Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Journey Begins

My graduation picture taken the week I heard about my diagnosis
Hi!  I am Jennifer Anand.  I am a college freshman at University of Akron, the oldest of 7 children, and fighting my second battle with cancer.  Rather than try to write about my previous cancer, and introduce you to my family, I’ve included the letter my dad sent to family and friends, for the New Year 2013.  Enjoy!

 Did you take your coffee? How about your backpack? And the keys? How about some money?” Almost the same questions that I was asked by my 1st daughter Jennifer, several years ago. Here I am, sending her off to her freshmen classes, and asking her the same questions and making sure that she ate her breakfast. What a joy it has been to see her driving off to college, with confidence and excitement, learning new things and making new friends. It has been a blessing to see our 1st homeschooled graduate, pursuing Polymer Engineering with a full scholarship at the University of Akron - Honors College.

Sure, it has been a tumultuous year with Jen’s diagnosis of Hodgkin’s lymphoma on January 2012, followed by chemotherapy and radiation treatments for 8 months. And now during her Christmas break from classes, the news of the recurrence of cancer, with more chemo and stem cell transplant treatment for the next 5 months, is not exactly news that makes us jump with joy, but the months in between were really good. Looking back, the 18 years, from holding her as a baby in the operating room, to this Sunday when I tucked her for a nap, have been really great. I have taken the time to enjoy her childhood and walk with her into adulthood. No regrets.

Family picture at church, a week after recurrence, Dec 2012
It is with delight that we see our 16 year old Rachel, who has quickly matured and taken over a lot of the domestic responsibilities from her sister, applying herself as a junior in high school for college admissions and scholarships next year. Diligence and hard work paves her path in everything that she does and her love for the little ones makes her a favorite amongst children everywhere.

Joseph at 14, is maturing physically as a young man, with wit and charm, and tenderness in his heart for his big sister’s trials. He is a good leader to his brothers and sisters, as well as a great helper for mom & dad. He is making strides in his Civil AirPatrol unit, intent on pursuing a career with the US Air Force.

Conscientious Daniel at 12, almost as tall as his brother, plods his way through 7th grade and is applying his mechanical mind to many different projects, his latest being a modified vacuum cleaner attachment to catch small metal debris. He is also an avid birder and naturalist, earning the nickname “Daniel Boone”.

Petite and persistent Ruth at 9, just moved in with her big sisters into one bedroom, but is still our little princess. She is picking up skills from her big sisters in baking and crocheting and drawing, and is enjoying her 4th grade.

Outdoorsman David at 7 is a sharp shooter with his BB gun, and would rather identify birds and bugs and spend time with them outside than sitting down and reading a book about them inside.

Our 6 year old “baby” John will get offended if he knows the adjective being used, declared one day that he passed his piano lesson the first day because he is “talented”!! He does have a big mouth with the sweetest smile, and basks in the pamperings from all of us.

We look back to the summer of 1993 when Ammu and I realized that God’s Word from Psalm 27: 3 “Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward” is a promise to us. We have enjoyed all the years of all of our children, from the diaper changes to the driving lessons, along with the trials and treasures of child rearing. Children truly reflect the pinnacle of God’s creation, and our dependence upon Him to accomplish this monumental task of raising them. We realize they belong to God and we are stewards of these blessings from Him.

We are looking forward to a wonderful New Year, and looking to God again in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness” and remembering to “Rejoice in the Lord!!”

We wish you and your family a Very Happy and Blessed New Year 2013.
Vijay & Ammu Anand (Our Home page)


  1. Not sure exactly why, but when I read this the first time and again today, it made me cry. Love you guys! Praying like mad to the Great Physician and the God of all Comfort that He will heal, strengthen and encourage you through this trial. ((Hugs))

  2. God is good Jennifer. We are privileged to walk this road together. We pray for Gods great grace to satisfy your every need. We love you dear but your Lord loves you so much more. Big hug from the Haveners. Keep your eyes on Jesus.

  3. Wow what an awesome way to start this blog. I am humbled by you being willing to share your journey with us. Know that Mr. Schnarr and I have never stopped praying for you and your family! Seeing this pic made me cry... I miss you all so much! Serving the Lord, is awesome... I can not think of a better way to spend my "vapor" of a life but to sit at His feet, the creator of all and be taught by the Master.
    Jenn, may God wrap his arms around you and your pole (I am reading the posts backwards, which should come at no surprise to anyone that knows me)right now and give you a hug, and I am sending virtual hugs to you and your family also. Love you,
    Mrs. Schnarr