But it doesn't feel average. It feels very way crazy super far below average. It feels like pain and anguish that will never end. It feels like exhaustion deep in the bones. It feels like sleepless nights and sinus infection and fevers and snotty noses that won't stop. It feels heavy and dark and too much.
And so, I was the almost-thirty-year-old-girl, crying at the hospital reception desk (but at just one of the four reception desks I visited today, thank goodness). The desperation suddenly leaked out of my eyelids and down both my burning cheeks. It was embarrassing and humbling and hiccupy.
This Crohn's flare has been raging in my body for thirteen+ months. There have been delays and detours and a surgery and unfit doctors and insurance denials that have brought us to where we are today. And where we are is far from ideal, with far from desirable doctors, and less than desirable options.
But my body is failing. Rapidly. I am a depth of ill that is hard to describe. I have tears and snot pouring down my face while I try to type this. It's hard to describe the pain & suffering in a believable way, 99% of people see the smile I put on, the carefully done makeup to hide the swelling and dark circles, the quick steps I take in the office during my Tuesday and Thursday work hours to keep my job, the (shakily) standing and worshiping on Sunday mornings (if I drag my weary body out of bed in time). They see the smiling filtered photos on Instagram of enjoying beautiful moments with my beautiful little family.
But sometimes, no amount of willpower or self-control can stop the hot exhausted tears of pain & defeat. Enter said embarrassing moments like the one above, to the left of the elevator, on level two of the local hospital.
God is good.
God is merciful.
God is kind.
God is healer.
God is faithful.
God is strength.
It doesn't matter if it *feels* like He is good, like He is kind, like He is healer. The facts remain.
And those facts, those promises, those attributes of my Father, those are what keep me going. There is no where else I can put my hope. Where else can I go with my anguish and weeping? My husband is the most amazing man alive, and even his arms can't contain the amount of tears and the weight of suffering.
Christ has overcome every bit of darkness and tribulation and suffering. It doesn't mean He takes it away when we want Him to but He does promise ultimate victory. I know that, whether in this life or the next, I will be set free from the pain, free from the suffering, free from the stress, free from the financial burden of chronic illness.
But so much beauty and joy abounds amidst the suffering.
A giggling spitfire of a toddler.
A loving husband.
Beautiful fall weather.
Warm apple crisp & vanilla ice cream.
Homemade soup & bread from a bestie.
Twinkling unscented candles.
Diffusing warm & spicy fall essential oils.
Time to read and study the Word.
Nightly prayers with Justin.
Drop in visits from sisters.
Playtime with cousins.
The list goes on... But my head is pounding and my eyes are aching so I will end with that. To my fellow friends on this life journey, take heart. The big, bad, fiery painful things are not too much for our Father. And He sends abundant blessings beyond what we deserve.