For the past few months I've hinted about plunging into the pit of a serious illness. An illness that was at one point life-threatening enough to land me in the ER.
In a way I saw it coming, and despite my herculean efforts to stop it on my own, this disease surged over and through me like a cataclysmic tsunami.
I thought I was helpless during the great elbow debacle...
Sometime in November I was handed the diagnosis of Major Depression.
I scored the highest number possible on the assessment scale used by doctors to establish the severity of the illness. My primary care doc prescribed some meds and sent me home. Two weeks later, I found myself in the emergency room. Rather than improving, my depression raged out of control destroying every part of Darcie, it's debris ridden waves could reach. My thyroid was "alarmingly abnormal" to quote one of the ER docs, my hormones all a-whack, and as time went on and I saw multiple practitioners and specialists, it's been determined that my adrenal glands are toast (Some call it adrenal fatigue, the Mayo Clinic website denounces that term, calling the symptoms a combination of hypothyroid and major depression.... uh...)
My hidey-hole had been the most comfortable place over the past eight weeks. It takes a lot of prodding to pry me out. I'm swamped by the stagnant waters left over by the tsunami wave, but at least I'm protected from the full impact of the surges.
I (stupidly??) allowed myself to be yanked from said hidey-hole (complete with a new leather reading chair - another post yet to come) to face one of the biggest fault lines on the floor of the Darcinian Sea.
Some of you regulars may remember the devastating blow I received last February when I was cut from our church worship team. I'd been singing for four years and was suddenly deemed lacking in skill.
A week and a half ago, I was invited to be a backup singer on a "super-team" for the Christmas service (Dec 23). My dear friends who also suffered the same fate a year ago begged me to join them. They argued we need each other's support. We've all been devastated and affected by this over the course of the past ten months.
Last night was the first rehearsal. We had to sing with the very people who stared us down during auditions and said "you don't measure up." It was hard. Emotions I thought I buried shot through the cracks in the fault line. It was all I could do to hold myself together.
My best friend, Stinky, told me to try to use this experience as an opportunity to heal. How? Can someone point me to Healing for Dummies? Oh. There isn't one.
People speak of healing all the time. Author Kristy Dykes has a rare, deadly form of cancer and has most of reading America praying for healing. Author Mary DeMuth is in the process of healing from a traumatic year on the mission field in France. Best-seller Brandilyn Collins WAS healed of Lyme disease. She was wheelchair bound, loosing function in her joints then God...
Depression is not new to me. Looking back, I think I've been affected by it from an early age. Most of my life, perhaps. But it was something I could manage on my own. Now it's grown to something bigger, more ominous. Something that threatens to steal my life.
I know God is bigger than depression, but HOW do I live that? How do I live the hope of healing when my body and mind refuse to respond to treatment or just plain don't work? How do I use situations such as this singing gig as a time to heal rather than time to rip off a scab?
I pray and I pray...
Thank God for my friends here in Denver, my family in PA, and my new found writing buddies of ACFW. Only through them and with them do I feel God still cares.