My eyes kept involuntarily closing. I didn't want them closed. The Bishop was speaking and I was both interested and impressed with the message he was delivering to my daughter's Confirmation class. And yet...my eyes keep closing. Each time I that became aware of the fact that they were closed, I would force them open only to be shocked at how bright the world around me was.
It's not like I was falling asleep. I mean, sure I was tired, but I've been tired for a long while now. Fighting fatigue has become a daily struggle. I'm not exactly sure of how to explain it, but it's not the same thing as being sleepy. Every night I get sleepy and I fall asleep. That's normal. The ever present fatigue was not. There came a point when I told my husband that I sort of felt as though I was floating back and forth between two worlds. That didn't really fit though because it wasn't that I could truly sense another world, I just knew that I wasn't completely here in this one. I wanted to be here, but try as I might, no amount of will power would tear away the heavy veil of exhaustion that had draped itself around me.
Back in March, I confessed my lack of energy during my annual GYN appointment. I wondered if it was a normal part of peri-menopause, which I suspect (wishful thinking?) I've begun. At that point the tiredness was only just starting to slowly descend on me and while I didn't want to make a big deal over it, I felt it was at least worth mentioning. He noted that it had been more than a few years since my last blood work up told me to schedule a lab visit. The lab work showed that I had a vitamin D deficiency. That surprised me because, well, this is the South. You can't avoid the sun here. What's more, I'd been spending more time outside than usual. Lots more time. Still, when the nurse read off the list of symptoms that can occur with vitamin D deficiency, I had to admit that I was experiencing nearly every one. I remember that I actually teared up with relief. There was a real reason for the way I was feeling! It wasn't in my head after all!
Remember - that was back in March. It's June now. Despite taking the prescribed vit. D supplements faithfully, everything kept getting worse. Part of me considered making an appointment with our family doctor, but the idea of telling a physician that I'm in his office for no other reason then that I'm TIRED just seemed silly.
Ahem...well....actually, I did do that once - more than a decade ago. The doctor walked in and I sheepishly admitted that the only reason I was there was because I was tired. That was it. Just tired. His quick response was that I should start antidepressants. I vehemently refused. My intense reaction to his suggestion was due to a past experience. The first (and last time) a doctor put me on antidepressants was...horrid. I'll write more about THAT in my next post.
Once the doctor saw that I wasn't going to happily accept the sample bag of mood altering drugs he offered, he decided to run a few tests. Lo and behold, it turned out that I really was sick. I had mono. He cautioned me about drinking after others and in return I informed him that I'm fanatical about not drinking after anyone (something that I've hopefully instilled in my children.) So where could I have gotten mono? Then I remembered. There was that one time, about a month before my sole symptom appeared, that I DID drink after someone.
A lot of someones.
I've never taken the wine at Eucharist since.
Speaking of Church, I guess that I should get back to my daughter's confirmation. There I was, sitting in the pew, unable to keep my eyes open for longer than a few minutes at a time. As I listened to the service, a feeling of needing help began to fill me. Would anyone sense that I was slowly fading away? Please God, I prayed, send healing in whatever way You choose.
Then it happened. Near the end of the service, the Bishop informed the congregation that he had spoken to the class about God's gifts and then he invited those of us who wanted healing to come into the aisle so that the newly confirmed could "lay hands" on us while we prayed. I've since found out that this is something that the Bishop does at all Confirmation ceremonies, but since I haven't been to one since my own (a gazillion years ago) I didn't know that. All I knew was that I asked God to send healing and suddenly I was being asked to accept it.
Let me point out here that I'm NOT a "come to the altar" kinda person.
Doing that type of thing would mean that other people would be LOOKING at me. :::shudder::: No, no, no. I couldn't do that. But I did anyway. How could I pray for something and then just turn it away?
Now, I'm not going to pretend that a rush of energy came upon me as they prayed. In fact, I really didn't feel much different at all that night except for the new faith that I would get better. Eventually. And I am. At least I think I am.
The past couple of weeks have been far better than the two months before them. Perhaps that's due to the new exercise routine that I started a little less than a month ago. Then again, it's possible that the whole exhaustion episode has actually been a recurrence of mono (from what I've read, apparently the Epstein-Barr virus can reactive even years after the initial infection) and that the reason I'm feeling better now is simply because it's run it's course.
That's logical, right?
Regardless of what laws of nature have been at work, I feel that the faith that I will continue to "wake up" is playing a big role as well. I believe that my desperate prayer was heard and therefore my body has responded to that belief.
Have you ever felt a change in your life that you attributed to prayer?