How are you guys doing? I wanted to give a little life update because I realized the last one I gave was pre-quarantine. Yikes!
Everything shines so much brighter after being in the dark for so longsabina Laura
I saw this quote on Instagram the other day and thought to myself, how true is that. Something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately is the progress I’ve experienced in the last couple of years.
I remember waking up on June 11, 2017 and thinking to myself for the first time ever, “I feel good today.”
You might think I’m exaggerating but before that, I couldn’t remember a time in my life where I didn’t wake up with a migraine, chronic pain of some sort, or the dull stomach ache that was the only constant in my life.
I don’t really talk about it frequently, but before this blog, my life was pretty much confined to my room most of the time. Consistently, I tried to do normal kid things like play sports, stay out late, and just have fun with my friends, but it never came without pain, often feeling like punishment.
(I promise this life update is going somewhere).
When you’re going through it, especially as a young kid, you can get immune to the pain. It becomes your normal, your life, and something that you feel like no one else will understand.
Does pain really make you stronger?
We always hear people say: “your pain is what strengthens you” or “if it wasn’t for the lows, we wouldn’t be able to recognize the highs” or even Demi Lovatos famous song, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”
When I was going through it in my teens I didn’t see this, nor did I feel it was correct.
I would sit in doctors offices wondering what kind of psychopath would actually feel that way about the lows of life. While I waiting for another test, and my friends were out doing normal teen stuff, I’d wonder how this was supposed to make me stronger when I only felt like it was crippling me. Literally and figuratively.
But a few years ago, I started to open my eyes to what these cliché sayings were truly talking about. It began with appreciating the small things, like being able to have a conversation with a friend without feeling exhausted afterward. Or being able to go to a family holiday without fear of needing to take a nap.
Then it moved to bigger things, like waking up without pain or being able to enjoy a meal without throwing it up afterward.
In these moments, I realized that while the pain may have wrecked many years of my life, it had left me with a small gift I could hold onto. The realization that joy comes in the small things, the temporary moments, and in the relationships I have.
What finding joy looks like to me →
Joy isn’t buying an expensive bag, or even landing a job, I call that happiness. And while I’ve also experienced a lot of happiness in the last year, it’s the joy that’s consistent. It’s being able to find hope through gratitude, instead of a constant desire of things I don’t have, or places I have yet to experience.
It’s waking up each morning, with an actual smile on my face because most days I wake up pain-free. Joy looks like going for a walk with Nick and being able to keep up without my nerves freaking out. It’s even there when I do feel sick occasionally because it reminds me of how much progress I’ve made over the last couple of years. It reminds me that even though I might be experiencing temporary pain, my body will get through it, and that’s enough faith to push me through the depression that often comes with chronic pain.
I realized the other day that I’ve never actually gone into my story before on here, or on my Instagram. I’ve hinted at the hospital visits, the tests, and the fog that I walked through for years, but never into detail. I frequently get questions about this, and one day I will share more of what happened, but until then, take these words as encouragement.
If you’re going through it right now and it feels like you’ll never escape the darkness, I get it. I’m not going to preach at you and tell you to be more grateful, practice the small joys, etc.
“But what about God? And your faith?”
While I believe that things like chronic disease, depression, etc. can lead to breakthroughs filled with gratitude and joy, I know its a different walk for everyone. I had so many people tell me when I was in my darkest places that “God was teaching me something” or that “pain brings a lesson,” and it only made me cold towards them.
It’s different for everyone but these cliché lessons only brought me more pain. They made me feel like I was carrying my pain the wrong way. That just added more stress to my plate.
And while I believe that God doesn’t cause pain, or want us to experience hardships, He does allow it. I know first hand that sometimes when you’re amidst the darkness it’s hard to remember that He’s a good god. I’m the first to admit that for a long time my pain did not strengthen my relationship with God, it only made me angry.
If this is you, it’s okay. One of the many things about God that I have gratitude for is He doesn’t leave our side, even when we leave His.
☀ On the other side ☀
All that to say, I feel like I’m through the darkness. My stomach disease is under control (after doctors telling me I’d be in pain for the rest of my life), my migraines only come every few months, and even my endometriosis pain is okay.
While some days may be darker than others, it feels good to be able to even write a positive, praise-report. I don’t write this to gloat, but to give you hope if you’re amidst dark days right now. To show you that there is hope!
I guess this turned into less of a life update, and more of a health update. Not exactly what you thought you were getting, but I will share some other life things going on too!
Other fun things to celebrate:
- I now live in my own studio apartment that I love so much.
- I’ve been able to start biking again and it brings me so much joy each day!
- With good health comes good productivity. My business is doing great, and I finally feel like I’m where I’m supposed to be. Follow on IG to see all the happenings <3
- I finally found a dog breeder 🙂
Okay, that’s about it for now. Thanks for reading through this life update, well more so a discussion about progress, small steps, and the in-between. I was reading over my 2019 Year In Review last week and was happy to see that I was hitting many of my goals. And most of these stemmed from being healthy. I also realized I need to start on my French lessons again. That was one of my top goals and to be frank – I am slacking lol.
Anyways! Keep up with me on Instagram for more day-to-day updates. I like to think I’m more fun there :,)
P.S. Here are some pics from this summer to make it a better life update :,)