I Ate Bacon and Eggs at 8 AM by Valerie J. Patterson

On April 15th that was the text my husband sent me.  Never before has such a simple sentence brought forth such varied emotion in me.  I laughed.  I cried.  I rejoiced.  And I gave thanks to my Heavenly Father.

Really?  You might be asking yourself.

Yes.  Really!

You see, he sent me that text two days post colon resection surgery.  March 22nd, Steve had a routine colonoscopy.  When the doctor came to get me in the waiting room, he very gently told me he found a tumor and believed it to be cancerous.  Immediately, my heart broke and I began to cry.  He placed his hands on my shoulders and told me not to cry, that Steve would be all right.  I asked him the survival rate and he replied, “Ninety-nine percent plus the Lord Almighty!”

Instantly, peace filled me and I believed right there that he was telling me the truth.  Steve didn’t know yet.  He was in recovery.  When he went into his room, I went in and as soon as his eyes locked with mine, the tears welled in my eyes.  How could I tell him?  How could I break this news to him?  First I had to calm down.

I drew several deep breaths, stood at his bedside and told him they’d found a tumor, but that he was going to be all right.  Steve’s dad came in and we three talked and tried to laugh.  Finally, the doctor came in and explained in more detail what he found and then he recommended a surgeon, stressing that surgery needed to be sooner rather than later.  And thus began our journey.  This blog article is not about the cancer.  It’s about the courage, the hope, the faith, the power of prayer, and the people placed on our path for this particular journey.

The Surgeon: A humble man who–upon hearing us thank him for his expertise–said, “Thank you, but I am not as good as [the man upstairs].”  When his eyes lifted Heavenward, I smiled because it was proof that God had placed him on our path.  I trusted him at first meeting.  He set us at ease as he explained exactly what would occur as well as the healing process.  He answered our many questions, and he took excellent care of my very best friend, my biggest blessing.  Just before he took Steve into surgery, he squeezed my hand and told me it would be all right.  When he came to get me in the waiting room, our eyes met, and he hit me with an enormous smile.  “It went very well.  Took a little longer than expected, but it went well.  I got everything.”  We are thankful that he is on our path.

The Oncologist:  A very sweet, very intelligent, very knowledgeable, very patient man.  He is perhaps the very first–and only doctor–to ever look at me and ask me what research I had done prior to arriving at his office.  I told him what I had read and he took the time to explain what I’d read, how it applied or didn’t apply to Steve, and then went on to not only explain his course of treatment for Steve, but also the science behind it.  He provided us with literature to back up his plan.  When he explained that Steve would not require chemo or radiation, tears sprang to my eyes because I and so many others were praying for this.  He never missed a beat.  He smiled understandingly before handing me a box of tissues.  Our journey with him has only begun, and yet I am thankful he is walking this path with us.  We’re trusting him with Steve’s health.

The Church:  Our church family has been standing in the gap from the beginning.  When there is an entire body of believers praying, miracles happen.  There is power in prayer.  Every night, Steve and I would hold hands and pray.  When two or more are gathered in His name, He is there in their midst.  There’s power between those two.  Imagine the power of hundreds of people joined in the same prayer!  Steve’s cousin’s church was praying.  Our church was praying.  Family and friends were praying.  I am so very thankful for each individual.  I am in awe of the love shown to us through prayers, cards, lawn mowing, offers of meals, hugs of support, encouraging texts, phone calls.  I cannot begin to show my appreciation.

Our Pastor:  Our pastor was with me at the hospital during the long hours of waiting while Steve was in surgery.  He was there to visit with Steve, to pray with him, to encourage him, and to bolster his faith.  He was in our driveway at the first sign of an emergency that put Steve back in the hospital for an 8-day stay.  He was only a text away.  He and his wife provided me with comfort, hugs, care, love, and encouragement.  They were the source of a smile when I needed it, too.    And their care has not ended.  I do not have words enough to express everything I’m feeling.

Our Family:  The glue that holds us together when we are facing the tough, the difficult, the heartbreaking things that life throws our way.  It’s easy to take family for granted, but truly life is too short to not tell those precious to you that you love them, value them, and appreciate what they bring to your life.

Steve’s journey will be long, but the hardest is behind us.  We are thankful.  We are grateful.  We are fully aware that we are not walking this path alone.  We are rejoicing for blessings small and great.

Like millions of people, I never wanted to hear the “C” word, but now that it’s out there, I’m genuinely thankful for the very special people who are on this journey with us.

I am thankful for proclamations like: “I ate bacon and eggs at 8 AM!”

Life got extreme, and we fell to our knees.

Until next time, may your journey be peaceful and may there be exceptional people walking it with you.

20 responses to “I Ate Bacon and Eggs at 8 AM by Valerie J. Patterson

  1. What a time Steve and you have had, wonderful support and your faith will help you through as well as your love. I don’t know what to say other than I’m thinking of you both. Good luck.

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      Thank you for reading…and for the good thoughts, Jane. It’s been quite a journey, and we never would have made it without those on our path!

  2. What a moving and inspiring post, Valerie, despite all that has happened. The faith, love, strength and courage of you both has helped you and I send my love, a warm hug to both of you and lots of luck as you travel this winding path. x

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      Thank you, Kit. We welcome your hug and your love and good thoughts!! It all means so much to us!! Hope you and the hubbers are well and enjoying that garden of yours!

  3. A beautiful, inspiring post. And yes as someone that has experienced the power of prayer first hand it is an unbelievable experience. My thoughts are with you and Steve. Sending hugs.

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      Thank you, Lavada, I appreciate you! Do you realize it’s been 15 years since we “met”? I’m thankful for that publisher…without it, I never would have met you!

  4. Billie Shultz

    I have always enjoyed reading your blogs but this caught me a little off guard.
    I don’t know Steve but if you love him, he has to be special. I truly believe in the power of prayer. My thoughts and prayers are with you and Steve in any continued recovery. Your faith and love inspire many others. Hugs

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      My Sweet Steve is a wonderful man, Billie. You will definitely like him! We thank you for your prayers and good thoughts. We need them and appreciate them.

      I was just telling Tricha that I miss you! So glad we keep in touch on FB.

  5. Powerful, beautiful, inspiring story!!! What a testimony to the power of prayer, faith, family, and love. Thank you for sharing…..so thankful that Steve is on the mend…..God is so good!!!!! Continuing to pray for both of you!!!

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      Hi Nancy! Thank you for stopping by to read and comment. But great big THANK YOU for keeping Steve in your prayers!! That means so very much to us. God is indeed very good!! ❤

  6. Oh, thank goodness the outcome has been so positive. I know you’re past the worst of it, but I’m still sending a prayer skyward for continued good health. Thank you for sharing this with us. Interestingly enough, my doctor has been wanting me to get an occult blood done. I finally did and it was negative, thankfully, but she said I could do these each year OR a colonoscopy every 10 years. For now, since I have no issues, and as long as the stool test is negative, I’ll do them instead of the full scope. Not sure if it’s the best way, but will see how it goes for the next few years.
    Again, I am so relieved and happy for you and your husband. Yay for bacon and eggs!!!!!

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      Thank you Laurie for the prayers!! They are so, so very valuable to us!

      I’ve been seeing medical ads about a test that comes to your home and is in place of the colonoscopy if you have no issues. Is that what your doctor recommended?

      I am thanking God daily for Steve and for the way everything happened.

      • Yep. That’s the test. Certainly easier, but also not as comprehensive.

      • Valerie J. Patterson

        You have been through it, then? And it was negative. It has to be done annually because it is less comprehensive? I have been thinking about asking my doctor about this. You need a script for it, right?

      • wow, Laurie. I am so glad to hear that test exists. I have hypoglycemia and that day of fasting before a colonoscopy is killer. I get faint and clammy and shaky. This sounds awesome. Jillian

  7. So very relieved and happy for you, Valerie! And I can imagine your utter joy at receiving Steve’s text. What an incredibly special relationship you both have, and it was very gratifying to read about all the support you received during such a terrifying time.

    Sending big cyber hugs to you both!

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      Thank you so much, Tricia for the huge hugs! We would have never made it had it not been for the care and love and prayers of so many!! Our lives are changed forever, and we are so grateful for all!

  8. Valerie, my doctor said the test has to be done annually, but I’m not sure why. Mine was negative. And I belong to an all-inclusive HMO, so she ordered it, I walked downstairs to the lab and got it, and mailed in the sample in their pre-packaged mailer. Easy peasy.

    • Valerie, can you email me at laurieryanauthor@gmail.com? I tried emailing you but am not sure I have the right email. We are hoping to change the blogging days a little, but wanted to know if it would work for you. Instead of the third Friday, you’d have the 18th of each month. Hoping to switch from days to dates. 🙂

  9. Very inspiring story. I am so very glad all went well and that you had a good doctor who believes in the power of prayer. AND that was a great text to get! Jillian

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