Jesse had been fighting this battle like a hero for months and there seemed no end. I was accustomed to the long drive to London several days a week. I was used to praying for what he needed daily and what his parents and brothers needed. Going to the hospital had become a part of life just like eating and working and sleeping.
I had never once felt like it would not turn out that Jesse would one day be free of cancer and go home and back to school and his family would no longer need to worry. I had hope at every turn. I was sure one day the doctors would do one of their many tests and see that the treatments were working and that it would not be much longer until the cancer would be gone.
One morning at the hospital it was Peter’s turn to stay the night before and I had gotten there early before Anna arrived. Peter was having his breakfast in the tiny kitchen area in Jesse’s room. We were talking and he said to me that he didn’t know how he would go on if that little guy didn’t make it. This was the first time he had said anything like that to me. I told him never mind such thoughts. By that time my thoughts at night had begun to creep in that direction a couple times as well. I, however, quickly threw them aside and went back to hope and my complete belief that God could at any second take all the cancer from Jesse’s body and make him well. My heart was not ready to accept that Peter and Anna might have to give up their son.
Another thing Peter said to me that morning was that so many people ask “why me?” or “why us?” when something like this hits them. He said he hadn’t asked that. He said why not him? Why not his family? They were no different than anyone else. I, on the other hand, had thought that nearly every day! WHY Peter?! He did not deserve this. I did. That was the part I had trouble understanding. Why would Peter have to live this and watch Jesse suffer when I had made so many bad choices and lived so opposite from Peter and Anna? All 3 of my children were healthy. I would gladly have taken Jesse’s place as would many others but I would have also taken my brother’s place and be the one in that hospital with one of mine if it meant they could take Jesse home.
When Peter said why not them, I learned something. God knew what he was doing and if the parent living this nightmare could see it that way then I needed to as well. I knew that just as Jesse had said one day while at home. God had let him get cancer so that we could learn to love each other more. That’s what I needed to learn and it was what this horrible cancer had taught me. I loved that little guy more than anything, and I loved my brother with all my heart. I now loved Jesse’s brothers as I always should have. I never had a sister and during our times in that hospital room I learned that God gave me a wonderful sister when Peter married Anna. I loved her like I never thought possible. I also learned a new love for my family at home and to cherish them all for who they are.
On each trip to London I listened to the same songs and one of them was ‘In the Hands of God’ by Newsboys. I had done that. I had put Jesse in the hands of God and my job was to love and support him and his family. All that had happened and was happening had nothing to do with deserving or not deserving. It was about love. It was a high price to pay to learn to love.
©Lisa Bueckert 2012