So God Made a Mother Collection ➔

As I watched the Today Show this week a Breast Cancer Survivor was speaking about Hope. She said, “You have to believe that you will overcome it, there may not be a cure for Cancer, but there also isn’t a cure for the Common Cold.” I know, I know, thousands of people don’t die every year from the Common Cold, but what I took away from her statement was optimism, a positive “live in the now” attitude of Hope. She wasn’t bitter or angry or uncertain.

Many of us will never face something as serious as a life-threatening illness, yet in our daily lives we don’t live with a fraction of the optimism that this Cancer Survivor is living with. Doubt, anger, criticism, jealousy, & fear, these are the emotions dominating our daily existence. 

I don’t know what tomorrow will bring, but what I do know is WHO will bring my tomorrow. In our daily readings in Jesus Calling we have heard a common theme the past few weeks about living in the here and now. Sometimes we are so focused on what tomorrow will bring that we forget to relish in the beauty of today. 

I know as a mom that my children have grown into adults and teenagers in the mere blink of an eye. Sometimes this has me so sad, I miss their little fingers wrapped around mine, the smell of their fresh little baby lotion scented cheeks, middle of the night breast-feeding in the quiet stillness staring intently at their perfect little face. These were great times, but right now is pretty great too! Somedays it’s an unexpected call from our 17 year old who wants to have lunch, a middle of the day “I love You <3 text from our 16 year old, or a random “Mom, have I told you lately how awesome you are?!?” from our 10 year old as we drive home from school. 

I could sit and cry for days at how quickly they have grown into their own beings and how the dynamics of our family are transforming constantly but instead, I choose to marvel at how beautifully God has shaped them. Each new phase of life brings with it joys, lessons, hurts and accomplishments. As you raise your family it isn’t just your children that are growing and learning, but you as well. 

Early on in my journey as a mom, I was paralyzed with fear. Each time one of them stepped out into the world it was as if my heart stopped beating. The “what ifs” flooded my mind and made it impossible for me to see how awesome our world was. Now, as they are older and often on their own to make choices, I see how strong their faith is and how Christ is the center of their lives. What I have discovered over time is that no matter what the world has to offer, God has equipped us with the strength, the faith and the love to not only survive, but to thrive. 

Tragedy and severe illness may present themselves in our lives, we can’t control this. What we CAN control is how we handle it. Each day is a glorious gift from God and raising our children to accept and not fear the unknown and the hardships that may come our way is a powerful life lesson in faith and hope. It is time for us to focus on the positive and the blessings in our lives and trust that we WILL overcome all else. 

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who in his great mercy has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading,  kept in heaven for you who by the power of God are safeguarded through faith, to a salvation that is ready to be revealed in the final time. In this you rejoice,  although now for a little while you may have to suffer through various trials; 1 Peter 1:3-6

I am grateful for each day and each gift God has brought my way. I am grateful for the Hope He has instilled in my heart. The hope that someday, I will live in His Kingdom for the rest of time. 


Mammogram Web Ad

Traci Runge

Traci was born and raised in San Diego and has called Kearney, Nebraska home for the past 18 years. She is married to Darby Runge and together they have 6 children. They own and operate Pro-Tint, a window tinting business. Along with being a full-time mom, Traci is also a Manager and Certified Trainer with SendOutCards, she works with businesses and individuals to build relationships and grow their income through Relationship Marketing. Traci works hard to balance her roles of mother, wife and business owner. She strives to help make the world a better place through kindness and love and leading by example. Traci is committed to her family, church and community and can often be found volunteering in some capacity.

How Grateful I Am for a Mother Who Believed in Me

In: Cancer, Grief
Mother and grown daughter, color photo

It was a hot summer day sometime in the middle of high school. I was young and naive, but the ugly six-letter word was looming over our family: cancer. Although I didn’t know it then, this would be our last normal summer before my mother’s health would worsen. Cancer would give way to terminal cancer. It’s funny how something so big can seem so small in those moments. My mom and I were sitting on our back porch, encased in a narrow hedge of yew bushes. It was a yellow, lazy Saturday, and my brothers and father were at Cub...

Keep Reading

A Medical Diagnosis Challenges a Marriage

In: Cancer, Living, Marriage
Bald woman holding clippers over husband's head, color photo

It is no secret now that Albert Pujols and his wife have announced their divorce shortly after she had surgery to remove a brain tumor. As a breast cancer survivor, this news hit me in a special way. As I was reading through an article from Today, there was a quote that hit me hard, “But a marriage falling apart is far more common when the wife is the patient, researchers have found. A woman is six times more likely to be separated or divorced soon after a diagnosis of cancer or multiple sclerosis than if a man in the relationship is...

Keep Reading

When You’re Barely Hanging On, It’s OK to Ask For Help

In: Cancer, Living, Motherhood
Worn mailbox, color photo

I’m a bundle full of fun. My list of fun things include being diagnosed with cancer at age 33, having the BRAC1 gene mutation, doing six months of oral chemo, having a hysterectomy at 34, my ovaries and tubes out at 34, enduring a double mastectomy, and a million scans and procedures under my belt, followed by five months of oral chemo. I was a stay-at-home mom during this time with a 7, 5, and 2-year-old.  Sometimes I feel like I experienced a whole lifetime in one short snapshot of a year.   At the beginning of my diagnosis, our mailbox...

Keep Reading

This is What Cancer Looks Like

In: Cancer, Motherhood
Mother lying on bed with toddler sprawled across her, color photo

While I was going through active treatment and recovering from procedures and surgeries, certain moments during the day triggered this thought in my head, This is what cancer looks like. I envisioned a still shot of that moment and that title above it. One of the first times I had this thought was when I was lying on the couch watching my daughter play. I was fatigued and my heart was racing, but I was still a mom needing to supervise my 2-year-old.  She came over and held my hand.  This is what cancer looks like. In the days following...

Keep Reading

Cancer is Not in Charge

In: Cancer, Living
Mother with bald head holding child, color photo

My entire life, I’ve felt much pride and comfort in being a person who was highly organized, a planner, someone who truly enjoys predictability. When I was diagnosed with breast cancer, everything that encompassed my normal way of living was disrupted. And there was no way to fix it. This was not a good feeling—frankly, it sucked. I’m a stay-at-home mom of three young children. My first thoughts after my breast cancer diagnosis were how this was going to affect them. Would they even still have a mother in a year? These are terribly hard things to think about when you...

Keep Reading

But Dad, We Were Supposed To Have More Time

In: Cancer, Grief
Man smiling at camera

September 5, 2015 was one of the worst days of my life. It was the day I found out my dad had “it.” The word I expected but didn’t want to face.  Cancer.  Stage 4 in his lungs, bones, and spine. A week later we were told he had about six months left with us.  Six months.  A half of a year.  He was only 55. People nowadays can live to be over 100. How was it possible that he was only going to live half of a life?  They were going to be releasing him from the hospital so he...

Keep Reading

I’ll Never Go To a Seafood Restaurant With Her Again

In: Cancer, Grief
Woman alone at table

I am 19 years old and it is the smack dab middle of summer and I am sitting outside—al fresco—at my parents’ favorite restaurant at a small, round, wrought iron table on an uneven slab of cobblestone bricks. Ropes of twinkle lights hang above our heads and spool in circles around lush green plants in terra cotta pots in the corners of the courtyard. The stemware here is so thin I imagine one gust of air from a sneeze might shatter my glass into a million tiny pieces. RELATED: Don’t Take Your Mom For Granted—I’d Give Anything to Have Mine...

Keep Reading

An Open Letter To the New Cancer Mom

In: Cancer, Child, Loss, Motherhood
Oncology room childhood cancer

This is an open letter to the early days me—when my son’s cancer diagnosis was first spoken over him—and to any other cancer moms out there drifting, surviving, and rising through the trauma. The early days, those raw, pouring, dripping emotions fresh from Elijah’s diagnosis day, 2-year-old Elijah, my son. “It’s leukemia,” said the kind-eyed ER physician. His eyes were so big and brown, mirroring Elijah’s signature feature. Another signature feature of Elijah’s—his long curly beautifully golden hair—soon to be falling on pillows, on rugs, in bathtub drains, until the day he bravely said I am ready to shave it...

Keep Reading

Cancer is Something I Carry With Me Now

In: Cancer, Living
Woman showing scar on chest, black-and-white photo

Two years ago in the winter of 2019, I found out I had breast cancer. I was a young new mother and completely terrified. Fast forward to today and I am healthy, have an amazing thriving two-year-old, and am planning my wedding with my perfectly imperfect soulmate. My hair has grown back thicker and wavier even than before, my body is my own again. I have found the confidence to build my blossoming writing career from scratch and am happier than I have ever been. You hear about this happening, people turning their lives around after cancer. I’m not the...

Keep Reading

My Mother’s Love Will Never Die

In: Cancer, Grief, Loss
Mother daughter

The night my mother passed away, my sister and I, along with our families sat by her side. We held her hand as she took her last breath. We talked to her and lingered near her side until they came to take her away. It was so very sacred. I couldn’t believe she was really gone. She had battled uterine cancer and was staying at my sister’s home to be cared for full time for the last four months. I had arrived from out of state only two weeks prior, and we spent every minute together, day and night until...

Keep Reading