Bekah's Heart, Thyroid

Not Even THAT!

Romans 8:35-39 is one of my very favorite sections of God’s Word.

“Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? …

No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
(Romans 8:35, 37-39 NLT)

I love to think about this verse in the mornings. How powerful it is to start a day knowing that there is nothing that can happen in that day—nothing I do or nothing done to me—that can keep me from God’s love. It is still there waiting at the end of each day.

These really are some of my favorite verses. So, when my cousin was posting pictures of these shirts (pictured below) she was selling a while back to support a student at their church battling cancer, I knew I wanted one. What a cool message in a season of sickness and uncertainty that not even those trials could separate someone from God’s love.

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I got a shirt from my cousin when I was visiting Kansas back around Thanksgiving time and excitedly wore it home on the airplane back to Buffalo. It prompted conversations throughout the day including one with my teammates at work about how neat it was.

Little did I know that within 24 hours I might need that message for myself.

The next day at my annual routine physical, my doctor discovered something in my neck, specifically on my thyroid, that seemed a little “off”. She reassured me that many people (over 50%) get a thyroid nodule at some point in their life and less than 5% cause issues or contain cancer. My doctor was not at all concerned but wanted to send me for an ultrasound and lab work just to make sure. The ultrasound led to a biopsy which led to a six-week wait before another biopsy, both of which came back “indeterminate”.

Basically, they had no clue if I had cancer or not. The cells just didn’t give enough information.

After meeting with a surgeon in February, we made the decision to move forward with surgery. Six months after discovering the nodule, on May 30, I had the right half of my thyroid removed, along with the nodules.  Thankfully, recovery is going well and I’d say I’m about 90-95% back to normal 4 weeks post-op. Even better news: the third and forth biopsies (during and after surgery) seem to indicate the growth was NOT cancer which means a second surgery is not necessary at this time.

I still remain thankful for the reminder my shirt proclaims:

Nothing can separate me from God’s love.

And this is not just a truth for those battling cancer… we can all cling to God’s never-ending love. Whatever we’re walking through, it can’t keep us away from it!

No sickness. No brokenness. No guilt or shame.

No school shootings or political debates.

No family fights or drama with friends.

No anxiety.

No worry.

Not even that one thing you have in your mind that you’re certain is the exception.

NOTHING can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.

NOT. EVEN. THAT.

What a beautiful truth we can live in today, tomorrow, and every day!

Thyroid

Our Bodies are Amazing! So is the Creator.

The more I consider it the more I realize just how amazing the human body really is!

I can get a cut on my finger and within a few days, you would have never known if was there. Without having to think about it, hundreds of times a day, my lungs fill up with air and oxygen is taken to cells all over my body to allow them each to do the work they need to do and my heart pumps blood and my eyes blink.

In some miraculous way I don’t understand, my brain thinks a thought and instantly my fingers move in a specific way hitting the screen of my phone or keys on a keyboard in just the right place to put a series of letters together that make up this sentence. Then somehow your eyes can scan those letters on some screen potentially across the world and your brain computes a message. Mind-boggling.

When we’re sick our body’s immune system kicks in.

When we’re tired or hungry our body sends us signals that it’s time to eat or sleep.

Seriously our bodies are incredible! The more I think about it the more I am convinced this can’t all have happened by chance. Our Creator God is incredible!

This also makes me consider the times our bodies don’t work the way they should. While God designed them to last forever and function perfectly, that got messed up when sin entered the picture back in Genesis. Ever since then humans have been living in less-than-perfect bodies, bodies that ache, bodies that fade, bodies that get sick.

I’ve thought about this more recently, as I deal with some health issues of my own. Long story short, I will be having surgery in May to remove half of my thyroid. A thyroid is a small gland, shaped kind of like a butterfly located in our neck. If you would have asked me 6 months ago what our thyroid does I would have potentially stared back at you confused and barely been able to say where it was even located in my body. But now I know exactly the amazing, miraculous things this gland does for us. Each moment of every day our thyroids produce hormones that impact the function of almost every vital organ in our body including our bones, the heart, and on some level, basically every cell in our body! It’s work in these areas regulates our metabolism, weight, and energy levels. So it does pretty important work each day that often we are clueless about.

While mine thankfully functions very well, some extra cells have decided to grow on one side of it and I now have two very small nodules on the right half of my thyroid. One is not a concern at all and the other likely isn’t anything serious either however it was still labeled, “suspicious” after a few tests.

So, we’re on to the next step which is just get rid of those cells just in case. This is scheduled to happen in May. I won’t know until I wake up from surgery whether they removed just half or the whole thing. It will just depend on what they find when they get in there. Either way, the recovery should be pretty quick. (That also is amazing evidence of the incredible complexity of the bodies God gave us!)

As I mentioned before, the thyroid gland is a pretty crucial part of our body. Without it eventually our other organs would stop functioning properly too. If my entire thyroid is removed, I will need to take medicine that replaces the thyroid hormone in my body. That may or may not be the case if they leave the left half, but either way I find it incredible that God created humans with brains that at some point in history were able to figure out what a thyroid does and what is in the hormone it produces. Then they discovered how to replicate that in such a way that our bodies can take a little pill each morning and continue to function well even when that part of our body is removed. It’s amazing!

I am feeling good about the surgery and at peace with taking this next step.
I am confident in my amazing surgeon.
I am thankful for the awesome family and friends walking the journey with me.

And I am finding myself even more and more amazed at our Creator God who also happens to be our Healer as well!

That, too, is an amazing design! 🙂

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