Despite the fact I was blogging about any and all aspects of my life, summing myself up in a few sentences seemed daunting.
I wasn't a wife or a mother. I had already given up my career and taken on a disability status. As I think is true with most people, I felt like I could say who I wasn't much easier than who I was.
Rather than mess with it, I wrote instead about what I wanted the blog to be for people. One of the lines was this:
"This blog is about me, my life, my disease and learning to adapt to the changes life throws at all of us…"
When I read it again recently, the concept just didn't sit right with me anymore. I remember typing it and believing it, but over the course of writing the blog my perspective changed greatly.
To me, adapting now feels a bit like a negative concept… like God and I have different ideas about my life, and by adapting I'm begrudgingly adjusting my view rather than surrendering to His. I've learned through the trial and error of life that I don't want to adapt anymore.
I want to be so present in my moments that adaptation isn't necessary.
I have an autoimmune disease that has gradually stripped me of life as I knew it. I went from being a healthy, outgoing, talented individual who dove head first into life, to a person permanently confined to her home. I am in constant pain with limited amounts of movement, energy, and severely limited abilities.
It didn't happen overnight, although sometimes it feels that way. Instead, I've spent the last fifteen years watching my life, as I knew it and as I dreamed it to be, slip from my grasp. I lived a number of those years fighting with all of my might to hang on to every piece I could.
I adapted sparingly because I had to, but I didn't like it.
My doctor didn't like my version of adapting either, when she walked into my hospital room and saw me working on my laptop. I was typing dictation of an interview I'd conducted from my hospital bed, so I could write an article for the magazine where I worked. And I was doing it while hooked up to IV's of steroids and antibiotics and Demerol. Yes, I was adapting to my situation, but not graciously. I was fighting for my old life every step of the way.
Now, don't get me wrong. Having a bit of spunk is a good thing, but the intention behind the spunkiness matters. I wasn't fighting to maintain my life because I thought it was in God's plan for me. I didn't push myself because it was in my physical or mental best interest. I fought because I was stubborn and wanted my life to be the one I had planned. I was adapting as a compromise between my desires and His.
And there should be no compromising when it comes to God's purpose.
So, I've changed my thinking… and it changed my heart. Just as much as I would embrace a miracle of healing with open arms, I choose to embrace all that comes into my life the same way. I've learned to embrace the pain. Embrace the solitude. Embrace the constantly changing plan of my day as my pain and energy levels fluctuate.
I've stopped trying to adapt between what I want and what I have…and I've learned instead to want what I'm given. By removing the expectations I placed on my life, I've come to appreciate the moments He's entrusted to me.
It doesn't make the journey easy.
But it does make it worthwhile.
There are lessons in the pain. There is discovery in the solitude. There are blessings in the opportunities that have come because of my limitations. I've learned to love hearing about what's going on in the world outside of my home as much as I loved living it with my friends.
I see every moment of my life now, both the difficult and the joyful, as moment to be embraced. Because I know that God is in the middle of all of them. He is in the center of my storms and my blessings. He sees it all with eyes that know and understand and foresee the purpose of my situation. And I want what He wants.
So I no longer adapt, compromise or adjust. I surrender. I simply trust that whatever is in front of me at any given moment, He is in the center of it.
And there's no place else I'd rather be.