Tag Archive | Faith

Happy Birthday to me!!!! 

I am so excited to be alive!!! If everyone could understand what it feels like to feel dead, lifeless, immovable, unable, incapable… and then to be given life back!!! You would be so grateful for EVERYTHING that you are able to do, see, and be a part of! 

 

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The last 12 years were spent in sickness. It felt like I was dying over and over again. I’d gain my freedom, and something else would happen. 4 times stuck in a bed. 4 times fighting through issues. Trying to find out who I was when I couldn’t accomplish ANYTHING. Trying to find out what was wrong with me. Trying to figure out how to heal, so that my children wouldn’t have to go through what I have.  

 

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I learned to let people love me. It is not a weakness to ask for help. I learned that even though I couldn’t do it, God sent someone to help me; to love me. No, they weren’t perfect. But, neither am I. 

 

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I learned to love my husband, my caregiver, my friend (not my enemy.) The little spats didn’t matter. The messy house didn’t matter. Priorities went back where they belonged. 

 

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I learned to love my children instead of putting unrealistic expectations on them. I learned that we are all different and that it’s okay. Miscommunication can be worked through. Boundaries can be set. 

 

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I have learned to love myself. Those mistakes that I was so hard on myself for were learning steps. Thomas Edison tried 1,000 times before he successfully invented the light bulb. I have no idea how many times I tried before I could walk successfully the first time. We only fail when we give up. I don’t have to be perfect, but I can keep trying to be better one attempt at a time. 

 

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I learned that I didn’t need to have everything that I wanted in order to have joy. I learned to be thankful for the hardships, not a victim full of fear. There is something good in every day. There is something that I can learn in the pain. 

 

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God can use this for my good and the good of others. I have learned that I can still help others even lying in a bed. I can text encouragement, pray for others, and share what I have learned and overcome thus far even though I still have further to go. 

 

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I learned that God can work miracles even when we can’t see how. I learned to listen closely to His Spirit and to follow directions. I had never walked so close to God before. 

 

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I found the answers to heal on this journey, and I no longer have to worry about my children’s future. God wants me to use this information to help more than just my family, and I am excited to be living again!!!

 

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Happy Birthday to me!
I’m Free to be the person God created me to be!!!

 

 

Dire Circumstances, BUT God…

Well, I had a few really good days before my body crashed again. (fatigue/dizziness) I was really frustrated, yesterday, that it didn’t make any sense. So, I’m going to just say that I was sick. When people normally get sick, it’s random, unpredictable, and inconvenient. I don’t understand the reasons, but until then, here is a list of the things I’ve seen God be there for me this last week:

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1) God brought a friend back into my life that had hurt and disrespected me a year ago. I have kept boundaries in place, but He has been healing and leading her.

2) My oldest accomplished double his schoolwork last week to spend time with his grandparents fixing up their home. What an amazing teaching opportunity, and relationship builder!

3) The kids helped me research new recipes. My oldest even made one to take to our family reunion last Saturday! Because of this, there were no complaints about how “Mom’s killing us!” or “We’re eating like birds!”

4) We were able to spend quality time with some of our best friends in this weekend before they move later this week. I know God brought them into our lives blessing us in so many ways, and that He will bless us with more friends. It was great to spend time and hope to make plans together in the future, too.

5) I loved going to my home church, singing with incredibly talented people who I’ve missed, hugging many that I love, not needing Google maps to find my way, and feeling so loved that I could face the world again.

6) I’ve been able to work through some issues while my parents encouraged me.

7) We came home safely and were able to get the house back in order, so that I only had laundry and dishes left.

8) When I was wondering if I needed to ask for help, I realized that the house was fine, the kids know how to feed themselves because I haven’t made dinner in months, and I just needed rest since I couldn’t do much else.

9) The van’s axle broke with me driving across town. I was safe. Ford fixed it for free because of an old recall.

10) Our upstairs bathroom is getting remodeled! It’s been leaking since we moved in, so we tried not to bathe much… But we have a shower upstairs, now, and the bathroom could be finished by the end of the week.

11) The kids found out about a VBS down the street and were excited to go. Without a vehicle, I wasn’t letting them go in the rain. They prayed for it to stop and it did when it was time to go.

12) My neighbor took my kids last night to VBS since I couldn’t walk them.

13) I am grateful for those who show kindness and compassion. A friend who asked if she could help without embarrassing me in front of others, listened and tried to understand, and made sure I safely returned home.

14) Free valet parking at the hospital. He never questioned why I might need help even with his eyes. (I’ve had people do so in the past with Walmart carts.) Never made a comment about how good I look to not feel well. He even helped me with my door and seat belt. Kindness is God’s love. 

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I could go on with every detail. But I just wanted to say that regardless of how dire circumstances seem, God is always there. He’s been working things out for my good from the beginning. He knows and loves me personally. Circumstances change, but God never does. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. This is why I trust and love Him.

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It’s not fair!

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“It’s not fair!” My 5yr old son was throwing a tantrum. I asked him to do his chores, he refused, and now was missing out on the T.V. show that his siblings were watching. “It’s not fair! It’s not fair!” He continued. I can completely relate to this feeling.

 

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When I was 13yrs old, I gave up chocolate because I was addicted to it. A speaker at church talked about addictions, and I took to heart that scripture, “if your hand offends you, cut it off.” (Mark 9:43) In quitting chocolate, I noticed that my asthma attacks went way down. It was difficult. I proved that I had self-control and that it did not control me.

 

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When I was 16yrs, I noticed that my stomach felt like it had knives in it when I drank milk. I switched to rice milk, though, the colonoscopy results said “the beginnings of stomach ulcers.”

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When I was 18yrs, I began passing out and having severe migraines. I found a severe intolerance to Red Dye #40, and a corn allergy were the cause. Often these ingredients were together in products which made it easier to avoid both.

 

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And now, in my mid-thirties, my body won’t tolerate sugar. A little over a year ago, I began experiencing Chronic Pain and Fatigue, and other Dysautonomia/POTS symptoms. My body is very low on salts and doesn’t hold them anymore, so sugar sends me right back where I was over a year ago. It’s just not fair.

 

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This Christmas, they were passing around treats at church, and normally, I can refrain because they are pre-packaged. (Either chocolate, corn syrup, red dye or all 3.) But there were tiny muffin size home-made pecan treats… so I ate a few. Almost immediately afterwards, I felt light-headed. I went to the kitchen and took out my emergency Nuun tablets. It wasn’t enough this time. It was just not fair!

 

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Now, I have been learning to love myself this last year, but right there, I turned immediately to frustration at myself. But, if I truly looked at this situation with love, I would see how far I’ve come and be a little more patient in my learning… just like my 5yr old child in the beginning of this post.

 

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A year ago, I didn’t know why I was so exhausted. I not only have those answers of why, but how to heal. This is my first Christmas knowing how sugar hurts my body. It’s hard to cut out foods or change anything regardless of what that change is. And frankly, life just isn’t fair. It’s okay to grieve through it. We all have our own struggles. I’m realizing that the expectations I place on myself to “Get it right already!” are just as damaging as the sugar itself.

 

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I have learned to avoid harmful foods before. I have made healthy changes before. I can be patient with myself while I learn to change and be healthy in this new way. I have a wonderful support system that is ready to help me in the way I ask. I can use my voice and ask for help. I can change and learn at a pace that I’m able to handle. And… I can enjoy the accomplishments I’ve made this far.

 

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For more articles like this one:

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Climbing out of the Canyon

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Last year, I feel like I fell into this deep canyon. Many people who had the same thing that I have called it “chronic” with “no cure” adding to feelings of hopelessness. I was experiencing depression so bad my chest ached, pain in all of my joints (Chronic Pain,) nerve pain up my back (Fibromyalgia,) emotional and social pain, severe menstrual pain that made me want to throw up (Adenomyosis,) severe migraines, loss of energy (Chronic Fatigue,) fogginess, insomnia, becoming sick on most foods (Mast Cell), and dizziness to the point of passing out (POTS.) I feared for not only my quality of life, but my children’s. I would not be able to homeschool them, I would miss out on their lives, I would need a caregiver, and they would end up in the same predicament as me in the long run. If I had listened to the voices of hopelessness, I would not be where I am today and it would have affected everyone around me.

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But I prayed. I did not moan with the question, “Why me?” I wanted to know what He wanted me to learn. I sought answers. I did not give up. I listened as one man who had experienced severe allergies to everything (Mast Cell) inspired others on a support group with being able to run after one year of hard work. I have fought my way up this canyon wall learning to use many tools along the way with God, the Master Physician, leading me. It’s still tough. Sometimes, I forget to use the tools and want to quit. But I’m still fighting. Today, I am stable with very little medication (the need for it going down monthly), supplements and nutrition, herbs and essential oils, exercise, emotional healing, and I am not afraid to learn more. I am back to cleaning my house, being creative, feeling clear, excited about life, still homeschooling and teaching my kids what I have learned so they never have to experience what I went through, and rarely ever getting dizzy. (When I do, I have my emergency bag with me.) I feel I am halfway back to feeling healthy and still climbing up on this journey.

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Can I cure EDS? No. But I can live out a normal life bringing out the best in my genes and teach my kids to do the same. I am no longer lying down unable to move, no longer afraid, and definitely not hopeless. I want to bring hope to others with the things that I have learned… and last but not least, be there for my own family. NEVER Give up!!! There ARE answers. There IS Hope. You are NOT alone! May God Bless You on your journey as you Seek Him for the Answers He can lead you to.





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This Amazing Journey

About 6 months ago, I experienced Chronic Fatigue and Chronic Pain… and it has been an AMAZING JOURNEY!!!

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I began, like anyone would, experiencing grief for my health. I was very emotional, I felt defeated and frustrated, and I felt a great loss. This is necessary, however, I am not one to stay hopeless. I know that there are answers out there and I know that as we seek God for these answers, He WILL provide.

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I began with a Fight

A Fight against my connective tissue disorder: Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.

A Fight against taking care of everyone else but me.

A Fight to take care of myself.

A Fight to want to heal and provide answers for myself and my children who also have EDS.

A Fight to be heard; I did not want to feel alone and keep the suffering to myself. A Fight to ask for help.

A Fight to Keep Positive knowing that I didn’t have to stay this way no matter what others around me kept saying.

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My sister gave me a Christmas gift of a beautiful bracelet that brought me to tears. I felt understood, encouraged, and supported in that moment. It was a reminder to keep pressing on when I wore it.

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The more that I convinced myself that it was okay to be honest and to talk about it to others, the more I found support and love. I did not expect that. It was hard for me, being a private person, to say that anything was wrong with me or that I needed help. I had felt so much misunderstanding from health professionals, having to argue their misinformation, that I expected more misunderstandings. That happened in the beginning as I got the “What?” looks from people and the looks from others thinking I wanted a pity party. But there were so many more that became my supports even if only in their kind encouragement and prayers.

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As I began to find answers, some all at once and others slowly, I began to incorporate them. My own family was questioning me, but I just knew that when God lead me to an answer, I had to go for it. (Honestly, if they’d known how long I’d prayed about it and researched it before knowing that it was right for me, they probably would have understood a lot easier, but change is hard and scary nonetheless) I began to accept this beautiful person that God created me to be.

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Last month, walking into one of my specialist’s offices, he was shocked at how different I was. He asked me if he could sign the book that I was going to write. I laughed it off, but he wanted to know all that I had been doing to heal. So, I listed the things off for him. He was amazed that I had sought out many different avenues and he encouraged me to keep going. How neat to hear from a doctor!

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My husband, being a counselor, talks about the 4 different areas of our life that we need to be healthy. He likes to compare them to the legs of a chair. If one of these 4 legs is damaged, it affects all of the other legs, as well as, the ability to stand on it’s own.

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I am not done searching and applying answers that I have been given, as well as, those I have not yet received. I will continue to seek them out as long as I breathe. I am an example to these children of mine who will have similar challenges because of EDS and will also have many other challenges that I may have never experienced. But I am grateful to be on this AMAZING JOURNEY! I am so amazed at how God never leaves us alone and how He always keeps His promises.

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So, to others who are currently in the grieving process, Do not be afraid to fight, search, pray, accept, and love yourself enough to change. The answers ARE out there and you CAN make a difference!

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Pressing On

philippians3Recently, I was in extreme pain, but trying to make it through Bible Study. I was walking slower than the elderly women in front of me wondering why the heck I’d even left the house. One of the reasons that I go, isn’t just for the study of the Bible itself, but to be surrounded by those of the same faith for us to uplift and pray for each other; fellowship. And there were wonderful people there that did pray for me understanding that I WAS in extreme pain even if they didn’t understand WHY. But I just wasn’t feeling it. I could just feel pain. I also felt alone in it. Passing the bookstore in the church, a book stood out at the moment I asked the question in my head, “Why am I even here? I just want to go home.” The book simply stated, “Pressing on when you feel like turning back.” I giggled to myself that God was being funny with me again. But God didn’t stop there. He always backs His words!

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Sitting there in pain, feeling alone, and making sure I was near the back in case I needed to ask for help, I longed to make a connection with someone. I wasn’t sure how anyone could understand what I was going through even if they did have empathy, but I knew God understood. So, I tried to get out of the study what I was “supposed to” and leave it at that. I was trying not to feel sorry for myself. A woman who was not much older than I and was also having a hard time walking, came up to me and asked me if there was a story with my zebra cane. I told her a 30 second brief of Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and she told me about the pain in her back causing problems with walking, as well. A friend! It’s not that I didn’t have other friends there, but she understood the pain even if she didn’t have the same starting issue as me. On my way out the door, another friend offered to make food for my family (which isn’t easy with our allergies.) I left humbled that God loved me enough to send what I needed… and that’s not all.

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I had wanted to take my children to the library afterwards, but knew there was no way I could take their hands, books, and handle the pain involved. So, I decided that it was okay to go home and try again another day. Besides, it was snowing and a little too cold to get in and out of the van a few times with the littles. A little while later, on the other side of the highway, a woman was waving at people for help in the almost white-out flurry of snow near her small pick-up truck on the side of the road. No one would stop in the freezing cold. I knew it would take me a while to get over to her, so I prayed that if it was okay for me to do so, God would make the desire for me to help her stronger. (I do hate the precautions we must take to help people these days, and do my best to protect my family, but I trust God’s judgement.) I was almost in tears at this point and excited to turn around and see what I could do. I finally pulled up behind the vehicle, though, it looked like nobody was in it at first because it was snowing so much. A couple got out of the truck cautious of me. I knew what I was supposed to do. I invited them in the van and they asked me to take them to the next gas station. The woman had the same name as my baby girl and thanked me for getting her out of the cold. The man was also thankful but cautious and protective of them both. After I dropped them off and made sure they were okay, he left me with “God Bless You.” I returned the blessing, and was so thankful that God allowed me to help someone when I was beginning to feel helpless and needy myself.

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In Pressing On to learn His Words even if I didn’t feel like it, God gave me: people who loved, prayed for, and served me, someone who understood me, and He showed me that I am valuable when I felt incapable. God will always prove himself if we Trust Him. And even though I knew that in my head, my body was failing me, and my heart was following, He was there! He loves me. He intercedes for me. He serves me. He understands me. He wants me to know that I am valuable to Him.


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Live Like It’s Your Last: A New Perspective

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I grew up where the t.v. was on in the evenings and nobody was allowed to talk. I began to resent t.v. and would spend a lot of my teenage years in my room alone. I did not feel cared about. With my own family, I limit t.v. and make sure that my kids know that “People are more important.” But that doesn’t always show in my actions in everything else I do.

I’m a natural organizer. I love order. Things run smoother. Everyone knows their job and what time it should be done by to have plenty of time to play. That’s just not life with kids. It reminds me of The Sound of Music where the Captain runs his house and kids like a naval ship. It’s Control.

Now, yes, I believe there should be order, but that if I were so strict about it, there would be no peace. There needs to be a balance. I’m also trying to teach my kids self-discipline. How are they going to learn that if I’m standing over them making sure they do what they’re supposed to do every second?

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If I’m constantly worried about what my kids are or not doing, I’m a wreck and cannot do what I’m doing. Again, there needs to be a balance; natural consequences are amazing tools for teaching. But, it also has to do with the attitude that is followed through. If we’re constantly feeling like a failure at meeting this or that goal of perfection, we are missing what life is really about.

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This week, we went over the 10 commandments and that Jesus grouped them all into “Love God, Love Others.”(Matthew 38-40) I’ve also attended a funeral of a child, and attended a fundraiser where I listened to how a woman got through her son and husband passing away within a year of each other. God often talks to me this way in 3’s because it takes me a while to get it. How often do my kids feel loved by me? Am I being so selfish that I’m ruining not only what they think of me, but their own self-worth? Is that the kind of legacy I’m leaving?

I didn’t become a parent so that I could ruin their lives, but so I could love them and train them up in the Lord. (Proverbs 22:6) I will never be perfect and neither will they. But, if there’s one thing, God wants me to leave them, it’s 1) that He enriches my life because He loves me and He loves them, too and 2) that we need to keep striving to love Him and others in return. (1 John 4:7-21) That is a beautiful life. That is what gives one the confidence to accomplish great things. That is the legacy I’d like to leave.

So, I have a new perspective; to live like it’s my last day, hour, minute, or even second. I may not get another chance.



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