Everyday Miracles - The Story of Rhonda McKissack
The first time I met my oncologist, he told me that a positive attitude would be a crucial part of my treatment. The first time I met Rhonda I knew this secret had been shared with her as well, because she radiates joy! And being grounded in joy when life is all but stable, helps us to see the miracles all around us. To cap off our month of miracles shared by cancer warriors, here is Rhonda's miracle story....
The summer of 2018 had not been the best for my family. We lost three family members and two dear friends. I knew that we could not handle anything else. I had no idea what I was about to face.
In July of that year I had noticed a spot on my right breast. The skin was numb and had the appearance of an orange peel but there was no lump. Something in me knew that this was not normal and was pushing me to have it checked out right away. I went to my doctor and she immediately set me up with a mammogram, ultrasound and an appointment to see a surgeon. On August 8, I would hear those words that no one ever wants to hear. You have breast cancer. I was diagnosed with HER2+ Inflammatory Breast Cancer. This is a very rare and aggressive cancer that happens in 1 out of 5 people. It is one of the worst when it comes to breast cancer. I was immediately setup with an oncologist and one week later I was having my first chemo treatment.
If being told you have cancer in one breast is not bad enough, 20 days later I was diagnosed with Invasive Lobular Carcinoma in my left breast. I remember praying and telling God that this was His fight and that he had to give me the strength to get through this. I know that God was with me from the start because every doctor and specialist I saw were the best of their field. I remember my oncologist telling me to not cease praying because God still did miracles. It was at that moment that I knew God had this.
No, it was not the easiest journey. I had days where I felt horrible and wanted to cry. I even formed blood clots in each of my arms after my double mastectomy with lymph node dissection but God had placed some amazing prayer warriors and support in my life that kept me covered in prayers. He gave me strength and a positive attitude that was key in my fight to beat breast cancer. He made ways when I thought there was no way. On several occasions my medical bill amounts were cut in half or there was a zero balance. He gave me peace through every lab, scan, treatment and very little pain after my surgeries. I was able to go through 28 days of radiation without severe burning that can happen to many.
One evening I received a message from a friend that I had not seen in many years who is a lymphedema specialist that reached out to me in case I should need her. Well I did. I started having lymphedema issues in my left arm but God had already placed exactly who I needed in my path. So many times I would just laugh and smile because only God could have done those things.
My biggest miracle was being told that I am cancer free after being diagnosed with two different cancers in two different breasts at the same time. From the start of my journey the Lord had placed it on my heart to share my story with others. I have done just that but I have also given praise and glory to my Heavenly Father every step of the way. It is because of his grace and mercy that I am here today. I am a miracle.
No weapon formed against me shall prosper. Isaiah 54: 17.