Admittedly, I've had a bit of a rough patch for a few months. I had a severe hormonal crash the end of March, which lasted through the first part of June. July has been 'better'. Some might read this and say, why is having a 'hormone imbalance' such a big deal. Well, typical hormone fluctuations aren't a big deal. My hormones were so completely disrupted by my advanced stage adrenal disfunction and toxicity issue in my body that it's caused a severe hormone issue. When my hormones crash, it's a whole body/brain/nervous system experience that leaves me in quite a compromised and sometimes non-functioning place on some days. I never knew how powerful these hormones were until they weren't working properly. They are definitely improving, but have a ways to go to be back to normal.
Again, some new supplements I took to try to help me balance my hormones, actually caused a big hormonal imbalance in my already compromised body. I also tried increasing my progesterone just slightly and my liver didn’t tolerate it and I had neurological toxicity reactions. When one function goes down, all my other issues, my adrenals and nervous system irritation seem to be exacerbated. This issue leaves me quite vulnerable. If I were to get seriously ill with any other kind of illness, let alone the one I deal with - my body and liver could not tolerate any medicine to help me. It can barely tolerate the tiniest amounts of supplements and hormones without causing a backlash in my liver as it is now. I truly am at the mercy of my God.
I’ve learned a lot going through recovery from late stage adrenal exhaustion and chronic illness in general. I never understood what people go through – every day - with chronic health conditions. I would prefer that recovery be wrapped up in this tidy, neat little package with a steady and constant upward trajectory with a prize at the end when you cross the finish line. This is not the case at all. For myself and for many, recovery can be an up and down zig-zag trajectory, with one step forward and two steps back a lot of times. This makes it quite difficult sometimes to keep your chin up when you’re wondering if you’re improving at all and you feel like you’re actually regressing.
Along with all the hormonal issues and adrenal crash I was experiencing, the official Influenza B arrived for me the end of May, just before school got out and prior to Summer’s high school graduation. Ellie got it first, and then I did. I had been praying for months to be healthy and strong for Summer’s graduation so that I could enjoy it and be fully present for this big moment in her life without being sick. The Friday before graduation, I went down hard: high fever, aching, congestion - the whole enchilada.
The following morning after coming down with the flu and a high fever, I woke up and felt my kidney stone moving. I was already so sick with no strength at all; and now I had to deal with the excruciating and exhausting pain of a kidney stone. This is a whole other issue I haven’t talked about yet, but I’ve had another kidney stone stuck since last September. It’s caused some minor discomfort and only caused me severe pain one time before, which was last December.
I do not take any pain medicine because of my liver congestion issue, so I got to ride out the kidney stone and the flu completely medicine free. Every labor and delivery room nurse I’ve had take care of me, has told me I have an extremely high pain tolerance level, which I guess has come in handy. I will spare you all the finer details, but it was not pretty. My family felt absolutely helpless at times as they watched me in pain, but took care of me round the clock doing anything possible to help me be more comfortable. The pain from the kidney stone finally subsided the next day, leaving me physically and mentally wiped out beyond belief.
It was incomprehensible to me that these two health issues would strike at the same time. Couldn't God let me catch a break and let me deal with the kidney stone after the flu was gone? I was bewildered and honestly wondered how prayer really worked at that point and if my prayers were even being heard.
The day of Summer’s graduation was the first time in six days I had been up and able to walk around. The fever had subsided. I made it to Summer’s graduation, and it was beautiful, even as weak as I was. She was chosen to speak at her graduation and it was amazing to watch her stand and speak. I was so completely and thoroughly proud of her!
So we left Gilbert after school had let out for summer break, and headed north to Flagstaff to enjoy some beautiful weather and had planned to relax. Sydnee was there with Ellie and I the first week of June. Well my hormones and liver decided to have a massive issue that week, more-so than at other times. I truly had no idea what was happening. What I thought was going to be relaxation and rest after a tough couple of weeks in particular, turned into even more exhaustion and unrest.
My estrogen surged, and with my progesterone already really low, it wasn’t a good combination. I’ve charted my hormones every day for over three years and I know precisely which days I could potentially have trouble with high estrogen. I’ll spare you all the finer details, but again, it wasn’t pretty. I woke up early each morning around 4 a.m. severely nauseous and vomiting, internal nervous system tremors, with my head in a heavy fog barely able to think straight, severe hormonal depression and other symptoms too. It would settle down and ‘clear out’ around noon, leaving me extremely shaken, and then I’d start the process all over again by 3 or 4 a.m. the next morning when my hormone levels peaked in the night. Sydnee was right there – yet again - helping me through this difficult week until my hormones stabilized later in the week and my estrogen started to drop.
Why am I telling you all this? I’m not usually one to share all the details of every up and down that I experience. I’m sharing because all of these recent exacerbated health issues were leading me to a state of surrender.
I’d had enough of trying supplements that couldn't process appropriately through my liver and my body. Enough hormone imbalance. Enough exhaustion. Enough feeling afraid of my health. Enough hormonal yo-yo depression. Enough instability of never knowing if I would be well on any given day. Enough liver and toxicity issues. Enough adrenal and cortisol roller coaster. Enough was enough of everything by then.
At this point, I was also feeling extremely discouraged, fearful, and stuck. As I explained earlier, supplements supposed to help me were backfiring and I still have so much more healing to do. We know exactly which supplements my body needs to heal and fully recover; my body just cannot tolerate them!
I was completely exasperated. And honestly, I’ve felt outright anger and even hate for a God who is supposed to love me and take care of me. A God that is supposed to help me find answers and get well – wasn’t doing that. I have felt feelings for God that I never knew I could feel.
My journaling was filled with intense emotions and many tears fell during this time. I felt left alone to grope and find my way in the dark. I’ve been sick and unwell for so long. I was extremely fearful, not knowing how on earth I’m ever going to fully heal if my body can’t even tolerate the very supplements I need to feel better. Sure, there are countless times I’ve felt guided and grateful - and experienced outright miracles - but this was not one of them. In the regression of my health issues, I felt completely and utterly left alone.
These were not new issues. I’ve dealt with them over and over the last three years. I told my therapist, through many tears, that I have exhausted every avenue I could possibly exhaust. I get stuck in the thought process that ‘healing’ means ‘doing’. In order for me to be healing – I have to be ‘doing’ something. I have researched and researched until I can’t possibly research anymore. When one of the nations top genetic methylation doctors told me that I could have a future career as a biochemist - it made me laugh through my tears! I research and read because of my continual quest to get answers and heal. I have spoken to more doctors than you can imagine, spent countless hours pouring over medical articles and blogs, and spent more money – all in the name of healing - than you can imagine. I have done it all.
But at this point, I was done even talking about it – with anyone. Done.
So I did the only thing I could do. I tried the best I knew how to surrender.
I’ve been mindful of surrendering in the past, but I had slipped back into trying to control – and it was exhausting me. So I gave it up, quit researching and gave up the battle. I give. I quit ‘doing’. Sounds easier said than done, particularly when you’re still facing difficult health issues. It’s hard to surrender when you need answers so badly.
I was reminded of one of my favorite chapters in 'A Return to Love' by Marianne Williamson. She explains it so beautifully. "The more important the issue is to us, the more important it is to surrender. That which is surrendered is taken care of best. To place something in the hands of God is to give it over, mentally, to the protection and care of the beneficence of the universe."
So I figured if there was something God wanted me to know, learn or do, I was going to allow it to unfold and trust that He would bring it to me. I was done trying to control it and figure everything out.
I've also learned that even when it seems I’ve hit a wall and there are no more answers to be found, some answers eventually do trickle in - it just might not be on my preferred timetable. When you're that sick and not feeling well, patience can be tough. So I tried the best I knew how to relax into faith, and trust that God and the Universe are constantly at work on my behalf and are completely aware of me and my health needs. Surrendering to this state of just being ok with where I was, even temporarily, helps to put my body in a state of ease and healing instead of fighting. That’s the goal anyway. Just breathe and trust. My body and mind were trying to be in a place of just allowing. I tried to release what was no longer serving me.
Please also understand that I'm not suggesting everyone stop researching and finding answers if you need them for whatever issue you are facing. Or that I will never read another medical article. No, in fact, I believe God expects us to get up and do our 'part' in the process. But what was right for me at that particular moment was to stop and just 'be'. To be still. To just listen. To breathe and to allow.
So in this state..... I started to have a feeling come to me that I needed to be open to exploring other avenues for healing, alongside what I was already doing. There were more layers to my healing journey. I just didn’t know what that was and I wasn’t going to try to figure it out.
That was God’s job and I was all ears.
I don’t have all the answers yet, but I feel like more tiny pieces to my health puzzle started to slowly arrive. In the weeks and months following my efforts to surrender, more layers of this health and healing journey started to unfold. Different books with the same theme started to show up for me. More learning arrived about accepting love, service and how to be gentle with myself. I was also guided to start learning about a whole new method of healing that I really hadn’t explored.
The body has different layers to healing: physical, emotional, intellectual and energetic. All of these different ‘bodies’ need to be addressed in order to fully heal. The energetic body is also known as a person's torus field or aura. I actually have one daughter who can see other people's auras. This energy also flows through us, through our chakra systems. It's our very life force. We are made of energy.
When you’re as sick as I’ve been, you get to keep digging to find more avenues of healing and keep peeling back the layers one at a time to reach full healing. The energetic body can have blocks and the energy can get stuck inside the body within the chakra systems. This happens from emotional trauma, grief, childhood issues, PTSD, health trauma, etc., which prevents the energy from flowing properly through the body. I’ve learned that these blocks in our energetic bodies can cause illness (dis-ease) and also prevents the body from fully healing from an illness. The body is designed to self heal and to thrive. These energetic blocks within our bodies can be one issue that prevents it from doing what it's designed to do.
Lightbulbs went off for me. I haven’t specifically addressed and focused on the energy blocks within my body. I've certainly read about it and learned about it - but it always took a back seat to the physical and emotional issues I was dealing with.
When the student is ready the teacher appears. I can't soak up learning about energy healing fast enough.
I will try my best to continue to powerfully surrender. Take my hands off the wheel. I’ve learned that surrendering is not weak, it’s one of the most powerful things I can do. It opens up my mind and my body to allow and receive answers and guidance. It gets ‘me’ out of the way, so God and the universe can step in and do what they do best.
With love, hope and healing,
Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you,"declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
And while I'm sharing updates, I'll share a few updated pictures. We had a great time taking pictures at the Chesley Family Reunion this past July. Here are a few pictures of my family.
I am one blessed Momma. Aren't they beautiful?