Monday Night

Monday night at my house looks like…..

This doesn’t include the ten supplements that I take daily, the yoga, the infusions, the eye drops, and the transdermal medication patches. It doesn’t include nausea meds and emergency meds for allergic reactions that I often use daily.

I am so thankful to have access to these resources that help keep me alive. These meds make space for good moments in hard days, and if I’m being honest, every. single. day. is a hard day.

It takes me 30 to 45 minutes to sort meds, call the new prescriptions into the various pharmacies, and switch patches. I use multiple pharmacies, because with odd diagnoses like mine that require compounded meds, you can’t have just one pharmacy.

This picture represents so much gratitude. I’m thankful for insurance to cover some of the cost of this medicine and the financial resources to pay for the rest. I’m thankful for doctors who devote their lives to helping those who suffer like me gain a level of quality of life. I’m thankful for my personal doctors who research with me, listen to my thoughts, sincerely respect my experience with my body, and seek to truly stay on top of my care. Im thankful for researchers who continue to seek out understanding of my diseases and implement more complete treatment plans.

I’m thankful that I have access to these meds. I’m thankful for the homeopathic supplements and natural doctors that further increase my quality of life. I’m grateful for the ability to incorporate various forms of treatment into my daily life, as my body requires different interventions as time marches on. I’m thankful for pharmacies that deliver medication to my front door since I can’t drive. I’m thankful that I live in 2021, and not 1921, so I can still have a shot at life.

I’m thankful that God is in all these details: that He’s working in various ways to form me more fully into Him image and breathe life into my body, mind, and spirit, even as I fight for my life.

I am so fortunate.

My life is hard. That really is a crap ton of medicine. Also, my life is really great, and I’m so thankful for it.

Addendum: There is this practice that our culture labels “toxic positivity.” This is act of denying or silencing grief, pain, and suffering because of the pressure to only speak positive words, to be an inspiration and encouragement to others. This is not a post containing toxic positivity. In the practice of navigating suffering, we must face our suffering and honestly recognize our pain, losses, and even anger. We need to express this pain. In scripture, it is call “lament.” I write about this often. Judy peruse the Psalms. They get dark.

Expressing and processing grief in the presence of the Lord and with safe people sets me free to authentically experience profound joy within suffering. It feels a bit like a paradox, doesn’t it? There isn’t a fast-track highway to joy. We must also walk through the valley. Remember that the night of weeping precedes the morning of joy.

Sometimes the weeping lasts much longer than a night, but hold on…there is joy in the sunrise.

Please know that there is no pressure to publicly express insincere gratitude. This is a “both-and” scenario. Grief and gratitude work together when we bring our deepest pains to the living God, our suffering Savior: A man of sorrows, deeply aquatinted with grief.

So go ahead a grieve. It won’t last forever. Paradoxically, however, it might last a lifetime if we don’t make space for our pain.

This is my current song that speaks to my pain and hope. It is called “Lift my Eyes” by I am They.

3 thoughts on “Monday Night

  1. Okay, you win! I will NEVER AGAIN say I take a lot of meds. But you and I both do the same thing: I am so very thankful for the meds I DO take, so I can lead a “normal” life with relatively no pain (and compared to you, yes, I lead a normal life with relatively no pain). I too am VERY thankful I live in this country where meds are so accessible, where doctors are able to give me the right meds and insurance covers the cost. I pray for those in places where such medication does not exist.

    1. Yes, it’s funny how natural gratitude flows through my life now. I know we’ve talked about it often, but somehow it’s easier to see the blessings from this perspective. It seems to counter-intuitive! Praying for you, friend.

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Pastor Al Gilbert

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