Dreams

Do it again.

elevation worship, do it again, chasing dreams

Walking around these walls
I thought by now they’d fall
But You have never failed me yet
Waiting for change to come
Knowing the battle’s won
For You have never failed me yet

This is a post from my heart. It’s about chasing dreams. It’s about my hope and prayer to adopt. But it’s going to take a detour, like my life this year. I have thought long and hard about whether to write this specific post.

I decided to go for it because I believe I will see God’s grace and faithfulness {yet again} in my life, when someday, I have the family I’ve prayed for, for so long. My calling is not what I’m doing now. So with an eternal perspective, and the ministry God has for me, I’ll speak up regardless of what others may think.

Like someone I admire, who fearlessly talks about her own journey, I want to go first, so someone else can go second. It’s okay to admit life is really hard sometimes. Sometimes it feels really dark.

But I’m clinging to hope.

I know the night won’t last
Your Word will come to pass
My heart will sing Your praise again
Jesus You’re still enough

A few months ago, my rheumatologist, who I’ve seen since I moved back to NC, diagnosed me with rheumatoid arthritis. RA is not just achy joints or that thing old people get – just because they’re, well, old.

It’s an autoimmune disease which basically means that my immune system is overactive and instead of fighting off foreign invaders like viruses and such, it attacks . . . me {joints, connective tissues, etc.}.

I have dealt with autoimmune disease for about 14 years. Because of what my first rheumatologist did for me way back then, my health is so much better than it probably would’ve been. Science is cool, ya’ll.

But something changed last fall. By this spring, I was feeling worse than I ever have before. When I’ve dealt with joint or muscle pain in the past, I just plow through. I am busy at work. I plan and hold events and deal with challenging or stressful situations. For events, I do a lot of physical labor leading up to the day itself. That’s kind of just the tiny tip of the iceberg. I do not have time to be sick. I do not even freaking have the time for this.

In the past, when I’ve been in pain, no one knows – unless we’re talking about my Mom or maybe my closest couple of friends. You don’t see it. By spring, I was regularly limping because the pain was so bad in my knees and calves. Now it was being noticed. Questions were asked. My ability to hide how I was coping, slipped. I wasn’t coping. I don’t take pain meds so there is no covering it.

I was unhappy because I was miserable. It was seeping out everywhere. The people I love and adore most were probably ready to strangle me. Thankfully, those who have seen me through {you know who you are}, have been so incredibly patient.

My primary care and rheumatologist have run tons of tests. I have had more CT scans & MRI’s this year than I care to admit {and have the hospital bills to prove it}. I have given more blood than I want to think about.

My rheumatologist decided to put me on an immune suppressant this spring, that I self-inject every other week. For the first couple of months, I was feeling pretty good, especially compared to where I was. I not only had a reduction in pain, but I had more energy. That probably explains why I plowed through the final edits on my book.

I saw my doc in May and for the first time in ages, I had almost no pain in the week before seeing him {I have to record at appointments where I’ve had pain in the week I’ve seen him}. He said, “This is what remission feels like.” I was pretty excited and relieved.

And then, in the second week of June, it all went away. I had an event at work on the 23rd and I honestly don’t know how I made it through the day. For reals. I could barely walk for two days afterwards. I have been on a downward spiral ever since.

Many weekends, I’m in bed nearly all weekend. My days have been very challenging to get through. Saturday was busy – busier than I’ve been on a Saturday in a while. But that’s my definition. I got through one flea market visit before telling my Mom I couldn’t do any other shopping.

There is a cost. And I have to make choices.

I saw my rheumatologist on Friday.  The medication I was on, “failed.” What’s next? So we’re on to option three {number one was methotrexate}.

I’ll be waiting for approval from my insurance company. But once I get that, which I expect to, I’ll be going in for IV infusions every thirty-days. This is not the life I had planned. Though I have dealt with a body that sometimes hates me, this year changed everything and I suddenly saw limitations that broke me. Or at least that’s what it felt like.

I have not been super happy with life {haha}.

How am I going to chase after a toddler, or deal with crazy teenager antics (if I’m fostering) AND my crazy job, when I am barely making it through the day? How do I get up with an infant in the night when I am so exhausted? I have spent more of the last few months in bed than you would believe. I sometimes feel guilty about having this big house, when I don’t want to leave my bed.

How would I be a single parent, right now – under these circumstances? I went to Lowe’s a few times in the spring planning what plants I wanted for my patio. But outings like that, wipe me out. How can I possibly work full time, take care of everything in my personal life, and be a parent when I’m feeling this bad?

I’ve seen You move, You move the mountains
And I believe, I’ll see You do it again
You made a way, where there was no way
And I believe, I’ll see You do it again

I made choices in my professional life that didn’t win friends, to say the least.

I made choices at home and in my personal life.

I will be making more. And some of these will hurt.

When I speak of roadblocks, this would be the primary one. There are foster parents and adoptive parents {single parents included} who deal with health issues {including RA}. I follow them on social media. It’s possible.

But until I get a sense of what combination of things can put me in remission or help me manage better, everything else takes a backseat. It has to.

Pursuing an adoption is included, too. This hurts to type out and see these words on the screen.

I was made to be a mama.

I’ve seen You move, You move the mountains
And I believe, I’ll see You do it again

I think our physical health is more than just our literal physical health. What we put in our bodies, what we think and believe, and how we treat ourselves absolutely does impact our bodies. The stress I’ve had in my life in the last year, is unacceptable. This kind of stress takes its toll on your mind, body, and on those around you. I have not taken care of myself. And sadly, it’s all an inside job because I chose what I let impact me . . .

So in recent months, culminating the week before last week when I hit my absolute limit, I’ve come to the point where I’m focusing on the goal ahead. Everything else takes a back seat. Everything.

But even still, with a single-minded focus, my heart is weary. Waiting {well} is not a gift of mine. At 41, I’ve been doing it for a while {haha}.

So let me get this straight, God? You want me to wait some more? You’re joking, right? You want me to step out in faith, and then keep pushing through, when closed door after closed door is all I get?

Yes. The answer is yes.

The answer is yes.

God is a funny guy.

Saturday night I sat in church and was lost somewhere in the worship songs, we sang before the pastor started speaking. When we took communion and sang “Do It Again,” after the message, I was so grateful I went.

What is happening now is not the forever. And it’s certainly no match for the God who has given me life and salvation. It’s not who I am nor does it impact the actual calling on my life. It’s just a detour – not the end of the road.

I don’t know why things fall out in the way they do. I was feeling a little stir-crazy and frustrated this last week because I’m so tired of waiting. Everywhere I turn there’s more waiting.

But when I heard “Do It Again,” last night, I was reminded that He has gotten me through trials before. He’ll do it again.

People all around us face trials, sickness, loss, life-altering change, financial challenges, and so much more. So often many live without hope in the midst of the most difficult or painful circumstances.

But time and time again, I have seen Him do great things. He has done great things in my life. And I’ve seen it over and over in other’s lives, too. He’s never failed me yet. Even when things don’t happen like I thought they would.

He’s never failed me yet. My confidence is in Him and in His ability to do it yet again – to destroy the walls, to help me find what works, and to go into remission.

Someday, in His timing, I’m certain I will have that family I’ve waited and prayed for so long!

Are you facing a huge wall? A closed door? I’m going to keep working towards this thing. I hope you will too – whatever your thing is. Keep chasing it.

 

 

3 thoughts on “Do it again.”

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