So I'm going to talk about fear.
Recently, I've been allowing myself to be honest about where I'm really at. Not just how I'm feeling physically but how I'm REALLY doing. And I've come to realize I'm terrified about my future. And before you start typing up as many scripture verses as you can to send to me about fear, please keep reading.
I'm terrified that I won't be able to have children. Not just because I physically won't be able to, but also because I could spread Lyme to my baby. Through either the womb or breastfeeding. I could take antibiotics during the pregnancy to lower the percentage of my baby getting Lyme. I could take antibiotics while breastfeeding to lower that chance as well. But do I want to go through that hassle? I can have my baby tested for Lyme the second they are born and put them on antibiotics. Again, the hassle? And even if my baby doesn't get this disease, I could flare back up cause of the pregnancy. So then I'll be pregnant, living the way that I'm living now (symptom wise) and when the baby is born I go straight into treatment again. Yes, adoption is totally an option. But I could adopt a kid that already has Lyme and have too deal with it anyway.
I think what scares me the most is treatment again. No Thank You!! Not only do I not want to ever go through treatment again I don't want my Lyme to flare up again. I'm terrified of Lyme Disease. I'm terrified I'll stress out in the future and symptoms will come back. I'm scared that I'll get bit and go through all of this again. I'm worried I'll be so terrified that I'll scare my children and husband out of living life so freely. LIKE THEY SHOULD! Plus I'm scared there are symptoms that I'll never be completely free and cured from. Things that are too damaged in my body.
About that whole it flaring up thing. How does that work? Stay stress-free. Don't let your lymph nodes freak out. Stay out of "fight or flight" mode. Don't worry about anything.
HOW DO I LIVE LIFE LIKE THAT?
Tanner and I are both planning on being full time missionaries and starting our own ministry one day. How do I remain stress-free doing that? Can I go back to college one day? Can I have a full-time job? Can Tanner and I share responsibilities or will he have to do more so I can "stay calm"?
Something else I think about is "who am I"? Like not passion wise but mentally-emotionally-feeling wise. Most Lymies are able to talk about how they were before Lyme Disease compared to now. I don't have that. I've had this disease from at least a year-old. Probably born with it. I have no comparison. Am I the overly passionate, emotional person I think I am, or is that Lyme? Am I really high-strung and easily stressed out, or is that Lyme? Am I really moody and have mood swings like a roller coaster, or is that Lyme? Do I have anxiety and depression, or is that Lyme? I've learned to live with most of this. I've actually learned to use most of this for the Glory of God. I like the things I've accomplished because of some of these things as well. I've learned to use it for my well-being and just accept it. How will this work in the future if this isn't who I am? Do I need to relearn who I am? A friend of mine described it like getting your arm cut off and being told you now have to learn to write with your feet. The problem: I only know how to use my hands. I don't work well with my feet.
And here's the thing, I'm not the only one who thinks these things. God has so perfectly brought a couple people into my life who are in the same boat as me with treatment for chronic Lyme Disease. And we share mutual fears. Plus I'm on Facebook support groups and this kind of stuff pops up a lot. I've talked with my LLMD about a lot of this and he said he doesn't know. Everyone is different and we'll have to see. It depends on how my treatment goes. And to be honest, I don't like this answer. I want an actual answer.
(I'm sure some of you were expecting this next part because my King is so good at this)
And when I start to freak out about all of this I hear God. And I don't mean faintly, whispering, in the back of my head. I hear Him gently, but boldly say, "Be still, and know that I AM God."
I'm learning to renew my mind with truth and pray until it moves from my head to my heart. Because the truth will set me free. I can't keep living in fear and doubt and worry. I'm called to live life abundantly. I know God is bigger than Lyme Disease. I know He hasn't left me yet, so why would He now? I know that His grace is enough. I know that no matter what happens I am still loved and adored by the King of kings. I know that God's plans for me are for good and for a future. And I know that His glory has shown through my Lyme Disease in a way that brings me to my knees. Why wouldn't He continue this? This is all in my head though and slowly moving into my heart.
Now I'm going to share with you all of those verses about fear. The verses I'm filling my heart and mind with. The verses that will set me free.
2 Timothy 1:7
"For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of power, of love and a sound-mind."
1 Chronicles 28:20
"David also said to Solomon his son, "Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake..."
"When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me?"
"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."
"Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
"For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you."
1 John 4:18
"There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear..."
"The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul. He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows. Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life, And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."
1 Peter 1:6
"So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while."
1 Peter 5:10
"In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation."
"Yet I am confident I will see the Lord’s goodness while I am here in the land of the living. Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord."
"Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the Lord:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him. For he will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day.
Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday."
These are just a few. I'm writing these, and more, on sticky notes and filling my room with them. To renew my mind. I can't live in fear anymore. It's going to rob me of enjoying every good thing God has planned for me. And I dont want to miss out on the best cause I'm fearing the future. I'm looking forward to seeing how God's going to redeem this. Cause He's always in the business of redeeming that which the enemy has tried stealing.
Energy Exoelled: Took 3 hours to write. My left hand fell asleep typing. And my right hand is now stuck cause the joints are tight. The ringing in my ears are pretty bad and I have a bad headache because of looking at the screen. BUT I feel refreshed :)
~ Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny.