Monday, April 29, 2013

Even if... I am glad and rejoice!

Since I'm memorizing Philippians, any scripture referenced in the near future will be from there. Because, it's all I currently read. It's like when Ben was only reading and studying Joshua and EVERY talk or sermon or devotional he ever gave was from the book of Joshua for like 3 years. So, bear with me just like we all did with him.

You'll be able to track my memorizing progress through these blogs. My last post included Phil 1:20, and today we're all the way up to 2:17-18. I'll be through the book by the end of the summer, I'm guessing based on this rate.

Anyway, the point. "Even if I am to be poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrificial offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all. Likewise you also should be glad and rejoice with me."

On Saturday night, as you may have already known - Ben pulled off a massive surprise celebration of the end of this phase of my life with cancer. 15 months of surgery, recovery, birth, recovery, radiation, recovery, and chemo. He managed to get my whole family here (minus one sister-in-law and my nieces), and Matt & Kristy even made the long trip with their three kids to celebrate with us. 

So, I really had no idea this was happening. In fact, I thought I busted Ben a couple of weeks ago when I figured out that Kristy was coming to visit. I even apologized profusely for "ruining the surprise." But then, Saturday morning, people kept coming up from the basement. That I hadn't known were sleeping in my house. Like Mark and even his girlfriend Kim who lives in Texas. And Scott showed up. And I thought I figured out all the surprises. 

But then Ben made me wear a bindfold on the way out to "dinner." Which was really annoying. I wasn't sure where we were until he led me through a door into a building that has a very familiar (not in a great way) smell, and I knew exactly where we were... the AIA Headquarters. 

When he took the blindfold off, the first person I saw was my friend E. And I almost cried because I had spent the whole car ride trying to decide whether or not to tell Ben that he should have invited her to dinner. Then, I saw about a million other familiar faces and a screen up front that said, "Celebrating Susie."

And, I thought, oh no, I have to sit through a dress rehearsal of my funeral. 

But that's not what it was. There was a gorgeous cake, lots of bright and pinterest-y decorations, and soon you couldn't even smell what lives in the walls of the building's basement. It really was a celebration of finishing something. Not the disease, but a long hard stretch of it. Ben and I sat there while some nice and funny people said some nice and funny things, and it really felt more like a sequel to our wedding than a pre-quel to my funeral. 

Even my OB, whom I love, and who delivered Annie said some words and managed to avoid the embarrassing details of my delivery-room fears.

I think my favorite part was my brothers all being there together and speaking. They are at their funniest when they're together, and I'm so dang proud of them and I love showing off my awesome family.  And what about my dad? He's the most amazing school administrator/principal/headmaster/whatever kids are saying these days, but he should probably be a speech writer/speaker/author/preacher to boot.

I tried to express a few thoughts I had at the time, but what I wish I would have said is summed up in Phil 2. Even if I am poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrificial offering of your faith, (Even if, in spite of your combined faith and prayers, I die of a brain tumor) I am glad and rejoice with you all (I am so happy and celebrate with you all who I love and who love me). And you should be happy too, and eat cake and give hugs and get dressed up and go to parties and say nice things. 

Thanks for the great night and a great year!

Oh, and so many of you wrote me beautiful letters that were put together in a beautiful book that I'll get today hopefully and I can't wait to read it. Thank you so, so much!

My mom has been avoiding speaking with me for weeks and successfully kept the surprise a secret.

My brothers at our wedding in 2001. I promised them that if they cooperated with the Indian suits for the ceremony, they could wear what they wanted to the reception. Not sure why they picked these. Rumor has it that they tried to find them for Saturday's party, but that the shirts are missing. 

And, here they are today. Much more fashionable.

E looked beautiful!
Kristy gave everyone the impression that we made a pact in college that she'd go to med school and I'd go to seminary, and because she's a Dr, you might have thought that she kept up her end of the deal. Actually, neither of us have. She has her PhD, but we both need to hit the books again to make good on our promise to fulfill our dreams. But, I think maybe we've moved on to different dreams: Kids, missions work, visiting and cheering for each other's kids at soccer games.

1 comment:

  1. You look beautiful and this whole post makes my heart happy. You are well-loved, my friend!