Thursday, September 9, 2010

Turning Your Curse into a Blessing for Others

    Someday I know I will look back at my illness as one of my life's greatest blessings. Today I view it as preparation for the work God has in mind for me. It's been almost two years since I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia.  I realize how much I have learned about myself, my husband, my family and even other people.  One of the greatest difficulties is trying to figure out what works, what doesn't and what else I can try to remedy my situation. The other challenge is not letting the illness/syndrome define me as a person.
    I remember when I had my first child. I could take care of him, play with him, read, clean the house and not need a ton of sleep to feel human. Now some days just taking care of my three children can prove challenging. It's frustrating not understanding completely why joints and muscles ache or why I feel nauseated with a flu.
    My husband understands and is as sympathetic as he can be.  He helps with the dishes and the kids, among other helps here and there.  Since we homeschool that is a true blessing for me. My oh my, has he listened. I couldn't have asked for a better shoulder to lean on. My kids are learning as well. They are helpful and rather self-reliant for kids their age. I'm hoping if nothing else my children will become compassionate adults that will truly look out for others and lend a helping-hand. They are well on their way.
    When I was first diagnosed with the illness I tended to look for any and all solutions. I talked and talked about it. When I have a flare-up I still do. It's not that I am intentionally chewing your ear off, I am sorting out my thoughts aloud in hopes of finding another solution. My apologies for all that have willingly or unwillingly lent me their ears.
    The worst thing about fibromyalgia isn't the pain believe it or not. Rather it's knowing there isn't a cure, each case is unique as the person's body and chemistry is unique to them. I also at times despise the fact that what works for me today may not get me through tomorrow.
    I have changed my entire life to deal with this syndrome. My diet is different and at times difficult to maintain. My sleep patterns are all over the place. The experts say the best thing is to go to bed and rise the same time everyday. I'm working on it. However, when you're told you have chronic fatigue syndrome as well the outlook is rather bleak. I'm lucky if I sleep through the night. I even know if my family and I plan an outing I need my husband home the next day in case my body doesn't agree the day's activities. I plan on waking up stiff and having extremely sore muscles for the next day or two.
     The greatest change is God has allowed me to realize I am not supermom. I need Him more than anything else. I am a stronger person now and I continue to grow until I am with my Lord. Each year provides a new challenge or two and new growth opportunities. I plan on making the most of my issues. In time I hope my travails will help me assist and encourage others.  The worst thing anyone can do to themselves is to go at life alone. I pray God will use me in magnificent ways for his glory and kingdom.

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