MRI and Multiple Sclerosis

it happens every MRI.
that moment of panic.
complete panic.
i should be ready for it, 
but it takes me by surprise every time.

i lie still against the table,
at least a warm blanket upon me.
i grip the emergency-i-need-out-ball,
smiling at the tech who's making silly jokes that I know are silly and he knows are silly but what else are you going to say to someone who's getting an MRI?
before he leaves the room, 
he asks me if I'm okay.
i'm saying that i'm fine.
and, for that moment,
i am fine.

the face guard and neck positioner are clamped down.
my head and neck and shoulders cannot move,
a tangible reminder of how smothering this disease felt at first diagnosis.

the board slides back into the machine.
at first,  i'm calm.
and then the whir-whir-whirring  and knocking and banging of the MRI get to me.
and every vrr-vrr-vrr of the loud machine gets louder and louder and the Christian radio through my huge ear phones gets softer and softer. 
the machine seems to speed up, speed up the noise and speed up my panic.
my heart beats faster.
get out,
get out, 
get out.


get out 
get out 
get out.

the machine goes in beat with my heart.
get out, it's telling me. run.

out of this tunnel,
out of this hospital,
out of this disease.

{i'm in my moment of panic}

i have a brief thought.
just get out.
be done.
i don't need a MRI.
symptoms are liveable.

{except they're not}

far away.
I smile and dream of our family someplace warm,
someplace eternal winter cannot effect.
someplace with yellow sun and sand.

and I stop. 
and I calm.
we love our life here.
MS is just a by-product.
a by-product that every single day,
does.not.bother me.
no panic.
no sense to run.
it's just a disease that the Lord has allowed me to live with.
 i calm.

 and as the machine goes whir-whir-whir,
my heart gets slower.
i remember a verse that encouraged me when we were young and living in this little tiny town that i really didn't like and struggling in ministry at our small little church.

...He marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and find him...

 and my inner-dialogue continues.
the Lord has me here.
in a place we love,
with friends we love,
in a church we love.

MS is just a by-product.

God has me HERE, for a specific reason...
...maybe even so that I will seek Him more.
harder. stronger. with more fervency, urgency, and a little bit of panic than my non-MS self ever would have.

and I calm.
and I pray.
I pray until the moment that if I pray any longer, I'm going to start crying in the machine,
and then the tech will think i'm truly a crazy person.

i calm.
i pray.
the season of life we're in has been hard.
God has allowed so much in our lives in the past 4 months.
so much good,  so much hard.
we're just waiting. waiting on a lot of answers.

and blessed are all who wait for Him.
Isaiah 30

by the end of the 1 and 15 minute MRI,
i am, once again, completely fine.
telling myself to stop panicking every time I'm in these crazy machines.
i leave, stop to get a coke,
and head home for a wonderful weekend.
i will await, albeit a bit nervously,
the results.
but hough I will never be strong enough to deal with this crazy disease,

...when I am weak...then I am strong.

and for that?
my panic stops.

You are the Potter

scrolling through some old blog posts, I found an un-published post from 2 years ago.
better late than never?

coming, mom!
he yelled, newly-built double-decker lego space-ship in hand.

i turned the corner,
but i heard it.
the unmistakable crashing sound of legos onto hardwood floor.

i heard the tears start.
i walked around the corner, seeing shattered pieces around his feet.

trying to ward off the tears,
i said,
it's okay, kiddo! you can fix it!
you built it, so that means that you're the best at fixing it!

and in the middle of our kitchen,
i heard myself say those words
{you built it, so you're the best at fixing it!}

you are the potter, Oh Lord, we are the clay.

you built it, Lord, you're the best at fixing it.  
even if there's a few tears in the process.

Happy Birthday Matt!

my fabulous husband's birthday was yesterday!

we had the world's best vanilla cake.

and he celebrated by doing what he's good at -
preaching and teaching the Bible.
{that's what happens when your birthday falls on a Sunday and you're a pastor}.

I teased him that he's only 4 years from 40...
and that when he's 40,
he'll be the same distance to SIXTY
as he was TWENTY.

{think about that one for a bit}.

then told him he's gotta stop because I can't be married to a 40-year-old. ;-)

but in all reality,
the years just get sweeter.

looking back on our young, in-love, 20-something-selves,though we were happy,
there's something so special about knowing your spouse for this long and this well.

each passing year has brought deeper valleys to walk through,
but deeper love to walk through them with together.

i have truly found the one whom my soul loves.

happy birthday, Matt!