Sometimes as the emotional pain of this disorder begins to enter my heart, I become overwhelmed and feel incredibly alone knowing that, even if I try my best to explain what it feels like, no one can really know or understand. It's paralyzing and so frightening. It's like this terrifying nightmare of facing something so difficult and painful, but suddenly not being able to talk or make sense of it, almost not even being able to think clearly enough to utter a simple prayer asking for help. And then the fear intensifies and multiplies every second until it literally seems unbearable, like it is engulfing me.
Tonight, this happened. I'm not sure what started it, but all of a sudden, I felt like I could hardly breath. My emotional heart hurt, and I didn't know what to do. I tried praying, but nothing came out. I knew God could decipher the thoughts and feelings of my broken mind, but I was so scared. I couldn't even think clearly enough to ask Him to help me. With thoughts swirling around in my mind so quickly and my heart wishing that it could find relief in any way possible, I texted a friend asking her to pray for me. I'm so blessed to have friends in Idaho who are an hour behind, so they have a greater chance of still being awake even when it's late at night.
I felt so desperate. I just needed someone to pray for me. She quickly texted back, and a bit of the intensity lifted knowing that someone was praying the words that I wanted to say but couldn't. We continued texting back and forth as I tried to distract myself from the awful feelings knowing that I could be up all night facing them, when suddenly, the most beautiful, relieving, calming feeling of peace washed over me. I didn't feel alone or afraid anymore, I didn't feel overwhelmed about how I was going to manage to get up in the morning, and I didn't feel like my heart was heavy with sorrow. All of that was lifted. And in its place was peace.
It breaks my heart knowing that this nightmare will continue to visit over and over again, but my heart feels so much JOY in knowing that the feelings of peace that replace the sorrow, terror, and fear will wash over me time and time again. Sometimes it takes a long time for the peace to come, but it always does. Always.
In some ways, I am very blessed to get to go through this, because the greater the struggle I have, the more meaningful and powerful the peace when it comes. It's like I get to experience these mighty miracles nearly every week as I fight to survive and find joy through this indescribable pain. I get to feel firsthand the peace of God that passes all understanding, the peace that allows my heart to find joy through my brokenness. I'm sure I will always wish that this wasn't a reality in my life, but right now, I truly feel blessed to see God's hand working so intimately in my life in my desperate moments of need.