Seasons of Change

I’m often amazed my my family. You know, I don’t see myself. Through my eyes, everything is as it should be. I sound the same. I feel the same. My voice is the same.

Over the last five months, however, my girls and Mel have watched my appearance morph into something different. I slowly became someone entirely new. They see me with my bald head, no eyelashes, no eyebrows, and mousy complexion every day. They live with this new person. They’ve become accustomed to seeing me this way. Lately, I’ve grown annoyed with my wig, so it may be soon that I’ll don my bald head outside of our home. Until then, it’s our family’s little secret.

Occasionally, I’ll walk by a mirror and of course, every morning as I jump out of the shower, I notice this new person staring back at me. I’m still not used to it and I quickly move on. As I’ve said before, it’s easy to be bald when you look healthy. It’s so much more difficult when you look sick. I still look sick. I imagine it will be this way for a while. As obvious as my yellow and bruised nails are to the outside world, I can only imagine how the hidden inside of my body looks. Slowly, however, my nails are growing out and health is peeking through. I use this as an indicator of my body. When my nails look fresh and new and healthy, I’m hoping my body will also be that way.

I’m fortunate now that chemo is behind me, I have a new season ahead of me. I dream of warm Spring and a healthy me with new hair and a fresh complexion.

Life is never easy. I’ve had to “suck it up and deal” before, when life seemed so unfair for my baby girl. When it seemed we could finally breathe again, life threw us another curve ball. More sucking it up and more dealing. More growing. More learning.

I have a huge appreciation for my husband. I’m sure 12 years ago, when he spontaneously decided to buy an engagement ring before our graduation trip to Europe(because we all know Mel never plans anything), he never knew all of the trials we would face together. Never once, has he faltered on his extreme dedication to me and our journey. Let’s face it, I’m no pretty sight and I know I’ve not been the easiest person to deal with at times. Mel has treated me just as he has for the past 12 years. Nothing seemed to change in his eyes. (Even when I wanted a little coddling-no such luck.) Every day he has encouraged me and has told me I’m beautiful, even when I know that’s far from reality.

So, even though this season of my life has been challenging, I’m thankful for the growth, compassion, and closeness my family has experienced. Hopefully, the girls have learned that although the outside of me has changed, it didn’t change who I am; and that what is on the inside of a person is far more important that what they see on the outside.

Life is so precious. Seasons come and go and pass quickly. I’m so very fortunate to have had life experiences that make me acutely aware of how amazing our life truly is, right here and right now.


Carrie  on January 11th, 2012


Sissy - aka Sherrill  on January 11th, 2012

You’ll look back on 2011 as the year you conquered. Now in life when things are not going your way – you can say “At least it’s not 2011!” Mine is “It’s not 1984”
You’ll be strong!

Nonnie  on January 11th, 2012

We all have learned from Sunday School-our body is just a shell for the beautiful soul within. Consider yourself in the cocoon from that dreadful Cancer and a beautiful you will soon appear,again. You’ve always been the same beautiful young woman in my eyes as well as others that know you. So what if you’ve lost you hair-the hair didn’t make that face with the cute freckles or the blue in your eyes or that big toothy grin or the kindness in your voice. God gave me a beautiful daughter (3 to be exact) – with or without hair I love you! Mom

Judy Brown  on January 11th, 2012

Nonnie has nailed it again. I can see where you get your tremendous insight that allows you to see the beauty and the wonder of life, even when it is certainly not following the script we would have written. I would add to Nonnie’s post that when God gave you to her, you didn’t have those beautiful long locks of hair or those long, thick eyelashes or eye brows, but she thought you were the most beautiful child she had seen, even without all the extras. The same is true now!!!

Terri Woodham  on January 11th, 2012

Thanks Judy!

Kathie  on January 12th, 2012

Kerri, Your mom and Judy are so right….When Stephanie was born she had dark hair, pretty lashes and brows. When her chemo started at 4 months she became hairless and was so pale and pitiful. She had chemo for 2 1/2 years. It was the most difficult time of our lives, but she was the most beautiful child. What she went through made her even more special and remembering how she fought to be normal made her the person she is today. Thank God for healing her and blessing her with 2 special children…the loves of my life.

You and Mel have a special relationship and all you have been through has only made each of you stronger and more determined to make the best of life. I have followed your journey and I am so proud of the woman you are. I promise you that you are just as pretty to all who love you as you were with your long hair. Your children and Mel see your soul and they know your heart. You are their hero and mine too! Hugs and prayers