An Authentic, Sometimes Gritty, and Always Hopeful Blog for All Who Live with Severe Physical Pain

Friday, June 29, 2012

Tornados Inside and Out

Tree with top 30 feet missing
On Monday, a tornado sheared off the top of one of our tall trees in our back yard, as a sudden violent storm raced through our area.  I found the top of the tree where it had landed in a twisted heap about 36 feet away. Ironically, I hadn’t even known it was supposed to rain, having worked in my yard that morning, weeding the flower beds.  From my half-bath (our most inside-room) I knew just when the tornado passed because it really does sound like a train like people always say.  The clean up will be tortuous with both humidity and heat now blowing down on us like a steam engine.

The next day, my sweet cat, Angel, died. She seemed to not seem well on Sunday and was gone on Tuesday.  A tornado of mourning has overtaken me.  Angel has been my boon companion throughout hundreds of hours of deep physical pain, depression, and loneliness.  Somehow she knew when I had retreated to bed and was in need of her gentle comfort.  Appearing from out of nowhere,  Angel would seek permission to come close by looking into my face and gingerly placing one paw on me.  If the answer was “yes”, she would settle in beside me, calming me with her softness and purrs.  How I will miss her.

Pain Neuron
Yesterday another tornado appeared, twisting up this journey I travel.  New pain...two doctors showing concern.  Perhaps it will be something little…perhaps not.  I won’t know until I undergo  minimally invasive exploratory surgery in August. I’ll write more about it when it's right to do so. I don't know when that will be--I need to ponder and pray about it all.

Three tornados…inside and out.  They’ve ramped up my depression; so it goes when tough circumstances arise.  (And why do they seem to come in threes?)  I feel exhausted and spent.  I compare it to how I used to feel after my final exams in college.  I was a procrastinator, so I would have to study for exams for hours on end, skipping sleep and living on “No Doze” tablets.  (Anyone remember those?  Caffeine in pill form?  Today’s energy drinks “got nothin’” on those things!)  After my exams, I would somehow drive the 2 ½ hours home, grunt out a hello to my parents, and dive into my bed, where I would remain for the next 24 hours.

Yep, that’s just what depression feels like right now.  I want to dive into bed and stay there until I feel rested.  But, unlike my college days, I don’t need to rest-up.  Going to bed would only make me feel worse.  

There are a few things I have learned that work much better than going to bed.

Here are Four of Them Worth Considering:

1 - I have a general rule to live as well as I can, despite severe pain and depression.  Here it is: 

Judi’s Rule for Living as Well as I Can:

“Never get too tired, too thirsty, too hungry, too hot, too cold,
 too stressed, too emotional, or too still for too long.”

2 - Allow myself to wallow in ramped-up depression for a day or two.  This might surprise you, but I have found that when circumstances heighten depression, I do better in the long run if I allow myself to feel the full weight of it--mentally, physically and spiritually for a day, sometimes two…but never three (or I can fall into a pit that is harder to climb out of). 

3 - Get in the green.  I need to be outside.  Whether I am working in the yard, walking in the park, kayaking on the river, or just reading the paper on my screen porch, I feel better if I am outside or near outside.  Oppositely, if I am stuck inside for more than a day or two, depression will get a hold of me easier.  No matter how awful I feel, I always feel better if I go outside. (Tornadoes notwithstanding!) 

4 - Pray scripture that speaks hope and positive emotions into my life.  Because I believe that the Bible is the Holy inspired Word of God, praying scriptures has supernatural power to change our hearts for good.  How I do this: I look up scripture in several different versions--using as my quick and easy resource--and then I re-write the scripture as my personal prayer.  Here is an example of how this works:

Lord, you are in charge;
All my comings and goings are in you care.
I delight in You.
When I stumble, I do not fall hard.
For you always have a grip on my hand.

  ( In the theme of Psalm 37:23-24)

Here are a few other scriptures I have found uplifting--I hope you will look them up:
John 16:33, Psalm 42:5, 2 Timothy 1:7, Psalm 147:3, 1 Peter 5:6-7

Until Next Time, Live Well, Friends.



  1. Judi-
    I am so sorry for the PAINS you are going through!
    Tornado, loss of your trusty animal companion,
    and Physical Pain arrives again!

    Too much-but I totally agree with your suggestions-yes, have some form of "Sad Me" day, and reach for HIS hand to pull you up. I wondered if the severe weather was not a "Kick-off" of some sort, waking those nerves up that scream at you!

    My heart aches for the "WALL" you are up against. I will pray for you Judi-just as you pray for me when I ask, and the real blessing of praying for me, when I haven't said a WORD. It goes both ways.

    Please let me hear from you as you can. I go through more injections monday-the things we will do to "Make the Pain run away for a while!"

    All my love Judi. Martha

  2. Thank you, precious One, so faithful to encourage me. I am holding fast to the Lord, who always comes through!! The heat is keeping me inside for the most part, and I am blessed to enjoy my home, and have plenty of things to do. I pray the injections provide relief for several weeks for you.


  3. Oh, Judi, you have been through it. I'm so sorry for that! But, I do thank God you and your family and home are OK. I can't imagine losing your beloved companion right afterwards. And now extra pain.

    ...I'm praying for you, dear one. I wish I lived nearby to give you a hug. Please receive this as my hug to you! If you would like to talk, please feel free to call me. Love to you!

  4. I feel your hug right through the internet, dear Diane!! Thank you!