18 June 2011


       I am amazed at the beauty our God has created! As I drive- in fact everywhere I go, I stand in awe of the beauty of life. I can hardly imagine a world so much greater & more beautiful then this one! Well, for one there wouldn't be anything depressing to even put on the news! I want so badly to see everyone I know & love up there, but I can't make that happen! Yesterday I volunteered literally all day at one of my favorite places: the one & only ACH! My eyes were opened, once again, to the unending beauty in this place. The doctors there continue to amaze me- I've never met such nice, personal doctors while yet being professional; to me they don't personify the "typical" doctor, who in my opinion have been misrepresented. They prove to me that doctors can be "smart" & professional, while yet still attaining strong senses of humor & communication. I used to view doctors as judgmental, mean people who only wanted to "manipulate" or control my decisions- I didn't realize that I had a choice. I believe this thought was strongly impacted by the fact that I was a minor during majority of my hospital stays; I literally didn't have the final say because I wasn't yet independent. I also viewed doctors as people who wanted to make me look "weak"- to point out my "flaws" & to tell me bad news. In some ways, this is true- they do usually tell bad news, but it's also their job to bring hope; beauty amidst what was thought, by me, to be the "end". I wanted to be "perfect", & to me this looked like fixing everything on my own....... hmm... unrealistic!!!! I've realized that the "strong" people are the ones who see a problem & seek help to fix it, realizing that they don't have all of the answers-  my God taught me this in a long, painful way- a way I never imagined!    
I remember the day I was told I had Scoliosis- I wanted to lay down & cry; dig a hole & hide. This to me, seemed like the end- how would I compete any longer? Sports was my life!! When Dr. S told me I had to have surgery, I literally wanted to punch him- to make him take back his words. "I didn't need surgery! I was fine", I thought. I had to face the harsh reality; one I had seen but never truly experienced or believed deep down. I'm the type of person who learns by experience- I was told that no1's perfect, but I didn't believe it deep down because I had never seen anything differently in my own life- I was simply "going through the motions." Well, when the doctor told me this "devastating news", I tried so hard to keep a "happy face". "How would others perceive me now?!" I remember that to me, though, the surgery wasn't actually the most traumatic part- it was emotional, mental, psychological, etc. I struggled, & still do struggle with minimization; I heard the doctor explaining the surgery, but it "went through one ear & out the other". I didn't realize the seriousness of this surgery; I was being cut open; big deal! I viewed this as a minor surgery, so "why were my parents & others so scared? Why were they putting me on the prayer list?! It was just surgery!!" I had no idea! In fact, until several weeks I still never understood the seriousness & complexity to this surgery. It's good I was asleep or else I would have beat up the doctors! lol j/k But seriously, watching this live 1hr. movie opened my eyes completely- I saw what they had done to me, why I was in so much pain, etc.

 I don't remember the surgery all too well; I guess I've been trying to block it out to a point. I often find myself thinking & sometimes believing it was all a dream- "did it really happen?!" Then I look at the long scar from the top of my shoulder to the bottom of my waist & I also feel the screws & rods; but not to the extent I felt them during my Anorexia. I still struggle with the fact that I turned to an eating disorder after surgery- I know that this is the Devil trying to knock me down & to convince me that I'm weak, to embarrass me!This doesn't make the issue any less real to me, however! He doesn't want me to be "proud" ( I don't like to use this word!) or to share my story. I don't know anyone else who was effected this was by a Spinal fusion! As you can tell, my perfectionism has not gone away! In reality I know that the surgery wasn't the ONLY reason I developed Anorexia- there were factors prior to this as well. I believe this, but sometimes I don't- the devil knows how to get me, but I know how to fight back!! I've got God on my side! I don't believe that since these thoughts have entered my mind, that I'm "stupid" or whatever ( the devil says else wise!) because I never asked for temptation- I myself cannot prevent these thoughts from entering my mind; I can, however choose how I act on these thoughts. I struggle, also with the fact that most kids are up & doing all of their activities from prior to surgery after 6 months post-surgery. Why I'm so hard on myself, I don't exactly know! I am my own best friend yet my own worst enemy! When I replace the lies with God's truth, however, I realize that I don't need to have it all together! I need to live in reality! Over 15 years minimum of trying to be "perfect", this doesn't go away so quickly!! It takes time to change, which at times I hate! I KNOW that I'm not perfect; why would I even try to be?! Ugh devil, you suck! Yet, I'm grateful for you because you bring challenges to life. I love a challenge! I love the "thrill" of life & experiences.

 Volunteering so often brought back these memories. Also, for the 1st time in I don't know how long, I'm allowed to exercise & run again! The thrill is back! I can sweat again! It doesn't however, take away the fact that I'm not as "in shape" & "fit" as I was prior to surgery. I believed that sports were my calling, but God shut that door & opened another one. "We have to let go of the lives we had planned for us in order to live the life God has waiting for us." This was our senior class motto & couldn't have been any more fitting! "When one door closes, another door opens". 
 Well, this is a little into the beauty yet darkness of life. "Being happy means choosing to see beyond the imperfections". It's nearing 3 years in August since I was hospitalized for Scoliosis. Also, in writing class we are being challenged to look at our past, to use personal experiences in our essays. Life lately has been & continues to be alot of reflection for me- it's beautiful yet painful! Well, I should work on my essay now! It's due on Monday, so I better get on it! Thanks for reading! This girl has got to get back to life! Ugh... I wish there was more time in a day! 
                                       Love & Happiness,


from ashes to beauty said...

I shouldn't say that I'm "not as fit"- I guess what's underneath all of that is the fact that it took me nearly 3 years to get there; has it really been 3 years?! I guess the fact that I just recently got "my body back" could play a part in this! lol

Anonymous said...

Oh Chelsea:) I love you. You're amazing, and it's awesome that you're communicating your healing experience through writing like this.