RSS

Monthly Archives: November 2009

I didn’t know my own strength

I just watched Whitney Houstan perform her song “I didn’t know my own strength” on the 2009 AMA awards.  Wow….this song struck me deep.  If you don’t know her story, look it up.  In brief, she has been an amazing superstar, made mistakes, hit rock bottom, and has found her strength anew to keep living and doing what God has given her to do. 

I’ve been there.  So many times I have hit a point where I didn’t know where I was going to get the strength to live again, to breathe again.  But each time I have found myself there, I have also found a resevoir of strength that I truly didn’t know about.

I’ve been struck down.

I’ve been beat up.

I’ve been crushed.

I’ve been torn.

I’ve been silenced.

I’ve been tested.

I’ve been all these things, and much, much more.

The people around me tell me that I have such an amazing depth of strength within me.  They say that I will get through this current trial, and any more that life throws at me.

Truly, I never knew I was this strong.  I never knew that I COULD survive.  Sometimes each day was a struggle just to live, and yet I never let go.  I never knew the wells that run deep within me, that God specifically made for me to tap into in times of need.  I never knew the strength that he gave me.  I never knew my own strength.

This Crohn’s thing knocked me down for a couple of days.  I have always been strong physically and health-wise.  But now, I was faced with not being strong like I was.  Those closest to me said, “No Pam, you are STILL strong.  You will STILL be strong tomorrow.  You are the SAME strong person you were before this diagnosis.” 

Yes, I am strong.  But I am only strong because HE has made me so.

I didn’t know my own strength, in My God.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 30, 2009 in Crohn's Journal

 

Turkey!

Yes, this is about Thanksgiving.  But, also, have you ever felt like a turkey?  Maybe it’s kinda like my post about being a hamster.  A turkey just runs around, gobbling it’s head off, but really not getting anywhere.  Sometimes I do feel like a turkey.  Sometimes with this diet and food and Crohn’s it feels like I’m a turkey.  I do the same thing, day after day, and wonder how this could have happened.

Oh, the pizza looked so good last night that my daughter made!  All of the things I used to eat and love.  Ugh!!!  That’s just where it gets tough….knowing I can’t eat like I used to.

On the bright side though, I’ve lost 17 pounds!  I have tried and tried and tried everything I could think of to lose this weight for the past 5 years, and nothing happened.  Now, it’s just melting away!  I asked Mark the other night if he would like me as a 5’4 130ish pound blond, and I think his response was a yes.  🙂  I’m not sure if I’ll get down to that, and I hope I don’t go past that with Crohn’s complications.  But for right now, I will be THANKFUL for the weight loss!

Well, I am off for a few days for Thanksgiving.  Not sure if I’ll be able to post, but I’ll catch up on Monday. 

Have a great day of Giving Thanks, and don’t forget to the thank the One who gave it all to you!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 25, 2009 in Crohn's Journal

 

Hamster

Ever have one of those days where you feel like you are just running, and running, and running?  I’m not sure if that was my day, but I did feel some of those “yo-yo” things today.  The main one was with the doctor.  Grrrrr……

I got the files from the doctor, and it really made me mad!  It was pretty clear (at least to me) that he was just patronizing me in our visit, and that he really puts no credibility in natural ways to help Crohn’s.  He called me “naive” and said that sure I can try to control this with diet, but in 6 months when I come back I’ll be put on drugs anyway, REGARDLESS if I am in remission or not.

Excuse me???  So, even if I am able to make the Crohn’s symptoms get better through diet and supplements, you will STLL want me to go on drugs???  And WHY is that???

Doesn’t make sense to me.  Eventually drugs…probably yes.  Right now?  Not on your life.  There are to many questions yet that need to be addressed before I start plugging my body with drugs.

But, even though I REALLY might want to respond to the comments, I decided I should resist.  Conviction time.  Is that truly what Jesus would do?  Is that a good example.  Sigh….

No, it’s not.  We’ll read the files and then go from there.  In the meantime, the hamster wheel continues.  The info from the doctor made me sad and angry, both things not good for my gut.  It’s acting up a bit today.  Not sure what’s going on, but I have faith in My God, My Jesus, and The Holy Spirit to work through this. 

AMEN!!!!!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 24, 2009 in Crohn's Journal

 

A harder day

I’ve been feeling pretty good lately, but today I had some sparks of pain that were not that bad, but were worse than what I’ve experienced so far.  Let me put it this way….it’s what I used to experience every so often, but it’s just been a while.  When it happens, it literally feels like an electric spark shoots into my side, for just a quick second.  I was putzing around the house cleaning when they started.  I began to get discouraged, and was down that path, when I rememberd the tools available to me.  So, as I was cleaning, I just spoke out loud the promises of God that I knew.  Anything and everything I could remember, I said it and believed it.  I’m not sure what’s going on inside of me, but I do know this…it’s been 6 hours since the last spark of pain, when I was speaking words of truth, life, and health over me.

Hmmm….yes, there is power in God’s words.

On another note…I’m still on the chicken broth, keifer, and goat’s milk yogurt.  I honestly don’t mind eating these things.  They are very mild, and fill me up.  I also feel like I have enough energy to get through the day.  I even put my coffee maker away today, knowing that I won’t need it for a while and that, honestly, I don’t need it right now!

Cool, I think…..

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 23, 2009 in Crohn's Journal

 

God will provide

Oh, I had fun tonight!  A friend down the street was having a Bunco party, and invited me and another neighbor to come.  I had played bunco once before, but had forgotten really what it was all about.  We sat, all 13 of us ladies, for 2 hours playing this great game.  It was loud, it was fast, and it was a blast!  I did pretty good with all the food that was there.  This time, I actually looked at it.  I wasn’t tempted, but had a twinge of sorrow that I couldn’t yet have any.  I also missed not being able to have just one glass of wine.  Not that I needed to drink in excess, but every now and then I do like that.  That one, along with my coffee, I miss.  But, even so, I didn’t need the drinks to have a blast.  It was just so much fun to share the evening with a bunch of ladies playing a game.

The greatest part though was at the end.  You see, things are tight financially for us right now.  This diagnosis of Crohn’s couldn’t have come at a worse spot.  Looking into the future, I really have no idea how I will afford the supplements I want to take for the next 6 months.  That’s another spot that would just be easier if I was on drugs….at least they would be partially paid for by my insurance.  But because I have chosen this route for right now, the finances weigh on me at times.  My friend told me to look at it this way:  just like someone who needs medicine to survive, I now need these meds and certain foods that I normally would not get.  But without them, I will certainly decline health-wise, and that will affect my family as well.  So, I bite the bullet, buy the things I need, and I trust God for the rest.

But that’s the cool part.  Yesterday at the store I wanted to buy a blender because ours broke, and I make smoothies for myself and kids a lot.  I found one for $20, which was what I wanted to pay.  As I was checking out I asked the clerk if she had a coupon that might take some off of the blender, and she said yes, and that it was 10%.  She then said “how about this coupon?”  I replied that I didn’t think it worked with what I was buying, but she tried it anyway, and saved me another $5 when I shouldn’t have been able to do that!  At that moment I knew God was telling me, “don’t worry my child.  This is just a small thing, but I’ve got you covered, on it all!”  I truly felt his hand of blessing on me.

And then tonight at Bunco, I didn’t realize we had to pay $10 to play.  I couldn’t back out at the last-minute, so I reached in my pocket and pulled out a 10.  If I would have known it was going to cost me to play I likely would not have come.  But at the end of the night the hostess asked for who had one the most games, and that happened to be me.  She then gave me $30 as a prize for that.  I felt so blessed!  But, God wasn’t done with me yet!  They then went on to ask for the most “bunco’s” of which I had 4, along with 2 other ladies.  To determine who won we had a roll-off, and I got the highest number.  The prize?  $50!!!!  I walked in not knowing I had to pay anything and walked out with $70 more in my pocket! 

It was just another sweet reminder that though I don’t know how all this will turn out, My God does, and he will not fail me.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 22, 2009 in Crohn's Journal

 

A good day…

Today was pretty good.  I kept myself busy, which always helps!  That way my brain doesn’t have time to catch up.  🙂  But even physically, it was a good day.  Not much pain at all.  I”m wondering…is the diet actually making a difference?  The soup I’ve been eating this whole week has lots of things in it that are good for inflammation.  Hmmm…maybe? 

I keep being told how strong I am.  That amazes me, but doesn’t amaze me.  I guess it’s just God reaffirming what he has formed in me….a deep inner strength.  I know that it will be that strength that gets me through.  And not a strength that relys on my phsical body, but even more than ever, on HIS strength.

What’s that old song?  “His strength is perfect, when our strength is gone.  He’ll carry us when we can’t carry on”

Oh yes!  I am believing for His strength in my life.  I will claim it tonight in my life!

I will believe….

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 21, 2009 in Crohn's Journal

 

Catching up

The following were written from Tuesday to Thursday of this past week.  I thought it was important to include them as it shows where I was, so that you can understand where I am now, and how I got here.

Tuesday night, 11:00 pm

crying again tonight.  i know it will be okay.  this is the toughest test yet.  i know how strong i became through the last one.  i know it will be okay.  the hardest is the doubts that are already coming regarding if i’m doing the right thing by not doing the drugs.  i feel so weak…..i know it will be okay.  god wants me to lean into his strength.  i know i will be okay.  now i just have to believe it to the depths of my heart.  crying again….off to bed…..me
 
Wednesday
 
This past 24 hours has been pretty rough.  We went to see the doctor and I was able to see my reports and actually see the pictures.  After that is when it sank in that I actually have a life-long illness.  Last night I tried to go to sleep, but just couldn’t.  I was anxious, crying, and just didn’t know what to do.  I emailed some friends, and their letters of support just made me cry more.  I stomped my foot, I’m sure,  a few times and asked God why this would happen to me.  It was so hard for me to understand how someone like ME could come down with this disease.  When I couldn’t sleep last night I turned the stove on to get the family room warm, and then I finally decided I must go to sleep and try to rest.  As I lay my head down, I knew I needed to stop my thoughts so Icould sleep, and so my stomach would calm down.  So, I started to recite in my mind the promises in God’s word.  I told myself that I was chosen, accepted, a Child of the Most HIgh God, that he dances over me, that he has a plan for me, He knew me before I was ever even a twinkle in my parents eye, that he rejoices over me, that I can rest under his wing, and hide behind his Rock.  As I fell asleep, those were the words on my lips, and on my heart.
 
This morning was still rough though.  I feel right now almost in a haze.  I walk around not really knowing what I’m doing.  My stomach aches a dull ache beneath the ribs.  But I am thankful that I do not have debilitating pain. 
 
I did realize some things today though.  First, that this test and refining process is the toughest I have gone through yet.  With my personality, it would be so easy to just take the pills and be done with it.  I always have in the back of my brain the thought that relief is just a phone call away, and of course the enemy is going to torture me by saying, “just make the call!”  But, I truly want to do this, at least partially, without drugs.  If I went straight for them I would use them as a crutch, and would not fully invest myself in the healthy eating I know I need to do.  But this journey is the harder path.  I need to be dedicated to following it through, and not go for the quick fix.  I also realized that God is drawing me deeper.  I felt it a month ago, I just didn’t realize this was how he would do it.  I also know that he would not put me through this if he didn’t already know that I would be okay.  3 years ago if this would have come upon me, I would have faltered, and been crushed beneath the weight of it.  As it is, my faith is not shaken, but my branches are swaying a bit. 
 
I think the biggest realization that came out of today was that I am in a grieving process.  I have always stood by and been proud of my health,  That I could be healthy when everyone around me was sick.  That physically, I was strong.  And now, to know that my body is failing me, is  a tough pill to swallow.  But, God is taking the one thing I know I am strong in, and he is peeling that away.  He is slowly teaching me to again be dependant on him, and not on my own strength.
 
So, I know that in the end it will all work out just fine.  I know that I will be so much better off.
 
But this first part in kinda like stepping in a really hot hot tub.  At first it feels like it’s burning you, but pretty soon you relax and enjoy the benefit.  It’s tough right now as I let go of my physical health.  As I go into the rest of my life with uncertainty about my health.  And of course, this makes me prone to fits of uncontrolled blubbering and crying!  🙂  But think about the grieving process.  You go through that time of loss, where you miss deeply the thing that is now gone.  But eventually, you pick yourself up and life goes on.  Yes, I am grieving.  Our human natures get comfortable with where we are, and when God draws us deeper and strips away what we were so comfortable with, of course it will hurt.  But we cannot fully become more Christ-like if we continue to hang onto what WE are so comfortable with.

I am so thankful for my friends as I go through this.  It is times like these that I need those people to lift me up in prayer and encouragement. 
 
I know my God has a plan to prosper me, and not to harm me.  He  will be glorified through this. 
 
I guess I am honored that he feels I am worthy of this task.

Just give me strength right now Lord, as I go through this grieving.

Thurdsay
 
Today has been better.  My friends are surrounding me in love and prayers, and it helps!  I still had fits of crying and blubbering today, but in this grieving process, I understand.  I had a short burst of pain tonight that was intersting.  Again, it felt like the ones I’ve always had, and assumed it was my ovaries.  Maybe all these years it was a short flare-up?  Hmmm…..
 
I have joined a few forums, because I feel I need a place to talk with people who suffer from the same thing.  I still don’t know what my final path will be.  This disease, when you start to read what other people have gone through, is kinda scary.  I’m trying not to put much credence in all those stories, but they are from real people suffering from Crohn’s.  I pray that my life will continue on in health for many years.  Though, at times, I feel the old saying float back in my brain….”Today would be a good day for the Rapture.”  Yes, that thought used to get me, but now it’s just like an annoying bug that I swat away.  🙂  The journey ahead is long, and it seems very tough.  I know I will survive because of My God who will carry me. 
 
I slept for two hours, not moving, on my chair today!  Oh, I felt so refreshed after that.  My body and spirit are weak right now.  I could barely keep my eyes open this morning while reading my bible.  I feel right now a twinge in my lower right ab.  I wonder truly, is it the inflammation, or the other stuff? 
 
I am praying for wisdom and strength.  I need both for the short term, right now, with what life is bringing at me.  I also need it for the long term.
 
I hope that it is God’s will for me to do this without meds.
 
I think my kids are starting to realize that things are different now.  In Laura’s prayers she prayed for my tummy, and how hard it is now that mommy can’t eat chocolate and yummy other things.
 
I know I will get there.  It will just take time.  This next year will be tough, but I have confidence in my God.

He WILL carry me through.

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 20, 2009 in Crohn's Journal