The country singer’s husband, Rory Feek, shared an update on her mindset and health via his blog This Life I Live on Sunday.
Although Joey, 40, “can no longer get out of bed,” Rory still sees a fighter in his wife as she copes with terminal cancer under hospice care at her childhood home in Alexandria, Indiana.
“… She is so sharp and clear and her pain, for the most part, is so under control by the medicine that talking to her, you would think she’s her normal self,” wrote Rory, 50. “[She is] thinner. Much thinner. And with a hip new hairdo. But she is beautiful. So so so beautiful.”
As Rory explained, Joey has unfathomable strength and “will to live” – not just for herself, but also their 21-month-old daughter Indiana, who “gets excited every morning to see her.”
“There isn’t a day that goes by that [Joey] 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,” Rory penned.
According to Rory, their family and Joey’s doctors sometimes “believe that the time must be very near,” only for the star to experience an upturn.
“But today and the last few days have been incredible,” Rory noted. “Part of us once again believes that God is answering Joey’s prayer by healing her body and taking the cancer away, despite all the odds.”
The devoted husband, who recently announced their upcoming album of hymns, wrote that he wanted to “shine a light” on the realities of hospice, specifically that “it’s not uncommon for people to be on hospice for 6 months, or longer.”
“The word ‘hospice’ makes us all think the worst,” he shared. “The end. Or at least, the end is very close. I think, like me, most people probably think when they hear that word that it means that the family must be gathered around their loved one … watching them say their final words and breathing their last breath. And I’m sure in some cases, it probably happens that way. But last year when my mother was dying of cancer, after hospice was brought in, Mom lived another three or four more months before she breathed her last.”
In addition to praising his wife’s strength, Rory revealed that the couple recently discussed “how much is too much to share.” (Fans of the Southern singing duo, known as Joey + Rory, have watched the Feeks’ journey unfold on social media and Rory’s blog since Joey was diagnosed with cervical cancer in May 2014, three months after she gave birth to Indiana.)
“How honest do we really want to be?” Rory wrote on Sunday. “It’s like questioning God about the twists and turns he’s brought into our life in the last few years … and asking Him, ‘How much is too much?’ Sometimes I feel like shouting, ‘We get it God … you’re in control. Life is fragile and all we have is today.’ But He just keeps bringing more story and more pain, and more beauty … all at the exact same time.”
Rory continued, “So together, we made some decisions. This is our life. It’s what He has given us to live. And share. Sharing what we’re going through with others is really all we have to give.”
Still, Rory said he’s “fiercely protective of my wife.”
“Any man would be,” he wrote. “With all she’s going through, I only want her to be seen in a good light. So, though I’m only an amateur with a camera, I try to use my lens and words to lift Joey up.”
He continued, “Like any woman, my wife is self-conscious about what cancer has done to her. 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.”
That’s why Rory is so careful about what he shares.
“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,” he explained. “She wants to be remembered as a singer of songs. A devoted wife. A loving mother. Not a cancer patient.”