Sunday, August 15, 2010

another day...

That glimmer has become stronger, for while the nausea persists, I have actually eaten three small meals today.  That and three separate naps has helped me to feel stronger.  I wish that I could take more time off to rest, but until I get a grasp on what has been happening, I believe I should still be frugal with what sick leave I have...even though I no longer believe I will be pursuing the repair surgery this year.

That decision means I have something on the order of three weeks vacation that I shall have to use up by the end of the year or lose it.  I can only carry over 120 hours, and I have been hoarding vacation and sick leave for almost my entire time at this job for the surgery.  With the fall grant schedule, I probably cannot take the leave until Thanksgiving and beyond anyway, but I still have to figure out how to approach my boss about letting me be away so long at the end of the year.  Maybe I could take a few days by extending all the Monday holiday weekends by a day between now and then.

I am not sure how the cardiac monitor works, but I am really, really hoping that what was happening yesterday morning was at least captured somehow.  I know at one point, when I checked myself, my heart rate was lower than I have ever seen it, but I do not know if the monitor is continuous or perhaps every few minutes.  Each time that I got up from my nap today, I immediately had to sink to the floor to keep from fainting.  I count it a victory that I was able to ride the dizziness and nausea and the shooting stars and graying vision and stay conscious.  I really cannot decide how I feel about getting answer that is so hard to swallow.

One of the things the nurse said on Friday is that it may very well be the medication may not be of help at all.  "We try to help the symptoms, but sometimes there is nothing we can do."  Not very encouraging, eh?

Another answer this is, apparently, is why I get so bloody cold and cannot warm up.  Another symptom of dysautonomia is thermoregulatory I wrote before, it is not my thyroid, as so many have thought, but never bore out in blood tests.  My "numbers" are okay on that particular medication.  Anyway, last night was another cold fest, wherein my body temperature dropped to 96.8 degrees and I blanched myself in a hot shower even though doing so makes me weak.  Lying in bed, shivering from even the merest hint of a draft beneath the blankets tucked beneath my chin, I wondered just how long this thing has been brewing.  And I have wondered just how much it has affected me without my knowing.

I mean, I have been dizzy upon standing for a very long time.  I have had at least two years, I think, of complaining about getting too cold.  I have been watching my heart rate drop for nearly a year.  I have been short of breath at least two years, just climbing stairs or walking up an incline.  I have been falling asleep, i.e., napping for the first time in my life for at least a year, maybe longer (Bettina can you remember that one?).  And I have been fainting for...well...a lot.  Of course, the thing that strikes me most is the whole anxiety thing.  I definitely have noticed that change in me, not just the woman with whom I work who commented on the same and my dearest Bettina who assures me I have not always been this way.

Yesterday, someone noted something about me that is absolutely ludicrous.  It is so very opposite of how I act, that thought at first I was shocked and upset, I actually started laughing.  To be sure, I did ask my beloved Bettina and her husband their opinion.  She finds the thought even more outrageous than do I.  Her husband quipped a response that made me chuckle.  And I asked two others who have known me long term.  It is not that I am not concerned that impression was formed because perceptions can be important; it is just that I know it simply is not true.  But the fact is that this thing is thought about me drives home something I have been thinking.

This past year (and three months actually) has been the most tumultuous of my life, by far.  It is a year in which I have been all over the map.  A year in which I have gained the greatest treasure, but I have also been profoundly hurt.  It is a year in which I was given true freedom from something that has bound me my whole life, even if I have not yet really walked in that freedom.  A year in which my communication has been horrible, not realizing how I have sounded and battling to put words together that make sense.  And it has been a year in which I have also been pigeonholed as something I am not. The point is:  it is a year of my life, not the whole of me.  I need to hold that perspective even if no one else does.

Because I dared ask a question, Vee was baldly honest with me yesterday about something that I wish to take to heart.  A going forward kind of thing.  I wish to put that with a few other things I have learned about me and hold on to them, but I am also leaving behind chasing "the why of me" things for a while.  I have too much on my plate medically.  I need to work through those things one at a time.  I am under too much strain from work, not the least of which is setting boundaries that should have been there from the start.  And who I am is not the person being reflected back to me, for whatever reason that might be, so I am confused as to where to turn anyway.

Instead of "me," I choose Walter and Forde and Bender and Harrison and my beloved Book of Concord.  Instead of "me," I choose Christ crucified and understanding what that means, to the best of my ability, as much as I can teach myself.  And I choose the colossal challenge of learning Biblical Greek.  Personally, I think the break from "me" will do more for me right now than anything else.  After all, have I not had it ground into me of late that my faith is not about me?  My goodness, if I can just but grasp that my life is hidden in Christ I shall be miles and miles and miles ahead of the game.

In choosing this, I am hoping for a better balance than I have had of late.  We'll see, eh, Myrtle?  I have been told by several people I do not have to "do" anything; I just need to "be."  I guess you could say that I want to try out "being" for a while.  I have made a wretched mess of "doing," so "being" surely cannot find me any worse, right?

In any case...I am baptized. I am forgiven.  Today, tomorrow, and always.

I did not throw up today.  For that, I can, therefore, be actually thankful for the mere nausea.  Today was a better day than yesterday.  Tomorrow might be or might not.  But that is tomorrow.  

Lord, I am Yours.  Save me!

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