Rory Feek reflects on what's to come as his wife copes with terminal cancer

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Credit: Rory Feek

The Christmas spirit has never felt more alive for country singing duo Joey and Rory Feek.

Under hospice care with terminal cancer, Joey, 40, celebrated the holiday with family despite great odds stacked against her.

“In early November, Christmas seemed still so far away,” wrote her husband Rory, 49, on his blog This Life I Live on Monday. “And the prognosis was clear that there was a good chance Joey wasn’t going to be with us then and that this Christmas was going to be a difficult one to get through.”

Having relocated from their farmhouse in Pottsville, Tennessee, to her childhood home in Alexandria, Indiana, in October, the Feeks spent what they feared would be her final days bonding with friends and family – including their daughter Indiana, 22 months, and Rory’s adult children from a previous relationship, Heidi and Hopie.

As Joey’s health yo-yoed – she displayed unfathomable strength in November after a period of being bed-ridden – the couple decided to celebrate Christmas early this month.

But the Feeks put on a brave face. As Rory explained on Monday, their faith that Joey would live to see another Christmas reminded him of The Gruffalo, little Indiana’s favorite book. The story finds its main character surviving by making up a story about a mythical creature.

“So like the mouse in Indy’s story, we all began to ‘make up’ our own Gruffalo,” wrote Rory. “Ours was the belief that it was going to be a wonderful, magical Christmas. We didn’t really believe it – down deep inside we knew we knew better – but still we told ourselves and each other that it was going to be great.”

Then the unimaginable happened: “Christmas had come and Joey was not only here with us, but she was doing well and we all had an amazing day together,” shared Rory. Homemade cookies, colorful pajamas, the unwrapping of presents, and a large family dinner gave the Feeks what they hoped for – including renewed faith.

“Sometimes believing is seeing,” penned Rory. “And so as the New Year approaches, we will continue to believe and trust that what is waiting on the other side of the deep, dark wood is something even better and more beautiful than our minds can even imagine.”