The following was preached as a sermon on Sunday, August 18th.
In April, I shared news of learning about a new health concern. The concern was learning that I have a lack of blood flow to the brain, and that arthritis in my neck could be preventing this blood flow.
At first, hearing this news was a surprise. It was unexpected, and I wasn't a happy camper. I joked that I was on God's least favorite list because of being stiff necked (going along also with hard hearted.) And, I was mad at the news -- this wasn't in what I thought to be the plans in my life. But, what did it mean?
The past few months have had their share of doctor's appointments. Each appointment has been one step closer of ruling out causes, and, learning to adapt and adjust to the arthritis.
One of the more amusing moments came in the scheduling of the sleep study. For the sleep study, it needed to be done overnight at the sleep study lab. It took awhile to convince the schedulers I really needed to schedule this after Easter, not before. Then there was the surprise of how refreshed I felt in waking up afterwards.
Perhaps the biggest surprise came in hearing the results of the sleep study: insomnia. This result did not match my understanding of insomnia where someone goes to sleep and is unable to fall sleep. In this definition, the insomnia is more of being awakened at night, and then falling asleep (or not) after this awakening. A follow up with a sleep psychiatrist is scheduled for August. (I've never heard of a sleep psychiatrist before, have you?)
Before seeing the sleep psychiatrist, a two week journal of sleep habits needs to be kept. Really? Without journaling, I know WHY I wake up during the night. I wake up in the middle of the night because two of our three fur balls decide I am their playground: walking, strolling, seeking attention, and yes, purring loudly in my ear. At times, they have been known to go sailing across our heads and pillows to get to the other side of the bed. Closing the door on them would only lead to a longer period of lack of sleep.
I wish I could say learning this has created a dramatic change in sleeping, or lifestyle or habits. Right now, it's small changes that I think are beginning to make a difference. And, there are probably smaller changes still to be made the more I learn about this arthritis.
It's a growing edge that hopefully will continue leading into life. Stay tuned for updates. . . . .
Pastor Traci Glover