August 22, 2018

Monsters in the Dark

From very small, up until I was a teenager,  I was afraid of the dark and the monsters that lurked therein. I don't know if it was a natural fear that I wrestled with or some event was linked to it, but I do have some vivid memories of the times I was afraid. Once, I was about nine or so and after watching a television movie, "The Hound of the Baskerville" I couldn't sleep in my own bed that night and tried to crawl in bed with my parents. They wouldn't let me - I was too big at that point and so I slept on the rug on the floor next to my parent's bed. I had many nightmares that were doozies and I later found out that my hormonal balance was out-of-whack. I remember lying in bed on my back (couldn't sleep on my ears for years - afraid I'd hear my pulse stop), grabbing a cross necklace I wore around my neck and praying for God to protect me through the night, then being able to lie down in peace to sleep. Mom wasn't a very good comforter, bless her heart -- she'd laugh at my childish fears and tell me not to worry about it, when all I wanted was a hug from somebody with skin on. 

Well, the last two weeks I've been wrestling with a huge monster. I've been diagnosed with Pulmonary Hypertension (Group 3), a very rare, incurable disease.  There is treatment for the symptoms, but it is a terminal condition, although the doctor assures me that I will live to a ripe, old age. Considering that I'm in my 50's now, I wonder what he (a spry young thing) considers old? And while I know that everyone dies, and as a Christian, intellectually, I know who I belong to and have the promise of heaven in God's word, emotionally, I need comfort. I don't need anybody to tell me not to worry about it, because it feels like they are brushing me off and not really empathetic or supportive. I guess what I'm mostly afraid of is the point of crossing over, the fear of the unknown. I once read a description of that crossing over time -- it's like walking through a door into the next room. I'm just gonna have to hang onto that and tell fear to get lost. 

Here's my newest doodle: 

My homework for the month is - to continue finding the good and to find my support network. 

So as to finding the good -- I'm going to start off with a quote attributed to John Wesley.

“Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.”

It's good that I have a mild case of pulmonary hypertension (groups 2 & 3). 

It's good I don't have to drag around an oxygen tank after I did the 6 minute walking test at the pulmonary doctor last week! 

It's good my friend, S. B. came through his knee surgery well. May he continue to heal. 

It's good that a new school year has begun and it's good that our adult descendants have work!

It's good to spend time with Jesus! 

It's good that my husband found another stevia sweetened drink for me called Zevia! I believe he found it at Price Chopper. 

One of the treatments for the pulmonary hypertension involves a portion diet and adding some exercise to my day. Stephanie often talks about her Daily Five - Sleep, Move, Eat, Pray, and Create. I was thinking how good my treatment falls in with her daily pattern that she says keeps her on track. It was suggested that I get an exercise bike (I don't have the space for a big machine in my house) or swim. It's good that the Inmotion Elliptical Pedal Ergometer came today that we ordered and I was able to get in 7 minutes of pedaling before a cramp hit my thigh. My physical therapist suggested I start with 8 minutes and work up to 20 minutes a day. 

I was inspired by May-May's good background on her scripture art journal page. Told my husband it is amazing how, even though I'm late getting my Documented Faith art journal pages completed, how pertinent the verses have been the last few weeks.  

So remember, DJ, as you are holding onto God's hand, God is bigger than the boogie-man!

Benediction: Gratitude, goodness, and peace to you!