Hello, readers. Thank you for giving me some much needed time. And thank you to those of you who have been praying for me. This blog post will explain a bit of what has been going on and my thoughts on the matter. Some of you know, some of you don’t. I don’t write this blog post to muster up pity for myself or to complain about anything, but to tell you what has happened and what is going on in my head.
Right after graduation, I was diagnosed with MS, quite suddenly.
It was like an atomic bomb going off in my life. It was scary. It still is scary. I took time off on my blog to process through this diagnosis and to try and get my feet back on the ground, quite literally, unfortunately. My life has changed forever. Now that you’ve heard the news, let me explain. I’m not going to talk about how I was diagnosed, I can’t bring myself to tell that story quite yet, I don’t have it in me. But I will tell you my thoughts on the matter.
I’d like to tell you that I’m coping with it well. I’d like to tell you that I am dealing with this with trust in God and a smile. But this has hit me very, very hard. I am devastated. I am still dealing with a lot of hurt. I’m grieving. I am angry at God and towards God even though I know He didn’t cause this. He only allowed it. But after my struggles with diabetes my whole life, this has just seemed unfair. Let me explain something that I’ve come to know.
There are two stages to getting diagnosed with a chronic disease, and I only can say this because I’ve experienced it with my diabetes. Stage one is the devastating diagnosis and shock stage where everyone tries to rally around you and keep you going. I am so thankful for those of you who have rallied around me, who have known. It kept me going, it kept me waking up each morning. I am so appreciative of the encouragement and love, even when I didn’t voice it. But then comes the stage where things start to figure themselves out. This is the stage where being diagnosed with a chronic disease gets hard. And this is where my frustration begins. I have started some medication and have gotten physically back on my feet, so to speak. But when people ask me about it they say, “Oh, good, you’ll be back to normal in no time.” That’s not true. I’m never going to “go back to normal”. My life has changed permanently. My life changed forever with that phone call with my MRI results. My emotions are still reeling. This is when I am reminded of my illness every time I take those pills. This is when my emotions are still at a standstill. My emotions are everywhere. I’m angry, I’m hurt, I’m okay, I’m devastated, I have my moments of trust in God, then I don’t. They’re everywhere. This is the part people don’t understand. Taking medication won’t cure me. This is the stage I’m in, still mixed with some shock.
This all comes off as if I’m not grateful that there is treatment out there, as if I’m not grateful for those of you who have listened to me cry and rant. I am, immensely grateful that I have people around me who care. And I’m still trying to push forward. But I’m devastated that this has happened to me at only 22 years old after everything I’ve already dealt with. This disease lasts forever, just like my diabetes. And it’s terrifying. So, I’d like to tell you that I’m okay, that I’m not going to struggle, but I can’t. I am going to try and face this with the bravery and steadfastness that I do with my diabetes every single day because that’s all I can do. I’ve wondered recently how I continue to get up every morning. I get up for my future patients who are going to need me there. I get up because God requires it of me. I get up because God gives me the strength. That’s the only way I do. Because this has knocked me down quite hard and otherwise I don’t know how I would manage it. I’m trying to be brave and trying not to constantly think about the implications for my future; I’m trying to trust in God’s plan because He has to have one with all this. It’s the only knowledge that has been getting me through the day recently.
So, I ask for your continued prayers. For my diabetes and now my MS. I also ask for your understanding. I will not be over this in a day, in a week, in a year just because I’m on medication. I still deal with this every day, it is always in my thoughts, my body always feels it. My spirit feels like it does not belong in this weak body of mine. My two diseases do affect me every single day whether I show it or not. And that’s the hard part. This is for the rest of my life. Just because I won’t let it stop me doesn’t mean I don’t feel this devastation every day. And that is why I can only hope that prayer will get me through this uncertain and anxious time in my life as I work through my new diagnosis, as I work through what it means to have type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis. God will protect me and sustain me no matter what happens.
Despite this setback of this diagnosis, I have been blessed during this time. I have accepted a job in Colorado at Memorial Hospital in the nurse residency program in Colorado Springs. I will be on the Acute Care Renal floor – perfect for leading me into the field of endocrinology. I am very excited to move back to Colorado and begin my nursing career. I also can officially call myself a nurse because I have successfully passed my NCLEX by the grace of God!!! He is the only one who has gotten me through the past few months in one piece. Despite all the doctors, despite all the stress, despite my anger, God has led me to where He wants me to be. After four years of hard work and studying, He has enabled me to pass my boards and I am officially a nurse! So, thank you for your continued prayers. And thank you to those who have been with me through these past couple of months. Talk to you soon.
“But now, this is what the Lord says – he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: ‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior…'”
-Isaiah 43: 1-3