I’ve been a mess. My body is so broken. The decade-plus of Lyme disease, the constant assault on my body, has been showing more and more the longer I live with the active bacterial infection in my body and brain. I now have an ulcer from the years of Excedrine Migraine use for the migraines that started when I got infected with Lyme. I had no idea it was a potential ulcer risk, taking that medication essentially, weekly. My back and neck are hurting. I have widespread pain, joint pain, and fatigue.
I’m doing what I can to correct these issues. I’m on a bland ulcer diet, pretty aggressive ulcer healing protocol with my naturopath, new migraine medicine from the doctor, and am going to see a chiropractor for my back and neck issues. I’m also dairy-free now, due to a diagnosed allergy. I’ve cut out all fast food, all pop, and all bad snacking.
Even with the changes I’m making, I’m still sick and will always be so, unless a cure is found, or God heals me. And I’m pretty okay with that. I’ve accepted that this disease, and everything it’s done to me, is complex and not easily healed. And that really is okay. Because one day I will have a perfect body. One day I’ll stand face-to-face with Jesus without any pain or limitations. And until then, I will continue pushing through, walking with my boys even when the pain almost takes my breath away, playing ball when I would rather be in bed, and snuggle my husband when my head is pounding.
I will continue showing up because this one beautiful life on earth is the only beautiful life on earth I’ll get. Broken or not, my body is blessed and beautiful and I honor its resilience and power and strength. One day, this body will give out. I pray that won’t happen until I’m very old and have lived a long, lovely life. So, for as long as I can, I will push through the pain – and when the pain is too great, I’ll rest and I’ll be okay with that, too.
I walked with my kids. We laughed, made faces, took pictures, and made memories. One day, I’ll look back at these pictures and not even remember the horrible pain I felt that night walking with my children. I’ll only remember the good of that night. And that is why I keep showing up. Because the pain won’t be remembered. The broken body won’t matter. It’s the memory we made that will matter, be remembered, and bring me great joy.
I encourage you, if you are living with chronic pain, chronic illness, chronic fatigue, or chronic anything – don’t let it win in your life. Take it easy, yes. Bless your heart, please rest and don’t feel guilty if you need to check out for the day because it’s just too much. Just don’t stay down forever. Whether you can walk with your children or all you can do is sit in bed with your kids while they color or watch a movie with you…make some sweet memories, and spit in the face of the disease trying to rob you of your quality of life. Hang in, don’t let it win.
God loves you, and He is for you, and He is with you, and that is where you can draw your strength from. A supernatural strength you never knew you could have before getting sick. The hope found in Christ will surprise you, it’ll walk with you, and carry you when you fall. And before you realize it, your perspective will change. Your attitude will become light and bright and glow with the love of Jesus. And none of this means life will become easier. None of this means you will walk free from illness, although I pray that for you. However, all of it will guide you through your special circumstance in life with love, and joy, and perspective, and strength.
In the end, please know, you’re seen, you’re loved, and you’re stronger than you may realize. And disease doesn’t have to win in your life.