February 18th from Erin…
- First of all, THANK YOU for praying and for sharing this with others. I am so encouraged to know I’m being prayed for. Also, your comments, texts, calls, lunch dates, etc mean the world to me! I feel incredibly loved 🙂
- We have a surgery date – it’s March 30! Yikes! I’m actually hoping we can move it back a week so it can happen during the kids Spring Break. I think that will make it easier to work out childcare. But either way, it’s happening.
- I’ve decided to stop watching all medical tv shows and I have hidden the Acoustic Neuroma facebook group from my feed. I feel like both of those things aren’t helping in my efforts to be chill about this.
How you can Pray
- Pray for my attitude and emotions – I don’t want to feel this way for the next two months – I’d like to be able to feel better about things. My counselor had some great suggestions I’m going to try.
- Pray I can be part of the 30% of people whose tinnitus goes away after surgery. I have a constant ringing in my left ear right now. But there’s only a 30% chance it will go away after surgery. Please pray with me that it does.
How I’m Feeling
I don’t feel like I really have anything significant or profound to share this week. If I’m really honest, I just feel frustrated, discouraged, disappointed, hopeless, etc. about all of this.
I feel irritated that I have to deal with this, still scared about the surgery, frustrated by the constant ringing in my ear, anxious about the recovery, and sad about what the new normal might look like. I feel like life doesn’t feel really fun or carefree right now because there’s this big dark cloud looming overhead. And it’s hard to imagine when things will feel fun and carefree again. I wonder how things will be after the surgery and will I be constantly frustrated with the new normal?
And then, of course, I feel frustrated with myself for feeling all of that. I mean, things could be so much worse, right?
I guess maybe it’s a grieving process of sorts.
When the news was fresh, it was shocking. I literally couldn’t even talk about it.
Then it was devastating.
Then it was a problem to solve.
Then it was panic and fear and worry.
Now I’m just mad about it.
I don’t know how to do this. I don’t know how to be in this. I know God is teaching me things in this. But how will I know if I’m doing this well?
I told Reece that I want to have a goal in this process. And that I want the goal to be that on surgery day I could be calm and at peace when it’s time to go. But I feel hesitant to make that the goal because it feels so impossible.
He asked me why I felt the need to set a goal at all. And why in the world would I set a goal that has such a high possibility of sending me into brain surgery feeling like I’ve somehow failed?
I have no idea. He’s so right. But now I’m frustrated with myself for slipping right back into old habits that don’t help.
But I was reminded today that a real relationship with God is honest and authentic. If He knows me and loves me like I believe He does, then I don’t need to justify, qualify, explain, rationalize, or minimize my feelings.
He already knows them.
And I am not my feelings.
I can feel hopeless, but still have hope. I can feel afraid, but still be trusting God. I can feel lonely, but know I am deeply loved.
Somewhere along the way, I think I decided that one canceled out the other. But it’s just not true. I think sometimes I start believing that the world needs to see my unwavering faith in God when things are hard and that somehow my strength is that picture. But God is writing a bigger story than “Resilient Girl Fights Brain Tumor with God’s Help”
He’s writing a story that includes all my strengths but also my weakness, all my successes and all my failures, all my shining moments and the ones I’d rather forget. In His story, I’m not strong. But He is.
And because I don’t have to be strong, I can be honest.
I can tell Him that I’m frustrated, discouraged, disappointed, and hopeless.
And it doesn’t mean that I don’t trust Him. If anything, it means I trust Him more.