The Ministry of Lisa Copen

Lisa Copen, Founder of Rest Ministries which serves the chronically ill, shares about mothering, illness, ministry and more.

Ups and Downs of Illness

Hi, friends,

The last few weeks I’ve thought of a million things I would like to blog about, but the administrative stuff for National Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week always seems to take priority over my ramblings. The beginning of the month I received a phone call that my 94-year-old grandfather had passed away. We’d been expecting it to be sometime this summer, but it’s always sad news, knowing your family will miss such a person.

My son and I packed our bags for a 10-day trip. My husband, Joel, joined us after five days. By the end of the week my knee was flaring so badly I could barely walk or bend it and I didn’t sleep the night before our flight left, screaming in pain every time I flinched in bed. I decided to drop my pride at the airport and request a wheelchair to get out to the gate. A smart move.

My husband had lost his wallet (lost or stollen, we weren’t sure) so we had a ziplock bag of ways to identify him, not sure of what the airline would accept. This included a Costco photo ID card we went and begged for, prescription medication, our checkbook and a family photo from 2 years ago. Thankfully, they were understanding, but said he would need an extra security "want." So at one time, Joel was 30 feet away sitting, waiting to be wanded, my son was sitting between us with an airline attendant and I was in the wheelchair, waiting to go through security and my own "wanding."

When we arrived at the gate I got up out of the wheelchair and Josh said, "Jesus healed your legs now, Mommy?" I smiled and said, "Yes, sort of, for a little while."

Since we returned we’ve been going to and fro from preschool registration and classes starting to starting therapy. My son has always been an exceptionally picky eater with his "sensory issues" and after choking on a chip in late June, he stopped eating. We’ve tried everything, but he’s now seeing a therapist to get beyond this phobia he’s created about eating. He’s doing fine on milk, but yes… does need to eat! So keep us in your prayers, (but please don’t email me advice… unless you have a child who has had the exact same issue–than I’m all ears.) I just can’t take any more advice right now –if you know what I mean 🙂

This week the stress of everything got to me and my neck started flaring up to the top of my spine. It’s given me a killer headache. I called my husband to come home yesterday (I do this about 1 time per year, so it’s got to "be bad.") Basically I took some medications, including some major musel relaxers, and they’ve helped tremendously – I can look at the computer screen now. But… they knocked me out for about 36 hours. It’s nearly 11 pm and I am just starting to feel a bit normal again.

None of this comes as much of a surprise, because this time of year is always busy with Invisible Illness Week stuff and Satan always enjoys throwing a few hurdles for me to jump over. Ironically, I’ve been getting up early to do a radio program and then crashing again. I love doing radio shows, and I pray that I sound okay despite my lack of sleep.

I don’t want to sound like I am complaining–I just need to know that you know I am not any kind of super woman, but rather, one who is in just as much pain as many of you. I’m still one of you. Last week we were at my son’s doctor’s office 4 out of the 5 days. My rheumatologist has called to say "no more refills until you come in!" When you’re taking care of our kid and work, it’s so easy to let everything else slide. Especially when she can’t do anything for me. Cortizone shots don’t work anymore. I’m on all the drugs. I don’t want to have any surgeries right now to correct things like my wrist or knees. And it’s another $100 for someone to look at me and say, "Hang in there." Frankly, I’d rather go shopping and get my haircut for that $100.

So… thanks for your support and encouragement… for saying "thanks for the great newsletter!" For understanding when I send you an XL shirt instead of a L. Life has truly been chaotic and knowing you understand I am kind of "Oz behind the curtain" helps me make sure I am humble and the work is of the Lord and not of me.

Blessings to you,

Lisa

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