The New Normal

I was driving to yoga this morning and cramps hit.  Yes this is going to be one of those posts.

So my cramps hit, and they hit me hard out of nowhere.  It’s not anywhere near my lady time so they really were untimely.  My cramps are quite a doosey.  They mess with my circulation and my legs kinda go all noodley.  Which makes standing, walking, driving hard.  And for quite a few days I pretty much live on the couch with my heated rice sock.  And wine.  Yes, lots of wine.

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But I’m mentally prepared for that mess during lady time.  So when they hit this morning out of stinking no where I have to say I was pretty mad.  I threw myself a little pity party, cussed at my legs that were giving out on me and then, finally, I started praying.

Does God care about menstrual pain?  Does he care about silly women issues like this?

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Andrew and I had one of the most romantic, touching, I’ll never forget conversations in the entry way of Mariano’s Tex Mex food casa place.

As we were pulling up to the restaurant I started spilling out how I feel like lately my brain is unraveling out of my control.  Things are just getting harder for me.  Social situations are starting to be a wee bit anxious.  Things are so loud.  We placed our request for a table of …16… with the hostess then waited in the front lobby with cardboard snowflakes hanging overhead, bright blue Christmas ornaments and Mariachi hats all around.

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Andrew looked me straight in the eyes and said when we were dating he knew exactly what he was getting in to.  Before he asked me to marry him he knew that things were not going to get easier for us.  For me.  They were just going to get harder.  He did his research, mental health issues can get worse the older you get.  He knew what I, what we, were up against, and he did it anyway.  He didn’t say it all lovey dovey.  It was very matter of fact.

He just looked me deep in the eyes and said, “Ellie, what makes you think things are going to get easier?  They’re not.  But that’s ok, we’ll do it together.”

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A shift happened for me in that moment.  It was very freeing.  I realized I had very unrealistic expectations.  If I could just control every bite that goes in my mouth, then maybe I’ll find some reprieve.  If I could just maybe squeeze in a third yoga class a day, then maybe my mind will be more calm.  If I could just never go home and live on the road forever then maybe I’ll be at peace.  Control, control.

This is who I am.  I might never get a reprieve.  Heck, it might even continue to get worse daily.  I purposefully do not look at mental health stuff online because it tends to freak me out.  But my doctor confirms that issues progress with age.

So my brain might be a little chaotic.  My body might be in pain.  A lot.  Andrew and I seriously laugh over the fact that if it’s not my brain, it’s always something else.  Gasp!  Am I drama?  No.  I can’t be.

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I’ve been holding on to this expectation that I can control myself to normal.  Well, I hereby release that.  And while I’m at it, I’m letting go of trying to control my way to peace.

As the beautiful Ms. Patty Griffin says, I “could cry or die, or just make pies all day.”  In that, I can waste time whining or I can get on with my life.

I’m learning to accept things as they are instead of controlling every situation, bite and circumstance around me.  I can hope in the fact that one day my mind and body will be free and renewed.  So here’s to letting go, and here’s to pies!

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4 thoughts on “The New Normal

  1. I love you for hanging with us, even when we’re loud and annoying and a table of 16! Being able to count you as a friend has been a blessing my whole life, and I love getting to see the woman of God you’ve become. Thank you for enriching my life, and I have no doubt, the lives of so many others, by reminding us to seek Christ in the everydays and all the in betweens.

    1. Girl you know that is my favorite table of 16 ever! And not the least bit annoying :) You were making me laugh so hard, girl, I just love you and your joyful spirit. So excited about our next outing when we take over Food from Galilee.

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