Thursday, June 9, 2016

Update: "Cancer-related Fatigue"

About 10 days ago I started to see an big increase in my energy.  I was washing windows, doing laundry, cooking, cleaning the house, and going places.  Ahhhhh  I thought.  I'm finally back to normal. And then I crashed.  Big.  Say, what??

After a week of struggling again with weakness, major fatigue, shaking and pain, we were in need of some heavy duty talking with Holy Spirit.  Pushing was not helping, speaking against the symptoms brought little relief.  I was beginning to worry that I  was being hounded by past sicknesses.

Holy Spirit set us straight.  He told Joel again that the weakness, fatigue, and shaking were the effects of the radiation.  Still.  Nearly 6 months later?  I wanted confirmation on what God was saying to Joel so I did some google research and was astounded to find some studies by the National Institute of Health, info from MedMD and the cancer sites, and message boards that said the same thing.  The fact is, like so many others, radiation is still limiting my life 6 months after I had my last treatment.

Many people were still feeling what was called, "cancer-related fatigue" for not only months after treatments ended, but years. It is really more like cancer treatment related fatigue.  The more research I did the more it was confirmed, not only was the affects of radiation still causing rib cage and breastbone tenderness and discolored skin, it was causing fatigue.  Major fatigue.  Fatigue "not diminished by rest or sleep".

The more I pushed the weaker I got.  The weaker I got the more my whole body vibrated and shook.  The more I shook the more anxious I got, the more anxious I got the harder I pushed, going in a circle like a dog chasing it's own tail.

This heaviness I feel is a reminder of the years I spent trying to function.  What I need to remember is that I am not that person anymore.  I can still do 3x what I could do then.  I just can't do what I have been doing the past couple of years.  I am walking 1/2 mile instead of 1 1/2.......I'm cooking, I'm going places, etc. BUT I have to rest a lot.  And the fatigue comes and goes on a moment's notice!  I found that information, too, while searching.  It was a relief to read about what I was experiencing and put a name to it.

I have shared the breast cancer journey with you all since the beginning.  I have learned quite a bit about myself along the way.  Joel and I both have as we put the pieces back together after facing a breast cancer diagnosis in the midst of moving to AZ.

Looking back we can see how God was beside us, ahead of us, and behind us every step of the way.  With His deep unfathomable always.  Every doctor and every nurse were caring and very skilled as I made my way through 3 surgeries and 31 radiation treatments.   So many praying.  And so many words from our Lord whispered in our ears, spoken by His children, and found in His Word.  A journey of trust and obedience even when, no, especially when it was hard to comprehend or understand.  A time to draw nearer to our Papa God.

So, what about our beliefs on healing?  What the Bible says about healing does not change because of my journey.  It does not change when God uses doctors and treatments instead of His healing power.  We have watched and listened to many healed by prayer alone.  We have been healed by Jesus through prayer and watched Jesus heal others as we prayed for them.  No, the truth about healing and our beliefs have not changed.  Jesus died for us.....salvation and healing are both connected to the cross and His sacrifice.  My recent experiences do not change that.  Knowing what is happening right now gives us a stronger sense of what to pray for.  It makes it easier to move away from telling God how BIG my problem is and move into telling my problem how BIG my God is!

So I am resting more and pushing myself less.  I  figure with time to sit, I have more time to read, study, pray and speak His Word,  and balance that out with a good fiction book or two, TV,  porch sitting, and coloring in my coloring book. I discovered I really like it.  Coloring,, that is.  Not resting.

Back to the trust and obedience thing.  Every one of us have our own stories worth sharing.  All our faith stories lead us back to our Lord.  They include words like trust, obedience, love, forgiveness, and so much more.  There are times where we can just "see" God walking with us. These are stories that others need to hear.  Our stories encourage, stretch, comfort, and inspire. And most importantly, they keep us focused on God.  Our Healer, our Provider, our Protector, our Savior.

As this saga continues to ebb and flow, I hope you find encouragement for your own journeys with what life throws your way.  We are stronger than we think and when we are not, God is!  In the midst of it all, God is.

1 comment:

Anita Johnson said...

And I will pray for you. I'm careful to keep going...but pushing isn't always a benefit. I know sort of when I have done enough. And napping. Finally gave in. XO to you and Joel.