Tag Archive | multiple sclerosis

Beginning March 2017 – 10 years!

10 years! 10 years since I went on my first mission trip. So, it would seem due that I reminisce a little. What have I learned over the last decade? What has God shown me?

First, go! Second, trust! Third, pray! Not in that specific order though J Oh, and why? People!

Going to Mexico the first 3 trips was a no brainer for me. I was visiting a good friend of mine, and I didn’t even know they were considered mission trips. On those trips I was first introduced to a foreign culture, but could see how God was still the same. It was on the way home from the 3rd trip that I realized that doing just that: visiting established missionaries around the world to support and encourage them, was exactly what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. Of course I had no idea how that would all play out and really still don’t.

Scotland was my first trip over an ocean, and I knew no one. When preparing for this trip, I was struggling with my faith, I prayed the God would show Himself to me, and He did. He provided for the trip through avenues I wouldn’t have guessed and showed Himself powerful during the trip. I remember praying with a lady who I could barely understand (super thick Scottish accent) and I just asked God to interpret her tongue for me. He did! I prayed what I heard the Spirit leading and she was blessed. I found a happy place there – a place I visit in my mind when I need peace. In the hills where it’s green and the sheep wander. I was sitting on the hillside admiring God’s creation and thinking about Psalm 23.

Costa Rica was my first trip leading someone and taking her with me. It was a stretch, but at least I wasn’t leading her alone (we were with a group from Denver and Hawaii). The heat and humidity there kind of unnerved me. I wasn’t sure how the MS would be but God was so faithful! I took care of myself and everything went well. On this trip I learned more about the sex trafficking epidemic and that still breaks my heart.

West Africa was probably my favorite so far. 3 countries in 10 days, wow! The people were beautiful, inside and out. We did leadership training there and I learned how people around the world see Americans. Namely they see our tele-evangelists and try to mimic them. Ugh, heartbreaking. The message we shared, on top of our assignment, was to encourage them to be themselves. To let the Gospel shine through their culture, not to be like those they saw on TV. I found another happy-God peace place there on the shore watching the run rise over the Pacific.

China was a possibility the following year, but I wasn’t settled in my heart about it. So that is still on my ‘bucket list’!

Japan was the most recent trip. I visited the friend I had visited 9 years prior. Now she’s married and has two little girls. Japan opened my eyes to people. Because, besides the concrete, Japan is full of people! So few know about Jesus and it’s (also) heartbreaking. There’s so much depression and pressure to succeed, with no hope of eternity.

I have more of an idea of what I’m doing with my life since I started this journey. I’m pursuing my BS is Religion-Christian Counseling and planning on my Masters in Social Work after that. That will help me find resources and be a help and support to those whom I visit.

What’s next? Currently waiting on my new passport and not able to travel this year (new job). However, in 2018, Lord willing, I’m visiting friends in Valencia, Spain and Linz, Austria.

So, why missions? To spread the love of Jesus to the world. Why me? Why not? He called, I listened. Here I am Lord, send me. If He wants you to go, He’ll make a way. And forever change your heart in the process.

Oh, and I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis 10 years ago too. Had a couple rough spots on trips, but God was ever faithful. Don’t let anything stand in the way of what you know God has called you to!!!

Parting note: “For ‘Everyone who calls on the name on the Lord will be saved.’ But how can they call on Him to save them unless they believe in Him? And how can they believe in Him if they have never heard about Him? And how can they hear about Him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, ‘How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!’” Romans 10:13-15 NLT.

September 2016

I love fall! I know it’s still summer, but September means fall is almost here 🙂 I much prefer Fall temps, colors, smells, clothes, etc. I’m not really a fan of Halloween though, but to each their own. Hard to believe it’s already September, though, right? I mean, Christmas is just around the corner! Yay!

Job front – signed up with a temp agency last week. I’m not wanting to do temp work, but looking for temp – to – perm positions. With the end of the year sneaking up on us, I need to keep in mind health insurance issues. I’m on COBRA right now, but that probably won’t make sense Jan 1st when the deductibles start over. Hopefully, I can get started somewhere soon. Keep me in your prayers! Thanks!

Went with my dad to his MS check up yesterday. I hate this disease! My case isn’t so bad, but it’s hitting him a lot harder. I really hope they find a cure soon. Speaking of, even though I’ve been working out more and walking outside when it’s been warm and humid, I’m doing pretty well. Again, another reason I love Fall – walking outside without all the humidity in St Louis.

I’m coping with the depression. Talking about it last month helped some. It’s hard to explain, but sometimes I just feel down. I’m hanging in there and not doing too bad, I just know things aren’t right sometimes.

Started a class on the book of Romans this week. Good study material, but a little intimidated by the 10-15 page research paper due in 7 weeks! It’s an upper level class, so it’s to be expected, but I’ve told you before how much I dislike writing papers. I just have to not put this off, like I usually do! Also on the school note, I should finish my studies at the end of next year, which means my graduation will be May 19, 2018!

Well, I gotta get ready for my workout with my trainer. It’s still going well, by the way. I’m starting to notice muscles and stamina growing, so that’s awesome!

Alright, take care and take to you again soon!

 

Mid April 2015

It’s been a rough couple weeks, not gonna lie.  Things with Mike are wonderful, don’t worry, it’s not that. See, I tried to ween off one of my antidepressants because I thought I was doing a lot better.  Well, I was, but seems it may have been because of this medication. Tricky thing, depression. You start to feel better so you think you don’t need drugs anymore, but in actuality, they were what was working in the first place.

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t circumstantial depression, it’s a chemical imbalance in my brain. Apparently it’s fairly common in Multiple Sclerosis patients, especially those on MS medication. So, essentially, I’m taking one med to counteract another med.

Oh, the joys of a fallen world.  Bring on that glorified body, Jesus, I can’t wait!  I mean, I will wait for His timing on that, no need to rush my death or anything crazy like that…

Another drawback of feeling down and blah is that I eat more. Ironic, part of the reason I wanted to get off that antidepressant was because one of the side effects is weight gain, but I try to get off that med and I gain like 15-20 pounds in 2 months. Ugh!

Yes, I will start retaking that medication today!

Good news… almost finished with this semester of school, 3 1/2 weeks to go. I’m for sure taking the Summer session off. I’m considering staying a part-time student and just taking 1 class at a time after that. That will keep me engaged, but not overwhelmed, and it’ll keep me from having to pay back my student loans for a little bit, which I am not in the position to add those bills to my budget just yet.

Mike and I did our first 5k together last Saturday! We finished, close to last, but we finished! Pretty proud of that considering I didn’t train well and wanted to give up a few times. Mike was a great cheerleader though.  We’re doing another this coming Saturday too. The first was the Go! St Louis and this next one will be The Color Run.

Oh, I told you that I would share pictures of my brother’s wedding when they were available… here’s a link to the photographers’ site where you can browse through them Greg&Jeanette.

Went to Daytona Beach, FL last week… for work. Spent most of my time in safety meetings, listening to stuff I already knew, or in my room doing homework. Did see the beach and waves, didn’t get out there though. Ate some good food and did a little shopping. At least I got away for a little while, which was nice. Especially since the company paid for it 😉

Sent my application in for a mission trip coming up this September. Yeah, I know, procrastinator, right? We’re going to Asia, but I don’t think it’s wise for me to say exactly where because it’s to a ‘closed’ country. That means they’re closed to the Gospel and if they found out I was going as a missionary, they might deny me access or kick me out once I’m there. Exciting! LOL.  Hope I get approved for the trip and can start fundraising soon!

I think that’s about all at the moment.  Talk to you again soon 🙂

Early January 2015 #ms #LUO

Welcome to the new year!

I got to end 2014 and start 2015 infusing steroids for the MS (Multiple Sclerosis) flare up.  I should, hopefully, start seeing improvement soon, but in the meantime I deal with the side effects of the steroids.  Yuck!  If you don’t know what they are, basically I want to eat and drink everything I can get my hands on, my stomach is a mess, my senses seem a little dulled, and I’m really tired. Blah!

Hoping to start at the gym tonight though!  We’ll see how I feel after work, of course, and fingers crossed, I’ll start that new adventure!

Anyway, Christmas break is almost over for school.  I start my 2nd semester at Liberty University Online this coming Monday.  Taking New Testament Survey and Theology first, then adding American History, then finishing off the semester with Intro to Church Ministries and History of Life.  Going to be busy! But that’s my life!

Not too much else going on right now.  Just trying to hang in there and take it one day at a time, ya know?

Talk to you again soon!

mid-December 2014

Why, hello there!  Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!

I’ve been so busy with school that I haven’t had time to write here in a while. Did my last test last Sunday night, so I’m free until Jan 12th! I have been looking forward to this break!

So, bad news first.  Looks like I’ll only make a D in my Philosophy class.  I just had a really difficult time with that class. Earned A’s in every other class though!

The other bad news is that the MS is active again. I’ve been having hazy vision for a couple of weeks, balance and walking issues for a few months.  Got MRI’s done a few weeks ago and it showed some activity.  Working now with the doctor to start a round of steroids.  Oh, what fun.

In other news, I actually put up a Christmas tree this year! It has been a few years since I’ve done any decorating for the holidays. Actually feeling in the spirit of things this year. I even have all my Christmas shopping done and only waiting on one more shipment to arrive.  Now, just to wrap everything.

Weight loss is at a stand still. At least I’m not gaining!

Things are going better at work. The one I was having issues with quit and the replacement is awesome.  Best worker we’ve had in this position in a long time.

Well, that’s a quick update on what’s going on with me.  Hope to write again before Christmas, but if I don’t…  HAVE A MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

7 years

I realized recently that I took my first mission trip 7 years ago.  I didn’t know it was considered a mission trip at the time, I was just visiting a friend who was on the mission field.  Come to find out, that’s a mission trip and what I want to do for the rest of my life. 

Most days I feel called to missions.  Some days I doubt because I don’t fit the ‘typical’ missionary description.  I don’t know if I’ll ever live in another country full-time.  I want to do multiple short-term trips a year.  I’m sure whatever God has in store is so much cooler than what I can imagine though!

7 years seems so long ago, yet like yesterday at the same time.  A lot has happened since I first received my passport.  Mexico 3 times, Scotland, Costa Rica and 3 countries in Africa.  Wow.

Also 7 years ago I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.  (This is MS Awareness Month too).  The disease sucks, but through God I’m able to overcome.  I’ve actually been in remission for years now!  I believe He will fully heal me someday too.  From the depression also, which is caused by the MS, in a way, basically.

Amazingly enough these 2 don’t typically mix, MS and missions.  But you add God to the equation and miraculous things can happen 🙂

Now, where to next?