Pineo-what? The newest diagnosis: I can’t make this stuff up!

On May 8, I went for my first MRI with contrast.

I thought I had already had an MRI with contrast in my brain, but after looking through all of my past “procedures,” I have had a brain CT with contrast, but no contrast with my almost half-a-dozen MRIs.

I am claustrophobic, but I have been able to manage the experience with a washcloth over my face; as long as the cloth is placed BEFORE they cage in my face, I have been just fine.

I am glad that the experience of being sucked up into a giant vacuum hose while lying caged in on my back does not even phase me (most likely because I have done this so many times—with my eyes shut).

Last May, when I was at the hospital because the left side of my face went numb following a UVLRX treatment (which had, somehow, opened up another layer of infection that had been brewing/hiding out), the neurologist came in to have a talk with me…

Mind you, every time a physician at the hospital comes in to see me, (s)he says, “I have read your chart and history…”

I somehow refrain from laughing aloud, but I am not quite sure how.

I would like to see my chart and history, please; it must be absolutely FASCINATING, because EVERY doctor has read it and wants to tell me so.

I envision it goes something like this: “Crazy woman in extreme pain. She isn’t drug seeking, but perhaps attention seeking.  She presents, yet again, to complain about chronic Lyme disease, fibromyalgia, adrenal insufficiency, anxiety, neck pain… You would think by this time she would get that it is ‘all in her head,’ but NOPE. She just keeps coming back complaining of symptoms of….”

Anyway, this not quite 30-something year-old doctor with a leather man-purse (murse)/satchel/cross-chest bag came in to see me.

He was long-haired and wore thick-edged, rounded spectacles—I would not even call them glasses.

Kind of like Harry Potter, but not cute—nerdy.

Very nerdy.

I wonder how long these physicians rehearse with one another what they will say to me…

“If she says this, say this:”

“If she starts to question your expert opinion, do this:”

Anyway, he came in and introduced himself to me.

Without testing me physically for any of the issues I had come in for that you WOULD for a stroke/mini-stroke, he said, “I have read your chart and history.” (HA!) “And I have taken a look at your MRI from today.  We do not think you have had a stroke.”

“Ever?” I asked. “Or just today, do you mean?”

“Well, most likely ever.”

“Okay, if I HAD, in fact, a TIA (mini-stroke) in October, would there be anything to show evidence of this on my MRI?”

“Well, no,” he said. “TIAs do not have lasting impact or cause permanent damage in the brain.”

“Hmm,” I said. (I already knew this.) “Okay, so what did I have back in October when my right leg and arm went numb and I was unable to speak—other than to slur?

Please, I mean no disrespect, and I appreciate your education on this issue, but unless you have ever had a TIA (I lilted my voice in effort to give him the opportunity to say ‘yes, ma’am, I have, in fact, had a TIA, which is why I am so interested in neurology’) or were in my body at the time, I do not feel confident in that assessment.”

“Well, we aren’t sure what that might have been, but didn’t you receive steroids for an adrenal crisis?”

“Yes, I went into an adrenal crisis after the numbness ‘episode.’”

He was losing in this conversation.

He should have taken more time to rehearse with one of the veteran doctors who had ‘interacted’ with me in the past; instead, he had to change the subject.

“Well, actually, because you are doing significantly better, we are thinking we will just keep an eye on this by having you in for another MRI in a year. The 7mm lesion is not of concern to us. We will look at something else when you get your next MRI.”

Since that date last May, I have looked at those darned MRI and CT impressions and narratives over two dozen times, and I totally overlooked the CT that read “incidental note of partially calcified pineal cyst”

EVERY.

SINGLE.

TIME.

I must have somehow thought that was what the 7mm lesion was, but it wasn’t.

Nope.

Not.

There was no other description in any of my other MRIs or CTs, so I thought nothing more of what might be hanging out in my brain until I accessed my newest MRI result online through my health portal.

Well, an MRI WITH contrast is definitely the gold standard; it shows a whole bunch more stuff than WITHOUT contrast…

Although it took me about an hour to fully decipher these medical terms (and I read medical journal articles for fun, mind you), the results didn’t finally hit me until I realized, “Holy crap! This is what the neurologist was REALLY interested in at last year.”

It is a “minimally prominent complex cystic lesion in the pineal region. Findings likely represent benign pineal cyst” (but remember, it was ‘partially calcified’ as described in my CT with contrast) “and these usually remain stable.”

Usually…

“In light of its prominent size, a cystic pineocytoma is possible. Consider follow-up in 6-12 months to ensure stability.”

Well, I said that I read medical journals for fun (actually, I really read them to advocate for myself and my symptoms; nonetheless, I am not intimidated by them), so I started reading up on pineal cysts versus pineocytomas.

Pretty much everything in the pineal region is in an area of the middle brain that you really don’t want anyone messing with.

AND, even MRIs WITH contrast cannot actually tell the difference between a cyst or a cytoma (tumor).

You literally do not know which one you have until the neurosurgeon cuts open your skull and starts digging for deeply buried treasure.

WTF.

No thanks.

I cannot make this crap up.

Generally, these things are not symptomatic, and, overwhelmingly, brain tumors are benign.

Given the size of my “whatever it is,” however (10mm x 12mm), I have a small gumball in my brain.

The pineal gland is also known in some cultures as the Third Eye.

I understand why now.

I literally have a baby ‘eye’ in my brain.

I looked at the symptoms, and I have some of them—the non-stop headaches, the dizziness when looking up, …

I Googled pineocytoma at neurosurgery.ucla.edu/pineocytoma and found this from UCLA Neurosurgery:

“Pineocytoma is one of several different types of tumors that arise in the area of the pineal gland, requiring different therapies. The exact diagnosis is critical for choosing the correct therapy. Pineal tumors typically present with hydrocephalus, a buildup of fluid pressure within the brain.”

Some things, namely my constant pressure headache/migraine on the left side of my head, seemed to make so much sense now, especially as my findings show ‘mucosal thickening.’

The pineal gland makes melatonin, which helps you to sleep; I thought my insomnia was from my steroids—perhaps not.

Mostly, I had been living my life with the faith and belief that I was going to be healed—just like God had promised me when I went to work for my church.

I was feeling pretty okay with acceptance of the testimony He was giving me through my health challenges thus far; I was certainly not looking for more to add to my trunk of ailments.

Since I first became ill, when I would pray in my prayer room, I would pray over my Bible and then open it up for His ‘healing’ message.

More often than not, it would open to 2 Corinthians 12:7-10.

“Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of satan, to torment me.

Three times I pleaded with the LORD to take it away from me.

But He said to me,

‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’

Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that CHRIST’s power may rest on me.

That is why, for CHRIST’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.

For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

I did not question God when it would open to that verse, but I will admit that I just thought that He was somehow telling me that my Lyme would be chronic, like a thorn in my side, and that it would rear its ugly head when I wasn’t taking care of myself or keeping my priorities straight.

I didn’t think brain cyst/tumor, especially because I thought I had somehow received my fair share of health issues (“Uncle! Uncle!”).

I was really upset for a few days, especially when I saw my primary care physician, who kind of freaked out—just a little bit.

Then, when I got the call from that same neurologist from the hospital to discuss the results (when I have an appointment to see him in another week), I realized that this news was supposed to be rocking my world.

I cried and then sobbed myself to sleep.

BUT when I woke up the next morning, I had such a profound sense of peace and love.

It was then that the pieces were all coming together (Hindsight truly is 20-20).

I realized that God HAS been healing me—from my brokenness, sadness, hurts, un-forgiveness, loneliness, worries, anger…

He has been using these past 19 months to set the stage for me to deal powerfully with this ‘news’ that is SUPPOSED to be rocking my faith.

Instead, because of my unshaking faith, I am saying: “Ah, thank you, gumball, for sharing yourself with me. What a gift. Now I know, with certainty and without fail, that I need to make each day and each moment count toward my eternity.”

It had become easier and easier these past few months when I was feeling better and better to begin to stand on my own, upright—not clinging to God to hold me up.

But in every past trial or overwhelming situation—when I did not know where the next meal would come from to feed my family, or how the next bill would be paid, or how the next medication could be afforded, or how my salary could be managed without when I was too sick to work—when I had my hand, my heart, and my soul faithfully seeking God’s divine intervention, He ALWAYS came through.

ALWAYS.

While I would certainly not like to re-live any of those experiences, those were the times when I had the most faith—because faith was ALL that I had.

I was listening to KLOVE.com the other day, and they played the song “Even If” by MercyMe.

I listened (and still listen daily) to that song over and over and over again.

You see, I have already spent several months in bed, in excruciating pain, unable to move, sobbing, begging God to take away the pain or to take me out.

I have spent almost a year teaching myself balance by riding my bicycle, and, while I still fall and am unsteady at times, I catch myself more often than not.

I have physically had to decrease the amount of time, effort, and energy I used to spend (waste) on trivial matters—I have my priorities straight; I have no regrets; I enjoy spending my days by cherishing moments I used to disregard; I tell people I love that I do; I love my life.

I do.

It is well with my soul.

What a gift this all is to be able to accept, not resist, this next adventure in God’s divine plan for me.

I am certain it will be a roller coaster ride, but I like roller coasters.

They are also scary at times, too.

I may cry, scream, or vomit on this newest adventure, but I know God is in control, and I have faith in Him.

I promise to keep it real.

‘Shift Change’ means almost but not quite

I have been meaning to blog again for months.

I swear!

I wanted my next blog entry to be my announcement that I have created an amazing resource for people who are facing, managing, and/or coping with major health issues and their symptoms.

I have worked on this project for months.

While I do have the product ready (and over a dozen people have it for my test pilot), I have been overwhelmed with setting up my store online.

I will get to it.

Soon.

Yes, I promise.

It is called the Health Battle Warrior Battle Plan – Bootcamp.

 

In the meantime, God has me blogging today to share an update.

I am officially back to work as of March 2016; I am working for a federally-funded research branch of ob/gyn physicians, who are working to solve the issue of infant mortality in Detroit, Michigan.

These doctors are flabbergasted that I am not able to receive adequate treatment for chronic Lyme (One of the doctors is from Connecticut, and he is astounded that Michigan lives in the Dark Ages regarding this horrific illness).

While returning to work was financially necessary, I am by no means raring to go…

I manage to make it through each work day only to come home and crash; I have been able to do it again and again each next day for several weeks now (I did miss one day for hospitalization, but I will share more about that).

 

The Zithromax/Bactrim double-whammy antibiotic combo I was on for the past several months had finally begun to take its toll on my liver and kidneys.

I did a cleanse to fix that (I thought I was dying—for REAL this time).

My liver and kidneys are doing better now.

Anyway, my new and not-so-friendly round of medicine (Dapsone) requires a weekly blood test to track my methemoglobin levels to ensure I do not develop aplastic anemia (a side effect of the medication).

The most recent protocol for Lyme here in Michigan (in the Dark Ages, as you are unable to have access to meds that are proven effective for neurological Lyme issues) is to continue to rotate two antibiotics every several months (as long as tolerated) for a year without symptoms because the bacteria becomes resistant to the antibiotics.

“Without symptoms” are the key words here.

You see, I have been on antibiotics for chronic Lyme since March 2016, but I have yet to be symptom-free.

I still have ridiculous migraine headaches that nothing can touch (except more steroids), and I still fall quite a bit.

 

A few weeks ago, I was becoming confused again, and I was falling a lot.

My skin had become severely mottled; I was having small bouts of dizziness, and I was having chest pressure.

Within three days, I had fallen twice in the bathroom and burned my arm both times on my curling iron each time I fell.

My husband, Shawn, who saw me fall and burn myself the second time, said, “I did not believe that could even be possible (regarding the first time I fell and burned myself), but that is EXACTLY what you did!”

 

As these were all signs of the dreaded anemia, I called my Lyme doctor to find out my most recent methemoglobin blood results.

They emailed me the wrong ones (which showed my blood level was fine), so I figured the results were not yet back.

Wrong-o.

They had been mislabeled.

 

That Saturday, instead of going to have my standing order blood draw at the only lab that knows how to do so correctly, I went to see my primary care doctor to share my symptoms.

My regular doctor was not there, but this new doctor was very helpful and listened to me; she called me on Monday to let me know that my last methemoglobin was very high.

I knew it!

That day at work, I slipped twice and almost fell; thankfully, I caught myself both times.

After work that night, I drove to the lab to have the weekly blood draw done that I had missed on Saturday, but they were already closed.

I phoned Shawn, and he picked me up from the lab and drove me to the hospital.

 

After a “normal” EKG (They ALWAYS are!), I had my blood drawn, and I told my story, once again, about my chronic Lyme.

This time, however, it was like I was in The Twilight Zone…

 

It was just after midnight by the time my bloodwork was processed that I was able to speak with the doctor…

The ER attending physician informed me that she was from the East Coast, and asked,
“Why are you on Dapsone, given its health risks?”

I told her, “Dapsone is my last antibiotic option of the protocol, as my insurance has refused to pay for one of the medications ($2,000/month); another med was contra-indicated for me with my steroids, and I almost had another adrenal crisis; I am allergic to another of the medications; and, most recently, I had to change to Dapsone due to my liver and kidney bloodwork from my last set of medications.”

She asked, “Have you ever had the full month of IV Rocephin as part of the protocol?”

“No,” I said.

She said, “Well, we can have a picc line put into your arm in the morning and start IV Rocephin for you for a month.”

Had Shawn not been there, I would have thought this conversation had been a dream.

I looked at him and said (as soon as she stepped out for me to confer with Shawn), “Are they ACTUALLY recognizing and treating Lyme now?”

When the doctor returned, I told her, “Yes, I will stay and have the picc line put in, but may I have an IV dose of Rocephin now to ensure I do not have any side effects?”

“Certainly,” she said.

Within minutes, the med was placed.

I developed no side effects, and my headache miraculously disappeared, almost immediately.

I was ecstatic.

Shawn left to go home for some sleep, and he planned to return after my picc line procedure.

 

But then came SHIFT CHANGE.

7:00 a.m.

The day-shift attending physician came in to introduce himself.

He asked about my Lyme diagnosis, and, using my Health Battle Warrior resource, I showed him my positive Lyme results.

He made no mention of the picc line and just said, “We need to do another EKG.”

I looked at him, quizzically, and asked (failing to mask my irritation), “Why?”

“Because of your chest pain. We like to do two EKGs to compare to the bloodwork we drew earlier.”

I said, “The first EKG came back fine, and I decline repeating the test. What is the status of my picc line?”

He retorted (both laughingly and patronizingly, I might add), “You don’t need a picc line!

I told him, “The ONLY reason I have stayed here was to have the picc line procedure.”

“We will have a physician from infectious disease come in to speak with you this morning.”

“Nooooooooooooo!” Yes, I did say this in my head. Sheer exhaustion, and I was still able to refrain.

Kudos to me! I’ve come a long way, Baby!

Yep, it WAS, in fact, The Twilight Zone just after midnight at the hospital—the show ended right at 7:00 a.m. with shift change!

I had been THIS close to finally having access to a medication that has been proven to cure neurological Lyme; instead, I was coming home empty-handed (That ONE dose of Rocephin, by the way, kept my headache from returning for 36 hours!).

 

These infectious disease doctors are the same doctors who had told me that my 10 year-old son did not have Lyme (after his pediatrician extricated the tick from his ear, I might add)—His bloodwork came back positive for Lyme a few weeks later, and he was on medication for seven months.

Yes, I did yell at these doctors.

These infectious disease doctors are the same doctors who told Shawn, when he was in the ER dealing with a systemic yeast infection from his Lyme antibiotics, that he had lupus—AFTER I showed them his positive Lyme bloodwork!

Yes, I did yell at these doctors again.

Given my adrenal insufficiency, I don’t yell very much anymore—I work to conserve my energy for self-care nowadays.

I did not want to yell at these doctors again; I just wanted to go home.

I called Shawn immediately after the physician left, and asked, “Did we really talk to a doctor about a picc line?”

“Yes,” he said.

“Well, all of that is out the window now! Can you come and pick me up?”

I called in my nurse and asked to leave, declining the visit from infectious disease.

The doctor came in shortly thereafter and said, “That is fine for you to go. They phoned and said, ‘We don’t recognize chronic Lyme.’”

SMH. SMH. SMH.

I am so glad I was able to conserve my energy.

 

I saw my Lyme doctor a few days later and told him about the ER visit and the IV Rocephin.

He said, “In the state of Michigan, I will lose my medical license if I prescribe IV Rocephin to you. The state needs to pass a ‘physician-aligned health care bill.’ They just did so in Utah. They have also passed similar bills in Massachusetts, New York, California…”

I contacted LymeDisease.org for more information about other states’ bills to protect Lyme-literate physicians that enable them to prescribe medication.

I don’t know why I keep circling back to politics, but if it will help others, I am willing.

I do think this is a sick joke, God, but I will put on my big girl pants and play the game.

Am I able, physically?

I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13

Keep repeating it, like a mantra.

Please give me strength, God.

I am REALLY tired.

No one should have to go through this much insanity to receive treatment for Lyme.

I Love You, Football Head!

It is football season in case you haven’t noticed.

Football season is NOT like hunting season.

When you are married to a football coach, football season unoficially begins in January and runs through March with numerous football clinics all over the state.

There is a short window between late March and early June when football schedules do not rule every decision in the household.

Then, in June, the players start meeting up with the coaches at the weight room to begin summer weight training to bulk up for the fall season.

The first game occurs before Labor Day (Public school begins the Monday following Labor Day in Michigan), and kids must be at practice on Labor Day, or else.

The official football season runs through October, or even November if the team is good enough to make the playoffs.

Is it bad to admit if I have prayed for a defeat?

I was just asking.

I am neither confessing nor denying…

Yes, I am married to a football coach.

My husband, Shawn, has either played or coached football since the age of nine.

Nine.

He is 42.

Shawn and I met when we were sixteen years old in the summer between our sophomore and junior years of high school.

I figured if I wanted to date a football player, I needed to learn all about the sport.

This was in 1990, long before I could Google, “How to play football” or search for “Football Rules” on Wikipedia.

I learned by immersion.

I spent every Sunday watching the San Francisco 49ers play ball, and Joe Montana was H-O-T, hot!

He and Jerry Rice connected like magnets working together to get the ball down the field and into the end zone.

Once I understood how the game of football was played, I knew why my father would sit on the edge of the couch and scream at the TV.

It helps to yell, right?!

I will admit that I thought Shawn would outgrow his love for the sport.

I was never so wrong.

Once, Shawn’s dad joked, “If I aim a flashlight into your ear, I will see the laces of a football spinning around inside your head.”

Football head!

I thought that was hilarious!

Shawn did not…

Shawn loves football.

LOVES football.

Not just like in a friendly, “I love you, football!” way, but in an “I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE you, football!” way.

I will admit this is the first year that his coaching has not made me absolutely irritated.

Last year, he and I participated in a program called Journey of Generosity with our church.

That program completely transformed my love/hate relationship with Shawn and football.

For the first time, I saw the impact that Shawn’s coaching has had on so many young men’s lives through the years, and I came to understand that he is one of the most generous people I am privileged to know and to love.

Shawn used to coach in a community where a significant number of the boys were growing up in one-parent households, and they were not receiving the love, attention, and discipline from their absent fathers that they so desperately needed.

With powerful words of encouragement, Shawn teaches his players about the importance of integrity, being your personal best, constantly working to improve, and becoming a leader.

Sometimes it is very easy for me to look around at our youth today and just shake my head (SMH, if you are text-savvy).

Kids are so immersed in social media and technology that I have wondered how they will ever become the future leaders of America.

Then I watch Shawn on the football field with the other coaches and the players, and I have hope.

Yesterday, our team played an undefeated team.

Our kids exhibited all aspects of a powerful team, and they took every setback in stride.

When interceptions, penalties, and fumble recoveries threatened their win, they held together and stayed strong.

The players demonstrated both camaraderie and healthy competition, and we won the game in the last four seconds with a touchdown and a final score of 16 to 14!

All of the fans were on their feet, and the kids were jumping and cheering afterward.

All at the same time, I can only explain their amazing win as refreshing, encouraging, and breathtaking.

I fell in love with Shawn again last night.

I love my football-headed husband.

 

Ready, Fire, Aim!

Ready.

Fire!

Aim.

Yep, that’s me.

“All Balls” is what my good friend Jeff calls me because I have a consistent track record of jumping before weighing the complete, rippling impact of some of my most abrupt decisions.

Have I ever regretted that?

Certainly, I have thought, “What was I thinking?!”

On the flip side, though, I learn by action.

It’s how I grow.

It is how I continue to strengthen my courage to take on bigger and bigger giants.

It’s how I feel alive.

Do I have fear in those moments?

Absolutely, but my faith in God is bigger than my fear.

God has had my back in way too many battles to let my fear keep me from charging full force into something that lights a fire inside of me.

I get bored very easily if I am not up to something new or something for which I have a ton of passion.

That is why reading is a good distraction for me; I don’t get into trouble when I escape to the world of books.

Not only do I love to read, but I also love, Love, LOVE books.

I have a library of books that takes up an entire wall of my house.

I can honestly say that I do not think I will ever purchase a digital book.

When I die, though, no library will want my books: I fold over pages, underline and asterisk meaningful passages and quotes, and fold them right in half at the binding to make them easier to hold in one hand.

Yes, I am a librarian’s worst nightmare.

A book murderer.

The book I am reading now is All In, by Mark Batterson.

I figure if I am ready to do what God calls me to do next, it would be best for me to know just what “All Balls is Going All In” entails.

The title of chapter one of All in is Pack Your Coffin.

Hmm…

This is going to be interesting…

“When did we start believing that God wants to send us to safe places to do easy things? That faithfulness is holding the fort? That playing it safe is safe? That there is any greater privilege than sacrifice? That radical is anything but normal?

Jesus didn’t die to keep us safe. He died to make us dangerous. Faithfulness is not holding the fort. It’s storming the gates of hell. The will of God is not an insurance plan. It’s a daring plan…

It’s time to quit living as if the purpose of life is to arrive safely at death. It’s time to go all in and all out for the All in AllPack your coffin!”

Does that frighten you?

Man, that is so inspiring to me!

What’s next?

“God will test your faith. And those tests won’t get any easier. They will get progressively harder as the stakes get higher. And those tests will undoubtedly revolve around what is most important to you…

So the question is this: What do you need to give up… What is getting between you and God? What feeds your ego? Where do you find your security outside of Christ?”

It is time for God to get all the glory.

Okay, I will admit it; I am wondering what more God could possibly want me to let go of.

This is making me somewhat uncomfortable…does my past year of illness count toward that?

Can we take small steps?

May I see the playbook?

God is good at letting me know when things should come to an end, but He does not like to tell me what is coming.

The Lord knows full well that most of the things my family has endured over the past few years we would not have chosen, nor would we have wished them upon an enemy.

Well, maybe a worst enemy, but not just any enemy.

Just kidding!

He likes to keep me present and nearby, so I am alert and conscious of every sign and signal He is giving.

I have become more patient and less forceful with this, namely because my adrenal insufficiency takes me from six (not ten) to zero in one, swift adrenaline rush.

What used to inspire my pit bull within to latch on for the good fight now gets weighed in my mind: “How much of my energy tank is THIS going to drain?”

I will continue to pray on this.

Next, Batterson says it is time to Burn the Ships!

This means that there can be no Plan B.

“But if we have the courage to burn the ships, God will part the river.”

What comes next?

Crash the Party!

“Jesus loved spiritual desperados.”

According to Dictionary.com, a desperado is: a bold, reckless criminal or outlaw, especially in the early days of the American West.

I don’t like that definition.

According to UrbanDictionary.com, a desperado (in summary) is: a law breaker.

The reason I like UrbanDictionary.com is because I like to try to keep up with the crazy slang kids use these days.

I also love the definition of Karin. (You will have to check that out for yourself!)

The Urban Dictionary definition is much more fitting in this circumstance according to Batterson’s examples:

Jesus loved that four friends climbed onto a building and cut a hole in the roof in order to have Him heal their friend.

He loved the bleeding woman who did not remain in seclusion due to her illness, but instead crawled through the streets to be healed by touching the hem of Jesus’ clothing.

He loved the woman who crashed the party of the Pharisees in order to anoint Him with her alabaster jar of perfume.

Jesus wants our repentance.

He wants our past, our present, and our future.

He wants it all.

He wants us to go ‘Holy Crazy’ by making a difficult decision, having a tough conversation, or by taking a crazy risk.

“Going all out for God always starts with one step of faith. It’s often the longest, hardest, and scariest step. But when we make a move that is motivated by God’s glory, it moves the heart and hand of God. There comes a moment in our lives when enough is enough. The pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change. We reject the status quo. We refuse to remain the same.”

Yes, I am ready, Lord.

In the next blog post, additional items we will look at when going All In for God are:

Picking a Fight
Taking a Stand
A Little Crazy

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Me

I am a mom, wife, and Christian, in reverse order.  About Me pages are so generic.

My favorite color: fuschia
My favorite animal: butterfly
Every other favorite of mine changes with my mood.

I am brassy, sassy, and classy, but not all at the same time; I like to shake it up a bit–it keeps people guessing.

I am not shy.  In fact, I am quite bold in most circumstances. Given my petite frame (5’2″), this can be very intimidating; hence, the nickname Pit Bull. Once I latch on, I don’t let go. Just ask my 6’4″ husband. We have been married twenty years now.  2-0.

I have three kids I am usually willing to claim as my own. Taking care of them gives me a good excuse as to why I need to color my silvering hair a deep eggplant color every five weeks. My hair looks dark brown indoors, but it turns a reddish purple in the sun. I love it.

I am serious, funny, smart, silly, raw, and real.  I love people. Sometimes I don’t know why, but I do. I am very trusting, but if you lie to me once I will waste no more time with you.

Integrity, authenticity, and genuine caring are three character traits that mean the world to me, and I hope that people think of me when they think of these words.

I love God, and although sometimes I yell at Him and ask, “Why me,” I still want to live my life honoring Him and Jesus.

Karin

Whose Life is This (Anyway)?

This blog is not to be confused with Whose Line is it, Anyway? because that nutty show is hilariously entertaining and never disappoints.

This blog is about my crazy life, which is not always hilariously entertaining and sometimes disappoints.

I am an almost 43 year-old wife, mother, Christian, and generally sick (as in NOT physically well health-wise) human being. 

Some might argue that I am not only sick physically, but that I also have a sick mind and a sick sense of humor. 

I will not contest this.

This is my story. 

Names may be changed to protect people, but not always. 

Some people don’t care if I use their names; in fact, they will want me to.

Be Forewarned
Yes, I do like to exaggerate when storytelling: it makes life funnier, so enjoy!

I never thought I would write a blog. 

Actually, as a Gen-Xer, I was an elementary school-aged kid who had to type READY and RUN on the keyboard of the computer. 

Then I would quickly push PLAY on the tape deck for the computer to take what kids these days would say “FOREVER” to display a green, blinking cursor on the screen.  

No red, yellow, blue, pink, or purple. 

No images, icons, logos, or scrolling graphics. 

Just a green square.

The Internet wasn’t even a thing until well after my first child was born and I had already finished my Bachelor’s degree. 

Writing was not EVER a passion or pastime of mine, but I will admit, with pride, that I got VERY good at it because of Ms. Beatrice Jones, my 10th grade English teacher. 

God rest her soul.

That woman would butcher a paper like a sadist, and she would smile wryly as she returned our papers to us with blood-red ink dripping from each page. 

Every student’s pride and joy we had toiled over for weeks became a pit bull’s play thing, ripped and shredded with her overwhelming pleasure. 

Please know, I have no ill-will for pit bulls.  More about that later.

To this day, I can still recite the 23 helping verbs she required us to memorize: am, is, are, was, were, be, being, been, have, has, had, do, does, did, shall, will, can, could, should, would, may, might, must. 

Yep, those 23 words will be burned on my brain until I die.

I can correct grammar in the best editors’ news articles, magazines, memorandums, and reports.  

It really has become a passive, yet sick, passion of mine (perhaps in
Ms. Jones’ honor), though not enough to become a 10th grade English teacher to destroy children’s self-esteem.

Also, teenagers are NOT my cup of tea.

 I have two of them. 

I speak from experience.

I digress…

So why am I writing a blog?

God told me to.  

He tells me to do lots of things (Most often, it’s “Hold your tongue.”), and I sometimes like to listen the first time to be obedient.  

As it relates to this blog, I know writing will somehow help me to heal, to keep my mind off of how sick I feel and how much pain I am in, to think about funny memories, to re-live good times, and to start to live again–from the passenger seat–with Him calling all the shots.

This is going to be tough for me.

I have always been the driver.  

Always.

My nickname is Pit Bull. 

Pit bulls get a bad rap–most of the time.  

Pit bulls mind their own business and get along just fine until they are triggered. 

What’s their trigger? 

The enemy. 

For me, the enemy is bullies.  

I love justice. 

I want good to always triumph over evil. 

I want the underdog to have his day. 

I want the bad guy to get caught.

If I had a super power, I would want to have the innate ability to catch the bad guy or girl; make him/her feel real, true remorse; and then have him/her repent and turn his/her life over to good. 

I would second that super power only to flying, but I think every super hero should be able to fly if he/she wants to.

I was raised in the late 70s and 80s, a time when only the winning team received a trophy or a ribbon.  

I was taught about the importance of personal excellence, integrity, honesty, helping others, and caring about people.

I was also taught ‘Life Isn’t Fair’ and ‘No One Owes You Anything.’  

Those two mottoes suck, but they are true. 

I have taught them to my children: I figure the sooner they learn these mottoes, the less disappointed they will be when life hands them lemons. 

Or rotten apples. 

Or poopy diapers. 

Or a ticket for a ride to a place they don’t want to go, but they find they are already on the moving train.

I did, for a time, believe that I could accomplish whatever I set my mind to just out of sheer will, confidence, and a lot of hard work.  

I also, for a time, believed that life was mine for the taking.  

What does that really mean, though?

Certainly, there are goals I set for myself and reached–some much more easily than others–but then life started to happen. 

Real life. 

Messy, uncontrollable, unforeseeable, sucker-punching, unfair, ugly life.

I am CERTAIN God will have me share much more about those real life experiences in upcoming posts, but let me have you wonder about them for just a bit.

Karin

 

 

What to Expect When You Are Expecting (Me to Post with Consistency and Humor)

I am looking to post once a week, so get ready for some ups and downs as I deal with my chronic Lyme issues. I try to laugh through the pain, but I promise nothing. I intend to use my blog to be raw and real and to say things that other people with chronic health issues or constant pain only think but dare not say for whatever reason.

Yep, real, raw thoughts. This will be interesting.