“Loss Is Nothing Else But Change, And Change Is Natures Delight” – Marcus Aurelius

A lot has happened over the last month or so. I told you all about the loss of a dear friend, and I miss him dearly, and it just kills me to watch his mom, one of my closest friends, struggle through the loss of her son. All I can do is love her, give her hugs, encourage her and let her know that I don’t understand what it’s like to lose a child, but I can imagine the pain she is in, and I am always available to listen, or just sit quietly with her as she crys.

This past month another loss has come upon my life. Nothing quite like a death of a friend, but my psychiatrist of the past 8 years, told me he is leaving the practice and I will need to switch to another doctor. To some of you, this may seem petty, small, no big deal. But to those of you with a mental illness, you can appreciate the struggle it is to find a psychiatrist you trust, one who pushes you enough to push for your own recovery, but also knows when to pull back a bit and let you lean on them. You can understand that having a doctor who listens, and doesn’t just throw more medications at you or put you in the hospital every time you have a suicidal thought, is important, and unfortunately, is few and far between. This doctor has been with me through my darkest of times, through hospitalizations, suicide attempts, anger outbursts, but also through my successes. Through times of finding myself, and who I want to be as a person, not just as my diagnosis. He has encouraged me, helped me to succeed, but also let me fail at times so that I had the opportunity to learn, and take the reigns of my own recovery and start down the road of getting better. Him leaving the practice is really hard on me. I know the person I am switching to, just from them covering when my doctor wasn’t in/ working sometimes when I was inpatient. But the last time I was inpatient was 4 years ago, and a lot has changed since then. To be honest, I’m scared. I’m angry in some ways and feeling let down in some ways too. I know I can’t blame him, but I just wasn’t prepared for this. I feel like it’s putting me in a very vulnerable place, a place where I have to start over essentially with someone new and let them into my recovery journey. I have to learn to trust them quickly, so as not to fall backwards. Like I said, I’m scared. I just wish it wasn’t happening. I wish my doctor could stay with this practice, but I understand at the same time that people move on, it’s not all about me, I get that. I just am really not liking this at all.

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“Even though I love this crazy life Sometimes I wish it was a smoother ride” – Mercy Me

Life isn’t always easy…..in fact….it’s never EASY…….Life brings challenges every day, but we get through. I wrote in my last post about my friend dying of brain cancer. He was only 35, had a 4 year old son, and a loving wife and parents and a sister who loved him dearly. Not to mention all the friends who loved him too. There were just about 400 people at his celebration of life service this past weekend. It was amazing. Amazing to see the impact he left on so many people, the love for him, and the amazing amount of joy in knowing he is with God, no longer in pain, and looking down from heaven on us each day. It doesn’t make losing him any easier, but it gives a sense of hope in knowing we will someday meet again. Life gives us challenges to teach us, to show us our capabilities, to encourage us to push harder, reach for the stars and to make sure we are not just going through the motions, but we are truly living, because surely, one day it’s going to be our last with someone we love and we don’t want to have any regrets. I wish life was a smoother ride sometimes, ok, a lot of times, but I have been learning that God has an amazing plan for each of us. A plan we don’t get to see in advance. A plan that helps us to become who we are, as a person, as a community, as human beings. God knows what tomorrow holds for us, and while there are times I wish I knew what all was going to happen tomorrow, I am realizing how lucky I am to not know what tomorrow brings. I couldn’t imagine knowing that tomorrow someone I love was going to die…..or that tomorrow would be the last day of my job or whatever. Could you imagine the effect that would have? In a way, it would let me say goodbye to the person, or prepare to lose my job, but at the same time, it would make me so anxious, I wouldn’t be able to fully live out today, so really, I’d be losing today and tomorrow, which is not what God wants for us at all. He wants us to be grateful for today, the people we have in our lives, and the opportunity each day brings. He doesn’t want us worrying about the future, or the past. No, He wants us to live for Him in the current moment, to love those around us as if it was our last day every day. What a wonderful plan He has prepared for us all.

I will miss my friend terribly. But I will also be able to say, “he is home, with Jesus, and he is no longer here on earth, but Jesus needed him more. He needed him in heaven to be able to look down on us all and take care of us each day from above”.

Life throws all kinds of challenges our way, death of loved ones, loss of jobs, bad weather, or car problems, or disappointments in everyday things, but He loves us more than we can even fathom, and He has the blueprints that we cannot see. We can be angry at God, He’s ok with that; but we must know deep in our hearts that our best interest is always on His mind. It gives me chills to think I am loved that much, I will never fulfill the standards of God, because I am a sinner, but I do not need to fulfill those standards to be loved and saved by Him. No, He fulfilled those standards for me, and for that, I am grateful.