It started with five group texts: 1) my family members; 2) my family through marriage; 3) my girl friends; 4) work colleagues in CA; and 5) work colleagues in London. Never once did I consider posting anything on Facebook - it was too impersonal. I wanted people with whom I interact with on a frequent basis to know what was going on with me - what I was facing.
And, as I revealed the challenge that I faced, the love started pouring in.
Before surgery a box arrived containing a hand-made prayer blanket (highlighted in another post) by family members; messages of encouragement and support were thoughtfully written and sent; a colleague offered to fly to Austin to help me in any way that I might need; other colleagues sent messages of support and encouragement.
The week of surgery the first arrangement of flowers arrived from the team of colleagues I work with in California; a second arrangement then arrived from colleagues in London; a friend lovingly prepared and delivered the best chicken tortilla soup I've ever eaten; my step-daughter made time in her busy schedule of raising three boys to prepare and deliver a meal that she knew her father and I enjoyed; my sister-in-law, granddaughter, and her mother sat with my husband during surgery - keeping him company and helping to stave off the worry of potential complications or bad news.
Due to my mother's health she had been unable to be with me during surgery but she and my father (both 82 years old) made a surprise visit the fourth day after surgery saying, "We just had to see you in person!" After repeated hugs they climbed back in their car and drove 3-hours to their home.
Before radiation started, a surprise arrived from a beloved colleague in CA - it contained items that she had thoughtfully selected in the hopes that they would give me comfort in the days that lay ahead. My granddaughter and her mother delivered a basket of loving, thoughtful gifts to help speed me along with recovery.
During radiation three friends took time out of their busy lives to drive me back and forth to treatment; two friends planned, purchased, and prepared dinner; and my sister-in-law delivered a lovingly prepared dinner one night.
And, at the completion of radiation, my parents sent a large bouquet of congratulation roses.
The love was relentless, palpable, and efficacious. Love was the most powerful agent of my healing.