Tuesday, July 3, 2018

God Speaks, Learn to Listen and Understand

I've known faithful people, people that want proof of God's existence, as well as those that just don't believe at all and think those who do are foolish.

Even Einstein, who atheists claim was one also, was known to have said, you can't study science, and all that it encompasses without seeing the order and knowing that there is something out there larger than ourselves that created it.  I'm paraphrasing, because I don't know the exact quote, but the point is, he believed in something greater than ourselves and has often been hailed as one of the best and brightest minds on this earth, certainly no fool.

God speaks to us and THROUGH us.  He may do so daily, but we are not always attuned to his voice.  This may be something as simple as a beautiful flower that strikes us speechless by it's beauty, the cry of a child calling to our hearts, seeing someone's unfailing kindness to others, or something more complex such as sending one of his messengers to us with a message or instruction.  Our trials, or hurts may well be the thing that brings another to his side, and helps someone find their faith.  While trials are painful, they are what builds us up, tests our faith, and brings us closer to God, because we must lean on Him for His strength when we have spent our own.

This is a testament of one of the trials I've had in my life, and how God has spoken to me throughout this trial.  When I was a little girl, I told my mother I'd have hundreds of children.  When she told me I would have to be married, I told her no, I could simply buy an orphanage and adopt all the little children.  I think I must have been 6 or 7 when the issue of prayer and answers came up.  I don't recall if I'd asked, or how this happened to be perfectly honest.  But my mother, wise as she was, told me, if you ask God something, He will answer you.  Then she went on to explain that the bible sometimes holds these answers.  So, me being the curious child I was, went to my room, and said God, will I have children?  I then opened my bible, and my eyes fell on Genesis 11:30, where it explained that Sarai, later Sarah, didn't have children because she was barren.

Life moved forward from there, and I eventually got married, I think I was 21 going on 22.  I hoped for, and wanted to have a child.  I got frustrated at seeing other women, both good and not so good, easily becoming pregnant, and thinking, I'd be a great mom, why not me?  I even had a co worker that had had several abortions because she was irresponsible, unmarried, young and not ready for motherhood.  She went from man to man, I'm not sure what she was seeking, but she often forgot her birth control, resulting in traumatic results for her.  On one such occasion, she opened up to me and told me, she wouldn't be here if not for her own mother's decision to get off the abortion table, and follow through with her own pregnancy.  I can not imagine the difficulty knowing you were nearly aborted, and having to decide to have one of your own.  While I think there are many other decisions she could have made, the decision was hers, but very upsetting to me none the less.  Here I was, married, wanting a child and watching this woman abort a child she didn't ever want.

As you can imagine, this led to some anger on my part.  I wasn't angry at her, I was mad as hell at God.  It eventually led to me having a screaming match (one sided of course) and uttering something along the lines of what the hell God?  Can't I even GET pregnant?  My mother had cautioned me to be careful of how and what you asked God because He will surely answer you.  I did, in fact, get pregnant after this query.  I had nightmares that I was pregnant and that I was fighting for the life of my child.  I had pregnancy tests that were negative but I knew I was pregnant.  I asked the doctors to please do a pelvic exam to confirm, and once confirmed to help with the proper hormones to assist in the pregnancy as my body was not making them on it's own.  Since I was active duty military at the time, I was told, fortunately NOT by one of the doctors I worked with, that if I were a dependant, rather than the military person, they'd have to honor my request for a pelvic exam, but since I was, they didn't feel like it, and refused to do it.  Less than a week later, I was bleeding profusely, and felt weak, tired, like passing out etc.  I went to one of the doctors I worked with, and he confirmed I was having a miscarriage.  I was heart broken.  I cried and cried for days.

I had been attending a very small church.  So small that there was little special music, and when I'd started going, the preacher did everything.  He did the preaching, special music, visitation etc.  There were few younger people in the congregation, and I'd been a little hesitant to offer to help with the special music, because I thought, maybe he just LIKES to do it all.  I had finally offered, and he accepted, so we changed off every other week, and that way he could still bring his gift too, and some of the weight could be lifted from him to me....if it was in fact a weight.  I would ask what his upcoming sermon was, and try to have something prepared that went along with it, to help solidify his message.  I was fortunate, that one lady in the church was willing to help with the music for me, as she already did most of the organ and piano pieces for the hymns, and I'd go to practice with her in her home.

The week that my miscarriage occured, it was my turn to bring the special music.  I'd chosen My Tribute....Lyrics to follow:

[Verse:]
How can I say thanks
For the things You have done for me?
Things so undeserved
Yet You gave to prove Your love for me;
The voices of a million angels
Could not express my gratitude
All that I am and ever hope to be
I owe it all to Thee

[Chorus 1:]
To God be the glory
To God be the glory
To God be the glory
For the things He has done

[Chorus 2:]
With His blood He has saved me
With His power He has raised me;
To God be the glory
For the things He has done

[Bridge:]
Just let me live my life
Let it pleasing, Lord to Thee
And if I gain any praise
Let it go to Calvary

I didn't want to go back on the arrangement with the minister, and also it was something that occured on Thursday of that week, not giving him much time to prepare, so I steeled myself to go through with singing that Sunday, and bolstered myself as much as I could, trying to make sure I was well enough.  Sunday came, I was still reeling from what had happened, and my part in it, but when it was time for the special music, I marched to the front of the church, and took my place, doing my usual silent prayer that God allow Him and his angels to be heard through me, so others could see Him.  I sang all the way through the first time without so much as a sob or stutter.  Half way through the second time, I began to weep while singing, but my voice stayed true.  I watched as nearly every face was covered with tears, and they didn't even know why they were crying.  I ended up having to ask Betty Herzog to please stop playing because I had something to say to the congregation near the end of the second run through.

I can't remember exactly what I said, but it was something like, I needed to explain to everyone, exactly why I was weeping, and why they in turn were weeping with me.  I told them about my question to God, and how he answered me, "Yes, I am the Lord thy God and I can do all things. I can touch a barren body and make it pregnant, but this is not my plan for you."  And so, I became pregnant and had a miscarriage as an answer to my prayer, even through my anger, He answered me.  I told them, God is great, he will answer you, but be careful in how and what you ask, because the answer you receive might not be the one you want, or how you may think you will be answered.  Sometimes the answer is very hard to take, and sometimes it's no, but hearing Him, and understanding His answer is the difficult part.  Accepting that His answer is sometimes no might be hard, but thank Him, because He took the time to answer.  We have to open our hearts to hear and understand, even if we don't know the plan for us, but we have to believe that there IS in fact a plan.

That week, we'd had a new face, who came to church with her friend.  A teenage girl.  After she left, she was in a very serious car accident, which ended up with her in the hospital in critical condition.  She very nearly died, but pulled through.  I guess she'd asked our minister to visit with her, and ended up choosing to become a christian while she was in the hospital.  I knew nothing of this, until a few weeks later, when she and her whole family came to church, and she approached me, to thank me for my bravery to share my story, because my faith and love of God through a traumatic event was what made her realize His greatness, and if I could have unwaivering faith through what had happened to me, she knew He was there, and cared for us, because He answered my prayer even if the answer was to have this experience.

The story goes on, with me still trying to go to fertility clinics a few years later, for a few years, before fully accepting that in MY case, God does not help those who help themselves in ALL cases.  His plan for me I don't know, but fertility clinic was useless to me.  It took me MANY MANY years to finally come to terms with, not having a baby doesn't make me less of a woman.  It doesn't make me less worthy of love from a husband.  There are a whole lot of life lessons you have to learn when you're unable to do what seems to come so naturally and easily for so many out there.  One of which is, that it's not my place to judge, regardless of how undeserving someone may seem be to have the joy of having a child.  Their lessons are different from mine, and it's up to them to learn them.  I can't tell them what they are to learn from their experience, because I can't fathom what it is that God is trying to speak in their ears and hearts.

Over 25 years later, I received a message in the moment between sleeping and waking.  I'd accepted that I wouldn't have children, and had not hoped for a long while.  While I was waking, I heard a voice say to me, "if you want a child, try next month."  I woke confused and really baffled.  This wasn't something I'd longed for, it wasn't something I'd dreamed of, since it wasn't my path to take.  Here, I was told to try and have a child.  This was in May.  All during the month of June I tried actively to conceive.  Yesterday, I began to spot, and today I'm bleeding profusely.  I'm not sure if this is a miscarriage, or the beginning of menopause, but I did as I was instructed.  It's a week too soon for my lady time, so I'm thinking this may be a miscarriage.

What is the message here?  I'm not completely certain, perhaps it is a test of faith, will I follow God's instruction?  I've heard His answers in other things not pertaining to this in other issues.  I'm at an age where a woman should not be looking at having her first child, had I carried 9 months, I'd be looking at being nearly 70 when my child graduated from high school, which, believe me I'd considered and was not thrilled with.  But, the way I was initially told, reminded me of the story of Sarah and Abraham, how they were in their old age, past the time she should be bearing a child, and yet a child was born.  When she heard this, she laughed, and God asked, why did you laugh, which she then denied out of fear.  I was told to try, I was not told it would be a fruitful endeavor.  The purpose of this, is still a mystery to me, but I guess it will be revealed in it's own time.  It's a bit hurtful that for a second time in my life, I think I'm undergoing a miscarriage, but I'm sure there is a purpose in even this.  Perhaps the message was simply to prepare me for my upcoming menopausal state.  Perhaps there is a greater message that will be revealed at a later time.  All I can say for certain is, I was given a message, I followed the instructions in that message.

I can only hope, that through me, others may come to be able to hear His voice, and follow His instructions, whereever they may lead you.

Friday, April 13, 2018

ER

The other day I went to the er because I was having some severe abdominal pain.

I know I've had a history of an occasional diverticulitis flair up, with the timing, I thought that this was just my normal flu feeling when I get my lady time, but it just kept getting worse.  Finally, I called the on call nurse at the VA to see what they suggest, if waiting was ok, or if I should go to the ER and ofc they sent me to the er.  My mom and dad took me, for which I'm grateful, as I'm not sure how driving would have gone since I was having some awful pains.  A CT scan was done, and that confirmed that it was diverticulitis flairing up and not my normal, cyst pain or my lady time being poopy with the allergic stuff that happens to me with that.

I had a call from the doctor today, she'd had her staff call yesterday to confirm and set a phone appointment to discuss my results and any future testing that needs done.  She called much earlier than expected, and now I guess I can see why she wanted to get the call done.  I went to the ER for ONE problem, and she added about 5 more things to the list of things wrong with me.  I'm getting pretty sick and tired of my health declining and more problems arising, rather than treatment helping and making me better and removing or decreasing issues.  I mean COME ON!!!  The list is already long enough, did it REALLY need to get longer?

At any rate, this is what she said.  I need more mri's, ct scans, pelvic ultra sound, follow up on other stuff in a year, because......(deep breath)  I have something going on with my fallopian tubes again, a cyst on one ovary 9cm, other 4 cm, which I knew I had PCOD so that wasn't SO shocking.  But there's something in a lung lower lobe, that's the follow up in a yr cause it's apparently NOT a danger zone thing....not sure what that means or why, but ok I can live with that.  My colon is about half way riddled with the diverticulitis, so that's pretty severe but nothing ruptured so that's good.  They see what they think are fibroids in my uterus, which I guess we'll confirm at some point....not sure what that means either.  And MOST disturbing of all, apparently I have some growths on my adrenal glands that they can't determine if they're benign or not at the moment.  I think that's all she said, but I'm not a happy camper at the moment.

I've spent half the day crying or fighting tears, because it's just so damn frustrating to have MORE and MORE things diagnosed with what seems EVERY time something goes wrong with my health.  I never really got sick as a kid, mom used to take me from school sometimes so I would have a break and take me shopping so I wouldn't get too overwhelmed with my class load since I took some pretty tough classes.  I went from a relatively healthy young person with a minor scoliosis curve, to a mass of stupid medical issues that seem to be growing exponentially, and out of control.  The list is just too long now and just seems to not have the greatest prognosis when you think of all the issues......it also seems that if I were just chopped in half I'd be mostly ok, because most of the things seem to be from the waist down.  Well, except for the migraines, schermann's disease, scoliosis, and the endocrine bits.

Either way, figured it was time to let people know how things stand at the moment.

Monday, December 18, 2017

Christmas Coloring Book

This book was one I'd gotten several years ago as gifts for family, but ended up with an extra.

Vive Le Color! has some wonderful books, I think I've only got 2 myself, but think I've gotten a lot of different ones for family as gifts.  They're compact, the pages pull right out, and they are one sided on nice, thick paper.  Perfect for any kind of color medium.  The pages I'll share today I colored with different marker and gel pen sets.  I also took a picture of the cover with my hand so you can see just how small and easily portable it is, it'd fit into practically any handbag, carry on etc, so easily taken with you to appointments, on trips etc.  I will say this, since it is small, the small effects you do see can be VERY small indeed.  I used a magnifying glass on the one with the deer and snowflakes, just to try and be as precise as I could, but I also used gel pens which can at times come out faster than you expect so forgive yourself if you go out of lines.  Also, don't look at the pictures with a magnifying glass and maybe you won't see where I did hahahaha!  I'll post that one first since I already said what type medium was used.  I absolutely LOVE gel pens because they are so vivid and you can use the glitter and metallic colors for a deeper effect, but they do take a while to color because they take a little bit to dry.  I think you can just see behind the deer on the right what happens if you get it on your hand and lay it down on the page before it drys LOL there are little blue speckles behind her tail.


The ACTUAL first picture was Santa.  Since markers aren't usually my go to, I'm still learning with them.  The greys in his beard were a bit darkish, so he will simply be a younger version of himself LOL.  This marker set didn't have "fine" points but they did come to a sharper end, so you could still be mostly precise with them.


The next picture in the book was this lovely christmas tree, colored with two sided markers with a fine point side for more precision which was useful on the super small bits of this one.  I did misjudge some of the greens, so some decorations on the tree disappeared once the tree was colored in but that's ok, it's still a pretty tree. ;P


And lastly, the picture that shows just how portable the books are.  If you're hunting for one that would be easy to take with you everywhere, I'd encourage looking into these, there's probably a style for anyone.  Some I recall giving as gifts were flowers, and butterflies, as well as some that are stylized into iconic pictures depicting certain corners of the world.


As always, I hope you enjoyed what I've shared, now back to my coloring!!! Ciao!

Friday, December 15, 2017

Insomnia

Insomnia is a giant pain in the butt.

It's exhausting laying in bed for hours and hours trying to fall asleep with your eyes closed.  It's even MORE exhausting and emotionally draining as well as completely frustrating to chase your butt around the clock trying to get and maintain some semblance of normalcy.  It's lovely when I have a schedule where I wake even if it's early am, to have the majority of my waking hours be those of "normal" sleep.  That means making appointments, with agencies, doctors or even family is much easier, and then I feel great because I'm not letting others or myself down by not making my engagements.

When my sleep becomes erratic or even non existent, that's when I get angry, frustrated, anxious and even sad because I feel I'm letting other's down, and that's a horrible feeling.  Family, and loved ones are important to me, and naturally, it makes me feel like by letting them down, they might feel less than cherished by me, and nothing could be further from the truth.  I absolutely adore my family, and I feel blessed each and every day to have them in my life.

I do my best, even when my sleep is horrible, to try and still make my appointments, ESPECIALLY with family.  Sometimes, my body just says no, you can't do that right now, snoooooore.  While crashing for sometimes a day or so at a time can finally make you feel "rested" even that's exhausting since when you wake from such a state, you're dehydrated and groggy for much of the day afterward.  On the one hand it's like you're saying, yay I had sleep, but on the other it's like saying, geez I slept for THAT long?  How can I waste that much time sleeping all at once?  You lose days, and that's never something that's pleasant.

Some of my family has also has issues with this, but I pray every day that theirs improves and that it never gets as bad as what mine has developed into.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Hooray for Coloring!

I know it's been a little while since I've shared some coloring.

This time I'll be sharing some from an older book I've shared before, and also some pictures from a book I haven't shared yet but has been laying around for a while.  I have a few other books that are also laying around but I'll eventually get to them.  I've been occupying my time with several things so coloring has been slow and some projects that have taken time, so it's a good opportunity to illustrate that you don't have to color things all in one sitting.

The book that's been lying around for a while is by Kerby Rosanes.  This artist has a few, the one I had is the Mythomorphia one.  Basically it's full of mythical creatures, but also they have some morphology into other things in some pictures.  The other book is the one that came in a set of 3 from creatively calm studios.








Think I might do some holiday pictures since Tis the Season!!!  Enjoy, and as always feel free to share your art with me!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

November Update

I went for my follow up at the VA this past Monday.

I'm happy to report that the 4 month fall of 11 points on the renal test rose back up 11 points in the month I was off of the metformin.  This is good news and bad news.  The good news is, no kidney disease and it was medication related, and whatever brought it back up, whether it was simply the lack of taking the metformin, or the addition of the supplements or a combination of all, it's back up.  The bad news is, that now I can't be treated for the PCOD, at least not with the standard of care, that helps monitor and regulate weight and digestion etc.  I'm going to be seeing an OB/GYN to see what they recommend, I guess there may be another treatment, but whether it's as helpful or no, we'll have to see.  I guess one way, I could go on BCP, which can also cause weight gain, and also raise % of certain cancers, but since female cancer has not yet been a part of my family's genetic make up, there's a good chance that wouldn't happen.  I'm not sure the other alternative, but I guess it's in place of metformin, so might have some aid for digestion instead of my body sending all I eat to be stored since it doesn't know what to do with it.  Perhaps it'll be even more effective if I'm a good candidate.  I know after over 20 yrs of being diagnosed at the 99% of the progression of PCOD, I've avoided diabetes, but without the aid of metformin or a similar drug, I may cross the border that I've come close to for the past few testings.  As my Doctor puts it, I'm testing at a "prediabetic" state, which she's identified as borderline testing.  I guess we'd all fall into that category if we didn't test for diabetes if you think about it, but still.

I think part of what's helped so far, is my appetite isn't very big.  Since my body doesn't process food well, I've kind of been stuck in a limbo of eating one to two times a day, and sometimes not at all if I'm not home and forget to eat since sometimes my body doesn't tell me I'm hungry or haven't eaten.  So not eating a lot throughout the day has possibly helped with my body not progressing to a diabetic state.....but I'm more than certain it's hit me hard in the metabolic area.  I'm sure my metabolism is all but non existent by this point.  So there are definitely drawbacks as well.

My Doctor wants me to go to PT for evaluation to see about my spine again, but all that's done in the past was cause me to be so stiff I couldn't get up to go to the restroom on my own.  I'll give it a go, but I think chiropractic would be more beneficial though my spine is what it is.  It's just simply a crappy spine LOL, I'm used to the pain from it to a certain extent, but there are days that it's more difficult to cope with than others.  I think she's also sending me to a pain clinic, to try and see what, if anything else there is to do, but I'm not hopeful, you can't control pain from a spine that's simply got curves here, there and everywhere, when you can't just slap braces on it to straighten it out like teeth.  I have misgivings about PT and dread going, though I suppose I could call back and suggest that chiropractic helped more than PT before, since PT had me unable to walk for 3 days afterwards, and the chiropractor at least had me able to stand for more than 5 minutes without stiffness and pain from it.  I know it's not "healed" or "fixed" but longer is still better than can't do anything at all.

I know part of her reasoning is that perhaps PT can help me find things I can do to reduce weight, however, she's forgetting the PCOD part of the equation when thinking about the spinal part of it.  If I can't control food digestion well, no amount of exercise will help.  I'm alreadying eating well under the caloric count for a non active lifestyle, and I'm still not thin.  While that doesn't bother me because I know it's not something I've done to myself.  All one has to do is look at my arms, legs, face, wrists, ankles, hands etc to tell that it's not over eating.  All of those are boney.  An over eater has fat fingers, face etc.  But they're not the only ones, someone with a thyroid problem may also present those affects, so you can't just look at someone and assume it's something they've done to themselves over some genetic disorder causing it, unless you're in a grocery store and all they've got in their cart is a ton of junk.  If that's the case they're likely over eating.

At any rate that's the current update on me, hopefully things are going well for all of you!!

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Sweater Weather

It's that time of year again!!!

If my little 5 lb kitty could have screamed....I think she'd have yelled SWEATER!!!!  She's always loved it when I wear a sweater around the house, and if I take it off if I'm too hot, she claims it as her own.  Otherwise she makes a bed as well as she can so she can lay on it.

I always love seeing sweaters too, there are so many pretty ones that you just never see in the hotter months unless your workplace is very cool.  But I think not just the pretty colors is nice, but also, small animals and children seem to be far more interested in hugging or touching because they're just so darn soft.  If your child/grandchild nephew or niece wants to be held more, don't be surprised, you're very cuddly in your nice soft sweater.

Besides, once it's time for sweaters, you know Christmas is just around the corner, and hopefully people are getting into the Christmas state of mind and are more kind to one another.  I wish it would last forever, but you never know, if they keep practicing, maybe it will.

I'll post 2 pics of the mini kitty for you, I had to share because she climbed on me, and since I didn't fluff the sweater out, she was determined to lay on what there was and ended up upside down, head first on the bit of sweater available, which cracked me up, so hopefully you'll get a good chuckle out of it also.




HAPPY SWEATER WEATHER!  HOPE YOUR WINTER IS WONDERFUL!!!