When my chronic illness began to make me too sick to function, I was homeschooling in a new city. I had yet to connect with many friends or homeschool moms. My youngest had joined the local homeschool group choir. This had allowed me to meet one lady who was great to talk to.
My husband was working out-of-state, and wasn’t home often. We knew this to be a short-term problem, but it was necessary. Unfortunately, it was the worst time for my health to take a dive. There are so many things that husbands do that I’m not good at.
I had no trouble mowing grass, trimming hedges and pulling weeds until I got sick. At this point, just getting a shower caused a racing heart, dizziness, and sweating. I would collapse on the floor for about 10 minutes after every shower and wait for it to pass. Cooking and cleaning also caused great fatigue. The migraines were severe and put me to bed.
Doctors tested me and thought it was some type of connective tissue disorder, but the true diagnosis came years later. They tried a few different drugs to help me. These drugs helped a little, but mostly put me to sleep. This is not the way I planned to homeschool my child.
Thankfully, God knew what was going on and He had a plan. My child was in high school and was tremendously committed to doing his work. Having a driven and diligent student was God’s blessing to me, and it certainly brought him success. At this same time, our other son moved back home to finish graduate school. God’s perfect timing was astonishing to me.
With my other son offering to take care of all the yard work, this became a huge job that I didn’t need to worry about. This yard had a huge amount of trimming to do, but he took care of it. The two boys together made sure everything was taken care of at home. I was so proud of them, and humbled.
Since the homeschooled son wasn’t driving, there were many days that I couldn’t drive him to choir or the Book Club. Some days my oldest was able to drive him. There were a few days that I could drive him there and just rest in the car until he finished. Other days he missed choir. My homeschool friend offered to pick him up any day that I needed.
The hardest thing for me was asking for help and receiving help. It’s not fun or easy to depend on your children, but I let them help me. It was even harder for me to let a new friend help me. I was too independent and prideful to just give in and let her help. When God graciously offered me help through my friend, it would have been a blessing to her, as well as me. It’s important to ask for and receive help from those who care about you. When chronic illness (or another crisis) hits your family, God will provide ways to meet your needs.
I hope that I can continue to learn this lesson and be better at accepting help. We may pray for God to cure us, but He may just send us friends, children and other blessings to help and comfort us. We need to look for Him and His hand in our lives. I’m so thankful for God’s wonderful mercies!
@2017, copyright Lisa Ehrman