2012…

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The year is almost over. Toward the end of 2011, my life began to dramatically change. I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. My body totally went the wrong way. Instead of getting stronger, I got weaker. I felt weaker. Things that shouldn’t exhaust me–began to exhaust me. Coming from that place at the end of last year, I don’t think I could of predicted how this year would go. I didn’t think much about the new year or what it would bring. As 2013 approaches, I don’t think much about the new year and what it may potentially bring. I will know what it brings when it gets here.

Each new year brings blessings and challenges. The only way to prepare is to review. For me, 2012 was quite the interesting year. I enrolled in taking some masters classes. I dropped out of school by May. In May, I was also diagnosed with Atypical Trigeminal Neuralgia, which is a horrible illness that nobody should ever face. Thankfully, I found substantial help from supplements/vitamins to help me cope with it where the pain isn’t that bad. It keeps me from getting zapped alot of times. My greatest struggle is Fibromyalgia. It seems to have definitely progressed as I look back over the past year. How it will progress next? Only time will tell. This past year, it has impacted alot. For the past 6 months or so, I couldn’t go into service at church due to extreme sensitivity to sound. The sensitivity to sound has been life-altering. It is so hard to plan things out when I can’t handle loud sounds. The dishwasher, at times, is too loud. There have been some small chemical sensitivities. In dealing with Fibromyalgia, my biggest issue is teaching myself to rest. I still need to learn to pace myself, and find ways to balance tasks to be done and getting the rest I need.

Part of the learning process is taking careful notice of what I am doing and trying to see how it affects me.

Another one of the greatest challenges I have faced is my diet. Before 2012, I only know I was lactose intolerant (even though I didn’t eat like it). What happened in that area this year?

Gluten
I react very badly when I have gluten, so my diet has gone from eating whatever I want to carefully choosing and planning ahead to avoid gluten. The consequences for having gluten can be long lasting, so it isn’t worth the momentary pleasure it can give my taste buds. It is better to stay away, even when it is hard to do.

Peanuts
I figured out Peanut Butter causes alot of issues. IE) my throat feeling like it is closing up. Then, there is the whole not being able to breathe thing. Did I mention Peanut Butter is an all-time favorite? I haven’t found a replacement as of yet. Maybe, it will come in time.

Fructose/Sugar
On top of everything else, I have to seriously limit myself to no fructose and limit the amount of sugar I consume. I am still trying to figure this one out too. I have noticed bad stomachaches from sugar/fructose.It is a matter of learning to balance how much sugar I have. Still learning that one..

I obviously have alot of learning to do concerning what I can and cannot eat. They are running a food allergy blood panel to see if it shows anything, then I can experiment with those specific foods. I think avoiding gluten is easier than all this is. It’s alot to limit sugar, no peanut butter whatsoever, and limit dairy products. And that is on top of no gluten. I actually do still eat. Crazy thing is I am getting used to the food thing. No fructose/low sugar and no peanuts has only been going on since Thanksgiving, so that area is very new for me. The Lord is sovereign over it all! He matters more than food. He is teaching me that there is more to life than food. I need to eat to live, not live to eat.

He came to give me life, but not an ordinary life–He came to give me an abundant life!

Despite everything, I have been able to stay focused on my Lord and know He is still there. He doesn’t leave me no matter what happens. He has definitely used all of these things to strengthen me in Him. He has helped me to overcome all these things, and still be able to stand. The greatest thing is He continues to help me to get up in the mornings, and find a way to see this life is worth living–He continues to show me I have purpose. Even on the days when Fibro is really making life a struggle…. I still have many days when i just want to force myself to do things I use to. Mentally, I just haven’t adjusting to a life of chronic illness. In other ways, I have definitely made changes.He continues to show me all I need..

Alot of things are different. Alot more things will be difference as this year turns into the next…All that matters is keeping my eyes focused on Him. He is my source of strength!

Hebrews 12:2-3

Looking away [from all that will distract] to Jesus, Who is the Leader and the Source of our faith [giving the first incentive for our belief] and is also its Finisher [bringing it to maturity and perfection]. He, for the joy [of obtaining the prize] that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising and ignoring the shame, and is now seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Just think of Him Who endured from sinners such grievous opposition and bitter hostility against Himself [reckon up and consider it all in comparison with your trials], so that you may not grow weary or exhausted, losing heart and relaxing and fainting in your minds.
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