Kaity Kasper

Blog

Transformation & Grief

Today has been a difficult day.  For me, one of the unexpected parts of this journey is the grief.  I'm not just talking about the expected grief that comes from the loss of fertility, the possibility of death, or significant changes in one's body.  There is a whole other lot of grief that goes along with transformation.  Every time this particular type of grief crops up it surprises me, because I am so genuinely excited about the ways that I know my life is going to change in the wake of this period.  But still - there is the life that is being lost that needs to be grieved.

You're shattered
Like you've never been before
The life you knew
In a thousand pieces on the floor
And words fall short in times like these
When this world drives you to your knees
You think you're never gonna get back
To the you that used to be
Tell your heart to beat again
Close your eyes and breathe it in
Let the shadows fall away
Step into the light of grace
Yesterday's a closing door
You don't live there anymore
Say goodbye to where you've been
And tell your heart to beat again

In the days that stood between my being told that there was only a 2% chance that I didn't have cancer and the day I went in for surgery to confirm that we really were dealing with cancer once again, I tried to find a way to wrap my head around the fact that lightening really had struck twice.  Never in my life did I believe that I would be facing cancer twice before I turned forty.  Never.  And then suddenly, I was.

As I drove though the city on one of those days, I finally lost it and screamed at God, "Why?  Why is this happening?  Why do I have to do this again?"  And instantly, He reminded me of all the good that came from my last experience with cancer.  All the beautiful ways my life had ended up in the space I was in - a space I never would have reached without cancer.  "If you know that's what happened last time, how can you doubt that beauty will result from this experience?  I will do great things through this."

Transformation was coming.

Beginning
Just let that word wash over you
It's alright now
Love's healing hands have pulled you through
So get back up, take step one
Leave the darkness, feel the sun
Cause your story's far from over
And your journey's just begun

But knowing that doesn't make it easy.  In the months that preceded my diagnosis, I had come to finally feel like my life was taking the shape I had longed for.  I was genuinely happy.  Sure - I still had work to do, but it was work I was happy to take on and move through and explore.  Everything that had come before - divorce, recovery, and - yes - cancer - had led to this beautiful life that I was proud to call mine.

So for as surely as I know that an even more beautiful life lies ahead, it takes some grieving to properly leave the old one behind.

Let every heartbreak
And every scar
Be a picture that reminds you
Who has carried you this far
'Cause love sees farther than you ever could
In this moment heaven's working
Everything for your good
Tell your heart to beat again
Close your eyes and breathe it in
Let the shadows fall away
Step into the light of grace
Yesterday's a closing door
You don't live there anymore
Say goodbye to where you've been
And tell your heart to beat again

On days like today, I miss that life.  The one that it seems was just here.  And I want to go back.

But I know there is no going back.  This house, where I spend so much time these days, is the cocoon where an amazing transformation is slowly occurring.  With each drop of chemotherapy they drain into me, with each session with a healer, with each hug, each word read, each prayer, each dream, the brokenness that was brought about by this diagnosis is being turned into something stronger and more beautiful than it was before.

**quoted lyrics are from Danny Grokey's "Tell Your Heart To Beat Again"