By Sister Janis Yaekel ASC

I am Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC and I have pancreatic cancer. In fact, I have lived with cancer since 2012. I hope to share in my blog my journey and my reflections on the presence of God in my life. It is my hope that those who read my entries will find strength for their own journeys. 


I recently had a CAT scan of my lungs and an MRI of my abdomen, so I want to tell you about the time between getting tests and hearing the results.

I am not sure how other cancer patients feel about this in-between time, but for me, it is the hardest of times. I have gotten good results from tests and not-so-good results, and I think I have handled both pretty well.

What I don’t handle well is the waiting for results. The stress of not knowing is awful.  It is not just emotional anxiety that I experience.  The angst is physical and spiritual as well.  It is as if my whole being is strung tight as a bow string and I sometimes fear that it will snap before I get a call or see the doctor. During this time I just hang on. For me, this is the worst of the worst. I often say to myself that this is the kind of stress that could cause cancer!

When I get a call or see the doctor I move on.  I am no longer paralyzed.  If it is good news I rejoice, and if it is not, then I still find a certain peace within and I begin to adjust to the new reality. The waiting is over and there is light once again.

To me, this waiting is true darkness. I can’t do anything about the results that will be coming and I can’t seem to embrace this time of not knowing.  I cannot control anything and I can’t seem to rest in the knowledge that God and I will handle whatever comes.  The darkness of waiting however is always the place where new life can be hiding and so I try to be present to the possibilities that tomorrow brings.

As I write this, I’m headed for vacation, first, to be maid of honor at the wedding of a very good friend, and then to spend 10 days with my brother and sister-in-law at their cabin in northern Wisconsin.

And oh, I just got word that the scans showed no growth of the tumor.  Everything looks good.  I can breathe again!


Read other entries from Sr. Janis on her journey with cancer.