I really hadn’t planned to take such a long break from writing regularly when I started this move to reduce my digital consumption. My initial thoughts were to give myself a week or two to kind of digitally detox. What I’ve found is that I slip far too quickly back into old habits. In order to truly not let staring at my phone become a habit, I have to be quite intentional. I’m ashamed to say that it is much harder for me than what I thought it would be. I’m happy to say that by God’s grace I’m improving even if it is two steps forward, one step back.
As it turns out, this has been a perfect time (
funny amazing how God works things that way) because I’ve found myself in the midst of a bit of health unease. (I started to call it a health scare, but really it turned out to be not a big deal.) I needed to find a way to refocus and recommit to my health, my hubby’s health, and my family. This was the wake-up call I needed.
Two weeks ago, I woke in the middle of the night with the room spinning. This sensation literally woke me up. Within a few seconds it was gone. I went back to sleep, not thinking too much about it. However, over the course of that week I had similar episodes at all times of the day. There were no other symptoms except a little fullness in my ears. I figured it was yet another symptom of seasonal allergies in the Ohio Valley. (Ugh! Just ugh! The allergies in this region are ridiculous!) The spinning never got so bad that I couldn’t stop a few seconds and then move on with my day.
The next Saturday, I decided to wash my hair by leaning over the bathtub. When I stood up, WHOA!!! I had to sit down, close my eyes, and just pray for the world to stop spinning. I figured it still had something to do with my inner ear/allergies. I took my daily allergy meds and went to bed. The next morning I found the room still spinning. Doug got home from work after his night shift and insisted on taking me to the doctor. After a stroke evaluation, eye test, and long conversation with the nurse practitioner, I was diagnosed with sinusitis and lots of clear fluid on both ears. Antibiotic, allergy meds, and steroid nasal spray were prescribed, and I felt like I was on my way to getting rid of the maddening spinning.
As that week progressed, I thought I was getting better. I’d have days with no vertigo whatsoever. I also had a couple days with minimal symptoms. (Let me add here that all along in the back of my mind there were thoughts or worries about all this COULD be. The internet is not my friend when I start thinking too much.)
Fast forward to yesterday…exactly two weeks from the onset of the real life tilt-a-whirl going on in my head. I woke again with the world spinning. But this time was different. When I tried to walk to the bathroom, I veered to the left, lost my balance, and had to catch myself on the wall. The left side of my face felt strange…kind of numb, kind of tingly…just strange. (I should also say that I’m not new to that kind of sensation. I have suffered with complicated migraines since 2007. Maybe more on that at another time.) I didn’t tell anyone at first because I felt silly. I had already been to the doctor for this.
Then, it just got overwhelmingly scary. With tears in my eyes, I went to Doug and told him I thought I should probably go to the ER. Off we went. I was taken straight back, hooked up to all kinds of monitors, and evaluated quickly for stroke/heart issues. Thankfully, initial testing showed no signs of either. While my blood pressure was on the high side the first run, it quickly went back to normal as the nurses calmly talked with me as they worked. With IV in, blood drawn, and CT scan complete, it was time to just wait.
Waiting is never easy. Too much time to wonder and imagine up all sorts of scenarios. Typically, I’m a pray all day kind of girl. While I am working on intentional prayer time during my quiet time in the mornings, I usually just pray throughout the day when people or situations come to mind. Not formal. Not poetic or pretty. Just an ongoing conversation with my Lord. But there I was, right as the nurse was trying to get the IV to bleed back, the needle digging into my arm, hurting, imagining all kinds of awful diagnoses…and I didn’t know what to say or to pray. I found myself just saying JESUS over and over in my head. Then, the old chorus of There’s Just Something about That Name ran through my mind.
As I waited, I found the most comfort simply in the name of Jesus. You see, God already knew what I needed. He didn’t need me to put it into eloquent words. He just wanted me to rest in my Savior!
Thankfully, all tests were clear. I was given medicine to treat vertigo. Amazingly, I haven’t had any symptoms since the ER visit. If I do, I have the medication for it. I also now have a renewed commitment to finding the balance of eating and exercise that will help me and help Doug regain our health and possibly re-lose some pounds. (Possibly more about that later.)
On to all that God has in store for us!