Tag Archives: Boundaries

Addiction Is A Family Disease

You might be wondering, is that really true? I assure you it is.

See an addict can’t be an addict without help. There’s people in their lives that keep that merry go round going.

There’s the enabler, who wants to “Help” and “Fix” and they think if I was a good enough spouse, friend, sister, brother, etc. then they wouldn’t be like this. I NEED to help them get on track.

One of the first things I learned in Alanon (a meeting for people who have a loved one or friend with a drinking problem) is The 3 C’s.

I didn’t cause it

I can’t cure it,

I can’t control it.

Sweet one, maybe you need to hear that today!

An addiction doesn’t have to be just alcohol or drugs, there are many forms of addiction….food, sex, shopping, pornography, cutting, working, exercise, video games, TV, etc.

I love the example Henry Cloud uses in Changes That Heal, about a dad and his 2 sons. (I have paraphrased this story.) So the Dad is meeting with Henry and says “I need you to fix my son.” So Henry looks to the son sitting there and says “What’s going on, how can I help you?” The son says “No, it’s not me, it’s my brother.” He says “Well where is your brother?” “He’s not here” says the brother. Henry says “Well where is he? And what’s his problem?” The dad answers “He’s flunked out of 3 colleges and he smokes pot.” Henry is puzzled by this and asked “How do you even do that? I understand how you flunk out of one, but how do you get in the 2nd and 3rd one?”

The dad answers “Well, I’m on the board of multiple colleges. The first time he flunked out there was to much partying in the dorm so I bought him a condo, gave him enough money so he could just focus on studying and not work and he still flunked out.” Henry says “Darn those kids!” Love his humor🤣

I’m already chuckling at this point because I see where this is leading too…..

The dad is the great enabler!

Henry asked “Where is your son today?” Dad says, “He’s not here.” Henry says, “I know he’s not here but where might gps find him?”

The dad says “He’s in Vale…skiing.”

Now I ask you, does this sound like the kid who has any problems to you? Not to me.

At this point Henry says, “Sir I’m a psychologist and I help people. I don’t think I can help your son. He doesn’t have any problems. He’s got all the money he needs, a free place to live AND he’s on vacation. He doesn’t have any problems.” Now the dads is confused and getting miffed, saying “Oh yes he does!”

Henry says, “You on the other hand I can help.” The dad is like “I don’t have any problems.” Henry says “Yes you do, you have owned all your sons problems. But I can help you, help your son have some problems.”

I just love that! The dad was busy helping and enabling all his sons issues. The son has had no consequences and has absolutely no reason to change.

Do you have someone like this in your life?

How are you coping?

Are you owning all their mess?

Still trying to fix them?

Learning boundaries is the most amazing and absolutely FREEING thing I’ve ever done.

We all need them, addictions or not. You could have a family member with untreated mental illness. I can relate to this one on such a personal level. A certain family member of mine, has untreated mental illness and ever since I can remember I was always helping, fixing, and rescuing them. Until the last couple of years, I was so burn out. Exhausted! Stressed to the max!

Every time my phone rang I and I saw it was them calling….anxiety would set in quickly! I never had anxiety before. You never knew what was on the other end of the line. Crying hysterically, mad, complaining about their life or someone in it, or the high manic side where everything is beautiful, wonderful, and full of rainbows 🌈 and unicorns 🦄

This was simply ingenious, I gave them a certain ringtone so I would know it was them calling me and at that moment I could decide am I in a place where I can talk to this person? Or do I need to let it go to voicemail and talk later? That simple thing, was life changing for me.

See sweet friend, it’s not your job to fix someone else. You and I are not Holy Ghost Jr. they have a Savior just like you do and that’s his job to work in their lives and change what needs to be changed.

However, we do have a part to do too and that’s to stop 🛑 helping and rescuing them. Let that loved one feel the consequences of their own actions.

If you have a person in your life and they are not taking responsibility for themselves, they don’t have a job or keep losing jobs and now they want to move in with you again….you keep forking out money to “help” and “rescue” them. That’s not helping them be responsible.

They don’t have a car and they want to keep using yours.

You could be taking up the slack for someone with things they need to do but choose not too….but you say to yourself “Well someone has to do it” and so you do it. But now your full of bitterness and resentment when what you needed to do is let them figure it out and you do what your supposed to do.

Or maybe they don’t have groceries or gas because they spent their money on frivolous things and they can’t buy groceries or get gas for the car they’re borrowing from you….but they’ll play on your emotions and say “if you love me then you’d give me the money that I need.”

This sounds ridiculous but it happens every day my friend….you are not helping them.

Sure there is a time when everyone needs help but when you see it becomes a pattern and it keeps repeating itself over and over and over again, YOU are now contributing to the problem and staying on that merry go round. They have no desire to do any different because you continue to fix there issues.

If they are addicted to alcohol, don’t buy it for them. Simply say, “I love you but I’m no longer going to contribute to this, from now on you can buy your own alcohol.” This one, I had to do with someone.

When that person calls you with drama and chaos, things they want YOU to fix….simply 🛑 and say I’m sorry, I can’t do that for you. Tell them you love them and I’m praying for you but you need to figure out this for yourself.

Look, I’m not gonna sit here and tell you this is easy to do because the truth is I have felt like my guts were being ripped out, nauseous to the point of throwing up. It’s hard as Hades and that’s NO JOKE! But it’s necessary for your own health and well-being.

God gave me this verse a few years ago and maybe it will help you too.

EXODUS‬ ‭18:17-18‬ ‭AMP‬‬

Moses’ father-in-law said to him, “The thing that you are doing is not good. You will certainly wear out both yourself and these people who are with you, because the task is too heavy for you [to bear]; you cannot do it alone.”

We were never meant to carry these burdens alone sweet friend.

‭‭Thoughts to ponder:

Who might you be enabling?

What are you carrying that doesn’t belong to you?

Have you been rescuing people?

What can you do let people in your life feel the consequences of their own actions?

How does that make you feel to even think about doing that?

Ohhhh, I’ll answer that for you, it will FEEL WRONG AND AWFUL! But just because it FEELS WRONG, doesn’t mean it’s wrong.

You have to keep doing the next right thing and that “feeling” will catch up with you, eventually.

CHANGE IS HARD but it is a necessary part of life.

You can suffer the pain of change or suffer remaining the way you are.” Joyce Meyer

That’ll preach! That’s a word for someone.

So my friend just start setting small boundaries, those lead to big victories.

Pray about it, it may take you a while to do it and that’s perfectly fine. I’ve been there too. But you’ve got this, you can do it!

I pray God will give you the wisdom and courage to do what’s best for you and your family, setting those boundaries that brings peace to your heart and mind and FREEDOM to your life!

Have a blessed and wonderful day!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

The Battle Has Just Begun

Don’t forget who created you, you are anointed for such a time as this!

The storms and trials that come into our lives may bend you but they can never break you! They may even bring you to your knees but what better place to be on your knees crying out to Jesus. God’s got you sweet friend.

I know for me fear has played a huge part in my life. Especially when it comes to people closest to me. The fear of the unknown, fear of the known, sometimes I don’t know which is worse. Rejection and anxiety run close to fear. Are you anxious or worried about something?

It’s real easy to get consumed by it all. I’ve been there, can you relate? I get wrapped up in the problem and I can’t see anything else. I’m stuck and I feel paralyzed. I can’t see beyond it, it seems as though it will never end or change. But can I just tell you, that’s just lie from the pits of hell!

When we submit to God, he moves on our behalf. He says precious one, “the battle does not belong to you.” Come to Me, rest in Me and I will fight this battle for you, all you have to do is be still. 2 little words…..so hard to do. It’s in our nature we want to do but sometimes it’s not up to us to fix the situation.

We have to learn to lean on God and trust Him in the hard times….and good times.

If I’m honest, I have also found that I wasn’t waiting on God, he was waiting on me. Often times, we have to do hard things before God will do his part. It could be a matter of setting a boundary with someone but just the thought of it makes you sick. I’ve been there. Or allowing another to feel the consequences of their own choices and behavior, and not rescuing them or fixing it for them.

Why do we feel not worthy of someone treating us right?

Why do we accept bad behavior from people in our lives?

Let me reassure you that God loves you and wants good things for your life but you have to also want them. You have to set boundaries for yourself and others.

You have to know that Jesus died for you to have life to the full, till it overflows. Are you living in that overflow? Or are you just getting by, excepting things that you shouldn’t?

You are beautiful, you are worthy…because of what Christ did for you on the cross.

You are known by the King. You are fearfully and wonderfully made. You are treasured, chosen, called, adored, valued, priceless, wanted, and LOVED.

Do you know how great Gods love is for you?

Do you know how He sees you?

In life, we can learn to view ourselves by the things that people have done to us or the things they’ve said to us. We allow that to permeate on the inside of us and we become broken and toxic. God never meant for you to accept those things. He wants you to see yourself as He sees you. He wants you to forget what lies behind and press forward to all the good things He has in store for you. He wants to do a new thing in you precious one.

If you living in fear, worry, and anxious about everything there’s an answer…..If it’s enough to make you worry about then my friend it’s enough to pray about it!

Fighting on our knees is the key to living a victorious life.

1 John 5:4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.

You are an overcomer and the war has already been won. Do you not see it?

When things get tough and you feel overwhelmed, hit your knees sweet friend. The battle is won there. Keep praying, keep believing, keep trusting God. But also remember, you have another part to do as well. We must “be still” and know that God has us in the palm of his hand. You may also have to do something.

God maybe saying you need to do a certain thing so He can do his job, we can be in the way sometimes of God doing what He needs to do in our lives and others. If you’re honest you probably already know what it is, you just need courage to do it. Sometimes you have to release people, let them feel the pain of their own choices so things can be rebuilt and trust in your heart that God has you.

PRAY! PRAY! And PRAY SOME MORE!

Get In The Word:

The Lord is a man of war; the Lord is His name … Your Right Hand, O Lord, has become glorious in power; Your right hand, O Lord, has dashed the enemy in pieces. And in the greatness of Your excellence you have overthrown those who rose against You; You sent forth Your wrath which consumed them like stubble.” (Exodus 15:3,6)

“The Lord shall go forth like a mighty man; He shall stir up His zeal like a man of war. He shall cry out, yes, shout aloud; He shall prevail against His enemies.” (Isaiah 42:13)

“I will go before you and make the crooked paths straight; I will break in pieces the gates of bronze and cut the bars of iron.” (Isaiah 45:2)

“For you shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight; for the Lord will go before you, and the God of Israel will be your rear guard.” (Isaiah 52:12)

“Therefore understand today the Lord your God is He who goes before you as a consuming fire. He will destroy them and bring them down before you; so you shall drive them out and destroy them quickly, as the Lord has said to you.” (Deuteronomy 9:3)

“The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.” (Exodus 14:14)

“Be strong and courageous; do not be afraid nor dismayed before the king of Assyria, nor before all the multitude that is with him; for there are more with us than with him. With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the Lord our God, to help us and to fight our battles.” (2 Chronicles 32:7)

“… For I will contend with him who contends with you.” (Isaiah 49:25)

“… since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you …” (2 Thessalonians 1:6)

The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms; He will thrust out the enemy from before you, and will say, ‘Destroy!’ ” (Deuteronomy 33:27)

Do not say, “I will recompense evil;” Wait for the Lord, and He will save you.” (Proverbs 20:22)

I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you …” (Genesis 12:3)

Praise Him while your waiting. He will bring you comfort in your time of need. He is the God of all comfort and He brings restoration!

Have a blessed and wonderful day!

Big hugs,

Nicole💗

This is how I fight my battles
This is how I fight my battles
It may look like I’m surrounded
But I’m surrounded by You
It may look like I’m surrounded
But I’m surrounded by You
It may look like I’m surrounded
But I’m surrounded by You

It may look like I’m surrounded
But I’m surrounded by You

Overcoming Deep Dark Secrets….Life With An Eating Disorder

Hey y’all! Hope you guys have had a great week. I haven’t talked about this in a minute but I feel like it’s so important, not only for myself but for those suffering in silence. Some of you know I have struggled with an eating disorder for a good portion of my life, that maybe where you find yourself at today. But I want to offer hope to you, hope that you don’t have to stay in the same place as you are today. You don’t have to have the same struggles or battles, if your willing to allow God in and put the work in…..YOU CAN HAVE FREEDOM. It’s there for the taken!! While I’m still on the road to recovery, I’m getting stronger and more free every day, and you can to my friend.

So I want talk about what helped lead up to me even being willing to get help. I’m using the word willing for an important reason because if I said I was waiting on WHEN I FELT LIKE MAKING CHANGES I’d be waiting for an awfully long time. Because we can feel like every Monday we want to start over and TRY to get things right. But in my experience “WE TRY” “WE FEEL” and it hasn’t served me well.

Feelings are so fickle, they are one way one day and different the next. So waiting on your feeling to be what you want….well that day may never come. But if I make a conscious choice to say Lord I’M WILLING that’s different. I’m not giving my feelings a vote.

Our church has a small group/conference called Freedom and WOW it’s incredible! Well I went through it and right when it was time for conference in last December, I got so sick and I couldn’t go. I was so so upset, discouraged and didn’t understand at all. At the time I couldn’t see what God was doing behind the scenes and let me just say He is such a behind scenes kinda Guy.

So the 1st of January rolls around and 21 Days of Fasting And Prayer starts and prolly half way through God stuck His finger right on IT and said “Nicole now is the time, it’s time to deal with your eating disorder.”

“Excuse me Lord but I don’t have a problem.”

Now mind you I was weighing myself everyday sometimes 2-3 times a day. BUT I DON’T HAVE A PROBLEM. Denial!

I had been abusing diuretics and laxatives for years. I would fast and I could fast like nobody’s business but then I’d binge…..I was struggling with something, I didn’t know it had a name. It’s name was bulimia.

So it was at the moment I realized why I wasn’t able to go to the Freedom conference. God had something more He needed to deal with me on and bring healing to my soul.

Right then and there I went to my medicine cabinet and threw out all my diuretics and laxatives. Now I’d like to say it was easy from that point on and that I didn’t struggle but because my body was use to them and needed them to go to the bathroom. It was like crucifying the flesh…Ugghhh! There’s a healing period which I’m pretty sure I’m still in, I think it will take a while to heal my intestines, body, spirit, and emotions from all that trauma I put myself through.

It’s funny how we always think no one knows our deep dark secrets because we put on our mask every day and act like we gucci. But ya know what….I know…..God knows. And the pain of holding all of it in or keeping up the image will destroy you.

So after much prayer and seeking the Lord on what to do, the first thing I needed to do was to tell my husband. Oh how I dreaded that conversation, to the point it made me physically ill, like wanting to throw up.

So finally I went downstairs and said “Honey I need to talk to you about something and it’s going to be really hard for me to talk about. Of course I’m already crying and can hardly speak. I know the poor man is prolly thinking “Ohhhh I’m in the doghouse, she about to leave me! Or she’s having a affair!”

I could hardly get it out I was crying so hard but once I did you could see the relief on his face that it wasn’t one of the before mentioned items lol. I’m being so vulnerable baring my soul, and he’s relieved I’m not having an affair. Lol😂 We can look for humor in everything.

I told him how I had been struggling and abusing laxatives and diuretics, fasting and binging. He listened and said “Thank you honey for sharing that with me I know that was extremely hard for you. How can I help or what do you want to do?” Well I had already been looking for a counselors, I thought a nutritionist was a good idea as well. So I started there. I also shared with our 3 daughters, what was hidden in the dark had to come out, so it could hold no more power over me. It was a step toward freedom.

I reached out to a nutritionist who I really like but for me I have to say this is such a tricky part of having a eating disorder. They go over all your healthy issues, keeping in mind your eating disorder and then put you on a meal plan. Well for me what I had found is that I already had such a unhealthy relationship with food you telling me I can’t have a Dr. Pepper and I can only eat these things it wasn’t good for me. Because not realizing but all my life I had been putting certain foods in good categories and bad categories and if I ate from the good category I was good but if I ate or drank from the bad category “I was bad” I would heap so much shame and guilt onto myself which kept me spiraling. Not sure if that makes sense or not, so for a while I’ve been working on just my relationship WITH food. I know there are good and bad foods and our bodies NEED the good foods but your mind and heart still need to make that connection without condemnation and shame being in the picture. So if I ate a brownie or drank a Dr. Pepper I wasn’t a bad person like I fell like I was. It’s crazy what our mind can make us think about ourselves.

Having a eating disorder for me while it is obsessing over weight and food, I’ve also learned it goes sooooo much deeper than that. It went back to things from my childhood that led up to that.

I was raised in alcoholism, with that comes so much baggage. Enabling, people pleasing, codependency, fear, manipulation, people trying to control you, you feeling out of control, and not knowing what the day would hold. I think I learned to try not to rock the boat fairly early in life, that was a safe place….so I thought.

I love my mother and father dearly but they divorced before I was 2 and my father remarried and had 3 other daughters. He wasn’t there for me as much as I would have liked him to be or at the time needed him to be. Our relationship then wasn’t as strong as it is today. Thankful God brings restoration.

I lived with my mother who also remarried 4 times and that was very difficult for me in that I didn’t have a stable father figure. Let me say upfront I do not in any way blame her. She worked hard to raise me the best way she knew how and all she wanted was to be loved. She loved the way she knew how and so did my Dad. And can’t we all relate to that? We all want to be loved and accepted, we do what we know….right or wrong. It definitely hindered me in many ways but it also helped shape me into the woman I am today.

I was molested at a young age and back then that wasn’t something you talked about and they also threatened me about telling anyone. So that was yet another deep dark secret that got stuffed deep down.

Your life shapes you for the good or for the bad and at the moment for me it wasn’t good. Things were quickly building for the perfect storm in my life.

At a young age I quickly learned that when I expressed my feelings I got in trouble, or I was told I was wrong for feeling that way. I was also told on several occasions “If you do that you can’t come back home”. I felt rejected and like what I had to say or what I felt wasn’t important. So what did I do, I stuffed my emotions down further and further. That’s what we are doing with our eating disorders or any addiction for that matter.

By the time I had meet my husband and we married I had such low self esteem. I was constantly comparing myself to other women, and of course never measuring up. I literally hated myself. I would tear myself apart. It’s so sad to say these things but even watching TV was a struggle for me. If a beautiful woman came on tv I began comparing myself to her, telling myself how ugly I was. How my husband prolly would rather have her than me. It was AWFUL!!

The devil knows your weaknesses and he will use them against you. He will whisper lies in your ears and if you’re not careful you’ll believe them and they will hold you captive.

It wasn’t until I went to Al-Anon where I started getting help to deal with others in my life who had drinking problems that I was able to get free from some of that and I began loving myself.

I can remember one day texting my sponsor with tears in my eyes from a baton competition and telling her how much fun I was having and how in the past they were so difficult for me because of all the cute young girl running around in their little costumes. I was getting FREE little by little and it felt so good!!

All the things I’ve talked about cause frustration, confusion, distrust, guilt, rejection, fear of failure, shame, people pleasing and so much more. That’s what you begin to think, act, and do.

So fast forward to going to counseling, I felt like God lead me to this specific person. I mean for goodness sakes her name was Hope!

Hope means a confidant expectation of something good.

Hope was exactly what I had been looking for, for my whole life. Not the person although she’s has been such a blessing in my life but the HOPE God gives us in our time of need.

Hope was what I needed to overcome this disorder and other things in my life that have so enslaved me.

Hope for my future.

Hope for freedom.

Hope to have a voice.

Hope to share my feelings and not feel like I’m wrong for having them.

Just HOPE!

So while I’m still on the road to recovery, I’ll be honest I don’t do the laxatives or diuretics, but on a really bad day or week in my weakness I have turned to fasting and binging sometimes, but not as often as I use too PRAISE GOD!! That’s progress. God is so good and faithful and He will do it for you to precious one.

Today I can say I have HOPE for a better life. A life of freedom. I have good days and bad days but the thing I’m finding so valuable is my VOICE AND MY FEELINGS, whether their good or bad they are mine and it’s ok to have them and express them in a appropriate way. They no longer have to be stuffed!

Learning to not be lead by my feelings but to feel them and know they are real and they are mine and it’s not wrong to have them or express them.

My job is to allow God to bring healing to me, set healthy boundaries, and use my voice when needed and NOT STUFF IT! Stop stuffing things down just because someone may not like it or not want to hear something uncomfortable.

And my goodness stop taken ownership and fixing things that are others responsibilities. I have to stay on my side of the street in order to keep myself in a healthy place.

Precious one you gotta get the Word on inside of you if want to get to the other side of your problem where FREEDOM is. Meditate on it day and night. Pick one, stay on it till it’s deep in you and them move onto the next one.

Psalm 139:14 I will praise You because I have been remarkably and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, and I know this very well.

Song of Solomon 4:7 My darling, everything about you is beautiful, and there is nothing at all wrong with you.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 Don’t you know that your body is a temple that belongs to the Holy Spirit? The Holy Spirit, whom you received from God, lives in you. You don’t belong to yourselves. You were bought for a price. So bring glory to God in the way you use your body.

Zephaniah 3:17 For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.

You are loved my friend! We all have our issues whether it’s an eating disorder or some other kind of addiction God wants you to turn to Him and let Him help you. He will take what the enemy meant to harm and destroy and use for your good. But it’s up to you to let Him. He calls you holy, righteous, beautiful, and His Trophy of Grace

Love and hugs,

Nicole 💗

Please click the link below and enjoy the song You’ll Come by Hillsong

https://youtu.be/2RmZFaruXhs

Living A Life With (HOPE) & Chronic Pain, Autoimmune Disease Or Any Other Invisible Disease…

imageLiving a life with (HOPE) and chronic pain, autoimmune disease, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, or any other invisible disease means you have to learn to make adjustments because things change. It’s not as obvious to others because you can’t see the illness physically but boy do YOU feel it and eventually people will notice the change as it begins to wreck havoc in your world and then they will tell you “You don’t look sick” which adds more to your frustrations. See in the beginning you don’t realize you’ve got to do this whole “adjustment” thing in you life, you think “I’ve got this.” A little Tylenol, quick power nap, keep truckin…..HAA! D-E-N-I-A-L, we can be good at that, can’t we?

It’s only natural because we don’t want to accept what happening and make any changes and so you try and keep doing what you’ve always done, sometimes even to the point that it’s harmful to youself. Its hard facing you are not able to do what you were able to do before the pain came or the disease set in. So you say “yes” to things and sometimes you are not able to follow through with them and sometimes you are, it really just depends on the day which can be confusing to those around you.

Then other times you say yes out of guilt and do it anyways knowing you will pay for it later but it’s something you really want to do because now you’re learning to live with chronic pain/autoimmune disease and with that you’ve also learned there’s a cost. I’ve figured it out now, years later I have to make choices. I can do this, this or this but I can’t do it all. I don’t like that! Actually I HATE IT! Making those choices makes me angry and often it comes with guilt because I want to do it all but I’m learning I just can’t! Maybe you’re learning that too. Learning to listen my body is a must but hasn’t always been my strong suit.

THE WORD:
3 John 1:2 Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul.
1 Corinthians 6:19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is within you, whom you have [received as a gift] from God, and that you are not your own [property]?

At this point ours bodies have had enough and that realization kicks in and it says NOW will you listen???? Some people take the hint, still others are bullheaded. Some have falling into the people pleasing category which is a dangerous place especially for someone who has chronic health issues. The last thing you want to do is disappoint your family, your friends, your church, or your work place. You’ve tried to keep up the same pace, you keep trying to do the same thing as usual, mom, wife, the house, the kids, homework, your job, your spouse, let’s be honest just get out of bed.

You try to keep family and friends thinking everything is still the same but on the inside you know you can’t keep doing it but you’ve done it for so long. How does it stop? It MUST stop! You’ve had to be so strong…..for everyone but now you’re physically exhausted and the disease, the pain, well it has overtaken but you’ve continued with your smile and hiding your physical and/or emotional pain. Because emotional pain also comes along for the ride.

Realizing the mask isn’t so great or so pretty any more and it seems much heavier and it gets much harder and harder to put on. See I think one of the things that happens is we get caught up in other people’s expectations of how we “should be”, or maybe how “we use to be” or how “they want you to be” or even things “they” want to do or not to do. This is misplaced expectation and causes us more stress, frustration and added pain and suffering.

Over the last few years one of the greatest and most freeing things I think I’ve learned is that despite what I thought “I’m NOT a mind reader!!” So if you don’t tell me how you feel or what you’re thinking I don’t know and vice versa. I use to think because I had these problems my husband should KNOW I was struggling and he should know how to take care of me and what to do.

The truth is I had gotten so good at hiding that I’m hurting, that if I really do show it or if I ever cried then ITS REALLY BAD, so how is anyone to know what to do to help unless you tell them??? God is the only mind reader I know. I don’t always get this right but I’m better than I use to be.

Recently we went down to an Auburn football game, which of course is a big deal in our family because we go early so we can see our daughter, she’s a majorette there. We love to do all tailgating, pep rally, Tiger walk, Spirit March, Four corners, march in, before the game, add in the drive down and that makes for a really really long day. Its so much fun don’t get me wrong and I love it but it’s also really tough on me. I don’t say this to get pity so please don’t think that.

Anyways back to my story Auburn football and all the pre fun stuff involves quite a bit of walking/driving and it can be a bit much when you have back trouble, pudendal nerve probs, bursitis in both hips, and a torn hip labrum BUT to “watch me” (watch me whip, watch me name nae😂) most of the time you’d never know, on the inside I might be crying but on the outside… I’m rock solid baby!! I always try my hardest to keep up with the fam lol🏃🏼🏃🏼 but sometimes the hubs can be a little impatient and he was the other day. SOOO that’s when he got “The Look” 👀 See it’s times like these unless you’ve been there you have no idea what it’s like, and it was a really high pain day. If you have never had back pack, knee pain, neck or hip pain, or been sick with flu or anything else then you are blessed!! But if you have, now think abt that hip pain, back pain, myofacial pain, Fibro, whatever it is imagine it NEVER LEAVING! That’s chronic pain, that’s autoimmune disease. So yea, being just a little more thoughtful, caring and considerate, or in this case PATIENT would have gone a long way with me.

Another example, I was going some where with someone but quite honestly I was dreading it because I was in pain already and I knew it was going to cause a great deal more pain and this person snapped at me and said “Well I’m sorry you have to do such and such!!” Insert “The Look” 👀 again!! Lol😂 Yea see again that’s not the right response here. Unless you’ve been there you don’t know what it’s like, I’m trying to do the best I can but your words are heaping judgement on me now. Now we are back to me not meeting your expectations again. See how it all intertwines? We gotta break free from some stuff!!

APPLICATION:
Breaking free from people pleasing and overcoming unreasonable expectations people place on you or even your own. This is where a lot of self care comes in. We have to learn to express our feelings in a healthy way, journaling is great way to get started. Setting boundaries is very good, if you are not good at this there is an excellent book by Dr Henry Cloud called “Boundaries”….GET IT!

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To enjoy a healthy you and healthy relationships we have to remove the mask. The mask hinders our intimacy with God and others. Being vulnerable is something I’m really trying to work on. I think it’s natural to try and hide our weaknesses or pretend they are not there. “Most of the time I’m rock solid!” As we admit our limitations and where our capabilities end we can trust God.

His word says is 2 Corinthians 12:9 “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

Next is to learn the “The Look” 👀 just kidding, we all need some humor. If you’re a woman you already know it. If your a man…..You’ve seen, lol.

As if someone’s expectations, and our guilt wasn’t enough now our thoughts have come crashing in and now we wonder will our lives ever be normal again?

Will I ever be able to just get up and go?

Will I have to take medicine forever?

Will I have to have surgery again?

Will I have to ice, use INF unit, use foam roller, heat, oils, therapy exercises just to move every day?

Will I be able to sit in the floor and play with my grandchildren?

How will I feel 5, 10, 15, 20 years from now?

Am I disappointing my husband?

Does he still find me attractive?

Did I disappoint the kids?

Or disappoint my family because I haven’t been to visit?

I’m sure you see where this is going and if you’re not careful it can lead to depression and it does often. I think it’s good to grieve the loss of what you were as long as you don’t get stuck there. Don’t pitch your tent there! This maybe where you are today BUT we serve a God of SUDDENLIES and things can change in an instant. We have to be renewing our mind always because with daily pain and sickness that is extremely hard on a person in every way. While we may “feel” at the time “things have been this way 2 months or 5 yrs, 10 yrs” or ” I’ve had this pain and sickness now for 20 yrs, it’s never gonna get better.” The mind is the battlefield!! All these feelings I’ve just shared, I’ve felt at some point or feel but if all we do is go by how we “feel” that will be a crazzzzy roller coaster of life.

So why not try something different….. BE EXPECTANT for God to move and bring healing and restoration to your life! Be actively, expectantly pressing into God waiting for him to answer you. Have FAITH and HOPE that Breakthrough is coming, healing is coming!!!

We all have those days, those moments things look dark, they look like they aren’t going to change, I totally understand that. So you can put your little tent up for a little bit but you sure don’t want to pitch in the “PIT” and camp there forever and live in a constant negative state always saying “things will never change” “I’m never going to get any better”. NO!!! You were made for more precious one!

At some point we have to learn to be kind to ourselves, cut ourselves some slack. You would do it for someone else if they were sick but we expect so much from ourselves. Constant pain and sickness can be overwhelming, it can make you sad, angry, feel hopeless, and stuck. But you are not your pain and your pain does not define you. We have to learn to separate the two. The flares or storms of life come and go but we need to remember “Weeping my endure for the night but joy comes in the morning.” You are an OVERCOMER!

Now it’s crucial for you to begin taking care of yourselves, there is only one YOU!! You may not know it but you do have purpose and God has a plan for your life. Beside having a positive attitude there are many things we can do to make our situation better. Some of these diseases are aggravated by the foods you eat so if your eating a lot of processed junk, try eating a healthier. More lean proteins, fruits and veggies. Some people have food allergies or sensitivities, if you think that might be you get yourself tested and find out, it makes an incredible difference. I have Celiacs and going gluten free made an amazing difference in my life.

Most people in the US are not eating a balanced diet which can lead to vitamin deficiencies of some kind, so supplementing is a great idea. Interesting tidbit…..For every molecule of sugar we eat our bodies use 54 molecules of magnesium to be able to process it. Therefore consuming sugar-laden soda depletes our body of this necessary nutrient. There are approximately 39 grams of sugar in one 12 ounce can of sweetened cola. I love Dr. Pepper too but I bring up this point because if you already have healthy issues, supplementing might be of more importance to you. Fibro patients tend to benefit from magnesium.

Sleep is so important because it helps in the restoration and repair process of our bodies. A large number of chronic pain/autoimmune patients suffer from insomnia which plays a role in your emotional state, immune system, can raise your blood pressure, and worsen chronic pain. So yea we’ve gotta really work to figure that one out too.

EXERCISE!!!! Yep the dreaded word!! You gotta keep moving as much as you can. Find something you like, I know it’s hard but explore there is a lot of new fun things you could try. I love water areobics, it’s really does help with pain. You should give it a try, added benefit is you will burn twice as many calories in the water than on land becus of resistance. Score!🙌🏻

In closing I believe in God and His healing power, sometimes I think he allows us to go through difficult things to show us our need for Him, to draw us closer to Him or even to help bring a refining to us or in us. Whatever the reason His Word assures me that what the devil meant for harm He will work for my good, ALL THINGS NOT some but ALL work for my good and that He loves me and He is with me and will never leave me. That’s for you to my friend, wherever you find yourself as your reading this. Maybe your dealing with the same thing as me, or maybe a family member, or maybe something totally different all together but the good news is that NO MATTER WHAT God is still with you and HE LOVES YOU!! So I guess by sharing all this my hope is that you will maybe grow in understanding and awareness and if this is your struggle, accept where your at, accept yourself along this journey, even accept the limitations but don’t let it define you. Remember don’t pitch your tent there. You were made for more, so don’t give up and don’t stop believing! Breakthrough and healing is coming.

Jeremiah 31:3 I’ve never quit loving you and never will. Expect love, love, and more love❤️image

Much love and blessings,
Nicole💗