Tuesday, April 9, 2013
I am a control freak. This is not a new phenomenon to me. In order for my world to be happy I must have some sort of authority over the things that are happening in my life. Thus, why I have not been happy. Knowing that you really have no control over what life brings to you and applying that knowledge are two VERY separate things. Of course I KNOW that I have no control over my life, but a girl likes to play dress up every once in a while and my favorite costume happens to be the boss of the whole entire world. My imaginary perfection consists of everything going exactly as I would like it to... and admittedly sometimes I allow my recreational play time to slip into my big girl real world time. Sometimes I just think I should rule the events going on in my life and when that doesn't happen then it's wrong. It's bad. It's the huge evil dragon that must be slayed while wearing a fabulous new pair of shoes that I have decided are an absolute need. But that's not always what God has for me. In fact, it's not what God has had for me in a very long time.
My Crohn's disease has always been a trial. A very, very hard trial. Not only is it a disease no one understands and is embarrassing to speak about as a young lady, it's going to be with me my whole life. Imagine having something you see as horrible never being resolved. Ever. That your problem will not go away until you do. That is a huge pill to swallow. In all honesty that pill never quite goes down. You tend to gag on it your whole life. When faced with that kind of trial at such a young age (I was diagnosed at 16) it is very easy to get depressed. And I did for a very long time. I still severely struggle with it. It really never leaves you. But being the control freak that I am I have one thing that I can control. Me. I can control my happy. My joy. Because I choose where that joy comes from.
I have never been a good sport. I do not lose gracefully. So when in this past year I lost my job, my apartment, my car, my income, my independence, my relationship, the ability to control my body, and even my hair I found myself in the least graceful place I had ever been in. Even now nothing seems to be going the way that I want it to. Or even the way that anyone would predict it should go. Today I went to the doctor and I was given news that was yet another paper on my back and I don't know how many more sheets it will take until I break. Mother Teresa said once that she knew God wouldn't give her more than she could handle but sometimes she wished he didn't trust her so much. I couldn't agree more with her at this time. The appointment was concerning the medi port that I had placed in my chest right around my clavicle last month. For those of you unfamiliar with what a medi port is, it is a catheter that is inserted into your chest surgically under the skin that connects to your arteries so that when you go in for treatments (usually cancer patients are prompted to have them placed) you no longer need to have an IV placed for every treatment session. They can also draw blood from the port as well which eliminates additional sticks for blood tests. For me this was supposed a God send. For years my veins have been unviable, meaning that we were lucky if the best IV nurses were able to start an IV after eight to ten attempts. But so far it has only cause more stress for me. First an un-qualified nurse didn't follow protocol for flushing out the port so the next time it was to be used it did not work. Then the following attempt to use it was unsuccessful because there was a small blood clot and the medicine used to dissolve blood clots is on national back order. Then today when seeing the doctor about the small incision that was made about five inches above the port that was made to thread in the tubes we discovered it was infected and may have reached the inside of the port. If this is so, then the port will need to be removed and I can no longer receive treatment through it. So as you can imagine my stress just shot through the roof.
In the face of all of this loss I am now seeing that I have a choice. I can either continue to stumble along with two left feet and haphazardly fall through this life I have been given, or I can go to the place where grace lives and let some of it rub off on me. I cannot control what the world gives me, but I can decide how I present what the world has given me back to you. For the last year, my choices have demonstrated that I would like the world to see me as someone that is second rate, not good enough, and lucky to have someone love me because of my illness. That is a very easy thing to believe. That you are unlovable because of your flaws. It doesn't just have to be illness. It can be because you don't have the job you want, or the money you want, or the body you want, or the intelligence you want, or the circumstance you want. That the thing you don't want in life makes you unwanted as well. How could someone want you in their life when you don't even want the life you have? I am here to tell you that the things you think will never change never actually will if you don't get up and get out of your own way. I have been presenting myself to the world as an old used shoe that didn't have a match and would just be lucky if someone at Goodwill took me home. But I am so much better than that. I have gone to the place where grace lives and remembered that I know how to dance. I know where my joy comes from. I am a pair of Christian Louboutin shoes sold in Neiman Marcus and there is a five year waiting list to take me home. Live your life in the now. Live your life in joy. Live you life where grace lives. The place where grace lives and breathes and loves and allows me to worship my God and let him pore out his plan on me. To me his plan may be mean or wrong or hurtful, but to him it is a beautiful ballet performed on the stage of the world. So I plan on staying where I can get my grace back, because if I'm ever going to fulfill my role, I need to remember to dance again. :)