Better April 3, 2015

The fog is lifting. It is weird and wonderful. When I am not taking any medication, thinking clearly is extremely difficult. It literally hurts. My muscles tense, my body aches, my neck and back move out-of-place from the strain of crying so deeply, too often. The weight of world presses in on me and I can’t breathe. I hang on for dear life to God’s promises, I fight to keep my eyes fixed on Him and it is a battle. There was a mess up with my old medication. I was looking for a new primary care provider and the doctor I saw was foolish. She doubled my dose which interacted with my sleeping medication and resulted in Serotonin Syndrome. It took a couple of days before I realized what was happening. It was bad. I cut back to my old dosage, but the damage had been done and while the symptoms lessened, they didn’t disappear. My heart rate was up, I was shaking almost constantly and I couldn’t sleep anymore. So I slowly weaned off the medication completely. Withdrawal is no fun. Once off completely, all my PTSD symptoms returned. It was bad. I was horribly overwhelmed, unable to be the wife, the mommy, the friend that God created me to be. I called a new doctor and set up an appointment. They got me in quickly. The new doctor took the time to really talk with me. She wasn’t interested in simply treating my symptoms, she wanted to know how I had gotten to this point and she wanted me to get better. Through our conversation, it was revealed that she, too, is a Christian. She invited us to her church, encouraged me to seek out community, friends, a support system. She reminded that I shouldn’t be afraid because God is good. She wrote two new prescriptions and referred me to see a councillor she recommends. She ordered me to take a little time everyday to do something completely unproductive, just for fun, just for me. She reminded me that taking care of ourselves is part of taking care of others. I went out and bought really cute, really comfortable new shoes. I didn’t need them, but my heart is blessed by them.

Within a couple of days of starting the new medicines, I feel almost normal again. I can breathe easily, think more clearly and feel the peace of God cover over me again. I am weak, but joyful. I feel sleepy (side effect) but not overwhelmed. I am thankful. With new medication comes new side effects. There is no such thing as a perfect cure on this earth for the illnesses we are given. But as Christians, we don’t have to be discouraged by these inconveniences. We believe that God is good, that He loves us more than we could ever imagine, that He both cares about and is actively involved in even the most mundane aspects of our lives. I believe that, in addition to all His incredible promises, that God has given us medicine as a help (Genesis 2:15, creating medicine is simply part of cultivating the earth). So I thank God for these little pills that make such a remarkable difference in me. I ask Him to help me use them with wisdom. I bask in the overwhelmingly good knowledge that He delights in me, right now: content to be weak, to need mental crutches, and be dependent on Him. I can stand with my head high knowing that He never intended me to stand on my own two feet, but that He has called me to rest in Him. In my weakness, He is made strong.

Thank you for your prayers. I needed them and God faithfully answered them.

Better | Mere Breath
I am able to do all things through Him who strengthens me. -Philippians 4:13
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    Abra, I’m so sorry you have to suffer so much through PTSD. I need to read more about you, and what you have been through, so I could pray more specifically for your healing. I’m guessing it’s somewhere on your blog?

    I’m so glad you found an encouraging Christian doctor (What a blessing!) and that the new meds are helping you out of that awful place you were in.

    • Thank you, I would definitely appreciate your prayers. Right now we are working on figuring out how to manage the side effects of the new medication and preparing to get back into therapy. I developed PTSD through a series of events, starting with growing up in a rough home, as a young teen I developed severe depression, experienced the death of a dear friend, my own attempted suicide, a unhealthy sexual relationship and then I had Hyperemesis Gravidarum throughout the entirety of all four of my pregnancies. My mind finally couldn’t handle the stress anymore, and today I am so thankful that I cannot keep God from loving and caring for me. Praising Him as He has proven that His mercies really are new every morning.

  • kcgroves

    What a great encouragement you were able to find in your doctor! So glad you are starting to feel like you are in a better place.