Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Life with Dysautonomia

Throughout my blog, I will be talking about POTS and Dysautonomia, so here is a quick rundown of the disease!

In the Fall of 2014, I was diagnosed with a form of Dysautonomia called Hyperadrenergic Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia.

What is it?
Dysautonomia is a form of neuropathy that affects the nerves that carry information from the brain and spinal cord to various organs throughout the body. My specific form of Dysautonomia, Hyperadrenergic Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia or HyperPOTS, is very rare and not much information is known about it. What we do know is that it is thought to be a genetic disorder passed from mother to child and comes from an excess of adrenaline in the body.

What does it look like?
For the most part, I look like any other person. I wear a medical alert bracelet on my left wrist and sometimes use a wheelchair if I need it.

What does it feel like?
To put it in a word: tired. Fatigue is a major side effect along with syncope (fainting), migraine headaches, anxiety. difficulty in digestion, difficulty in adapting to different temperature, heart palpitations and tremors.

To learn more, click here!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

A Season of Waiting

After three weeks of prayer, conversations with trusted friends and deep thought I have decided to take time away from dating.

For a long time I have found my value, worth and identity in relationships. I let my loneliness and worry of never finding anyone control me. If I was in a relationship, I would convince myself that he was "the One" despite any warnings from friends, feelings of unease and knowing in my heart he wasn't a man I could spend the rest of my life with. If I was single, I would constantly search for someone to ease the loneliness.

I was never happy on my own and saw myself as worthless if I wasn't "wanted" by the opposite sex.

Because of that I found myself in a few different relationships ranging from unhealthy to worse. In one relationship I was talking about marriage with a guy after a month of dating, I gave my heart away quickly and was offended and broken hearted when things didn't work out due to immaturity on both parts. In another I dealt with a guy who was constantly putting me down and trying to change me. In the worst , I knew everything was wrong from the beginning but I was so scared of being alone and so desperate for attention that I stayed in despite losing trust and respect from my friends and family.

Because of this, I was broken hearted, bitter, and felt like I had no value.

It wasn't until a conversation with a friend discussing how the Father pursues us, that I realized that everything I was looking for in a man could be found in the Lord.

My value comes from Him.
My worth comes from Him.

He pursues ME.

Where does that leave me? Healing and trying to pursue the Lord with a healthy reflection of how I used to pursue guys.

So during this time, I will be focusing on Him, giving my attention to areas that deserve it like school, friendships and spending time with Abba.

But for now, I am enjoying life as a single woman, pursing the Lord as best I can.

This is my healing season.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Where you go...

For a long time I have been running from the idea of missions. Sure, I'll go to San Francisco or Spain with the Loft, but that's it. No going any further. No pushing the limits. I like to play it safe.

That ended today.

In the Loft this morning, a Journeyman, Maggie, came to speak about her experience overseas and how the Lord continually showed up and showed out. Then she began speaking about opportunities to serve as a student through the IMB and I honestly, my mind was anywhere but her presentation until I heard the words "Sex Trafficking"come out of her mouth. If you read my last entry, you'll remember that the children I worked with in Brazil were mostly bought out of prostitution and slavery, so women and children in that lifestyle way heavily on my heart.

For the rest of her presentation I was struggling with God. Finally I decided that to prove God wrong (like I really could), I would talk to Maggie and she would tell me that I wasn't qualified for the trip.

Turns out that the trip had filled earlier that morning, but I could almost hear God saying "You're not getting away from this that easily", and Maggie told me that though the trip to Thailand was booked, she knew that there was a woman who was looking for individuals and I was perfect for the job.

During service after my meeting with Maggie, I couldn't tell you what the pastor was preaching about (Are you seeing a pattern?) because I was thinking of how I could get out of this mission trip. Traveling with a team is one thing, but going to a foreign country by myself? That's way outside of my comfort zone.

As the service ended, there was an opportunity to commit to missions, whether it be short or long term which involved filling out a card and walking to the front of the church. As I was holding the commitment card in my hands, I looked up and my mother was handing me a pen and I heard the Lord say "Stop Fighting" and before I knew what I was doing, my card was filled out, I was standing in front of the alter of the church and tears were falling down my face.

So, I'm going.

Where? I don't know.

When? I don't know.

The one thing I do know: I've stopped fighting.