Brain Tumor to Brave Leaps


The day I got 40 stitches in my leg came from chasing my twin sister. We were in the 4th grade, and her running off from me with two other neighborhood boys sent me trailing them. I charged through a sandy field, jumping ditches, and dodging cacti.

At one spot, I leapt across the irrigation ditch, landing not on the other side, but in the bottom of the culvert. A dry stretch of dirt with at least a dozen lizards and broken-down barbed wire cut through the sandy earth.

Standing, I dusted myself off, and saw streaks of blood dripping like a broken faucet, down my leg.

I hollered for the three of them, but they were gone, hiding and unaware of my injury. I’m sure.

Back at the house, I mentioned my wound to my mother, who sent me to the bathroom for a Band-Aid and for that orange medicine we used back in the day.

In a few minutes, after I’d tried to cover my thigh with several Band-Aids my mom joined me. I’m sure her mouth dropped wide, and I’m sure her scream got lost in her throat. We ended up in the emergency room in need of medical attention beyond a box of Bandaids.

In seconds that day, I went from running, to falling, to being wounded, to crying, to receiving 40 stitches. That’s right, my inner thigh lost a section of skin and the puncture/tear was deep.

The doctor took a final X-ray after the stitching, and inside my leg he found something he’d left behind. It seemed an empty, bullet shell casing was lodged beneath my skin, buried under the bandage and the stitches.

The un-stitching and re-stitching became a blur and I often wonder why he took another X-ray after the bandaging up of my leg. However, the part I remember best is how I missed some school from the injury.

When I think of such a small suffering on my part, I’m reminded how the Lord let me meet Cindy Ross. Wait, hold on. I’m not suffering because I know her. Let me explain: I’m reminded how her life took a twist in her life, and how physically she’s “suffering” now. How a month ago, she too, ended up in emergency.

Weeks ago, she started to limp. She coughed a dry hack for what felt like forever, too. And she had headaches. And then she fell. Not once but twice. I nagged her, becoming the annoying person I can be, when I think someone should respond to me. I knew her health was in question. It was like something was buried beneath the skin causing havoc.

So, she would go the emergency room and the tests would reveal a mass on her brain. A tumor had found its way through her bloodstream. It was as if an empty shell attached itself to her brain.

She would also find out that she had a spot on her lung, too. Which she’s getting ready to face and receive treatment for soon. It may include radiation and chemo.

So, she’s had the brain surgery. And now has a nice little scar. Bigger than mine. She’s been in rehab for two weeks. And now sits in a wheelchair, and has temporarily lost the ability to walk. But we’ve learned she does have a brain.

Tomorrow she goes the cancer doctor … and I pray for faith to rise up in Cindy. For hope to conquer fear. For this season to become a testimony of lives changes for God. For her strength to return. For the chase to continue as she serves the Lord.

So whatever you’re chasing, or jumping over, or headed to tomorrow, please take time to pray for Cindy Ross, and pray the “stitching” of her life unfolds in such a way to give God glory. That she continues her race and runs well.

Oh, and pray that I will be a friend who will stop running if she needs me, that I’d pull her from the ditch, and help her to her feet!! And hold her!

(Oh, for those who wondered what happened to my sister, Melody, in the above part of this post. She felt sorry for me that day, but picked on me like always. She loved me like a twin who gets me and understands me, even though she hid from that day. But later, she tossed frogs at me. That’s real love. I wouldn’t change one second of having Melody for a sister, except for the re-stitching of my leg at the hospital that day! Well, and about a hundred other things I just remembered.)

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