I guess I'll blog again. People keep suggesting it. O.K. O.K. Never fear! I'm not getting a big head from the hordes of people seeking after me. There's been about...oh...four people. :) That, and I think about things to write with nowhere to write them. Things to say and nowhere to say them.
I just finished reading back through this blog, and it was eye-opening. It's only been four months since I've written. Not a huge span of time. I feel like an almost completely different person, though.
First off, I had to change the ages of all my children. Summer is birthday season around here. I apparently give birth best in a 6 week span from the end of May to the beginning of July. That, or I conceive best somewhere around September---but we won't go there!
I'm now the mother of a teenager, although the hormone-charged atmosphere has existed in our home for awhile. Now it's just official. And Hilary is four. Does that mean I stop calling her "the baby" now? Doesn't seem at all like that is possible.
I had another angioplasty for Pulmonary Vein Stenosis in June. The fifth one in less than three years. Will the fifth time be the charm??? I don't know. My doctor seems to think so. But of course, she did the third time...and the fourth.
I went for my follow-up appointment the other day. I had a metabolic stress test to see if my exercise tolerance has improved any. I detest that test. It's not just the treadmill. It's the mask that they attach to your head so tight, it feels like your cheeks have become one with the plastic. It's the million and one wires and blood pressure cuffs and the incessant questions. "How are you doing? What number is the level of activity on the chart now? And now? And now?" It's the apparently clueless researcher who decided that you should never, ever hold onto the rails, even when the incline is seemingly straight up. The incline...oh, the incline. Don't they know that's my arch nemesis? Don't they know I can make it through an entire day with careful planning to never face a set of stairs or a sloping hill? I can fake healthy most of the time. Except for the hills. There's no covering up on the hills.
But I did better. I am improved. I'm back to where I was before the veins re-narrowed. Not where I was years ago before this all started, but that's not expected. There is no cure. Just management. It's been a decade now anyway. There's all kinds of things that have changed with my body in a decade. I'm older. And squishier.
This is as good as it gets for me. I can make it through the day without a nap. I can breathe without trying so hard. My lungs only hurt if I overdo things. Life is good. But will it last? That nagging question I face again for the fifth time. Will it last? That's the number one spiritual lesson I've gained from this experience...nothing lasts. We live our entire lives wasting our lives fighting that truth. If we truly believed that nothing lasts, we wouldn't be so materialistic. Vainly trying to hold onto things or acquire new things. Things. Things. Things. They really don't matter if you know nothing lasts. Also, if you truly believe that nothing lasts, the pain and sorrow and suffering shouldn't matter so much. The darkness can never be so black if you can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
But we don't see the light. We feel like the pain will never end. Like the time will never come. That the wait is just too long. So we ride the ride of uncertainity up and down and up and down. Chasing after the job or the income or the place that will finally be the one that makes us happy. Seeking the people and the behavior of those people that will finally meet our standards. Running from the trials and tribulations that could be meaningful learning experiences and refine us with fire, but we don't see the opportunities. All we see are the flames.
So, I'm dealing again with the truth that nothing lasts. Good or bad. Only God remains. Never changing. The one sure thing to look to. The one true thing to turn to. Nothing in this life lasts. But God is so much deeper and wider and higher than anything this life can throw at you. Nothing lasts...but God.
I also find it interesting how much my thought process about headcovering can change in four months. It's been over a year now since I've covered full-time. And you know what? I don't really think about it anymore. It's just me. It's what I do. I don't fret over it. I don't feel awkward or strange. I feel like me. My mind is no longer filled with the focus of the covering itself. How does it feel? Does it match? Is anyone else doing it? I'm over those things. My head and heart are free from that distraction to focus on the real meaning of the covering. The humility. The obedience. The prayer. So then, what exactly is my excuse? Because I'm not there yet. I'm not now on some enlightened path free of battles. No, I've let go of one set of distractions and just replaced them with others. What's my excuse for not praying more? For not being humble? For not being gentle? For not seeing the light? That indeed is something to think about.