Spring is full of life and beauty, color and the richness of memories formed. Spring has always been one of my favorite seasons of the year and there are so many gifts of spring that bring delight. It has been many springs now that I have felt the effects of the spring pollen and as the lovely blooms and blossoms come into view my limitations increase, my fatigue overwhelms and the enjoyment is faded and blurry.
It has been five years since my diagnosis.
It was Mother’s day morning. We had just come home from a lovely morning spoiled with love from my family and worship at church. I took a step into the house and I felt it, that strange, swelling feeling in my foot. I had felt it before, one of the strange symptoms that I had chalked up to allergic reactions of some sort. As the day went on, the swelling increased and I began to feel more unstable as I walked. I used the stroller as a walker to get to our dining destination and by bedtime I was feeling anxious. When I got up to use the restroom in the middle of the night I could barely manage the walk. I had to hold on to the walls for balance. I knew we had to do something.
It was Tuesday, the 15th of May that I wobbled my way into ER. The nurses took me back immediately. They knew it was serious. Every ounce of me knew it was too. Once they talked to the Neurologist he was sure it was M.S. After an MRI and spinal tap the diagnosis was confirmed. I have the auto immune disease, Multiple Sclerosis.
This diagnosis has a link to Mother’s Day and thus every year as Mother’s Day draws near I feel melancholy. I feel a sense of dread. It certainly is not the day itself that I do not like. I love Mother’s Day! I have a rock-awesome husband and kids and they always lavish me with love on this special day and I am so thankful to say that I have my mama, my stepmom and mother in law still with us. I am so thankful for that. And yet, there is a grieving renewed in me every time this season draws near.
The grieving is the loss of the life I once knew and the picture in my head of the life I was planning to have.
Grieving is healthy. It is healthy to mourn and be aware of the loss in your life. I am allowing myself the freedom to cry. I am allowing myself the freedom to wrestle with God just like Jacob did and David did over and over and over. It was in a similar season that David, the man after God’s own heart, had written to the Lord,
“My eye wastes away with grief, Yes, my soul and my body!
For my life is spent with grief, and my years with sighing;
My strength fails because of my iniquity, and my bones waste away……”
After wrestling with the Lord, speaking honesty and wholly with him, David says,
“But as for me, I trust in You, O Lord; I say, ‘You are my God’.
My times are in Your hand; deliver me……..
Oh, how great is Your goodness, Which You have laid up for those who fear you,
which You have prepared for those who trust in You…..
Blessed the Lord, For He has shown me kindness in a strong city!”
Have you grieved over your diagnosis?
Have you allowed yourself the freedom to grieve over circumstances that were out of your control and yet drastically effected your life and the ones you love?
Please do so. Please give yourself quiet with the Lord to mourn and grieve and to allow Him to speak peace to your soul, kindness to your heart and wrap His loving arms around you.
Your story may be different than what you planned or thought it would be but God is still present and still working your story for a greater good. History is His-story. You have been written into His story and even when this broken world tears apart our plans, God still has us in His hands. You are loved with an everlasting love.
Below are words from a beautiful sister/friend of mine. She wrote them on my Facebook page the week of my diagnosis while I was in the hospital. These are for you too.
“… They say you have had this “condition” for many years. But, through all of those years you were unaware of it. And through all those same years you were labeled “Blessed” by God himself. Dear one, I am here to say, that nothing has changed. You are still labeled BLESSED! That is how you are known by all. You are not labeled by a medical term. You are Blessed. All that has happened is that something was exposed for God’s glory. His banner waves over you. He sings songs over you. He rejoices over you. Just as He did a week ago. A month ago. A year ago. Just as He will continue to. Love you.”