It’s stressful to see what’s ahead for me. ALS can be … … … rather, it usually is … a nightmare.
My anxiety really began to grow when I understood more of what’s ahead for me. Mostly, I buried my head in the sand. I’m blessed that my wife has made me face it but only the next single step through this journey, so I kept stumbling forward, one step at a time.
Then . . .it got worse … it began to overwhelm me. What bothered me most was knowing that I would not be able to communicate with those I love, some day. My new son-in-iaw made us aware of a ‘coping program’ called “voice-banking” which he thought would help; it’s available for my iPad and it seemed to offer hope.
I downloaded an app called “voice record”, agreeing it would help. The plan was to record important phrases to help me communicate … in a way. In retrospect though, the more I tried to record phrases I wanted to be able to tell my wife and even requests for help which I knew would help her … the more my anxiety level grew, but it increased … exponentially! My “I love you, so much” sounded extremely trivial compared to how deeply I felt and still feel! That, killed my enthusiasm.
When I go through problematic circumstances I tend to internalize them, pretty much. It’s the way I was made. I get quiet and try to work through things myself before I talk to anyone about it. Being a newlywed, that’s not always the best solution. It took me a while to even verbalize what I was struggling with.
Normally, my belief in God pulls me through; it has … so far. This, however … bad as prior episodes of my life had been … … …. I’ve never felt so helpless … so alone. I descended even deeper into despair. It was isolation I feared.
I went through most all the stages of grief —
“The five stages of grief, postulates a series of emotions experienced by terminally ill patients prior to death, wherein the five stages are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and finally, acceptance.”
My own death was easy to accept; eventually, we all die. I skipped bargaining. Denial didn’t last long. Anger did. Or rather, it kept reappearing; I blamed God, when it reappeared …
I’m at a point now, where I cry so easily, so quickly … any emotion sets it off … I really don’t fully understand why. Yet, I do, in a way. I’m so blessed that I explain to those who see it … that “I recognize how blessed I am! When one’s cup is so filled (with blessings), one’s cup over runs easily!” Admitting that, increases the tear-flow and I often find myself praying they understand – that I’m sincere as well as honest about it.
Some, however, probably think I’m weak. That’s true. I am. It’s God who is strong – it’s He, who is pulling me through – giving me strength! Scripture tells us that. God, our provider, Jehova Jireh provides. He even brought my wife, my angel to me, – – brought her and I together. Words cannot say how much I love them both!’
Now to why I felt I should publish this . . . One Sabbath, a Saturday, around mid-day, I was particularly stressed about not being able to communicate with anyone, and expressing that in prayer, to God, I ‘heard in the spirit’, very clearly: “it’s okay; we’ll talk!” That He would tell me so … … is beyond my wildest expectations! I love Him so!