Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Life is what happens ...

...when we have others plans.

As I originally thought about the idea for this post, I was thinking of all the times I've been  heading in one direction.  Only to have life intervene in a way where I'm forced into another, totally unexpected direction.  Being asked to resign from a position as a children's home in the 1970s was one such example.  Because of that I ended up finding a really good church in my home community, went to Bible school and, eventually, became a missionary/teacher in Texas.  That eventually led to a path which took me first to language school in south Texas and then to a mission on the Texas/US border where I was a missionary/teacher for two years.  Which led to another incident when life intervened with my plans.  During my second year, a lone Canadian male came down for the winter who said he'd had a dream in which I became his wife.  We were married that summer. Resulting in 2.5 children who might never have been born if I hadn't initially been asked to resign from that job in the children's home.

Life is indeed what happens when you have other plans.

Life has been intervening big time in my story for more than a year now.  It's caused a lot of pain, frustration, yet also growth and learning.

I cope daily with the latent affects of severe stress:  itching which at times is so bad that I can't bear to have anything touch my body.  Sometimes I'm close to screaming with the discomfort.  So uncomfortable that words won't come.  Fatigue.  So bad that I lie in bed unable to move, to read, to do anything other than prayer.  But at least I can pray.  Weakness.  My body feels like rubber.  One weekend last fast when this fast starting taking over my life, the sun was shining outside my window.  A gorgeous fall day.  There wouldn't be many others like it.  I wanted to go outside.  Enjoy the sunshine.  But too weak to sit up, I had to content myself with lying on my bed letting the sun stream in through the window.  Other affects come and go:  balance issues, inertia, inability to enjoy things I used to.  Impaired cognitive skills.  There have been times when the balance has been so off kilter that I've had to grab something, anything, to stay upright.

Life ... intervened when I had other plans.

My plans?  What where they?  To stay at my job another 3 1/2 years until the magic age of 65.  To take a long-delayed vacation with Papa Bear to British Columbia - our original honeymoon destination which never happened because life ....

Life happened in 2011 in the form of a stress breakdown, psychiatric injury.  Already coping and dealing with lifelong complex PTSD, I found myself floundering in a turbulent sea of emotions.  Violent waves crashing in over me again and again.  Unrelenting.  Until finally, emotionally I went under.  Drowning.  Crushed.

Life ...

Yet I still hung on like a drowning person to a log.  Trying to survive.  To keep my head above the water that was engulfing me.

I knew I could not go back into that situation.  It would kill me.  I had Papa Bear and the cubs to live for.

Life ...

What do you do when it intervenes?  Go back into the den, curl up, lie down and hibernate?  If so, for how long?  Just for a season?  Or for longer?

What do you do when the big world outside the den suddenly feels unsafe.  Terrifying.  Other bears are lurking out there somewhere.  Hostile bears.  How will I know if they are friend or foe?  Do I even want to?

Life ...  is not only what happens when you have other plans, but how you handle the interruption.

More in another post.


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