First I must ask your forgiveness for not posting an update sooner. I took some time after graduation and my last intense chemo to recuperate as I was rundown. I also felt like I didn’t have a lot to say about graduation, because Cancer or no Cancer I knew I had to graduate. I endeavor to be relentless in pursuing what I set my mind to, which recently has included waging war against Ovarian Cancer.
|Me on my last day of IP chemo with all|
the goodie bags.
My last day of chemo came with fear and anxiousness, but still there was hope knowing for now it would be the last day I would have chemo pumped into my belly. I wanted to pass along the hope and joy I felt on that day with those who I would be sharing the chemo room with, so with the help of my peers at the OU School of Social Work a goodie bag, including many items I have found beneficial, was given to every patient receiving chemo that day. It was my hope that I could pass the goodie bags out myself, as I have come to enjoy, but I was in too much pain and overburdened with sickness. Even though I had anticipated chatting with other patients a caretaker stopped me on the way out and said "thank you, my mama needed some of those things", which is all I could have wanted to hear.
I only had two days after my last chemo to recover for the graduation ceremony in recognition of obtaining my Masters in Social Work. It was amazing that I was able to feel well for the ceremony considering the two days of recuperation where met with a lot of sickness and difficulty. In a prayer said by my husband that day he expressed thankfulness for God's provision through this battle, and a heart of thankfulness helped take focus off the difficult circumstances around us.
|Benjamin holding me up at OU while displaying|
my grad cap proclaiming "Fall in Love and Accomplish
What you Never Thought Possible".
|Surprise looking out|
at all the people standing
May 11th , 2013 was very different than the graduation I had been anticipating for almost three years, certainly I had envisioned that day without Cancer, but still it could not have been more perfect. I was blessed by friends and faculty who chose to wear Teal for Tarah and support Ovarian Cancer Awareness, and I will always remember how I unexpectedly felt the urge to hold up my graduation cap when walking across stage revealing my bald head to the auditorium. Still the greatest feeling was the surprise in seeing everyone stand and cheer as I was hooded, and then again when the Social Work Association announced their sponsorship of the goodie bags.
I never could have expected to begin a ministry in the chemo ward after receiving an ominous diagnosis or graduating from grad school with a 4.0 two days after my last intense chemo, but I hope this journey shows how limited Cancer, or difficult circumstances, can be when you know Christ. Cancer cannot shatter hope or overcome courage, and I do not have to fear because my God comes through always.
|Me Rocking Teal for |
Awareness on graduation day
I am continuing to Fight Like a Girl, and have begun maintenance chemo with only mild side effects. Overall I am feeling well, and working on readjusting back to reality a little bit. I have a couple cat scans coming up and will post an update on what’s next soon.