There are places we go inside ourselves when life disappoints us…lets us down…beats us up. When life is unbearable we explore different outlets so we can deal with it, we turn to apathy (dwelt there), we get angry (done that), we get depressed (yep), we pity ourselves (sigh, yes), we just give up on the future (totally). We can also dwell in the past reliving “the good times”, or dwell in regret, or (especially with myself) grieving lost years.
A chronic illness will eat away at you like nothing else can; It will eat your body, eat at your mind, eat your emotions, eat your relationships, eat your spiritual life. Unless you have lived in this reality it is hard to explain the devastation.
Before I continue on I must preempt by saying it is important to accept your illness and not be in denial. Denial is not a place of healing, and chronic Lyme is a disease that requires knowledge, understanding, and effort to fight. Now accepting your disease and embracing it as your identity are two different things. It is so easy when you feel so sick and weak, and in pain…and your mind is in a fog, and you are depressed, to simply fall into the pattern of being a sick person and accepting this as your new identity. I have been through this, and it made me miserable. Miserable because there is no room for hope or looking forward to healing.
If any kind of hope or joy sounds beyond what you are capable of right now PLEASE know that I understand, I had been in that place for such a long time, even up to just a matter of months ago. I also understand that until you get to a certain point in treatment it may not even be physically possible to hope because your mind and body are so down. But, if you can latch onto just a little bit of hope…just a smidgen of light, do it with all your strength. As important as the pills, the drops, the iv’s and everything else are to your healing, there does come a point when you have engage emotionally to the best of your ability with hope and positive emotion to get better.
For me the turning point was surrendering my grief and disappointment to God. I had been dwelling in a mindset of grief and disappointment for so many years that this had become my reality. I was creating for myself everyday a new day of grief. This is miserable! I can only say that it was God who pulled me out, I asked Him to change the mindset of my heart and that He would help me not close myself off from His truths, and He did! Now I must also say that I was about 10 months into Lyme treatment and my body and mind were getting close to a place where I could start moving forward better, but I couldn’t do it until God gave me a lift.
I am trying to share all this knowing how impossible it can be even to have the energy to even think about hoping. I know how low it gets.
There is grace for you in this place.
I pray for you today wherever you are. If you are in bed I pray you embrace that bed, own where your body is today, do something good for yourself, read encouraging scripture. If the Lyme won’t let you read maybe get an audio book. If the Lyme won’t let you pray with words just call out with your spirit, knowing that there is an Interceder.
Whatever you do, do not buy the lie of guilt that you are not diligent enough or cannot do enough. Your heart place is all that matters, so 100% of what you are today may only be 10% of what you feel you should be. Rest and do not worry for man looks at the outside while God looks at the heart.
If you cannot walk today embrace the crawl, own it, master it, because that is where you are today. Create an atmosphere of healing not of sickness. Take it, don’t let it take you.
And know that God is close to the brokenhearted and low in spirit. That is you, He is near.