Give Thanks In ALL Circumstances

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1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in All circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

These verses have been very hard to follow in the last few months, my physical and mental health has taken a nosedive, grief is a fickle fellow and mine started with the unexpected death of my Mom, I have talked about this loss in another blog post but it is the place in which I can see the downward spiral. This time it came in the form of my physical health, I woke up one morning and could barely get out of bed, for the first time in several years I was in a full-on flare up with my Fibromyalgia, I struggled the better part of a month before seeing a doctor who after extensive blood work with questionable results sent me to a specialist thinking I might have Lupus, turns out it was a Fibromyalgia flare-up in full force, a medication was ordered and at this point I had also become deeply depressed as well so I was placed on Cymbalta to help with both issues, I, however, could not start it right away as I had bronchitis on top of everything else.

A few weeks later, I started the medication, at first the lower dose did well then after a couple of weeks it was increased, I did okay for a short time but then I just felt numb all the time, at this point I was sleeping 18-22 hours a day, yes you read that right 18-22 hours a day, getting up to take meds with a little bit of food and bathroom trips only. Things got worse and I just wanted to curl up in a ball and never wake up. My Mom’s death affected me in a very deep way and some days even now it seems like it just happened, outside of my Grandma White, my Mom’s Mom, this was the most immediate death to date.

I need to add that these feelings were already under the surface to say this medication affected me negatively is an understatement; I asked to be removed from this particular drug and placed on a milder depression medication, as I was coming off the Cymbalta it caused my serotonin levels to drop and my depression to become even greater to the point of going from wanting to die to actually making a plan on how to do so, I knew I was in trouble when I went to bed at 10-10:30 p.m. and slept until 3:30 pm the next day, I woke up and had torn my nail beds down to next to nothing, had looked like I had got into a fight with a sidewalk on my nose and no memory of either thing happening. I later learned that this is a form of self-harm; my thoughts kept going to how to make this pain I was feeling both mentally and physically stop for good, which landed me in an unscheduled doctor’s appointment scared out of my mind thinking if given the opportunity I will end it all. I was tired and just done.

That night my very supportive husband and  I called 3 of our closest friends and our pastor to come over and told them what was going on and that in all likelihood I was going to check myself into a mental health facility, I knew enough to know to admit I needed help, but felt I could only trust a very few with this information as there is such a stigma in our society about mental health issues, the next day I went from the therapist office to the ER, that is how you get admitted and from there I was sent to the only bed they had in the whole state of Indiana at that time, a place called Harsha Behavioral Center in Terra Haute. I cried myself to sleep that first night, I had never been to a place like this in my life and I was scared, I prayed a lot too. Turns out God had me right where I should be.

This entire experience has had a profound effect on me, my meds where changed, a couple of different ones added and I learned a lot about my triggers and coping skills, I was in a place with people who were there for all kinds of different reasons but we were all there to help us learn how to deal with our different issues. I won’t bore you with the details of my stay, but I will tell you how this ties into the above scripture. As I said there were people there for various reasons, God was there with me protecting me, before this experience I might have been a bit judging of the stigma that goes along with mental health issues, but I believe God allows us to go through things because someone out there needs to hear your story. I met a woman who also chose to get help and she and I are keeping in touch, I am no one special, my story could easily be someone else’s but I tell you my story because every time even now I stand on the word of God, I believe very strongly in the power of prayer and the above verse have helped me through and continue to help me through a very dark season.

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in All circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

My personal journey is not over it has just begun, my official diagnosis is Major Depressive Disorder and PTSD and I will begin therapy this week, there is a long road ahead but I will “give thanks in ALL circumstances” because I know God has a purpose for all we go through.

Saved To Serve A God Styled Life

Maggie P