I reflect back to the times I worked for/under the Africa Cancer Foundation a few months ago and the numerous cancer patients and survivors (we chose to call them victors) I got to meet and there is one thing that was common among all of them. They all were strong willed and faced the challenges bravely.
I recall once I visited the Kenyatta National Hospital children’s oncology ward and there I experienced what would be the best definition of expectancy violation. I thought I would find gloomy and crying children only to find jovial faces playing around and laughing all over. At some point one of my colleagues asked me to carry one of the children from the play section to the ward because she had drip pins on both feet and we thought she could not walk. The words that came from her after that left me amazed “Naweza tembea, asante” was all she said and got up, ran to where the others were. And all the while I watched them paint drawings, laugh at the puppet show, sing rhymes and eat the food that well wishers had visited them with I saw strong individuals behind these little souls a reflection of the “I know I will overcome” poem that I met as I got into the ward. This despite the fact that some had some of their body parts amputated to avoid the spread of cancer.
I thought of the many grown ups I had had met in the course of work and the much they told us about the ordeals they had or were going through as they battled cancer and the look in their faces would never at any point show despair or fatigue from this fight. They always looked ready to tackle the next challenge that the disease would bring. In them there was always the spirit of “it has been tough yes but I know I shall pull through this.”
And the next day as we sat in office with my colleagues we thought of; what it were us in those very shoes? Would we be equally strong and face the world telling everyone we were sure of pulling through? Or maybe we would break down, give up and wait for life to play its part? And one thing came to our realization, that God does not just let anyone go through cancer, He chooses the strong, what many of my friends would call “cut for that stuff”. When God lets anyone go through the cancer battle field He knows that they are strong enough not to break down along the way.
We look at life and reflect on the many times we complain, most of the time about small things that we should not even bother with; a C.A.T that was brought unexpectedly, a knee that is acting up, a broken nail and a lot of other things that can be easily handled. And to think about what many people in my age group complain and rant about; heartbreaks and rejection, We go on and on about this as if the world would never continue spinning without this one person. We go pasting all over social sites. Is it really that serious? And to think of even the very serious ones we might have at times; the loss of a loved one, a job, misunderstandings in families and many others that most of us would agree are tough to handle. One thing I know is that they never kill, if anything those who die out of these just choose to kill themselves for no good reason.
What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and as it was with Job God only lets temptations come our way when He is sure we can handle them. He would never allow a bag that would break you put on your shoulders and I guess that is why air is this light, so that it does not dent our heads or break our shoulders. This applies to all that we go through in life, it is never more than we can handle, and if we keep that in mind and always find a shoulder to lean on in God then it will never be that hard, all will pass and leave us a better people just like the cancer victors are.