Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Transparency: What were the last four weeks really like?

When you've been living with a chronic illness for essentially your whole life you get very skilled at hiding your illness even from those whom are close to you.  Over the past several months and one of the main reasons I started this blog was because God told me it was no longer ok to hide my illness from others.  So once again, I am opening up what it means to be me with every person who wants to know, and likely those who really don't want to know.

Let me share with you what the last several weeks have been like. There are have been many, many lows but by my being honest with myself and with others I have been abundantly blessed.

As I have shared things started to get rough about three to four weeks ago.  All of my baseline symptoms dramatically increased and I became so sensitive that I started wearing a carbon filtering face make when out in public.I wish that I could say that the mask has solved all my problems but my baseline symptoms are all still significantly elevated.

Two weeks ago I was still just pushing through everything.  I asked for specific prayer and many were faithful to pray for me.  However, for three straight days I borrowed from the future heavily to maintain a clean house despite raising three small children, to not just care for my three children five and under but also homeschool them and then have dinner ready everyday when my husband got home.  Normally all this is about all I can handle anyway but I am also having a flare of symptoms and am in my second trimester.  After those three days, I was barely able to function for the next four.  On day two of my recovery I cried and had a discussion with my husband about the fact that I could no longer do all these things.  On day three I spent the ENTIRE day in bed and day four I spent most of the day in bed.  I then had to have a very low key entire week to finish recovering.  So, THREE days cost me the ELEVEN following days.

My husband and I agreed that my first priority was to care for and homeschool my children.  Everything else would be secondary and only what I had the energy to address.  In vulnerability I reached out to my small group and they have been wonderful.  Not only have they believed that I am ill right now, but they are willing to address my expressed needs.  It has been hard to welcome them into my mess but very rarely have I been blessed so abundantly.

Just to cement this all in, God in his mercy, gave me a cold that wiped me flat for two days.  He reminded me that things could be so much worse and that He wants me to make good choices now so that I can build into my future.  So much of the world's advice is to live today for all its worth with no concern for tomorrow and I simply can not live my life that way.  Today I must choose right so that I can spend tomorrow with my family.  When I choose poorly my whole family suffers.

The Lord has also further restored my hope for the future in that I now have an appointment with a doctor who treats people with a Mast Cell Activation Disorder on March 20th.  I have been looking for such a doctor for more than two decades.