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Are you just hanging on? What Makes Your World Crazy?
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When times are crazy and the world seems spinning out of control, how do you hang on? How have you gotten to the place you are currently? Are you where you want to be? What or who is your rock?
LIFE CHANGING EVENTS CAN CAUSE CHAOS
In my own little world of me, I have done some growing and I have a lot more to go, but I realize the benefits of growth far outweigh the trials and tribulations of getting there. I was declared disabled six years ago. Talk about insanity and my world going crazy! I lost my reason for getting up each day. It happened abruptly but not without warning. I didn't heed the warnings I was given so I had to get it the hard way.
Physically I had been slowing down due to pain, the pain of fibromyalgia and dystonia. Getting to my job on the second floor, no elevator, was, at best, difficult. I pulled myself up the stairs with my arms as my legs were so weak they couldn't help much. I made it through the days fairly well until I started having dystonic episodes more frequently. I had work for my job to do at home in the evening. It wasn't getting done because I was so tired, I would sleep after supper only to get up and go to bed. I was falling behind more and more. The writing was on the wall. I called it quits.
Panic set in. We were going to be without my salary. How would we manage? I had disability insurance from my job and would be able to apply for Social Security Disability in six months. They cut off my disability after one month. I called and found that trying to get permanent disability was not going to be easy or nice. I was treated like trash and, at times, I was threatened. I found the agent I dealt with was purposefully confusing me, which I must admit wasn't too difficult. I went running to my psychiatrist in an emergency when I thought I was totally going to lose it. The job loss was devestating, the abuse of the agent from the disability insurance was overwhelming, and the fear of not having an income were pushing me over the edge.
There were other situations involved in my final decision for leaving when I did. It was those situations that added to my emotional stress and sense of loss. The abuse from others was incredible. I felt so hated. I tried so hard to act normal but I was so hurt by what had happened I stayed away from church for three months. Yes, I was a full time church worker and worked with other Christians in a Christian school with Christians kids and parents. This was not unfamiliar territory as my father had been a pastor and I watched for 37 years how some Christians mistreat their pastors. This was a born again spirit filled church. I couldn't believe it could happen in such a place.
My husband was an elder. We had been very active in church activities. Our four children all went to the church school and were active in what was available for them. I spent 20 years teaching and doing what I had wanted since a child of 5 - working for the Lord. There were many times of incredible miracles, times of joy watching kids discover Jesus and fall in love with Him, dancing and singing while worshipping in Spirit and Truth, witnessing to other classes how Jesus had touched their lives, and seeing a child's prayer of wanting his parent to come to know the Lord actually happen. That's why I taught and that's why I learned.
The times of trial were more than I cared to have but I believed strongly in the truth and set high standards for myself and my students. It was my commitment to those standards that brought the walls crashing in on me at times. I felt I had to not bend to parents' demands when they weren't warranted because the child and I knew what the truth was and if I gave in, they would learn a very poor lesson about life that could harm them in future years. I took the blows instead. The last blow was bitter but God had warned me not to go back to school that year but I couldn't see how we would manage financially. That Christmas I was warned again but I learned a student's mother was diagnosed with brain cancer and I didn't want him to suffer the loss of his mother and the loss of his teacher. I had no ears to hear. I got what I deserved. It was a whole lot worse than it had to be, but it showed me what people are capable of, even professed Christians. Without my faith, I would have crumbled. The little faith I had, I clung to in desperation. I was amazed I survived the year. As I look back, I should have known I would make it simply because God was there whenever I needed him. He was my comfort for my breaking heart. He strengthened me in my weaknesses. My tears of anger and disappointment flowed bringing me healing a mm at a time. When my husband's term of being an elder was over, I left the church.
It's been six years since I left. My crazy world is not as messed up as that first year after taking disability. God has done so much in these six years to help me grow, some really spectacular things.
Shortly after the emotional part of my leaving started to ease, the physical started to be more of a problem. I had visual disturbances and ended up seeing a neuro-opthamologist. Tests were done and the results were abnormal. They led to other tests - some normal, some abnormal. I spent more time in doctors' offices. They all agreed there were neurological problems but they couldn't name them. They didn't know how to treat what they didn't know.
As things were causing me to be less active physically, I was spending more time with God. My new church has a fantastic Bibe teacher-preacher who is also well versed in history. I was learning from God about God. He healed me in different ways. Once I felt a disc go back in place when someone placed his hand on my back and prayed for me. I had been suffering post concussion headaches for about six weeks and at a meeting God touched me and healed me. I was so grateful. I hate headaches.
I took a course on healing. I went back to the time I was a baby and I saw Jesus holding me as a baby in his arms and he said, " I will not drop you." I had been taken away from my mother from three months to six months. No one ever told me why. I believe my mother must have had postpartum depression. I think she couldn't deal with me. My brother was three years old at the time and he stayed home while I was taken away. It helped solve a mystery.
I have found the best healings are the deepest ones - the ones inside that really matter. The physical discomforts are minor if I am at peace with myself, and I can only be that way if I am in God’s will.
ON MY WAY
God has provided a therapist for me. We've known each other for twenty-nine years. She has helped me through some rough times. My bottom was verbalizing that I never knew a mother's love. That was a very deep bottom. Everything was up after that.
My relationship with my mother continued to be stormy. I was working at forgiveness and I wanted to be able to honor her and I had no clue how to do that. I prayed for her to come to know the Lord. She was a bitter, miserable, old beyond her years, lady. Her anger was something she held onto very tightly. Her first heart attack was at 52 and her second one was at age 56. The first was just a month before my wedding and the second was two months before the birth of my first son.
At 76 she had a stroke. I learned about it through a common friend one Sunday morning at church. It had happened on Friday. My brother didn't call me until Tuesday to inform me. Mother didn't want me to know but when she saw she was going to have a long recovery, she felt I should know. She had had a bout with cancer a few years earlier and when she had trouble swallowing they thought it ws due to the stroke. They operated and found it to be cancer. They put in a feeding tube. A month later my brother came from California. I got a call at school to come see her. My brother was there. Mother was kind of out of it. My brother left to have a cigarette. My mother opened her eyes wide and said to me, " Lorene, can you ever forgive me?" It was easy to say yes as I had spent so long working at it. I also was in need of forgiveness and received it. We cried for joy. When my brother came back, my mother told him and we all cried.
A nurse called from the hall, "Bea, how are you doing?"
She replied, " I'm seeing life through new eyes." She admitted she was sad that it had taken so long with so little time left. She died two days later. God indeed answers prayer.
PHYSICAL HEALINGS ARE MARVELOUS BUT THERE IS SOMETHING GREATER!
Crazy means many things to different people. I have always felt I walked on the edge of sanity and insanity. I certainly didn't feel I fit in anywhere.
I enjoyed acting as a shy kid because then I could be someone I wished I was. Being in front of people like that was enjoyable. I think that's one reason I was a teacher. I got to act a lot. It was fun.
In the last six years things have been crazy just because of the changes in my life. My husband had retired seven years before while our youngest was a senior in high school and our oldest son a senior in college. Our other son was in college and our oldest daughter was living with us with her five year old son. Good timing for retiring.
The first year was difficult financially but SSD came through and then my private disability finally started a year after my leaving. I was busy with doctor appointments and testing. I did get some gardening done and started crocheting again.
My amount of medicine increased and the trouble began. I am very sensitive to medications. Neuropathy was a real pain and so I was started on lyrica. I put on about twenty pounds, not a pleasant thing but the drug helped the pain. About a year later I came down with laryngeal edema and that was the end of lyrica. A six week withdrawal followed. Losing twenty pounds was a real plus as it helped my breathing and movement.
About the same time I went on a gluten free diet and that made me feel much better. After two surgeries I discovered I was hooked on lortabs. That was tough going off. The next drug they tried was topamax. It helped my pain I had from the small fiber neuropathy. At the end of the month I got it refilled and read the pamphlet that came with it. Yet another discovery was made. I figured out when I saw mental/mood as a side effect, why I had been feeling so insane. I was preoccupied with death and suicide. I was obsessed over a friend, emailing and phoning to the point of annoyance. I didn't know what I would do to myself. I got off that drug immediately but I still wasn't feeling right.
A visiting preacher came to our church and spoke for four nights in a row. I went every night. God saved the best for the last. That last night he prayed for me. He told me I was feeling something in my body I had never felt before. He was right. I felt a dry rain come over me starting at the top of my head going down to my feet. I fell to the floor and God started his work. I was crying and speaking in tongues. I saw a vision of God chiseling chunks of stone off my heart. Then there was a marvelous peace. I rested.
The next morning after I was up a short while, I realized I was feeling different. I discovered that God had healed my mind, not just from the recent past, but for my whole life. I was filled with great joy. I have found it necessary to maintain my healing by staying close to God, talking to myself about things that help me to stay positive - like it is an offense to God to have a pity party. I love him so much I don't want to purposefully offend him. Praising God is good for him and for me.
A situation arose the other day. I had had some pain at PT so when I got home I went looking. I found a hard lump below my right rib cage in the front. It was about the size of a giant gumball. Now I have been losing weight for a little over a year, about 55 pounds. I have no appetite and am still losing weight. Putting that together and now with this hard, immoveable lump, I panicked and called my doctor friend. He suggested it could be a lymph node and for me not to even go where he thought I was going. I told him it was hard not to because of the circumstances. I could tell by the sound of his voice, he agreed. I set myself up and my digestive system takes the first hit.
My imagination had me thinking no surgery, I can’t take anesthetics and no bacterial infection because I can’t take antibiotics. Forget what the lump could be!
The next day I had a scheduled appointment with my rheumatologist so I asked him to check it. My rib pain was fibromyalgia and my abdominal pain was IBS. When I got home, I discovered the lump was gone. Yes, it was IBS that created the lump and moved it along. I had put myself under such stress, no wonder my IBS was so active.
Now had I not panicked, look what I could have avoided - the above and a whole lot more I haven’t told you about! I still panic before I go to Him and ask what I should do. I so want to stop that. I want Him to be the first thought, not fear. He's always ready to help. I just need to ask.
I’m not where I would like to be, but I’m better than I was. His name is coming to my mind faster than it use to. Who is the only One I can depend on in all circumstances? The Triune God - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
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