Today I’m grateful for my good friend Scott Bronson. I met him through AML, the source of many good things in my life. It was one of those times when you meet someone and feel like you already know them—I was so instantly comfortable with Scott and have always felt like he was a closer friend than the amount of time I’ve known him would warrant. Maybe that’s just because of the kind of guy he is, open and warm. Maybe everyone feels that way about him.
Anyway, he is a wise person and willing to share things he’s learned through the course of some difficult life events. Yesterday, he said what I needed to hear.
I’ve been struggling with my health still. Through all of this I haven’t doubted that I would someday get better—for I have been promised so, and I have great faith in the priesthood blessings Roger gives me. They always, always prove true and sure. But I have had a hard time translating that macrocosmic, over-the-long-haul faith into daily and moment-by-moment faith. Scott told me about a time in his life when the cancer had returned and he had knelt in prayer to discuss the ways that the atonement can help people with illnesses. He came to a point, he says, where he said to God, “Here!” and tossed all of his fear and anxiety over his health and the future into the air like a ball, and just let the Lord catch it. “And it worked,” he said. “I didn’t worry again, even when the cancer returned later. I still don’t.”
So I’ve been trying to analyze just what it is that I fear, and how I can toss that fear into the air for God to catch. I realize that I am not afraid of dying. I’m not even all that afraid of suffering (well, maybe some). But what I’m most afraid of is the effects of my illness, the things I leave undone. Especially, the price my children might have to pay if I’m spending the day in bed yet again or emotionally not strong for them. I worry about them growing up remembering a mom who was always sick.
I also fear when a new little health problem appears. Oh no—is it something new? A new manifestation of the same old thing? Is it something I should tell a doctor about because it might be significant in getting the right diagnosis? Or is it just a little ache or pain like those that are a normal part of living in a body and it doesn’t mean anything? Which is it? Which is it? There’s a lot of panic surrounding each little twinge these days. I’m making myself crazy with it.
So I realized that I need to toss these things to God as well. New little pain? Fine. Toss it to God. He’ll make sure that, if it’s significant, I’ll know it at some point and be able to do something about it. I don’t need to worry about how important it is. Or my kids—I have to toss them to Him as well. Maybe they will grow up with memories of my being sick. That’s part of their own story with God. He’ll be able to take care of them, too, right? It’s really none of my business, as long as I’m doing what I can. I have to have faith that if they have a problem with what’s going on, they can toss things up to God, too.
When I take my youngest with me to do errands in the mornings, he rides in the car with me, not caring where we’re going next. He’s just there with me. I’m trying to be childlike in that way—just riding in my carseat while God drives. What does it matter where we end up? I’m just here with Him. So maybe one of the errands involves a new little pain, or having to stay in bed again. Whatever. Got’s got the ball.