Vampire Diaries 3

“It’s only a day away,”

The curly haired girl would sing on stage

‘Cause the sun did come out “tomorrow”

And that was all that shined over here, alas.

Bedbound once again

I search my mind in wonder:

What penance doth I need to serve?

What sin doeth I need forgiveness?

Thy husband is off on his adventures

And I am here, alone with you

Exasperating in another lost day

Where even the counselor had little to say.

My Lord is silent on such an occasion

Perhaps waiting for me to simply dwell

And know that He is there

Even when I cannot see, feel, or touch His face.

Is this my fate, I ask to the silence around me?

Perhaps it is.  Perhaps nothing will ever change.

I am to rejoice the Scriptures tell me forthright

That must come from grace for my strength fails,

Lest a key drops into my space with some goodness

This day I will simply breathe one nare at a time

(Until the pounding in my head subsides, alas.)

Psalm, psalm 139, 9-10, dwell, peace, Scripture, Christian, strength, darkness



The moments that matter

child with umbrella, boy, boy in the rain, blog about sorrow, overcoming sorrow, rainy day, hope beyoneWhen things are not right or even worse

We cry out to the air and wonder, “who is there?”

“Can anyone hear me on my bed of sorrow?”

“How long will this go on, how long?”

Oh the angst for enduring what simply should not be . . .

I could bemoan much pain in my heart this day:

From my spirit through my tender frame.

But why?  What will I gain by wallowing here?

As I listen to a friend who sounds like me over the waves,

I hear wisdom that comes with her years.

She doth declare that in her own time of prayer

The Lord spoke to her so gently.

In all of those times of suffering,

When surely no one cared He said,

“I was there with you.”

And her heart was full, no place untouched.

So today let’s heed this wisdom

Should we, too seek and hear His voice.

Don’t just want for the pain to end.

Reach into the moment to His love so grand.

Find people with mercy for the darkness of our lives

For we all have a burden to carry, each one.

And let us come together in prayer, in fellowship, in praise.

But most importantly

Kneel at the throne of grace often

In adoration of the Person who sees you always.

For Jesus loves you always.

And turn these into moments that matter for all time.

They will be sweet, and soften the burdens we will endure.

We can go on when held by His hand.

Yes, we can indeed.


When there’s no where else to go

the crossSometimes I am not quite sure why I am crying, this late in the game.  I’ve been here before, I know my Heavenly Husband is in charge, and I haven’t died no matter how severe the symptoms have gotten.  My husband and I have seen the Lord work amazingly through this illness.  New skills have come, I am grateful to have met you Gentle Reader, and by the grace of God we have overcome tremendous trials together.  Healing is on the horizon with a new treatment direction  .  .  .  I even have my own company on the drawing board to fulfill my entrepreneurial dreams.  So how can I possibly be sad?

I am sad because it is normal to be sad when suffering.  I am sad, grieving if you will, for all of the losses even if it was good to let some people, places and things leave my life once again.  I am sad that Steve and I had to lose so much to gain so much goodness.  We almost missed “it” so many times!  I am glad that we are more in love now than ever before and it came though an extremely difficult path.  No longer do I ask the questions “why” and “what if?”  More often my question is “when?”  When will this hell be over?


Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.  (Galatians 5:1)

Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.  (Colossians 3:2)

For God has not given us a sprit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.  (2 Timothy 1:7)

And let us not grow weary while doing good for in due season we shall reap if we do no lose heart.  (Galatians 6:9)

. . . but we also glory in tribulations knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.  (Romans 5: 3b-4)

. . . being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.  (Philippians 1:6)

But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the gospel.  (Philippians 1:12)

Therefore I ask that you do not lose heart at my tribulations for you, which is your glory.  (Ephesians 3:13)

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  (Philippians 4:13)

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.  (Hebrews 4:16)

And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.  (Philippians 4:19)

For we walk by faith, not by sight.  (2 Corinthians 5:8)


I was hoping that somewhere between copying these lines of scripture and writing this blog that I would feel better.  Well, not yet!  When all else fails, I shall crawl up to the cross of my Jesus, place myself at the foot of His throne of grace, collapse in the shelter of His mighty wings, rest in the promise that He is always with me:  now and forever.  Yes, this is the best place to go after all.  Here is where I belong.  JJ

New Sport: Thwarting Disaster!

So glad the Lord gave me the presence of mind to cancel a Methacholine Challenge Test today.  I feel exhausted from the prospect that I could have died had I gone through with the test . . .

In the process of diagnosing asthma, a Doc orders a pulmonary function test.  If your lung capacity is deficient for either the intake or exhalation of air, you may have a problem warranting treatment or at least a rescue inhaler.  Since I started having severe chest pain and compression symptoms at the end of March, the LLMD ordered this test for me.  I completed it about a month ago with findings suggestive of mild asthma.  Hmmmm.  I’ve never had breathing problems before and the onset coincidentally occurred during the stress of relocating back to my home after mold remediation.  I was scared.  A lot was at stake.  We had spent thousands of dollars to remediate our home, much of it not covered by insurance or the gift of friends.  How was I going to do after 76 days away from home?  Turns out that I did o.k. initially then the noxious symptoms gradually returned.  Oh well.

We have continued to narrow down and eliminate the potential triggers over these past two months so I can get well.  This takes time and there have been some successes and failures alike. As long as there is an underlying Lyme Disease process (that I am not well enough yet to treat directly), I will have some sickness every day.  But the bottom line is that I did not have difficulty breathing or feel like an elephant was sitting on my chest until the last week of March, 2013!  The LLMD ruled out a heart attack.  Then a negative lab finding for a complication of mold illness suggested that I might benefit from a particular prescription medication, not covered by insurance.  I tried it and am receiving some benefit, gratefully.  The chest pressure is less most of the time.

Today was an exception.  I had a particularly severe reaction to our ol’ church building last night resulting in about 45-minutes of intermittent seizure attacks and marked chest symptoms.  I was still pretty sore today despite taking the medication for the latter symptoms.  So when hearing the risks of the Methacholine (MC) Challenge Test today including a full blown asthma attack, I got really scared.  The MC progressively constricts your airway while a respiratory therapist takes measurements of your breathing.  Holy cripes!  If your values go down 20% then they give you Albuterol to open your airway.  Well isn’t that dandy.  I was given Albuterol as part of the test protocol during the Pulmonary Function Test last month and did not notice any difference in terms of breathing easier.  Thankfully, I had a respiratory therapist who was willing to talk with me in detail today about the test, his experiences, my PFT findings; we agreed about the extreme likelihood that I would react negatively . . .

I feel like I stared death in the face today.  If I would have reacted, it would have not only been a full blown seizure attack AGAIN, but the risk of respiratory arrest.   Holy crap!  Remember the cartoon I posted awhile back about feeling like a lab rat?  This lab rat could have been no more.  I crossed out my name on the consent form and wrote, “patient declined test.”

When I have a seizure attack with chest compression, I do not breathe for several seconds.  It is by the grace of God alone that my breathing re-starts!  If I try to initiate active movement, such as trying to inhale, the volitional initiation of movement triggers another seizure attack.  A similar reaction happens when trying to talk or move as the attacks are occurring.  Eventually I collapse and need to rest.  Much time needs to pass thereafter before I can function on my own or someone else has to lift me up and begin to move me.  Sometimes I can initiate fine motor movements and not gross motor movements (such as walking or bearing weight on my legs).  Usually my biggest challenge is simply trying to breathe again.  Hyperventilation comes first then deep breaths and labored respiration.  Normal breathing is last.

O.K., does that sound like asthma to you?  Perhaps some aspects of it are like asthma.  I don’t think that most of it is asthma.  Google it and see what you think!

So my new sport this evening is first to write until my exasperation with the complications of Lyme Disease are more on the computer screen than in my head.  Sorry for you, the gentle reader and spectator.  This day was a bad one.  The sport of living with long term illness continues as I try to listen to the Holy Spirit and all the advisors/coaches He has sent to get through the game of life.  I am crying as I write this.  You the spectator have witnessed the athlete getting injured.  Not only is my chest still sore but my heart is bruised as well.

I talked to my precious husband on the phone from the parking lot of the hospital this afternoon.  God bless that man!  I was exhausted and barely realizing the significance of my experience inside that building when his kind words soothed my soul.  Steve has asthma and has had a Methacholine Challenge Test in the past.  He was worried for me, praying for me.  He agrees that it was too risky to complete it and ’twas better to have refused it.  After we talked I still had a few errands to run, prescriptions to pick up, supplements to purchase, and of course:  just a couple more plants to take home from a mom-n-pop nursery.  So glad Young’s had the Sweet Marjoram I haven’t been able to find anywhere else in the area.  Just saying the name,  “Sweet Marjoram” makes me feel better.

Now that all of this is “off my chest” I can go do what I do best.  It is dark now but that never kept me from gardening before.  Besides this time it’s planting two planters and I can do that in our garage on my very cool potting bench.  My husband’s son, Daniel, gave me that awesome bench 5 1/2 years ago.  Love it.

Sounds like Steve’s home.  Sigh.  All is well.sweet marjoram