time in the various natural settings this place has to offer.  Let me tell you, I am raising country boys.  They zig zag down the sidewalk at breakneck speeds and I am always so nervous they are going to rush out (or fall) into the speeding cars.  Sheesh!  It is so nice to get out of the city to a park (we've done the beach, Stanley Park, Lighthouse Park, and Lynn Canyon) where there is plenty of room for them to run wild!

One thing I have noticed is that the city breaks my heart.  Every day I walk over loads of trash, multiple homeless people, and see those who are addicted and mentally ill everywhere we go.  There is more of everything here and difficulty is no exception.  I feel helpless to make a change when the problem seems so big.  Lord, have mercy.

There is a light that shines here yet.  God is present here, walking among those who are broken.  I may not be addicted or homeless, but I have visited the depths of my own life these past few months and Christ was there with me!!  I'm realizing more and more that there is no going back.  I looked in the mirror the other day and longed to rewind the clock--to go back to how things used to be.  The problem with looking back is that I miss what is right in front of me...I miss Christ today.

I'm so thankful for the time we have had here.  It has been good in many ways.  It has also reinforced my continual need of Jesus.

I'm looking forward to finishing my final 11 treatments and heading home!!
(pictures of our time here to come)

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