Tag Archives: Sick

My Life With Chronic Illness

Last year, I was diagnosed with Elhers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS). EDS effects my body’s college production and leaves all of my connective tissues – mainly my joints, feeling weak and hypermobile. I’m constantly in pain, and yet I get accused of being whiney or dramatic.   
I have had joint pains my entire life. As a kid, I was told that it was just growing pains. I learned to understand that being in pain was just my normal, and I didn’t know for a long time that it wasn’t normal for everyone. I have already undergone 4 surgeries and have at least 1 more surgery pending. 

  
Most recently, after 6 weeks of intense headaches and random vision disturbances, I went to the eye doctor for a routine eye exam and he sent me straight to the ER. My optic nerves were swollen and bleeding. The last few days have been a whirlwind and I received a diagnosis of pseudotumor cerebri (PTC). With PTC, my brain is essentially reacting like I have a tumor, but there is no tumor. I’ve had two ER visits in the last 48 hours and have lost part of vision (hopefully only temporary). 

  
I feel like there’s something wrong with me. I keep asking why this is happening to me. I ask why I’m in so much pain. But no one can really tell me….it’s just the luck of the draw.

  
Chronic illness and chronic pain are miserable. No one understands it. People think I look fine, so I should feel fine…but most of the time I feel like I’ve been hit by a bus. 

  
Today, I’m in incredible pain from a lumbar puncture. I want to feel “normal” and not be in so much pain. I want to function at my normal level or productivity…but I simply can’t. 

  
Some days are good and some days are bad. I feel like my life is like a wheel of future, I never know where it’s going to stop. 

  
I often have to cancel plans with friends because my pain level gets too high. Or I struggle to get out of bed because it hurts to move.

  
So, I ask you to stop thinking I’m whiney or dramatic and understand that my life is much, much different than yours.

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7-in-7 Day 6: Help Me

I’m at a loss for words
I just don’t know what to say
This world is broken
And I don’t know how to pray
It feels like it’s over
Like You’re not even here
I’m just trying to trust you
In this gut-wrenching fear

Life or death
That’s the question at hand
Trust and doubt
I just don’t understand
To be blind or have vision
Help me to see
I can’t see like You do
Help my unbelief

You’re holding my life
You know my every moment
Even though now
I feel so forgotten
Where is Your hand
Why aren’t You moving
If life is a war-zone
This is a battle I’m losing

Life or death
That’s the question at hand
Trust and doubt
I just don’t understand
To be blind or have vision
Help me to see
I can’t see like You do
Help my unbelief

Caught up in doubt
Confused by my fear
Are you weeping with me
I really can’t hear
I’m hoping for more
Longing for grace
Do I have faith to believe
That You’re in this place

Life or death
That’s the question at hand
Trust and doubt
I just don’t understand
To be blind or have vision
Help me to see
I can’t see like You do
Help my unbelief


Even When it Hurts

It’s not all guts and glory. I’ve been running for about 6 weeks now. I’ve had my bad days and good days. I’ve learned a lot about pushing my limits, but not pushing them too far, about proper hydration, and how to fuel my body. I’ve had ups and downs. I’ve had sore muscles and hurting feet. But have I had a bad run? No, I haven’t.

Even when it’s hard, even when it hurts, the run is still, always, worth it. Tonight, while making random turns through my neighborhood and not really knowing where I’d end up, I was about 2 miles from my house when the nausea kicked in and I nearly doubled over because I thought for sure that I would vomit. Then I realized that I still had to get back home and I wanted to cry. But, as always, I survived. I made it home, drank some water, laid down, and I dozed in and out for about 30 minutes.

This run wasn’t any different from any other run. Except that maybe it was a little hotter. This is what I mean by learning about pushing myself too hard. I have an all or nothing personality and I tend to over do it. My thought process says, “if you’re going to do something, you might as well go all the way with it,” even though, more often than not, that train of thought it what gets me in trouble.

I’m getting a little off track here; the point I’m trying to make is that, even when it hurts, it’s still worth it. Even though tonight’s run took a lot out of me – both emotionally and physically, it also gave me a lot, spiritually.

I felt horrible tonight and I wanted to quit, like I’ve never wanted to quit before, but I knew I had to get home. I sucked up the pain, fixed my eyes on the road ahead, and I made it home.

Over and over, through running, God has shown me amazing dependence on Him. Life, just like running, gets hard, uncomfortable, painful, and sickening, but in life, just like running, it is possible to push past all of that and depend on God to be my strength.

Yes, it hurts. No, I don’t like the feeling of pain. But the feeling of being alive – nothing can compare to that and I’ll gladly trudge through some pain and discomfort to feel that.

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