Seeing God in the pain…

11/05/15 This post was originally published at my old blog here.

Strength of My Heart
I feel like shit. And I’m not even going to apologise for swearing. It feels like the only word that explains it right now. Worse than ‘I feel terrible’, ‘I am in pain’ or ‘I am fed up’. It’s all of those things and so much more. So, I feel like shit.

I’m in pain, not sure if it’s an old back problem flaring up or something new. I haven’t been able to walk properly for a week and now I can’t even move off this one spot I’m sitting on the floor without being in pain. And I don’t mean an ache or a something akin to a headache, I mean an excruciating, acute, knife in my leg kind of pain, the kind that means if I find a position where the pain is manageable, I ain’t moving. It’s the kind of pain that means weighing up the options on everything I do: how badly do I need the loo? how much do I actually need a drink? do I really want to read that book over there? How long will the laptop (my lifeline at the mo) last without being plugged in? So far the things that have got me moving are: finding the painkillers (and oh how I praise God for painkillers) and getting a cup of tea (well, needs must when you feel like crap and tea helped although it did cost me).

I’m not writing all this to invite sympathy, I’m not good at receiving it anyway, I just want to explain how I’m feeling as a kind of intro to this post. Which I guess is really just some thoughts on pain and how we (well, I) handle it… So here’s some things I’ve journalled in the last few days:

..oo0O0oo..

I made it an hour out of bed this morning before the onslaught began. I thought I can handle this, today is a new day, repeating to myself:

Thou, Lord and God of power, shield and sustain me this day….

I willed myself onwards: I can do this. Get a grip you stupid woman. Don’t let people down. Let yourself down, that’s bad enough but DO NOT let others down. We are a team, we support each other. But not willing to be supported. Everyone who had asked I snapped ‘don’t be nice to me, I’ll cry’. Truth of course, I was only just holding onto my composure by a thread as thin as a cobweb. Even a gentle breeze would destroy it.

And that was it – a simple and sympathetically voiced ‘are you ok?’ from someone who cares. But I had to shut it down, not willing to fall, to break.

But to no avail… I am broken and in pieces anyway.

Sobbing, heaving, sighing. Broken.

Thank God (and I mean that) for a dear friend who came and gently picked up my pieces and didn’t attempt to stick them back together, she just held them and gently gave them back to me.

..oo0O0oo..

As I lay in my little cocoon of self pity all sorts of devil-sent-lies were in my head…

You’ll have to take pain killers for weeks

You’ll be in pain forever more

There will be horrible side effects

You won’t run again that’s for sure. You are useless. You won’t be able to walk, you’ll put on weight and be fat. You’ll have to sit around all day doing nothing…

People will be talking about you – did you see her – what a wreck, she can’t cope

Your team will think you are useless, you never pitch in, how selfish of you

Your family will get fed up with you always needing help

..oo0O0oo..

Well what a difference a few hours makes. Not sure if it’s painkillers, the emptying of tears and snot or just: a few hours.
Now there’s just anger and frustration, oh and the fog of the pills of course. Can’t think straight, can’t read properly, can’t remember anything… There’s the pay off.

..oo0O0oo..

I hate this. I really do. It’s like my boundaries are being reduced each day. First I couldn’t run, then it was walking, then a week off work, then, well then just whatever I can find that is pain free – well it’s not pain free, but managable in the pain is the best I can hope for…

..oo0O0oo..

When will this end?

..oo0O0oo..

I am so frustrated and angry right now. Oh yes I know, I know, God will teach me through this – of course He will, that’s what He does and already is. But I’ve had enough of that at this moment in time. If I’m honest I don’t want to be taught anything right now. I’ve had enough illness and infirmity in the last 7 years to keep me going for a while.

Can’t He see that? I’ve had enough.

..oo0O0oo..

But then…
Then I’m ashamed.
I am so blessed, I have so much more than so many. I am so much better off than so many.

How arrogant am I? To say that I don’t want to learn from the living God? How dare I? How can I rebuff his teaching, his love, his compassion and comfort?

..oo0O0oo..

And yet now I seek, I feel like I’m in a whirlwind, a hazy fog, where is He in all this? I am seeking, looking, not knowing or understanding…

Where are you Lord? what am I not seeing?

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