Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Disorderly

Have you ever thought about your struggles in life and wished you could trade it in for something else? We all have crosses to bear and I think that's specifically designed for each individual. I keep hearing, "God won't give ya what you can't handle" and "If He brings you to it, He'll get you through it," but sometimes our thought-to-be "big problems" are something we would want back if a larger issue came barreling through our front doors.

I'm going to be honest here. 

I cursed God last night.

I was angry. 

As the most imperfect Christian you can meet, I set a time every single morning for at least 1-2 hours to pray and meditate. I don't tell a lot of people that. If I don't get to do it in the morning, I do it before bedtime in my living. I make the room dark, I light a few candles and use sage for cleansing. I've been on this bizarre journey with God -- one that I never thought possible. He has given me a few gifts that I'm afraid to use. Sounds crazy, right? But if I started talking to you in tongues, you might send the mental health unit after me. I remember sitting in church years ago and this man behind me starting speaking another language. Everyone was silent. And then someone in the front interpreted what he had just said. When I learned what it was all about -- I was like, "Oh c'mon! That's totally staged." And oddly enough, God gave the gift to me, to which I was too scared to continue using.

Ok, back to my point. I hate to talk about my problems or share my medical fiascos on here or with anyone in general. Because honestly, nobody cares. I don't mean that in a bad way -- but we all have problems and we just deal with them. I'm not trying to say, "Oh I'm holier than thou 'cause I pray all the time," more than I am (possibly) complaining to God asking, "Why do I have to suffer through this if I'm so loyal to you?"

But I'm making a point. 

So lately, (if you are a regular reader of mine), my nightly seizure-like episodes have been the strongest they have ever been. For those of you who are new to my blog, I have these violent episodes on the onset of sleep -- like when you're just drifting off into a deep slumber -- then BAM -- I wake up gasping for air, my body shaking all over -- almost seizure-like, but it's not a seizure. Sometimes, I get these horrific spins -- like my head is exploding. It takes a while before I can feel my face again. So it's not like I have insomnia -- I have a fear to go to sleep at night. I never nap--ever. There was one episode where my lungs stopped completely and I was flailing my arms back and forth trying to wake my wife up, but I ended up hitting the nightstand and then just passed out. I have been to numerous sleep studies and sleep specialists who have yet to find a solution. I don't have sleep apnea and there is nothing neurologically wrong with me. 

Then it becomes the good ol' "spider bite" diagnosis from the doctors. 

They all tell me, "Well, it's anxiety. Take some benzos and call me in the morning." 

And out the door I go.

With the same problem.

Here's why this is such an issue for me: I simply don't want to live anymore. And yet, I want to live so badly! But when I go to bed at 5am and wake up at 7am -- my day is shot. Going on 0-2 hours of sleep per night can really mess with your head. Sometimes it's so bad, that it causes my vertigo to go out of whack -- which is not good because I can't drive. And since I work from home, it shouldn't be a problem, but it is. It debilitates me. It controls my whole life. "Exercise!" Great idea if I don't fall flat on my face from pure exhaustion. People see me as "happy" -- and I AM a happy person because I LOVE life. But since this issue is affecting me so greatly, people rarely see my face because I hide like crab, peeking out from the inside hoping that one day, I'll get to live my life again. 

This is not a pity party. This is just my way to vent my frustrations and let those who are close to me know why I'm such a recluse lately. 

I thought to myself, "I should feel lucky that this is my only real cross to bear, when there are people battling with terminal illnesses."  I am grateful. I truly appreciate every single little thing in my life. But but but....

It's pure torture though. Every single night, I curl up in my plush blankets and lay my head down hoping to get some much needed rest so I can have a productive day. But it feels like someone just walks inside my room, walks up to my side of the bed and then strangles me until I'm flailing my arms and legs trying to gasp for air. When you have this much of a lack of sleep, it can really mess with you, especially if you have anxiety and depression. Last Saturday while cleaning the house, my exhaustion kicked in and the room spun around like a carnival ride. I held onto the vanity in the bathroom and passed out briefly. I didn't hurt myself, but I had to take a moment to elevate my legs and get myself together again. This fatigue is killing me. Sometimes I just wish it would kill me off already.

So I pray more.

Then I read a tweet while trying to get back to sleep.

Just because you are going through doesn't mean has stopped loving you..

I honestly thought God gave up on me. I kept praying to Him to take whatever kind of sleeping disorder I have away. But it kept getting worse and worse, so I thought He just forgot about me. And then I got angry. I threw my pillow down and cursed God. My wife just looked at me and said, "Wow. Just wow, Deb." She has never seen me do that before. I've never seen myself do that before. It scared the both of us.  

I managed somehow to get a couple of hours of sleep in. When I woke up this morning, I grabbed a cup of coffee and sat outside. It looked dark and stormy -- my favorite kind of weather. It was raining pretty heavy, yet warm enough to sit out there in a t-shirt. The house has an overhead panel so that you can sit outside while it's raining. It looked absolutely beautiful. It was so peaceful. I sat there with my little dog and prayed to God for His forgiveness. I mean -- the worst thing you can possibly do is to curse God. As I stared back down at my phone, there was this advertisement in one of my emails and it said, "But you're human. It's OK." --- If that isn't a sign, I don't know what is. 

And then I read a devotional that my friend posts up on her Facebook wall every day.

April 12: "TRUSTING ME is a moment-by-moment choice. My people have not always understood this truth. After I performed miracles in the wilderness, My chosen children trusted Me intensely—but only temporarily. Soon the grumbling began again, testing My patience to the utmost. Isn’t it often the same way with you? You trust Me when things go well, when you see Me working on your behalf. This type of trust flows readily within you, requiring no exertion of your will. When things go wrong, your trust-flow slows down and solidifies. You are forced to choose between trusting Me intentionally or rebelling: resenting My ways with you. This choice constitutes a fork in the road. Stay on the path of Life with Me, enjoying My Presence. Choose to trust Me in all circumstances. Then Moses led Israel from the Red Sea and they went into the Desert of Shur. For three days they traveled in the desert without finding water. When they came to Marah, they could not drink its water because it was bitter. (That is why the place is called Marah.) So the people grumbled against Moses, saying, “What are we to drink?” Then Moses cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a piece of wood. He threw it into the water, and the water became sweet.

There the LORD made a decree and a law for them, and there he tested them. EXODUS 1 : 22 – 25

But I trust in you, O LORD; I say, “You are my God.” PSALM 31 : 14"

I couldn't be more happier with the responses I've been receiving. I know this isn't one of my typical posts, but I had to share this with you. This has affected me so much mentally, that I had thoughts of taking my own life at times. I have had this sleeping disorder since 2007. It wasn't bad in the beginning -- just enough to startle me. It's affecting not only my work, but my overall wellbeing as well as my immunity. I can't tell you how many times I've gotten sick this past couple of years. When you don't sleep, your body doesn't get a chance to repair itself.

But I have to keep in mind: It can be SO MUCH WORSE!

So when you think your life is the worst possible life and when you think that your problems are much worse than somebody else's -- remember this little story.

A young man was at the end of his rope. Seeing no way out, he dropped to his knees in prayer. "Lord, I can't go on," he said. "I have too heavy of a cross to bear." The Lord replied, "My son, if you can't bear its weight, just place your cross inside this room. Then, open that other door and pick out any cross you wish." The man was filled with relief. "Thank you, Lord," he sighed, and he did as he was told. Upon entering the other door, he saw many crosses, some so large the tops were not visible. Then, he spotted a tiny cross leaning against a far wall. "I'd like that one, Lord," he whispered. And the Lord replied, "My son, that is the cross you just brought in."

That story keeps me in check sometimes.

We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed and broken. We are perplexed, but we don't give up and quit. We are hunted down, but God never abandons us. We get knocked down, but we get up again and keep going. Through suffering, these bodies of ours constantly share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies. --2 Corinthians 4:8-10

Nobody knows what you go through. Nobody really knows what I go through. I try not to judge anyone by their issues or problems in life. You know, sometimes we can easily say to someone, "Just get over it," but it's so much more complex than that. There are some things you could handle that I wouldn't dare take on and vise/versa. I truly believe that through our weaknesses, God works his strength in us. I'm trying not to lose hope when things don't go my way. I'm trying to view my issues as my own cross to bear -- and to also know that I wouldn't want anybody else's cross as well.

So it's not that my problems are bigger than yours. It's just that they're mine.


I would be incredibly grateful if you took some time to add me in your prayers. I don't know what else to do as I'm crying while typing this out. I get it -- things can be worse, but but but...this is totally ruining my life and making me not want to live. I need to be healthy (and awake) so that I can take care of not only myself, but my family. I can't 'be fruitful' when I'm in constant fatigue all the time. I just want to live again.

He gives power to those who are tired and worn out; he offers strength to the weak... Those who wait on the Lord will find new strength. They will fly high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint." --Isaiah 40:29-31

Life wears us out, but waiting on the Lord renews our strength. Our limitations remind us to rely more fully on the Lord.

I know this isn't one of my usual posts, but sometimes we need to shake it up a bit. This is one of the main reasons why my writing hasn't been as frequent as it used to be. Thanks for reading. Please try to keep me in your prayers, if you can...I'm just struggling.

For more of Deb's articles, please visit: www.debrapasquella.com or join her on Facebook and Twitter. Check out her cooking blog for some of her famous recipes!