Happy Monday!

Sometimes, I am amazed that I have been privileged to meet some of the people I know. Their character and strength never cease to amaze me. Jami Williams is one of those people.

I had saved this article from the local paper back in Missouri. I was blessed to work with Jami for a while and was always very impressed with her writing skills.

As I got to know her better, I learned about some struggles she had gone through and even got to meet her sweet mother.

Jami was the mother to a baby boy who was born very early and very small. He required a tremendous amount of special care and she did everything she could to help him thrive, and thrive he did! She was a strong, determined young mother who knew the value of hard work. She was a talented writer (and now author), photographer and anything else she needed to be!  At that time, she had no idea of all that was still ahead of her.

Jami went on to get her teaching degree, started teaching at the local high school, earning the respect and love of all of her students.

And then it began.

Her mother was diagnosed with cancer and ten days later was gone. Her brother’s cancer returned and she and her husband were involved in an accident that still continues to haunt their health and life. She still goes on.

Her struggle continues and the unseen enemy, cancer, continues its battle with her brother.

I am blessed to know Jami and pray that, if needed, I can be that strong. When I came across this article again, I thought maybe someone else could be encouraged, not by her struggles and pain, but her strength and joy that she always digs up from the deepest depths of her soul.

There are many others who have tremendous stories and I admire them so much. One common trait with all of them is their faith. Faith never fails.

Please pray for Jami and her family.  I pray for Jami and all the others that I know have been, or are, struggling. I pray for you too.

Pray Unceasingly, 

Lois

The battle wages on: A Relay for Life caregiver tells her story 

Mexico Ledger – September, 2018 (By Jami Williams)

Caregiver Jami Williams gave a powerful speech Sunday at the 21st annual Relay For Life of Audrain County, which was held under the theme of “celebrating super heroes.”

Here are portions of her speech, which told of the lessons she and her family have learned through their experiences with cancer. She offers a message to all those caregivers out there acting as the “sidekick” to the “super hero” survivors for whom they care.

“I didn’t get a chance to be a caregiver for my mother. She went into the hospital, was diagnosed, and 10 days later, she was gone. I never thought that I would have to be a caregiver again. My brother had been cured, eight years cancer-free. I remember the exact moment I knew that my brother’s cancer was back. And I knew that it was going to be bad. I was right.

This past summer, cancer took. Cancer did not sneak into our lives. Cancer landed like Thor and his hammer smack dab in the middle of our lives. Cancer took all of the soft tissue in my brother’s pelvis. Cancer took away his ability to sit down for two months. Cancer took, and it is still taking. And it would be really simple, actually it would be expected, for me to talk, as a caregiver, about how angry that taking makes me.

But I can’t talk about it, because I can’t be angry. I refuse to be angry. I am too busy being grateful for every moment that I still have with him. So, I want to talk about how much cancer is giving to me, as a caregiver.

hank you, cancer, for teaching me to let go of things I cannot control. Thank you, cancer, for showing me that my brother truly understands the value of life and through having the opportunity to observe that, having more value in my life. Thank you for making me patient, making me brave…

You can keep all of the time that you have taken, but we won’t let you have one more moment. You see, as a caregiver, I stand between you and my brother, and as a caregiver, like all caregivers, I am formidable. I am relentless. I have all of the power over you, cancer, because I forgive you. I forgive you for being a weak monster. That means you have nothing to hold over us, nothing [with which] to manipulate me. See, as a caregiver, I am a lioness, I am the stone of David, and you won’t survive this hit…

You may comfort yourself with the understanding that your biological makeup will possibly someday allow you to have my brother’s life. But you will never take away his ability to live, to live now while he survives and to live on in my memory. Because I am the caregiver, the sidekick to the superhero, my brother.

So, take your rightful place as the villain, as the nemesis, as the bad guy. And let us do battle…

To the caregivers, the sidekicks to these super heroes, it is your job to forgive cancer, because your energies are better used elsewhere. We must forgive, for that is the source of our power to care for, to love, to be strong, to do battle. So, cancer, I forgive you, but you will never be forgotten. I will pursue you and never let it end. I will chase you down, not to avenge what you have taken, but to prevent you from taking more. And if you should take my hero, then woe be unto you, for I will absorb his strength, round up those who are like me, and we will shake the earth together until you are nothing but something that used to happen to people.”

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