Tuesday, May 31, 2011

"When You Don't Understand...TRUST"- It's All In The Plan !

"When You Don't Understand...TRUST"- I believe this is the hardest lesson I've ever learned and am continuing to learn.
I wrote yesterday about abusing my body and reaping the horrible consequences of my actions- that one happened when I was 25 until I was 27. It was beyond a difficult time: I was not able to work, had to move back in with my parents, was on a first name basis with the hospital/doctors/nurses (I was there more than I was home), had to give up my car.  The final blow was when I had to go on disability- at 25 I was on disability- all time low!  I couldn't go out much- and when I did it was short, sweet, and exhausting- I remember having to ride in the little scooters at WalMart and the grocery store (crashing at every corner). At times, that was even to exhausting and I would pass out. My mom would even have to help bathe me because I was to weak. Anyway, you get the gist- it was a very horrible/humbling/difficult time.
When the doctors told me they doubted I'd EVER be able to have children (although that was way off in my future), it hit HARD- growing up I always said I just wanted to be a mommy ( more on that in another post).
Ian, an incredible young man.
BUT, I did get better!! It was a huge deal the day I began eating more than 500 calories, and finally gained enough weight to get rid of the size 10 little girls clothes I'd had to wear. I still deal with severe nerve damage in my body and also deal with some other repercussions of my poor decisions. Although doctors and specialist said that I would have to be medicated to deal with these issues forever- I only had to take them for 3 years. The only medication I continue to take today is Insulin.
Eventually, I began looking for the 'silver lining' in this whole mess as I began healing up. Good MUST come from every situation, right? Well, I decided 27 years old was a great time to go to college!  It meant I was going to have to live on campus (eek!- although that gave me some of the best friends I still have today) and get accepted- made me very vulnerable. As scary as it was, I did it and changed my life! I was accepted into Southeastern College/University. Although, I didn't finish my degree- I hope to one day do that- I did finish just short of 3 years towards my Elementary Education Degree. I learned so much, some a learned in the classroom and even more I learned about me.
While at school- I became a candidate for an insulin pump- which I've been on ever since (even have a continuous glucose monitor now that checks my blood sugar every 5 minutes) that has given me such a better quality of life. I also became trained and began working with Autistic Children- which I have a major passion and heart for now- a young man named Ian changed my life!
You know, when I went to college- as a STILL single woman- I decided I was going to live my best life and accomplish dreams that I wanted to while I still could! I became VERY content with being single and that I DID NOT need a man on my arm to make me complete.  I had suffered more heart ache and made bad decisions because of men- and I wanted to go beyond it all! Well, about 2 years later- wouldn't you know it- my prince charming appeared! Not ever like I thought he would, could, should! I'd always dated the same type of guy and found myself not looking beyond that stereotype- which, to quote Dr. Phil, "..wasn't working for me.." (obviously).
I had this great friend from when I was in Bible School in Texas- he was on staff as the chef/director. He and I had been great friends when I was in school- I never thought of him as much more- you see, Lupe was a big biker long haired bearded Mexican. Really, he was one of the most gentle, compassionate, Godly men I'd ever met- you know, like a toasted marshmallow- all intimidating on the outside and all soft and gooey on the inside! About 10 years after I'd graduated (when kept in and out of touch over the years), I was on the computer one day when he IM'ed me. I gave him my number, he called me the following night and we talked every night from then until he flew to Florida to see me 3 months later . Before we left for the airport, he proposed (wasn't planned)- I said yes. One year later I married my best friend, and moved to Texas. My life is so complete with Lupe in it, I can't even imagine what it was like without him.
I always imagined I would of been married with kids before I was 25- WOW was I wrong and so glad I was! God threw my plans out the window (in a very unconventional way), and I was married at the age of 30 (almost 31). I tell Lupe, "I love you more today than yesterday and more and more with every tomorrow", 6 years later (May 21) that couldn't be more true. Even in some of the trying times we're walking through- I wouldn't change a thing!
Would I have chosen this process? NO! Did I enjoy the process? NO! But, I am so grateful that I trusted even though I did not (do not) understand- because look where the journey has brought me!

Monday, May 30, 2011

God's Chisel- This Skit Makes It Very Plain!

I saw this skit at church one night while we were in Texas. It hit home in a BIG way! I remeber the day I had a 'spiritual surgery'- in 1995- changed my life!
I've watched this skit on occasion- and it never gets old and is a great reminder.............

I KNOW I Have a Purpose...I Think!?!?

I'm sure we've all questioned our purpose/job/what we were created for at one time or another. I know I have many times.....I question/wonder about it to much. But those questions remind me of circumstances in my life that prove I do have some purpose. For expample:
When I was a baby, I developed Spinal Meningitis- I had it for over a week with a dangerously high fever before it was properly diagnosed. I slipped into coma for a few days, that is until our Pastor came in and prayed for me- my extremely high fever broke as I sat up in bed and asked for my Daddy. I have no damage from the high fever or anything else.
When I was 15, a van slammed into me, throwing me through the air, while I was crossing a major highway in Clearwater. Not only did I survive it, but had no injury outside of major bruising/scrapes/soreness (the van, on the other hand, had a ton of damage). I pretty much walked away from that one- the doctors couldn't even believe it.
There is the allergic reaction I had to Demerol at 16. When I was finally able to wake up- I went into seizures.
The difficult fight with anorexia/bulimia from the age of 17-22. I successfully overcame it only to see it show it's ugly head again when I was 23(in a different form) and almost killed me- more about that later.
Of course, there's the one that I still deal with every day- it was discovered at the age of 21. I was suddenly, out of nowhere, diagnosed with Type 1 Juvenile Diabetes. I know what your thinking- I was probably unhealthy, overweight, etc. BUT, I was everything but that! As I was trying to defeat the eating disorder- I became a bit of an exercise nut- and was eating more normally, although extremely healthy. So, I weighed about 105 pounds (barley 5 ft. tall), exercised regularly (a bit to much), ate healthy, AND my relationship with God was very strong- the best it had been in a long time! I was at Bible School at the time (Texas Bible Institute), I became sick- no energy, no appetite, weight loss, eye site deteriorating, major leg cramps, drinking GALLONS of water a day- just feeling horrible! I had no idea that for 3 months I had every symptom of Diabetes.
Myself and a few friends went home to Florida for Spring Break. I arrived and everyone flipped when they saw me- I was down to 89 lbs and just looked horrible (my mother didn't even recognize me at first). Everyone feared I was dealing with the anorexia again- I agreed to go to the doctor for blood work before leaving for the beach the next morning. I never made it the beach- instead I was admitted into the hospital for 10 days with a blood sugar of 900+ (normal is 90-120). Before I knew it- Insulin and glucometers were my new best friends. I quickly found myself bitter/angry/confused/depressed, it would be many years until I would recognize and deal with these emotions.
It is a hard thing to adjust to, all of my eating and exercise habits had to immediately change. Trying to learn the balance of insulin, food, and exercise caused me to go into severe hypoglycemia on more than one occasion.
The worst, was when my anger/bitterness over the Diabetes almost killed me. After living with the disease a couple of years- and being the 'perfect (terrified) diabetic'- I completely rebelled and slipped into a Diabetic Eating Disorder (you see, when your sugars are high- you lose weight. Mind you, I weighed 120 pounds). For 2 years, I took enough insulin to keep me alive, never checked my blood sugar, and ate anything/everything I wasn't suppose to. When I finally decided enough was enough- I need to get healthy again- I went to my doctor for a run down. They called me the next day- my doctor said my cholesterol was CRAZY high and my HbA1c was 22- apparently that is the highest A1c that whole team of doctors had ever seen. She told me if I didn't do something NOW- I would have a heart attack and be dead before I was 27. You could say that scared me. I began to take my responsibility towards my health serious. My body went into "after shocks"  of my 2 years of rebellion. Basically, my organs started shutting down because of the severe nerve damage my high blood sugars had caused. For 2 years I spiraled down hill faster than any doctor could catch me. I dropped down to 59 pounds, I couldn't eat, was in so much severe pain- no drug seemed to help. After 21 months of starring death in the face- my team of doctors told me I had spiraled into a wasting syndrome- and if we couldn't get ahead of it- they gave me 2 weeks to live. I remember looking in the mirror and for the first time in my life- I saw myself as sickeningly thin- I could count and see every bone in my body and looked like death- I decided at that moment- I wanted to live. It took a lot of fighting for another 6 months- but I made it!
Sometimes I feel like I'm in a desert with tumbleweeds rolling past me. I can honestly say- I don't know exactly what my purpose/job/calling is (outside of wife/mother/Christan)- and I think that is very sad at almost 37 years old. But,  I KNOW, that I KNOW, that I KNOW it MUST be something for someone- the circumstances I talked about above tells me that. My Daddy GOD has brought me and sustained me many times for me not to have a BIG purpose! I must be here for something bigger than myself- and I'm still determined to rediscover exactly what that is.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Jeremiah 29:11

I am TERRIFIED of failure and rejection! Not an easy thing for me to admit, considering I'm a bit of a perfectionist and these fears paint me as much less than perfect. It's so silly, really, as if anyone truly thinks I'm perfect- so why do I try so hard to present myself that way?
Considering these fears of failure and rejection- I am writing a blog ONLINE for people to read- I must be crazy! The things that run through my head are absurd (everyone should be so thankful they can't see what really goes on in there)- "What will people be thinking", "What if noone reads it, or even cares when they do", "What if they don't like it", "What if they figure out I'm not really who they think I am/was"!!?? See, Absurd! 
SO, I am proud of myself! I decided- I DON'T CARE! See, this isn't about anyone else but ME! If someone comes across it and decides they want to read it, that's great- if not, I have a great outlet to journal 'out loud' and learn something and heal while I do it. If it helps someone, then it went beyond "me" and I'm thankful.
Just a little disclaimer before I go any further- I'm not a writer or journalist (that would be just one of the talents of my older sister, Tara)- and I have a tendency to ramble, AND I love to talk. Which means one of two things- this could be very comical and entertaining or a train wreck! My main objective is to rediscover my gifts/talents/skills and how to use them effectively in my life and others, honoring God in it all. 
I know God's given me abilities and I use to jump and get so excited at any opportunity to use them- and somewhere those things were lost and crushed. I've begun to question if I'm truly talented at anything and usually wonder if I have anything to offer anyone anymore. One of my favorite scriptures has always been Jeremiah 29:11, "For I Know The Plans I Have For You, says The Lord- Plans to Prosper and Not Harm You, Plans To Give You A Hope and A Future". This is a scripture, that in the past 6 months, I have held onto with everything in my being, like a lifeline- and not just for me- but for my Wonderful Husband and Children. There are many times in my life when I questioned not only this verse but My God (believe me, I'll be writing about it) - and that's when I HAD to adopt the quote, "When You Don't Understand- TRUST". Because, if I don't have my God to hold on to and to hold me up- what do I have?