Diagnoses

“A diagnosis doesn’t define me.” A liberating statement, indeed. However, there are times one can not just “speak away” once ailments. We are all different. There is not a one size fits all remedy. Trial and error, and try again is the name of the game. A cooking cutter mentality is not a healthy approach.

In 2002 I ended up in a fetal position, seemingly out of the blue, unable to function. Tests, tests, and more tests, with frustration and annoyance as part of the ride. The end result a diagnosis of Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. Meds, home remedies, etc., etc., trying everything to beat these ailments. Yup, even got the typical “it’s all in your head. Just push through.” I’ve learned that it’s chronic. Sometimes I know exactly what brings on a flare up and sometimes I have no clue.

Then there was the time I was diagnosed with degenerative osteoarthritis. No, this diagnosis didn’t define me, but it sure did change the way I do things. Amazing doctors and physical therapists have educated me on what to do to keep myself mobile and what not to do to aggravate things.

Now I’m faced with debilitating anxiety and depression. With the help of my medical doctor we decided it was time to see a therapist. With the support and guidance of my medical team and my family we are exploring ways to help me deal with and cope with these new companions. Will they come and go? Will they stay for a season or will they be with me for the rest of my life? These and other questions are on the table.

My diagnoses don’t define me, but they are part of me. They don’t undo me, but, at times, they do cause me to be laid out. I find accepting this is easier on my physical and mental health than trying to “push through”.

Learning is liberating. Fighting is exhausting.

Birth Date

There are records in a village of Mexico that state that a girl was born. A home birth, common to the land. No gender reveal, no birth announcement, no baby shower, no pictures on social media or elsewhere. Oh, how things have changed.

“Back in the day” is now part of my vocabulary. Who would have thought I would still be here today, 53 years later.

As Job, I have thought, “I should have never been born” or “what is the point”. Crazy brain! You know, for such a mess up like me, I like to think I did something “right”. Yes, I’m learning to shift through the crazy muck in my chaotic brain…an ongoing process. In the midst of it all I have had the privilege and joy of being a Mom. Four humans that lived, some for a very short time, in my womb. A miracle indeed!

Last year my son and his girlfriend treated my hubby and I to a fancy dinner overlooking the ocean. The sunset took my breath away. For a moment “everything” was alright. The vastness and beauty of the ocean reminds me of God’s amazing mercy and grace. Beauty in the midst of gutting pain.

After dinner we took a stroll down the malencon of La Paz, Baja…so refreshing. We ended the evening laughing and dancing under the stars. For a moment “everything” was normal, although one is deeply aware it’s a new normal. And, somewhere in it all, it feels perfect. A beautiful evening etched on my heart. Beauty for ashes, indeed.

So TODAY I am grateful that:

  • My husband doesn’t know the pain of widowhood
  • My son doesn’t know the pain of being an orphan

AND, somewhere amidst the thick fog, together, we will find a “lantern” to light up another moment in time.

A hug, a smile…laughter.

Listening to the beat of their heart

 

Birthdays

“Happy birthday to you! Happy birthday to you…” I better stop singing before I mess it up. Yes, it’s happened! Yes, I cried. End of story…oh, wait, I’m just getting started. Anywho, birthdays…goodness, how could such a subject conjure up all sorts of reactions and emotions? I tell ya, there’s nothing light and simple anymore…or has there ever been?

Can I just express my opinion about birthdays? Yes! I’m glad you approve…haha! What in the world has happened to birthday parties, people?!?! The venue, the entertainment, the decor…omygoodness gracious, one would have to sell their first born to afford such a feat. Wait, what if your first born is the birthday celebrated? Well, never mind. Let’s get back to the story. Quinceañeras are no longer a little girl with a simple white dress at a mass y una comida. Oh no, it’s a huge production. You’d think it’s the royal wedding. And, them cakes! Seriously?!?! Are they even eatable? I’d take a Betty Crocker, moist devils food cake with milk chocolate frosting ANY DAY over some of these “plastic” pieces of art. Ah, my Angie would always bake me a cake 😦

My “happy” birthday memory bank is, well, not very active. I do remember my Mom would always be the first to wish me happy birthday. And, I remember turning 15, which for some reason is a “magical” number in my culture. However, I had already managed to mess things up bringing shame to the family. The Runaway had begrudgingly been accepted back. Shunned because her innocence had been lost. Funny thing is that her innocence had been long gone. Taken in their own home by one of their own. I guess it was easier to blame a stranger…I guess. Let’s just say it wasn’t The Waltons. There was an attempt to celebrate this “magical” age in a girls life. Still not sure why? Cause it was anything but a “happy birthday”. Yup, Porcelain Doll was in full attire. A picture with a cake is cause for a flood of memories, a deluge of triggers which should be avoided.

There is that 50th birthday, though. Quite the marker, so I decided to celebrate. It was GOOD. Then there was my last birthday with my beautiful girl. She was nearing her end. Being who she was, she “decided” that she would fight to stay awake all day so that she could spend it celebrating me. Her eating was almost at a stand still, yet, she sat up and had a piece of pie with us. It was her Momma’s birthday and she would do all in her power to make it a special one, and SHE DID!

“Happy birthday to you! Happy birthday to you…”

maybe, just maybe, birthdays aren’t that bad after all…

Good Friday✝️

You don’t know my son. He is a fighter…” (queue the dramatic music) “There’s a heart beat!” gasp! The kid lives. Another miracle for the books. Prayers answered. They walk into the sunset. And live happily ever after…

S — C — R — E — E — C — H ⇒⇒⇒

What if “the kid” dies? Yeah, mayor GASP! That would be a different kinda finale. No best seller. No stellar premier. No front page news. Just a total dud…a flop.

Spoiler Alert – EVERYBODY DIES. No magical kiss to revive the “sleeper”. No mantra or prayer or magic juice can raise the dead. The fat lady has sung, gone home and is not coming back – EVER! Yes, indeed, reality sucks!

If – – – – – – that is all there was, then I’d numb myself with a substance and throw caution to the wind, cause it doesn’t matter anyway.

Ah, but, let me tell you about a “man” who came down and dwelt among us. Who was killed and buried. No happily ever after in the land of the temporal. However, that was not The End. No! No fairy-tale-ending here, cause those endings don’t bring hope beyond the grave. This Man did what no one else has done, nor will do. He conquered our last enemy – DEATH!

The Grave is Empty

One day all sorrow and pain will be done away. My tears will be wiped away by the One who will carry me to the end. I’d say that’s a very GOOD FRIDAY✝️🖤🌼

Scars (poem)

〉〉〉  S – C – A – R – S  〈〈〈

each with a story of it’s own

joyful & traumatic –  bitter & sweet

visible & invisible – physical & emotional

other inflicted & self inflicted

by strangers, by loved ones, by self

〉〉〉  S – C – A – R – S  〈〈〈

some repulse, others bring a smile

stories of heroism, stories of survival

freely spoken, cautiously guarded, safely hidden

〉〉〉  Scars are part of LIVING  〈〈〈

Grayness

Motivation Monday! How does one wrap it’s brain around such a lively subject? How does one who lives in a constant state of blah, get motivated to even move? Who would stand in line to watch a dud? Who would pay money to see a flop? Yeah, no headlines here!

The come-back-kid. The rags to riches. The from nothing to somethings are the ones who get the applause, the adulation, the pats on the back. Never disappointing. Always pushing through.

What if the dark abyss is more inviting? What if it beckons one to enter in and never look back? What if in the midst of all the colors of the rainbow, grayness is ones go to spot? Do I repulse you? Do I annoy you? Do I disappoint you?

Can you fix me? Can you pull me out? Do you even want to try…anymore? Like a sling, always coming back to the same-ol-blah.

Stagnant…Monotone…same-old-song.

 

What if…

…What if I’m just…Me

What if I don’t break any records or become famous or stand before crowds

What if contentment is just being “here”

What if I’m not keeping up with the Joneses or trying to be like the Kardashians

What if fulfillment is just being “present”

What if I stopped regretting yesterday or fearing tomorrow

What if joy is for today…?

Perspective – Perspective – Perspective

“Teach us to realize the brevity of life,
    so that we may grow in wisdom.” ~ Psalm 90:12