I should probably be taking my migraine medicine and lying down to sleep. This has been my life lately. Go to bed with a really bad headache and then wake up with one. I’m tired of taking medicine that makes my belly hurt to fix a pain in my head that never heals.
This afternoon I had a case of the “mean reds” (if you don’t understand this reference, please go watch “Breakfast At Tiffany’s) and I was too close to Facebook. This is a problem. I’m so sick of Facebook in my life but being chronically ill the past year, it’s easy access to company and sometimes just a distraction.
I’ve been having bad pressure and pain in my head every day for four months. In November an MRI showed a lesion on my brain. At the time, the doctor told us it looked like Multiple Sclerosis or a low-grade tumor. The radiologist thought it could possibly be scar tissue. I haven’t talked about it much on social media or my blog. I mean yes, I’ve “vague-booked” about the headaches but not about MS. I had a lot of peace after the first test. Whatever it was, I knew I would face it with God and He would be glorified through the story. Heath was amazingly supported and beautiful. I had two more MRI’s – one of my brain with contrast and one of my cervical spine as well as a lumbar puncture. They did not find the MS marker but an elevated protein that they also look for in MS and the lesion lit up a little so the doctor didn’t think it was scar tissue. MS doesn’t have a “yes or no” test, so I am middle grade “probable” and in six months they look to see if there is another lesion. We are hoping and praying for healing. We want this to be nothing. The doctor doesn’t treat with MS medicine until they find two lesions or the marker. So we wait. And in the mean time there are headaches that are not believed to be caused by the tumor. Every day — migraines and tension headaches together. It’s not my best thing. Some weeks I’m positive and pushing away the pain and trying to dance or learn violin. Then, there are weeks when I struggle through work and come home and take medicine or put an icepack on my head.
Being sick isn’t fun, but this week I am especially grateful for my life. To be sick and in pain is to remember I am breathing. For whatever reason, I still have a purpose. Although, often times, going to work and coming home to lay in bed doesn’t feel purposeful. Tonight, I would rather be loving on my homeless friends under the bridge or watching “Pitch Perfect” with my BFF in Birmingham. The medicine I suppose I needed was these clacking keys and a blank screen.
I guess I should explain why I wrote what I did on Facebook. Remember the “mean reds” and the closeness to social media? It went something like this, “Sometimes you grow up and are disappointed with who you’ve become.” Do you ever just write things that you cry while you’re writing them because you know they aren’t true. The enemy likes to use my words to hurt me because God loves me through words, I think. All the truth inside of me was screaming of how hard God and I worked (well, mostly Him but me too) so that I could learn to love myself how He loves me. Remember all that was overcome? Remember how much you love that lady on the street that draws paradise and is your consistency every day? Remember how you heartbreaks for those you love? Remember that you’re human? Remember loss, change, sickness, danger, death, fear … remember all the things that have been coming at me. I’m not claiming the pain of others right now who I love deeply and who are hurting much further down than I am. It’s only that – “just keep swimming” isn’t always the best motto. Because eventually you get exhausted, you body fails you, your muscles cramp, your eyes “rain” too often, and you exhaust those you love most.
I guess what I meant by the statement is that I miss being that lady that could make everyone laugh, encouraged everyone, looked for the beauty and positivity in all, and had the passion and projects and adventure. I’m a newlywed, did you know? We’re hurting as we grow together. It’s been two years of spiritual opposition since we came together to do more than we could ever do for God apart. It’s heavy. We saw the bullet holes that went through our first house and we lived in fear for awhile. Today I realized that the day my cousin died was the same exact day last year I watched a work friend collapse and go into cardiac arrest right before my eyes. Fears continued to grow as existing blood pressure problems in my own life were exasperated and my health continued to nose dive. It isn’t why I’m disappointed. I’m disappointed because I decided that when I got my life back, after that time I should have lost. I said I’d never be apathetic about God again. I know what it’s like to almost lose my life, so life is too short not to live to the full.
I’ve let myself down. I’ve felt that I’ve let God down at times. I’ve felt disappointed that I’ve felt isolated, too fearful, and unhappy. I felt sad that I’m not happy to do all the things I want to do with Heath – to cook, clean, giggle, and be there for him like I want to . I have my days and we have beautiful times … I just don’t love how things are in my life right now. I suppose it’s where God wants me to be, for those who love their life will lose it. It’s a struggle. Today, I hope my weakness will boast of Him because I love Him and because I won’t give up sharing this story. It doesn’t matter the pain in the head or the MRI results. He is faithful. And struggling helps burst from the cocoon.
I’m still growing. I’m still breathing. Today that is enough.