Usually I have wonderful things to report for the weekend, but not this one. I have literally felt more tired than normal. The soreness from the radiation seems to be setting in and I feel as if I am trying to fight something off. Lauren has a bad sinus infection and Jeff is getting a cold, so maybe that is it? I have had quite a pity party for myself and it has lasted the whole weekend. I would have invited you but...it really wasn't much fun! I have slept a big portion of the time. Can't seem to get enough sleep or rest. I went to church today but could hardly wait to get home to bed. I usually can't wait to get up in the mornings because of all the things I have planned to do or projects to start, but it hasn't been like that lately...I am just dragging. So I have felt more sorry for myself than normal. So instead of whinnying any more today, I have decided to give you a story that is one of my favorites. It reminds me that the things that we go through in this life are things that will teach us the most, if we let them. It reminds me that none of this will last forever...even though it seems that way.
I am grateful though for friends and family who constantly believe in me and keep telling me that I can make it through this. Thanks for that support and encouragement....I need it.
Keep your fork!
There was a young woman who had been diagnosed with a terminal illness and had been given three months to live. So as she was getting her things in order, she contacted her pastor and had him come to her house to discuss certain aspects of her final wishes. She told him which songs she wanted sung at the service, what scriptures she would like read, and what outfit she wanted to be buried in.
Everything was in order and the pastor was preparing to leave when the young woman suddenly remembered something very important to her.
"There's one more thing," she said excitedly.
"What's that?" came the pastor's reply.
"I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand," she told him.
The pastor stood looking at the young woman, not knowing quite what to say.
"That surprises you, doesn't it?" the young woman asked.
"Well, to be honest, I'm puzzled by the request," said the pastor.
The young woman explained. "My grandmother once told me a story that I never forgot and I have tried to pass along its message to those I love and those who are in need of encouragement. Here’s her story:
“In all my years of attending church socials and potluck dinners, I always remember that when the dishes of the main course were being cleared, someone would inevitably lean over and say, 'Keep your fork.' It was my favorite part because I knew something better was coming . . . like velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple pie. Something wonderful and with substance!'
So, I just want people to see me there in that casket with a fork in my hand and I want them to wonder, "What's with the fork? Then I want you to tell them, "Keep your fork . . . the best is yet to come."
The pastor's eyes welled up with tears of joy as he hugged the young woman good-bye. He knew this would be one of the last times he would see her before her death. But he also knew that the young woman had a better grasp of heaven than he did. She had a better grasp of what heaven would be like than many people twice her age, with twice as much experience and knowledge. She KNEW that something better was coming.
At the funeral people were walking by the young woman's casket and they saw the pretty dress she was wearing and the fork placed in her right hand. Over and over, the pastor heard the question, "What's with the fork?" And over and over he smiled.
During his message, the pastor told the people of the conversation he had with the young woman shortly before she died. He also told them about the fork and about what it symbolized to her. The pastor told the people how he could not stop thinking about the fork and told them that they probably would not be able to stop thinking about it either. He was right.
So the next time you reach down for your fork, let it remind you ever so gently, that the best is yet to come.*
"Discovering the ways in which you are exceptional, the particular path you are meant to follow, is your business on this earth, whether you are afflicted or not. It's just that the search takes on a special urgency when you realize that you are mortal". -------------Bernie S. Siegel, M.D.