Cancer: A New Leg of the Journey…


On August 16, 2016 we heard words we never expected and these words have changed our lives completely. Late that Wednesday afternoon the news came that mom had cancer… Mom is the person who never checks the “Cancer” box on forms because it hasn’t been in her side of the family – she’s that person… But in one day our lives were turned upside down as we began to wrap our minds around what this word meant for us.

Since that day we have spent a lot time seeking God, crying out, and pleading for a healing that would most glorify Him. Let’s be honest though, I’ve begged the Lord to let mom live here on earth, to keep being the person I call when I’m walking in a dark parking, to chat with while I shop, to possibly help me plan a wedding one day, and if I ever have children to be their Nana. However, as much as I want her here, when I settle my heart before the Lord I know my deeper desire to for more people to know Him and so if that means losing mom for His glory… it will be well with my soul even if it’s not well with my emotions.

The big picture is that we see God moving in many many ways as a result of the word “cancer” in our lives! We have found ways to celebrate even in the saddest of moments. A “CELEBRATE” banner hangs on the mantle at the house as a constant reminder!

As I look back over the start of this journey I see so many things we have learned, discovered, and embraced – here are just a few

  • We have learned new terms and medical procedures
  • We have found her favorite chemo caps and learned that mom’s head needs a petit wig not a small.
  • We have discovered that the step up into an ambulance isn’t as difficult as the step down although depending on the day they can both be challenging…
  • We have learned the importance of iron in the body and nicknamed her Iron-Woman after the bags and bags of iron that dripped into her IV.
  • We have learned that recliners come in different sizes and if you take the measuring tape to the showroom floor it’s very helpful.
  • We have learned how to let others love on us – and we have been loved WELL! The amount of meals, cards, flowers, money for travel, prayers, hugs, encouraging words, phone calls, text messages, and so much more have been an out pouring of God’s grace, love, and faithfulness.
  • We have come to terms with a diagnosis of 3 weeks to 3 months but are daily believing God for a miracle.
  • We have discovered that naming the tumor that caused so much pain makes it easier to talk about and it’s much more fun to say “Kill Tawanda!!!” than “hope the radiation shrinks the tumor.”
  • We have seen old relationships reestablished, new friendship grow deeper, and seen the Lord bring new and unexpected people into our lives.
  • We have learned to celebrate in the dark and hold tightly as we bring those truths into the light.
  • We have seen strangers love on us and offer to help – like Pauline in Walmart who used to be a nurse, or the amazing people at Southwest who have booked and changed more flights for me than I can count, and the precious doctors and nurses who took such good care of my momma for 24 days in the hospital.
  • We have come to appreciate and covet the prayers of other – there is group of girls on my campus that have been praying for mom since the day they got back to school. I can be walking down a sidewalk (almost daily) and one them will ask how we are or shout across the quad that they are praying (tears, I tear up every time I talk about that!).
  • We have seen that tears help the sadness, can bring laughter, and just help make life better – a good ol’ ugly cry is just good for the soul.
  • We have seen the Lord open conversations for the gospel in ways we never would have had otherwise. Deep conversations about the Lord have been life-giving and happening constantly.

Now that’s a LIST!!! And that’s only what I’ve thought of this morning! God is working and He is up to something great not only in our lives but in the lives of those around us.

For those of you who see yourself in this list – THANK YOU! For those of you I left out, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to.

If the Lord has somehow used mom’s cancer in your life would you comment and let us know? We want to celebrate with you! Thank you all for being on this journey with us!

8 thoughts on “Cancer: A New Leg of the Journey…

  1. Your Mom’s cancer is a daily reminder that life is precious and we should never take it or those we love for granted. It is also a reminder that God has a much bigger plan and picture than we do and He is faithful in all things, He hears our prayers, answers our prayers (not always how we want), He wants us to always tell others about Him and theses are things that come to mind when i think of your Mom. Our prayers continue! We love you all.

  2. Beth, I only recently learned about your mom’s diagnosis, so I haven’t been on the journey with y’all to learn from her cancer.
    However, I learned a great deal from your mom about what caring for people means and looks like. I am glad to hear that she is receiving care after giving so much for so long. Y’all are in my prayers.

  3. I was struck by how as I sat with your mom, that she was glorifying God in the midst of the storm. Not angry, not upset, not crying out why me but saying how good God has been. I cried an avalanche of tears after I left yesterday, because somehow it doesn’t seem fair. Out of all the terrible people doing terrible things in the world, why her? Your mom is always the lady helping everyone else. Whenever I wanted to do something for a family at church, my first thought was “Call Triss!” Indeed, she helped me put together lots of things for lots of families, and often times at the last minute. But, I know that she will forever be praising Him. We are all blessed to know and love Triss. She is an inspiration to us all and truly a brave, Proverbs 31 lady. Even yesterday as I was praying for her, she ended the prayer by praying for me. In her storm, she was praying for someone else! And, it was just fitting because that is who your mom is. Keeping mom and family in prayers.

  4. Visiting your Mom was a blessing for me and Libby! We looked back on our roots in the family of faith at FBC Pensacola! Little did we realize how those lessons we learned under the tutelage of so many adults who loved on us and prayed over us would be the lessons that made life worth living! Abundant living! I am so blessed and happy to have experienced my “growing up years” with your mom. Those friendships and experiences are the core of my lifestyle, based on my relationship with Jesus Christ, then and now! Praying for God’s miraculous healing in whatever way He chooses, trusting His wisdom and His infinite love!

  5. I am one of the thousands who have been blessed by Triss’s obedience in following God’s call to ministry. Her gentle strength, her ability to make a person feel that they are the most important one that she could be talking with, her undivided attention, and most of all, her challenge to us all to find God through his son, Jesus…these are only a few reasons that so many hold her dear to their hearts. If anyone can fight this battle with Grace and Light, it’s Triss. Please know you are loved, you are prayed for, and that you have made a difference in countless lives. I love you!

  6. Beth, as usual you have touched my heart with your faith and your witness and I am grateful that God made sure our paths crossed so many years ago. You are walking in a valley that only your “Daddy” can walk with you, but if I could, I would. Please know that you and your momma are on my heart. Keep writing. Someday you’ll be able to look back and see God’s hand was at work, and if you don’t write it down, our human brains can’t remember His glory. Write down the “God things” because they will add to your testimony of How awesome He is. Who wouldn’t want to love and be loved by a God like this?

  7. ❤️20 years of love from your mom and loving her back and working at her side ,needless to say has changed my life so many way. After the diagnosis it became clear I had no time to feel sorry for myself but to be grateful for the years of your mothers friendship and leadership .Thankful for her family , your family and all they have taught me…..walking the walk. Doing life together, good and bad, joy and sadness. Bringing God to life every day, learning to trust in Him, knowing he is beside us in all that we do. The greatest thing I’ve ever heard said about your mom was from somebody in divorce care ” I want to have what she has” 💕 I told him he can have it too it’s free , for the asking , ask Jesus to come into your heart❤️ he could see the joy in her heart and he wanted that! 💕what could be greater than that and somebody wanting the joy that you have , that you share 💕💕

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