I am almost 100 percent sure that finding out I was ill made me the most humble person in the world. I am a powerful personality. I am not quiet, I am not timid. I believe in being honest and straight forward in my relationships. I have been known as unshakeable. That is until I was shaken, It took a lot to accept the limitations that came with chronic illness. I was actually shocked at first. I couldn't do very much for myself after my first flare or attack. I had to submit and surrender who I use to be and accept help from many different places. Places I never imagined. I was a winner before I got sick, what was I now?
So let me explain it like this. You go to bed fully functioning and every body part moves freely and without any pain. You go to bed praying thankfully for today and hoping joyfully for tomorrow. The alarm clock goes off and you look over and think "I better get up, I have a lot to do." So you pull the covers off and you go to put your feet on the floor into your house shoes and nothing happens. When I say nothing, I mean your toes, your feet, your legs, don't move. At first you think you are still asleep. So you close your eyes and lay back. After a few more attempts to move you realize exactly what is going on.
Now imagine that. You can go to bed and wake up with a headache. You can go to bed and wake up with a pain or two. But when you wake up and can't move your legs. There is a fear that runs through you like water. You cannot imagine what or why this is happening. And even though you have been told this was possible you can't believe it's happening to you. What do you do? What do you say? How can you come back from this?
This is the reality of illness for many of us. It's a surprise to wake up differently than you went to sleep. This is our reality. It's scary. But it's reality. So we learn that taking things for granted. Even the simplest thing. Can be a mistake. So I'm sitting in the bed waiting for God to answer prayers and perform miracles. This could not be happening to me!
We are so sure that the horror stories of paralysis and total disability are just stories. We do not comprehend it when those stories become our truth. It's painful and it changes you. It takes the boldness and the strength you had the night before and turns it into being humble and afraid. Now I must admit. Those emotions are temporary. If the situation is temporary. We are fearful through each doctor's appointment, each therapy session, each moment that reminds us that our bodies hav e turned on us.
I would be a liar if I said that chronic illness is a breeze. If I said I have it all figured out. If I said you will be the same eventually. Those things aren't true. You will be stronger and more understanding. You will be more conscious of the possibilities that you never thought of. You will be humble. And when the paralysis goes away, you will be ecstatic. Even with the residual effects of the illness, you will be better!
So I just want to encourage you that whatever stage of illness you are in. Whatever circumstances you are dealing with right now. Depression, mourning, pain, illness. These things come to strengthen you. To remind you of how Powerful and how faithful you are. It was through my brokenness that I recognized I was whole.
I know we all endure scary moments and scary situations. I know we will come against obstacles that we are sure will be the end of us. Only to come out renewed and restored. I am not psychic. I am not predicting anyone's future. I am sharing my story. Because I know what it feels like to be awakened by the the things we least expect. The thing we are least prepared for.
And in the end, we can remind someone else that we looked our fear in the face. With a humble heart and a faithful mind. We weren't prepared for this. Nobody is. But we are going to endure like the turtle against the rabbit,....we will win.