I think this one is really just for me

So, I wrote all this out, and I'm glad that I did. But, I'm really hesitant to post it. Sharing these parts of it all is really hard. It feels like people are left with such a one-dimensional impression of who I am. And, honestly, a post like this inspires pity, and I hate pity even though I do need it! Alright, conclusion of meta-post.

I spent the last three days in bed. I knew I'd be crashing at some point, but it doesn't usually take me this long to recover. Of course, given all the medical facts of the moment, I shouldn't be so surprised. I think the baby has increased my requirements for recovery time.

So, what am I recovering from? Not entirely sure, but I think I'm paying for my New Year's Eve activities. I went to the park with my family, and even though I just sat in a blanket with Hazel the whole time, it was the most significant outing I've done for a while. It felt good to get some fresh, cold air in my lungs and sunshine on my face, even if it was only 38 degrees. I should have stopped there, but I had already decided to pretend I wasn't sick and enjoy some NYE festivities. I REALLY should have thrown in the towel. In fact, the whole time I was struggling through putting a dress on I was saying to Brendan, "I should not do this. I do not want to do this." First stop was dinner at a Chinese restaurant with the extended family. Normally, this would have been fun, but I was trying not to vomit (POTS, not preg-related, I think...). And given my state, dealing with the very exuberant child to my left who shall remain nameless was extremely taxing. I took our first opportunity to get out of there just to be done worrying that they were going to rip the tablecloth off the table or upset the lazy susan because it was raising my heart rate by the minute. Brendan and I left our kids in the kind and capable hands of their aunt and uncle and departed for one of my favorite events of the year and the reason I was so committed to the fact that Denial is a river in Egypt. The all-adult dress-up party was lovely as always. Sadly I couldn't enjoy it. I perked up a little bit being around my friends, but I quickly began to flag. My brain fog became ridiculous as did my headache and heart-rate, and I wound up standing on the porch just to be away from everyone while I waited for Brendan to come out and take me home.

I started out angry, but wound up crying my brains out for the next hour or so about my deepest fears and disappointments (no biggie) and going to bed where I have pretty much stayed since.

So, why was I telling you all this? Ah, yes, this morning. Because I've been trapped here for so long, I was determined to turn the denial back on and get my butt to church this morning. Mostly, I wanted to be able to teach my Sunday School class, but I also really get so much rejuvenation from worship. I'm definitely needing some rejuvenation. When things get really tough like this, I just sort of go into this shallow-thinking mode where I kind of disassociate from what's happening. I try to keep myself on a steady diet of non-demanding Netflix watching and snuggling with whatever child comes in to see me. I braided Hazel's hair about 20 times. Giving yourself a day like that is probably fine, but three is way too many. All the real feels that are trapped inside just really start banging on the walls and driving me crazy. It's hard for me to want to engage with God when I'm like this. I KNOW that it just takes me breaking the ice by cracking open my Bible or even finding a song to listen to, but I get very lazy and resistant. Coming to God means being honest about my need, and that doesn't mix well with shallow-thinking denial. So, anyway, I was looking forward to church because I knew that would help snap me out of my awful funk and give me some new hope.

But, I woke up feeling dizzy. Not good. Waking up means I'm still horizontal. After whisper screaming some expletives to myself, I dragged on my BP monitor. Super low blood pressure. This was no surprise to me since I had been up late dealing with chest pain. It's a POTS thing that no one really understands. Comforting, right? I stood up to see what the damage was. (For those just joining us, POTS stands for POSTURAL orthostatic tachycardia syndrome, so the real test for how symptomatic I am comes with checking my heart during postural changes) The first time I started the monitor it was flashing at me that I was arrhythmic, and I think my pressure was so low that it couldn't get a reading and displayed an error. So, I tried to start it again but had to sit down because I blacked out and my ears filled with cotton and clanging. DARN IT. No church for me.

The Holy Spirit convinced me to do my own little horizontal worship time. I followed the regular order of liturgy and used music from my church website and the site of another musician I love, and his church's website as well. I called myself to worship with these words of Moses and God from Exodus 33: "'If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways, so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. Remember that this nation is your people.' The Lord replied, "My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.'" I listened to songs and tried my best to sing along as they were choking me up. Confession flowed easily as I knew full well I'd tried hiding from God for three days. I was going to find a sermon to listen to, but I decided that I was preaching to myself already. And, really, that's what I pulled open the blog to try to write through, but I guess just narrating the last several days was what needed to happen first.

Maybe all this is the offering portion of my worship. "Here's what I have, Lord. This is what I'm working with. You might as well take it because only you can make good of stuff like this. And I love you." These thoughts are taken from the speaker we enjoyed on our church's women's retreat. She presented the concept of just giving God what I have, even if it feels unworthy, like the widow's mite or a kid with a fistful of dandelions, because God will receive with love and acceptance. What a relief!

My ears are still ringing. My heart pounds if I get up. But, my deepest health need, the need for spiritual comfort has been relieved some now. God, give me strength for tomorrow and the week to come! But help me to give all to you so that you can make good from what is happening whether I like it or not.

Feeling Better and Seeing Baby

1st Trimester Report: FOG