on avoiding shingles the second time around…

Posted by on Mar 23, 2013 in faith, perspective | 1 comment

Ben went and had an MRI of his head last weekend. Frequent stabbing headaches with unexplained triggers will get you an easy pass to the big tube with the metal face mask and the jackhammer melody. It’s the first thing doctors do, my sister told me, to rule out any of the “big stuff”…tumors, aneurisms, and the like. More than likely, it would confirm that he needs to adjust his lifestyle. Less stress, more self care. More accurate eyeglasses prescription and less screen time.

But that night, as I started to drift off to sleep, my confidence faltered. What if there is something seriously wrong? What if we are at the beginning of something impossibly difficult? What if….? I couldn’t finish the thought before hot, silent tears started to drop on my pillow. I tried to stifle my sniffles, because I knew that any comfort from Ben would send me over the edge, and I wasn’t sure if I would be able to stop crying.

I slipped off to sleep, dreaming the elusive dreams of the exhausted, and spent the next several days thinking and praying. Wednesday we found out that the MRI came back normal. This was incredible news, even though our hunt for answers isn’t over yet. You can’t just say, “well…it’s nothing immediately life-threatening, so things will just be…better.” We have some more figuring out to do.

But what was more profound to me during those days when we were waiting for the results were the questions that kept running through my head. “Will I trust God to handle this?” “Will I face whatever comes with faith and courage?” “Will I be able to follow Job’s example of accepting what comes, and not blame God?”

Actually, it was less the questions than the answers. Last year, when my Mom was facing possible debilitating back surgery, I asked myself similar questions, and didn’t have very good answers. In fact, I ended up with shingles, partially because I let myself get run down with worry and stress. This time around, my answers were much different. I have spent a significant amount of time over the past year getting into the Word of God and really focusing on solidifying where my beliefs land.

What I believe? I believe God is a compassionate God, and that He has our best in mind. I also believe that sometimes bad things happen, and that while we can’t always comprehend the reason at the time, we can always trust that God’s story will be told through those challenges and that He will bless our trust and obedience.

Easy to say, hard to act on, right? Absolutely. And I totally understand that we sidestepped “the worst” last week. You might ask me how I would have responded if the results had been different. You might ask me how I would respond in five years if his headaches are still unexplained. My answer would be that I pray that I would continue to find that peace that comes from trust in an all-powerful and all-knowing God, and that I would continue to be compassionate and caring to a husband who is hurting.

I go back to a verse that I wrote about in an entirely different context a few days ago on Mom Colored Glasses. This is what I will spend my time meditating on. Truth…beauty…goodness…not paranoia…ugliness…or untruth…

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One Comment

  1. I’m glad you guys got healthy results from the MRI and hope a solution arises very soon for Ben. Once I became a parent, worrying became so much more debilitating, yes?? “What would happen to the kids if….” But that verse is a perfect response to that.

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