I felt it last night and this morning, a type of panic starting to rise up within me. Worrying replacing peace, “what-ifs?” swirling, self-pity in place of thankfulness.
The shot in my stomach to cut off all hormones is showing its power in the intensity of hot flashes throughout the night and this morning.. What I used to call a ‘hormone’ headache has been throbbing all night, its name changed to ‘no hormone’ headache. My right reconstruction site joins my head in the throbbing, a pink, inflamed & burning reminder that I may be in for more surgery that would remove the progress and the shape of feminine. Progress that was bought with a lot of pain and many dollars earned by my hard working husband. All the while a bottle of meds sit calling to me, their purpose is to sweep up any leftover hormones. I am scared of these tiny white pills. I was supposed to start them a week ago. Can I handle their side effects on top of everything else? I’m already the mom who has been spending most of my day in bed, sleeping for hours in the afternoon so I can enjoy my family or an outing in the evening.
I can see my girls are pretty over it all. Disappointed when I can’t take them somewhere, and numb to the familiar answer of “Mom doesn’t feel well.” I hear my door creak open mid afternoon and then shut again, I wonder what little one needed and feel sad that she sees the familiar lump of mom asleep in the afternoon. I think of how my Todd is handling most of the parenting, and wish that I could handle more, emotionally and physically.
I feel overwhelmed with all there is to do. Pumpkins need put away and replaced with reds and greens. The house filling up with evidence that the kids have been home on fall break. Gifts need bought and wrapped. Groceries need bought. Meals need planned. December paid posts need written, my contribution to our family budget.
One doctor calls wanting to scan my ovaries, this week. Another doctor’s office calls reminding me to come in for my second stomach shot. Yet another doctor calls wondering about my pain level and wants to see me Tuesday. He reminds me that if all goes well and no infection we need to make a surgery exchange appointment by the end of the year.
I feel it rising, the feeling of overwhelmed.
I scroll through my Facebook feed and find an angel, Ann Voskamp. I remember it is December 1st, day one of advent. For a moment it becomes just another thing I need to do, but then, I click play and listen. Her voice so soothing. Her words go straight to my core an loosens the ball of worries. Truth words that have the power to change my thoughts. I release pending despair and take breath of fresh air.
I am reminded that GOD HOLDS IT ALL.
I am reminded why I have hope.
I find my determination
I find my perspective.
I resolve to ride out this December advent season, upside down. Like her sweet tree, hanging all upside down in the video. Perfectly imperfect, looking to the only One who is perfect. My hope -giver, my life- giver, my story- maker.
I will count the gifts…there are always so many, even in seasons of hard.
I will remember to trust Him with my story.
I will be ok with the imperfect, and remember what it took for me to find this hope…
I will remember that this baby, the star of this advent season, would one day save me. Has saved me.
I will find my hope.