Thursday, May 26, 2011


Three days shy of twelve weeks is the longest period of time I have been off antibiotics since I was first diagnosed with Lyme disease in 2007.  For about nine days now I’ve been discerning some odd happenings with my body to determine whether it is Lyme or something else afflicting me, and last night concluded that it’s time to start treating again.
In the early years I had accumulated a mass of medicine bottles, that is, after the boxes of sharps and medical waste had been cleared away, used bags of Rocephin, IV tubing, latex gloves, gauze, tape, vials of saline and such.  Bottles of supplements, vitamins, probiotics and antibiotics cluttered the small space of my tabletop, along with the date diary I was advised to keep as a record of symptoms’ progress and regress. 
At some point I realized it would be much better for my psyche to clear that table and get a weekly pill box instead.  It was important to me that a monument to the illness not be erected in my living space.  Though it had taken over my life in many areas, I would not permit it to impinge in that way. 
For me, invaluable as I lay ill was instead the display of an icon of Our Lady of Tenderness at my bedside:

When struggling to overcome an illness, it is easy to be overwhelmed and consumed by the “cure.”  It is easy to set and center one’s focus and attention completely upon the aim of achieving wellness.  But it is important to remember that in our times of suffering and struggle, we resemble Christ in His great agony and passion of the cross.  The mother of all tenderness and the Father of all mercies look upon us as Christ in such moments, for we may never so much resemble Him as we do in suffering with trust and patience.
Yes, it is right and good to desire wellness, and we should desire this and try to attain it.  Yet also, we must not suffer the burden of illness wishing it away with disdain, for it is a vehicle and a way to holiness, the suffering of which has been sanctified by the loving God Himself.  And so, to whatever the day has brought us to face, let us say: Amen.

No comments:

Post a Comment