The Place Between Fear and Gratitude

I am stuck between fear and gratefulness.

It’s a hard place to be.

Fear can be debilitating and steal your breath, as well as your joy.

I can’t count the amount of times yesterday I had to stop, breathe, wipe my eyes quickly, and erase the fear that I wouldn’t be here to see Maddie go off to college, let alone Morgan and Quinn. Do you have any idea how hard college tours can be while worrying about your own mortality?

I had fear as nausea grew that I wouldnt be able to finish the day.

I had fear about my hair falling out every time I ran my hands through it, while marveling at how long it grew in one year, and how soft it is. I had fear about losing my eyebrows and lashes and hair again. I ran our of eyebrow pencil yesterday and it was full panic mode. The things we worry about.

I had fear about the bone pain in my legs getting worse as I took the Claritin and Tylenol.

I had fear this chemo wouldn’t work and we are running out of options.


But then I kept changing the channel and relied on faith and gratitude.

Gratitude to everyone who donated and shared the go fund me page. I think it was close to $4,000 last night.

One day.

One day raised enough money to pay for the next two months of therapies and supplements and eased my mind.

Gratitude for my body, which somehow… two days after receiving the heaviest chemo they have… let me walk around for miles and miles on college tours. I walked up dorm buildings, around the city of Boston, and other than nausea and bone pain, I did great.

Gratitude for friends who constantly check on me. My love bucket is so full it is spilling out.

Gratitude for my school district. We were able to meet an alumni who is in her first year at Emerson and man… she is brilliant and she is kind. She gave Maddie a private tour of the dorms and the real lowdown. They talked about our high school and what’s happening, and she told Maddie she has amazing teachers this year. My school district is also inclusive and has students from all walks of life and all around the world. There was no culture shock at these schools she visited, and said she felt like she was among her group of friends.

Gratitude for Maddie. She was pleasantly surprised with Boston University. It’s a beautiful campus and has all these new places.

But Emerson? It is something to see when your daughter falls in love with a college on sight. It’s a small college, and as we talked to Brynn, she had people over and over say “Hey!” She said that’s what is so great about a small college. The classes are all close together and situated right by a great big green lawn in Boston. They said the kids get involved with shooting and filming and production right away. The tour guides were kids Maddie said reminded her of her friend group. I still want to take her to NYU. She might still want to see UCLA, and Fordham and Ithaca also apparently have something similar. But her heart is already in Emerson.

I’m grateful for this man I married. Waking up yesterday with madison sleeping between us in the tiny cheap motel room reminded me of when we first had her. Together we’ve raised three kind and loving humans. We kept catching each other’s eyes yesterday as we saw Madison’s smile grow bigger and bigger as the day went on.

He kept holding my hand when he saw the fear creep in. He drove all the way home last night so we could wake up in our own bed and be comfortable. The last time we drove straight home from Boston was when the doctor at Dana Farber told me I was going to die soon, and to remember how this story was going to end. I screamed and cried all the way home that night.

This drive was much better.

Grateful for my parents who surrounded Morgan with love all day and my dad took her on a date to the races, and grateful for the Boy Scout parents who did the same task of loving Quinn at the campout. Morgan and Quinn were well taken care of.

Grateful that we decided to eat at Dicks, where the waiters and waitresses make you wear silly hats and are rude to you. Somehow, our waitress looked at us and was sweet, even when she called me a pain in the ass about my order. Another waitress gave Maddie her catfish to try. We laughed at their antics, and Maddie will apparently own 16 cats when she grows up, according to her hat.

Grateful we saw the very last night of ghirardelli, and made a memory there.

Grateful to see the freedom trail, and be reminded that because of the hardships of our founding fathers, we have the life we have today.

Actions today will impact lives tomorrow.

So that’s how you make the decision to let feelings dictate your life.

I could crumble under the weight of the fear… or lean into the gratefulness and faith I have in Gods promise of protection and healing.

I can feel the fear… and choose to trust Him always.

His plans for me.

This story.

What if this story is the one that will help many other cancers? And I WILL live the long life I dream of and pray for everyday?

If fear wins, fear would have robbed me of the joy I felt yesterday.

Anxious feelings are not facts.

Read that again.

Anxious feelings are not facts.

The fact is you are where your feet are.

Stay there.


Look around and find your blessings. The air, the sun, the birds. Your life.

They are all gifts.

Enjoy them today.

Quinn just called and we will get him at 9 am.


We will stay home and rest. Which is good since apparently no one can travel around town due to the onslaught of apple heads and pumpkin heads. I’m grateful we have a home to stay in, a family to cuddle with, good anti nausea drugs and supplements and herbal teas to help me heal.

And I’m healing.

I can breathe a little deeper than before. I’m declaring the tumors are shrinking already and not pressing so hard on the nerves near the liver and pressing on the diaphragm.

Thank you again for everyone supporting us.

Ever time I got a notification about the fundraiser, rob and I would just look at each other and feel so humbled.

Thank you.

May we all choose gratitude, joy, and faith over fear today.

In Jesus’s name, amen.



One thought on “The Place Between Fear and Gratitude

  1. Hi Keri
    Today is the feast of archangels Michael, Raphael and Gabriel. I felt comforted by that today. I pray to the archangels all the time to protect my children and I pray to them for your healing and to help you thru these fearful times.

    Liked by 1 person

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