This past Thursday, July 29th marked the day ten years ago when we sat in the breast center of our local hospital receiving the confirming news of my breast cancer diagnosis. They say surviving breast cancer ten years later is significant. I think “they” must be right, so as the day approached, I was intent on preparing myself well for the significance. It is the reason I named this “Pinked’s Summer of Celebration”. It is the reason I plopped myself on a white sandy beach surrounded by some of the most beautiful water my eyes could behold. It is the reason I chose to spend those surrounding days with my favorite human who lived the yuck with me ten years ago, pointed me toward all the good in it, and continues to be my hero on a daily basis.
I was intent that the significance of this day not be lost in hustle and hurry. I was intent that it not come and go without truly taking in all that should be celebrated. I just never imagined all that God was going to do to take and clean my dirty glasses to make my vision of the significance of the last 10 years more clear.
There are so many details to the story that I hope to share later should you be up for a nice long read, but the short of it is that two days before flying home from our long-awaited 10 year celebration trip to Aruba, I tested positive for Covid. This meant that I would need to be transferred from our beautiful resort to isolation accommodations in a residential part of the island for seven days. (I should pause now to say that I have not had any symptoms and feel very safe where I am located.) While there has been much disappointment at how our plans were detoured, with each day I spend here in quarantine, I become more confident and peaceful that my presence in this time and space is a gift. Some of the purposes I can already see, and some I may never fully realize.
While it is not exactly like receiving the news of a cancer diagnosis, this Covid experience in Aruba has brought us moments of disbelief, fear, and desperation, many of the same emotions we felt all those years ago. Through this extra time and opportunity to process it all, I believe The Lord has shown me the significance I have been seeking to understand in three telling words:
Recently, I was talking with a friend about faith and she expressed how hard it can be to believe in a God that allows so much hurt all around us. Her question took me back to when I was first diagnosed. That season allowed me to experience something that life up til that point had not afforded me. I quickly discovered what it meant to wrestle with God. I wrestled with many of the same questions my friend has and with my 33 year old faith because to be honest, thanks to the blessing of amazing parents, I had never questioned my faith. God wanted me to pour out my heart~my questions, my frustrations, my fears. I can’t say that now I have the problem of pain completely figured out, but as I lived out the hard days of tests and treatment, the goodness of God that met us in the midst of all of it was what won. I found myself coming out on the other side of those ten months of treatment with a faith deeper than I had before. I couldn’t deny Him because of how I felt His presence at every turn.
In the midst of my hard days back then, I discovered that writing is what gave me strength. It was how my wrestling was expressed, but ultimately it was a record of all the ways our prayers were being answered and our needs were being met. I have come to see my writing, both then and now, as my tether to my faithful friend, Jesus. Almost all of my writing is purposely formed around gratitude as a way of remembering all that He has done before and giving me the ability to trust for whatever might be ahead.
Perhaps because I had not been forced to wrestle before, I also didn’t believe my testimony and my potential impact to make a difference amounted to much. The blessing (yes, you read that right!) of walking through cancer which is only one of the many challenges that we can potentially face in this life, gave me confidence that I could meet others in their struggle and offer the hope that got me through it. Hope that says that in reality none of us are worthy, but because of Him we all are! After some time of healing, Pinked Perspective was a natural next step that was powered from pain and drove me into the lives of others, which is really our most significant calling and greatest joy.
In a moment of disgust for this process I told Blake that I would never come back to Aruba. As the days have passed and I have been able to see the many ways that God’s Hand has been here providing for and guiding me, I have started to believe this place to be sacred. After all, there is just no other explanation for perfect weather~EVERY. SINGLE. DAY! ~Kara
Obviously there haven’t been any kits shipping out in the last week and a half, but I have been collecting requests while away and will be hard at work when I get home to get those kits sent. Before I left on vacation, my daughter and I did some inventory. We found that we are in need of a good many different items. I have had a few offers from supporters who would like to host kit assemblies so if you can help us out with any donations of the items from our Amazon Wishlist, that would be so appreciated! Thanks so much for considering a donation in honor of Pinked’s Summer of Celebration!
Below you will find a list of the items we are in need of:
- Jesus Calling Devotionals
- Summer/Fall Button Down pajamas (Small and Medium)
- EOS Lip Balms
- Tissues (Travel packs)
Thanks so much for considering a donation to Pinked Perspective this summer. And please let us know of any loved ones that may be in need of the support that we provide.