Feb 16, 2016

God's Love Inside The Refining Fires

Recently a dear friend asked me to share what God has shown me through a recent time of stretching.

Honestly this time of stretching wasn't as big of a deal for me.

I had to have a biopsy because my doctor suspected that I might have thyroid cancer and my 2nd opinion concurred.

There were moments when I allowed my mind to wonder "what if" and of course in the quiet of the night I would sometimes start to worry but I quickly turned that into prayer and left it where it belonged, in God's hands.

Please don't think I'm some amazingly spiritual woman!

This was never my typical response. I'm a natural born worry wort, a pessimist, and negative thinker.  At least I was, but something beautiful and amazing happens when you've lived in the fire for so long.

After suffering loss of many kinds and of my entire family living for over 9 years with chronic Lyme disease and other tick-borne infections, I've learned that I can trust my Father.

I've learned that even when I can't see what the outcome will be that He loves me, He cares for every single little detail, He will turn the bad into something good and I can trust Him.

He provides when we let Him, He pours out peace like a river and He rescues when we need it most.

God shows Himself and His glory and His deep, rich magnificent love when we are poured out as empty vessels before Him.

Who would do that on their own on a good day?  How do we even know how to do this when everything is going well and we're self-sufficient?  We can pretend and try to muster it up but are we really pouring ourselves out?

For me at least, it took the trials and the fire.

All those years of reading and memorizing scripture, sitting in church, and participating in Bible studies has laid this wonderful, strong foundation for me so that when I was tested God's Word came to life for me.

His presence became real, His mercies became a balm and His love became my assurance.

In the end, my biopsy came back benign! Praise God!!

I carry this little paper in my Bible and used to read it often but now I know!  I just know because of the fires I've walked through with Him.

May God bless you with His love and may you allow the fires to perfect you!

 "In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ" 

1 Peter 1:6-7

Feb 5, 2016

It's My Turn To Heal

Healing From Lyme Disease, Co-infections and Adrenal Fatigue

Being the wife and mom of a household full of Lymies has been a hard road for sure. 

For years I have spent countless hours in research, taking myself and my children to doctors, filling prescriptions, ordering herbs and supplements, organizing medicine boxes, keeping pain journals and charts, homeschooling one-on-one, and doing everything else I could to help get us all better from Lyme and co-infections.

Early on I was able to focus on my own healing and healthy living but as we diagnosed each family member it became more and more difficult to find time for self care.

My 2nd daughter was very ill and spent much of her time in bed not able to lift her head, some nights she was up all night vomiting, she was weak, fatigued and filled with pain.

By the time my 3rd daughter was overcome by psychiatric symptoms I found it was impossible to take care of myself.

My daughter needed my attention and care almost all day and much of the night. Every morning I was greeted with her screams of anxiety and pleas for me to come help her get out of bed.

I was living on a thread; overloaded, frustrated and stressed out.  I could feel the desperation deep inside; I was desperate for answers, for help, healing and peace.  

My whole entire life was consumed with caring for my family and while I made the effort to eat as healthy as possible and took small bits of time here and there to take breaks when I could, it wasn't enough.

I knew that my lifestyle would eventually catch up with me and that I was living with way too much stress.  

I could feel my own anxieties and exhaustion on a daily basis. I was an impatient mom until I learned that my impatience and anger made my daughter many times worse.

I was forced to take deep breaths and wait quietly for the tantrum to end.  I was forced to patiently and gently speak to my daughter, to walk her through her therapy techniques.

Little did I know that learning this calming behavior was helpful for me too, it taught me to calm myself and not take on all of my daughter's stress and chaos.

Now everyone has gotten better and my daughter no longer needs me 24/7. The only thing she needs from me now are a lot of hugs, help with school, and to listen to the new songs she wrote.  I like my new responsibilities.

I'm no longer living in a constant fight or flight mode but I discovered recently that because I lived this way for so long my adrenals are fatigued, my emotions are raw and my body is exhausted.

Many of my initial Lyme symptoms have returned with a vengeance and I have a deep longing to hibernate along with the rest of nature.

So now it's my turn to care for myself, to be gentle with myself, to allow myself to rest, to heal and to seek the care that I need.

It's really hard for me to kick my feet up and read or take a nap, I always feel guilty.  

What I've discovered is that my kids and my husband are always happier when I'm taking care of myself. They actually like to see me rest.

The day I stayed in my PJ's all day gave me a glimpse of that. My husband kept telling me he was proud of me for taking the day to relax.  My daughters walked by, smiled and said, "Mom I like how you changed into new PJ's for the day," my son kept walking by me smiling and he told me he liked me sitting.

The other day I told my son we were doing school snuggled up in a blanket because I didn't feel well.  His reply was a happy "Yes!" with the whole bent arm thing going on.  He said he loved when I sat and relaxed because we could be together.

I hope you'll find time to take care of yourself even if you have to take care of others.  It is really important.

As I learn more about my adrenals and what it is I need to do to heal and recover I'll share with you. You may have already walked this journey and have great advice for me.  I 'd love to hear from you.