A few short weeks ago I was bursting with energy and productivity. Then, migraines took over and sapped that robust burst of life in days. Today, I feel good with no pain and hope for a better weekend. The days wore on, and I became frustrated that my bag of tricks failed me. As the energy began to dissipate, so did my positive and affirming mental state.
This is the fight in mental illness. Some days the negative touch fails to invade your thick mental health skin; other days your skin is transparent and easily penetrated. Having two migraine episodes lasting seven days each within a month was rough. Today is a new day and I have shed the old and clothed myself with the new skin.
Stress has a way of dictating my health these days. If it escalates, body systems take on a mind of their own and issues arise. Last year, it was my blood pressure and glucose. My heart didn’t feel right, so I drove myself to urgent care. Suddenly, the room began to spin and I collapsed. My blood pressure reading, while passed out, was 225/110- this is counter to the norm. Your blood pressure tumbles rather than escalates. My glucose was off the charts. They assumed I had diabetes. I had to go back the next day and my blood pressure was 114/78 and my glucose was within normal ranges. The explanation given was the mounting stress circling my life.
The doctor informed me that I must get stress under control because my body is physically reacting. She was stern and it felt like a parent scolding me for playing with the wrong kid! How do we control stress beyond our control? Such as, an adult child spiraling, or a loved one in addiction, or a life style change requiring you to care of young children? Controlling outside stress is impossible. However, to control our reactions and our thoughts is to gain some freedom. No pro in this game, I still struggle every time something arises, i.e. the migraines. I have techniques in place and I am working on it.
That is all we can do. If we march on through the battle we will be better for it. I don’t own a white retreat flag, I refuse. There is no map of hidden bunkers in this life, no place to sit and hide while the world fights me. So, I stand. This is me, the courageous warrior, armed and dangerous. When every cell in my body is calling me to run and hide, it is the Spirit in my soul that says forge on and fight. This who I am. A daughter of the one true King, and royalty never bows down.
..But to all who did receive him, who did believe in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.. John 1:12English Standard Version