If you like to get involved, but don’t have the hutspa to carry through and find yourself ignoring the fun you might have, I’ve got an offer you can’t refuse.
A few weeks back Cheryl Sherry at the American Cancer Society talked about the Hatwalk she planned in conjunction with the annual Relay for Life cancer research fundraiser. She wanted to find people who would decorate a hat, then model it at the Kentucky-Derby inspired gala April 26 at the Fort Dodge Country Club.
Well, I know somebody who would model a hat, but can’t make one.
Sandi Rogers, of rural Moorland, is battling her third bout of cancer, a cancer related to a melanoma she had in 1989. She recently lost her hair to radiation, but refuses to give up her spirit.
“It’s a God thing,” Rogers said Monday. “The journey’s not over yet. There’s a leap of faith in the hat challenge. The whole thing has become spiritual.”
The leap, she said, is planning that far out.
“The old melanoma metastecized,” she said. “By the time the melanoma reaches metastatic melanoma, the chances of a cure are rare, extremely rare. My doctor had said the worst case scenario, two months or less. And we caught it extremely early.”
Rogers has lived one of those months, and fully expects to live the next month and thereafter.
“We are expecting very good results,” she said. “We’ve finished 10 treatments of radiation, all the radiation to the head I can have, and I’m still taking the chemo by mouth. I’m still feeling great, and God’s been text-messaging me.”
That’s what she calls the messages she hears. She knows they’re from God, and isn’t shy about saying so.
“God’s fingerprints have been all over every part of this,” she said. “I’m doing so well. I’m on so many different prayer chains.”
Rogers said she was brought up in a Christian home, but lost her church habit. After her husband, Wayne D. Rogers, died in 2004, she returned to a church base — Trinity United Methodist Church in Fort Dodge. She wanted to sing in Sonshine Singers, but her voice had lost something through the years, and she was encouraged to join a church choir to exercise her voice.
When she attended services at Trinity, she knew she had come home.
“From the time I heard that first sermon, I knew I’d found my church home,” she said. “I started singing in their choir right away.”
And now she’s a member of the faith-based Son- shine Singers.
She doesn’t seem to worry about what’s happening to her. She said she heard God’s words to her: “I could have taken your life at any point in these last weeks or months or years.” That’s clear enough. Then she added, “He’s telling me because he’s been able to take my life at any time, he does not wish to take it now.”
She calls these talks with God text messaging, to put it in terms young people can understand. “Things just come to mind, and I know they are real. God’s text messaging me, so I need to listen up and be a witness,” she said. “I know God’s in charge, and he will never leave me.”
Rogers was a Hospice volunteer until the end of February. She sang in the March Sonshine Singers concert. She’s a member of the Dragonboat Fighting Angels Abreast team, and she mentors the confirmation class at Trinity United Methodist Church, where she also sings in the choir.
She has short-term memory loss, which annoys her. “If I get too cold, and going without my hat will do it, I get feeling ill, and my brain is not working like it should,” she said. Food she used to like often holds no appeal, and sometimes she has no appetite. “If I get too tired, it starts to demolish me.”
Still, dealing with her cancer is simple for Rogers. “I have chosen to be a practicing believer,” she said. “God knows my every move and thought, he knows my entire past life. Satan knows me, too, but God is more powerful.”
She would like to model a hat in the American Cancer Society fundraiser, the Derby Bash Hatwalk. Anyone interested in making a hat for her to wear may contact Cheryl Sherry, ACS spokeman, by calling 576-6274.
Anyone interested in offering a prayer for Rogers has only to start, “Dear God.” He’s listening.
So long friends, until the next time when we’re together.
Contact Sandy Mickelson at (515) 573-2141 or firstname.lastname@example.org