Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Heal Today...Gone Tomorrow

Fort McHenry cannon looking toward
the Francis Scott Key bridge
where my uncle took his life

Pss. 30:2  “O LORD my God, I cried unto thee, and thou hast healed me.”

Heels today… gone tomorrow

You ever have one of those days where everything is going along fine. Then you see something and reality smacks you upside the head? We’re doing some fall cleaning here; we get to the cluttered closet and there sits a box of shoes. Heels that I’ve never worn. 

I said, “I have to get rid of that entire box.” 
He replied, “Well when you can walk again, we’ll pull them back out of the box.”  

Tears filled my eyes and kept on filling. The reality is…I’ll never be able to walk normal again. Just thought I’d share that with you all as I release some of this anguish I’m lugging around.

I used to love wearing high heels, not real high, just a classy kind of heel with jeans or a skirt; then about four years ago, with too many Omaha trips (eight hours round trip) high-heel wearing came to a screeching halt. I remember going to the doctor and she sent me to the hospital for some x-rays and a day later it was explained that I had lower lumbar facet joint arthritis. Sure, some meds and a highly paid chiropractor could offer some relief, but that's just it, a false relief, not a healing plan.

Here I was, still enjoying my youth and am told that I have arthritis and as many of you know, that is a chronic disability that doesn’t just go away. I had tried to wear my lower heels and even they were awkward to walk in and the limp in my stride didn’t sync with a low heel. I was relinquished to tennis shoes and even they were getting uncomfortable mainly in the summertime heat. I did buy some comfy sandals by Earth Spirit (yes, WalMart brand) but don’t ya know, I can’t wear them in the winter now can I? 

I have my up and down days where I feel sorry for myself and the me I once was but have to learn to accept that this is the new me and whom God created.  But when we were cleaning out the closet and the box with my heels in it passed me by, I cried. I admit it, it hurt to see a part of myself shoved in the basement never to be seen again. I think my husband was trying to make me feel good when he said the words, “When you walk again.” The reality was and is, I’ll never walk normal again.

My dear friends try to comfort me, “there is Hope,” they say. My first thought was yeah when I get to heaven and can run free! They mean well, they really do and I won’t for one minute minimize the love I feel for them or from them, and the comfort they bring to my life but understand, I was one on the go woman all of my life. You don’t fit into the same jeans you wore twenty years ago by NOT being an overly active woman. Then yesterday…

Heal today… gone tomorrow.

I don’t know what the universe is trying to tell me when yesterday I answered my phone, thinking for one idiotic moment it was my sister calling to tell me about her daughter. No, it wasn’t her, it was an old friend who called me last year some time (he got the number from my mother) and wanted to rehash the past just like he did last year when I stopped answering my phone because I AM NOT ABOUT MY PAST!

I told him last year that I didn’t want to talk about that stuff but he just kept going on and on, “Do you remember…” You name the memory, I remember it with all its hurts and pains that I let go of, in vivid painstaking detail. His call started that way this time in asking where my ex-husband lived (they were friends) and talking about my abuse until I finally said, “I’m really busy right now.” (Joni is a terrible liar! Luckily I WAS busy!)

He said, “I better let you go or I’ll keep talking and talking.”
My instant reply was, “yes you will but call me when I have FREE minutes, like the weekend.” I seriously was trying to hang up without hurting his feelings because that’s just the way I am, then and now, I don’t like to hurt ANYONE. I just wish he had shown me the same consideration because I know I won’t be answering the phone this weekend. 

For thirteen years I wrestled with my pained past. When I first left Baltimore and left my family and past behind, I got caught up in a tornado of healing as memories whizzed passed and choked me into anxiety attacks where running off alone in the rain on darkened streets were my only solace. I would lie in bed cradling my pillow as tears soaked the very sheets where I slept. I was in a better place but it was a place of healing that had to be measured by agonizing sickened memories of the past.

Haunting is the only way to describe the lingering past. A ghost that would appear out of nowhere when I least expected it and scare me into a non-drug induced panic attack. I don’t take drugs for my pain and dealing with what I’m dealt in a meditative God loving fashion is all I’ve ever known to do. 

A close friend once told me that I needed to just let go of those memories and the people who hold those memories if all they’re there for is to hurt me, why hold on? Yes, that meant family and old friends who think rehashing an excruciating pain-filled past is what the future is all about. 

My now and my future is all about healing. My pain is washed away with every rainfall and I release the past as if it never existed into a tornadic funnel to be released wherever it may go. I will not allow thirteen years of healing to be scrubbed by one phone call of the bitter past. I face my tomorrows with the prayerful meditation that I have known to grow me into a hopeful tomorrow.

I woke this morning only to be hit with news of an earthquake where a dear friend lives. I prayed. The universe will leave something in my life called HOPE, LOVE and COMPASSION; he arrived to let me know he and his family are well. 

Praise be to God!


NurseArtist said...

I can understand some of your pain with your legs/feet. When I was younger, I came running outside my house and stepped off the front porch step--right onto a Fisher-Price See N Say clock lying on its side on the sidewalk, left there by a careless child. I heard the SNAP as my ankle turned and I fell to the sidewalk. I could feel my ankle swelling immediately. It hurt so badly. I struggled to my feet and stumbled across the street to my in-laws' house. They were watching my kids and I was late returning to pick them up. By the time I hobbled over and up their porch steps, my ankle was almost as big around as my thigh. I gathered my babies in my arms, along with the diaper bag, and their toys, and hobbled back across the street. My mother-in-law left shortly after that to go to bingo. Dennis was out on the road. I had no one to watch the kids so I could go to the doctor. We had no insurance at all. So I just used an old broom as a cane to hobble around, trying to keep my feet up as much as possible, and praying for some relief. I know it was broken, but I had to tough it out. We didn't go to the doctor unless we were dying, and even then, we put it off until we had to go. I've had arthritis in that ankle every since, and I haven't been able to wear heels since then either. A few years later, I did the same thing to the other ankle, hurrying into the hospital to go to work. I didn't go to the ER. I should have. But I needed the paycheck. Life is tough sometimes..but I've found that I can be tough too when I need to. And I know you can be tough too. Hang in there, my friend. Don't let the negatives overwhelm you. Let go and Let God!

joni said...

God's got this for sure. You'll see that in tomorrow's post. :)

I just had to get it off my chest. Thanks for reading

benning said...

And BJ is fine in Italy, as we now know. :D I know Steven was being loving when he spoke of you walking better. The future holds many things. Hope is one. Better shoes may be another! ;)

*HUGS!* Smile! You are appreciated. And callers from the past may be treated with strength. Hang up! :D


joni said...

Yes Ben, Jim is alive and well. My pettiness in my post pales in comparison to what people around the world are going through. But if my post gives hope to one person, then my job of writing is worth it, to me. :)

Steven does hold out hope that I'll walk normal again just like when I held onto the hope he'd see again. :)

The future may hold HOPE but my today holds it tighter and I embrace it!

And I would NEVER hang up on someone, I don't have an ignorant bone in my body. Only two people ever call me and that is Steven and my mother. I know their rings so all others will be seen as 'not important'. :)