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Note: This column was originally published on May 30.
Several weeks ago I slipped some personal news into a column about why I think Chiefland won't get a hospital anytime soon.
My position on the hospital is the same. But, there is good news on the personal front.
I am cancer free. It took losing the proverbial “pound of flesh,” but it was a relief. Last week came the good news that testing on the tumor removed found a less than 5 percent chance of a recurrence of the invasive cancer.
The surgeon asked how I felt.
“There is strength in Levy County prayers,” I said. “You don't know how many people have prayed for this and for you.”
She looked surprised, but I am not. I am humbled by how blessed I am to receive the prayers of folks asking God to heal me and to guide the doctors who examined, biopsied, planned and treated me.
One friend asked if I was scared, but I admitted the die was cast. My job was to give it up to a higher power and go with what was provided to me. Granted, I cursed the cancer and the stupid drain I had as my constant companion for almost a month and having to sleep in bras.
But never could I complain about being given this. It would not do any good.
I did say I was a modern medical miracle. Because the cancer was on my left side and I am a Southpaw, I was limited in my activities and I temporarily became a right-handed person.
A note to the boss who has watched me wear my lunch menus on my clothes: I actually spilled less food eating with my right than my left.
And then there was Angelia Jolie's announcement in the New York Times that she had a preventative double mastectomy when genetic testing gave her an 87 percent risk of cancer. Bless her for her courage.
Of course, I did ask folks if they had heard how jealous Angelia Jolie was of me? She timed her operation to take the spotlight.
I am not completely finished with this journey into modern medicine.
Now I have “reconstruction.” Every time I hear that word I think of the intro for the “Six Million Dollar Man” TV show: “We can rebuild him...we have the technology.”
Every day I wake and ask, “Why am I here?” and “What do you expect of me?” and I ask morning and night for the gift of wisdom to do what is expected in a proper manner that brings good to the community.
And I give thanks for the people who pray.
Lou Elliott Jones is editor at the Chiefland Citizen and Cedar Key Beacon. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.