Although the odds are stacked against her, Joey Feek of the country music duo Joey and Rory is still clinging to hope and praying for a miracle.
For those of you who do not know, Joey Feek was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2014, three months after she gave birth to her daughter Indiana (“Indy” for short). She underwent a radical hysterectomy, along with rounds of chemotherapy and radiation. Although Joey and her doctors thought she had beaten the disease, they discovered that the cancer had returned in mid-October, and that it had also spread to her colon. While Joey could undergo more rounds of chemo and radiation, it would only buy her time, not the cure she so desperately wanted. Therefore, Joey made the decision to return to her home to spend her last days with her family in hospice care.
Since Joey’s diagnosis, her husband and duet partner, Rory Feek, has been documenting her battle on his blog, titled This Life I Live. On Sunday, in a blog post called “braver than me,” Rory shared an update on Joey’s condition, and shared a series of heartwarming photos of Joey and her daughters.
Joey and Rory captivated the hearts of millions when they won the CMT singing competition Can You Duet in 2008. They have garnered a huge fan base that have been clinging to every word of their story of life, love, and living. Because of this, Rory explains that he has been very careful about what he has shared with the public. Although he believes his wife is as beautiful as ever, he doesn’t want their fans to remember her “after” pictures, rather than who she was before her diagnosis.
“Like any woman, my wife is self-conscious about what cancer has done to her,” Rory wrote. “Who she sees in the mirror these days looks like someone else … not the woman that she feels like she is inside. And it hurts her deeply.”
“I know that. So, I carefully choose what I share. It would break my heart to have the thousands of ‘before’ photos out there of her looking beautiful and healthy all these years… be replaced in people’s minds and hearts by a single ‘after’ photo of what cancer has done.”
Joey doesn’t want to be remembered simply as a “cancer patient.” Rather, she wants her fans, friends, and family members to remember what she has always been: a devoted wife, loving mother, and a singer of songs. Rory has tried every way possible to protect his wife, but he says she is “braver than me” and wanted to share more of her story. Joey wanted to know what was being said about her outside the comforting walls of her home, so Rory told her. He told her how she was inspiring so many people with her courage and unwavering faith.
“I told her. I told her what was happening,” Rory wrote. “At least what I thought seemed to be happening. That somehow, people — a lot of people — have been following her story. Our story. And how she was inspiring others with her courage. And how what I’ve been writing has been encouraging others in ways too.”
Together, Joey and Rory decided they were going to continue to share their story, and show her fans that she is still clinging to hope for a miracle, and for her body to be cured of this terrible disease.
“There isn’t a day that goes by that she doesn’t look me and her family in the eye and say ‘I’m gonna beat this,’ or ‘I’m getting better, I believe that.’ And she asks me if I believe it, and I do. I choose to.”
[Photo by Richard Vogel/Associated Press]