Sunday, August 29, 2010

my ebenezer part 2

the medication my OB gave me continued to make me sick. I couldn't eat. I couldn't sleep. I feared going back to work. Work was the problem, work is what caused this, quitting would make it better.
So I quit, with great humiliation and wondorous relief. I was free! I was back to normal! And, I was. For a few weeks. I stopped the medication and could eat again, and I could sleep again.
I thought for sure this was a minor blip on my otherwise lovely life. No biggie, it would be good for me to understand others that deal with anxiety. But I was better now. For a few weeks.

Then one night I felt it again. The hot flashes down my arms, the cold sweat breaking out... it was all because I had made my first counseling appointment. And it made me nervous, and feeling nervous made me remember what it felt like to panic.
I realized I was far from "back to normal" and that perhaps, I wouldnt be the same again.

The next day I went to see said Counselor. Now, I am obviously a huge advocate for counseling and in reality think everyone could benefit from it at some point in their lives. But me? Needing counseling? It made me feel weak, vulnerable, needy-all the things I didnt like.
This man, kicked my butt in the first session. He is the Head of the Counseling Dept at the seminary and has been counseling for over 30 years.
He said that day that he hoped I wasn't "better" already because he guessed I hadnt learned the lessons I needed to learn. I prayed he wasn't right...but he was.

My OB started me on birth control to figure out my body wackiness. I vomited for a week straight.I couldnt eat, the anxiety was getting worse. I called the doc and said, "is this normal?" Yes, it may take a month.
Oh hell no, I thought. So I stopped taking it. The next day I felt better. Then that night I started taking Zoloft which my doc wanted me to try. I took it at night and was wide awake {and filled with anxiety} the whole night.
The day after I got a sinus infection. I have never, ever gotten one before. I continued to vomit and just wanted to go the hospital and get hooked up to an IV and lay there, for weeks. I have never felt so bad in all my life. My face hurt, I was vomiting, I was having anxiety hot and cold flashes, I was starving.
Matt missed classes that day while I searched for a doctor to go to. All I could find was a Wal-greens walk-in clinic. And that's where God showed his face.

As soon as I walked in, I started to panic. "what in the hell was I doing at a Wal-green walk in clinic! Something is seriously wrong with me and I am seeing someone who can only get a job at Wal-greens!" I started to pace and freak out. I just knew something was really wrong with me. Was it cancer? Was I just crazy? Was I having a heart attack?
Then the nurse practioner called me in. She was my age and adorable and was someone I would be friends with. I told her my sinus problems and then she started asking the regular intake questions. I told her I started zoloft the night before for anxiety.
She then put her pen down and turned around. She sighed and said, 'I think I have anxiety.'
She then went on to break most doctor/patient rules and started sharing with me her struggles as a new mom, a son who doesnt sleep through the night, and working a job she doesnt want to do because she just wants to be home with her boy. She told me her hands shake while she's at work and she worries she has MS. 
Here I was, the worst day of my life, listening to someone's life story. And you know what, it felt wonderful. I was able to counsel her and direct to some resources of benefit and use the gifts God has given me. I listened to her for well over 30 mins. and my anxiety melted away. I wasn't the only one. I wasn't the only one!
She gave me a thorough examine and didnt even laugh when I asked her to check extra long when she listened to my heart to make sure I wasn't going to have a heart attack.
God knew I didn't need someone to tell me "this is normal, you'll be fine." because really, I wouldnt have believed them anyway. God knew I needed to get out of my head, care for someone else and realize there are a lot of hurting people out there. He gave me a glimpse, a life raft it felt like, in my dark day to hold on to. I was able to relate to people on a level I have never reached before. I could empathize, I could share in the sorrows. Through this Wal-greens gal He said clearly and boldy- "Sharon, there is a reason you are going through this. This is not in vain." I heard him too. 

the next day I was in the trenches again. it was night two of no sleep. i was vomiting all morning, my head hurt,  i was sure i was having a nervous breakdown. matt had to go to class and i was looking down the day with two little ones and absolutely no energy wondering how i was going to do it. i walked outside with the two of them. at the same time my neighbor, D, walked out too. he took one look at me and knew how bad i felt. quickly, he said, "Sharon, you wont always feel this way." I believed him. 
again, it was a life raft in a day that i felt was swallowing me whole. and hearing him say these words brought me life and when i think back, i dont hear him saying it, I heard God's voice and it brings me much comfort.
You see D had been through hell and back in his four years of seminary. he had been misdiagnosed his first semester with a brain tumor and thought he was dying. he then suffered from lymes disease and went into a steep depression and had medical ptsd. he's had fourteen epiderals and countless mri' when D said what he did, i believed him. God used someone who had been through the fire and could still live and love and care for other people. I clung to his words for weeks. They were like fresh water to me.

to be continued....

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

my ebenezer part I

in the Bible, the Israelites made 'ebenezers', which were little stone towers to remind them that God had shown up or was found to be faithful to them. it was a physical reminder to them that He never left them. this is my ebenezer.

i want to share with you about the darkest time in my life thus far. i want to share it with you because one-i feel like the more we are honest about our failings and trials the more it can minister to others. when i was going through my hard time it was a breath of fresh air to hear people's stories and hear how they came out the other side better and happier. 
the second reason is that its a good reminder to me that God showed up. That even in that dark time we, I, was not alone and that good things came out of it. Even in scary places-there is light.

it all started when I weaned Abraham. because i was still nursing Maggie when I got pregnant with Abraham; it had been four years since i didn't have some strong hormones running through my veins.
i started having anxiety throughout the month. i would obsess and worry about random things- spider bites, potty training, working again. 
then i did start working. working with the severely mentally ill. abe had JUST started sleeping through the night, i was chronically sleep deprived. matt had been in europe most of the summer. i had three babysitters and we had one car: it was the perfect storm.
throw in the wacky hormones and out comes an acute panic attack.

it was 11 oclock at night and we had just laid down after a big meal of spaghetti. as soon as i laid down i shot up straight and said, i think i am having a panic attack. {humorously, in retrospect, i realized i was having severe acid reflux which lead to the panic a can of tomato sauce radically changed my life.}

my heart rate shot up, i started sweating all over, my chest was burning, i had to use the bathroom 3 times in short concession.
as a counselor, i knew what was happening. i knew i wasnt going to die. i knew i wasnt having a heart attack. i knew i needed to pace my breathing to matt's so that i wouldnt hyperventilate. but what shocked me the most, and what i wasnt prepared for, was my thoughts. i knew people had 'racing thoughts' when they had panic attacks but i had no idea what that meant. but heaven help me, i thought i was going nuts. which in turn made me panic even more which made the thoughts even worse. if you have never experienced a panic attack (and i hope you never, never do) then words cant really describe the terror that sets in.

it was all over in 15 minutes. and not to be overly dramatic but that 15 minutes and the few days that followed has changed me. some good, some bad. i went from confident, capable, nothing much phases me to fear ridden, scaredy cat. the fear that invaded my life was (is) powerful and i was shocked at how quickly i crumbled underneath it. i weak, i was vulnerable, i was needy, i was everything i didnt like. fear followed me where ever i went. it still does sometimes. fear of having a panic attack while driving, fear of a panic attack while in a new place, fear of a panic attack when meeting new people. these panic attacks are powerful. 

two days later i went back to work. they were hosting a staff breakfast for me. that morning i started taking an anti-depressant that my OB gave me the day before until i could get my hormones under control. at the breakfast i started to get sick to my stomach and then the fear set in and i started sweating. holy crap! i thought, what if i have a panic attack in this tiny hot room with all these new people who are having a breakfast for me!
i excused myself to the restroom. i even went outside to get fresh air. if i had had my purse, i would have just driven off.
i paced the hallway trying to figure out what to do. i almost lost my breakfast as i opened back up the door. i quietly told my supervisor that i started a new medication that morning and i was sick to my stomach. i looked no one in the eye and gathered my things.
i have never been more humiliated nor relieved in all my life.

i laughed when i got in the car. i couldnt believe it. i couldnt believe i couldnt sit in that room. i couldnt believe that i never wanted to walk in that door again. i was done. i was ashamed. i royally tanked it.

things have always come fairly easy to me. grades, friendships, jobs, etc. and honestly, i had never failed at much. {except that one time in 7th grade when i fell flat on my face during a dance performance.}
but here i was failing. failing boldly. i shook with fear and the foundation of who i was suddenly cracked. 

But this isnt about my failings, this is about God showing up....

(to be continued....)

Friday, August 20, 2010

finding my craft

so for about a year now i get together on monday nights with some neighbors to craft it up. usually i just hang, sometimes i craft, sometimes we watch entire seasons of the bachelor while slowly knitting or sewing something. but these girls have inspired me to 'find my craft'...and i think i have!

this summer i brought home my mom's sewing machine and starting giving it at shot. i made some dresses out of old t shirts and made some pillows, skirts, cloth napkins.... here are a few of my creations.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

summer recap

so i seem to have misplaced the gadget to upload pictures. which is a wee bit frustrating since i have some great photos to show you. one in particular of when maggie painted abraham head to toe. thats right....
head. to. toe.
besides that Picasso moment, we have had a wonderful summer. Our california trip at the beginning of the summer seems like a million months away....i wish we were there now. because let me tell you. the heat is oppressive. i mean, really. i can barely go outside. and when it feels 'cool' and 'like fall'-its actually like 80 degrees. surprisingly, we have kept busy inside doing art projects (see above painting incident) and having playdates and running around in the rain.
the past month matt has been taking a class that is kicking out butts. i say 'our' because he is gone alot. way way more than usual and works at night too. thankfully, we have one week left of this stress inducing doozy of a class. then we have a few days to enjoy the awful heat and then its time for fall semester. our last year!
maggie starts school in two weeks and i am excited for her! the school supply list was too cute. and although i am leaning more and more towards homeschooling-i am super pumped she is going to have a wonderful first "school" experience with pre-k.
we are excited about the adventures ahead and to share them with you. til then...keep cool.

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Welcome to the Morginskys blog! Our family and friends are spread across the globe and we set up this place for those that want to read about the goings on of the adventures of our family. We have lived in Nashville but are headed to St. Louis for a new chapter in our lives.