Endings and Beginnings

As 2015 comes to a close, I cannot lie, I’m glad to see the end of this year. 2015 turned out to be one of my most difficult years to get through. It was a constant struggle to stay afloat against the relentless bombardment of issues that had to be dealt with…personal issues, new health issues (primarily diabetes and high blood pressure that have been very difficult to get under control), relationship issues, spiritual issues, …from January 1st through to this moment, I have often felt off-balance, discombobulated and frequently lacking the energy I’ve needed to be able to navigate the increasingly complex labyrinth that some of these issues have created. I’m arriving at the threshold of 2016 feeling like a ragged, wrung-out dish rag, thanks in large part to my poor body having to get used to so many new prescription drugs – and the side effects, some of which were severe enough to require trips to emergency – for the past several months, and frustrated for what feels like an unnecessarily wasted year in terms of living a purposeful, passionate life…some of these new health issues and medications left me with little to no energy to do much for long stretches of time.

Yes, there have been peaceful stretches and patches of good energy here and there, but looking back, I see far too many empty hours frittered away on anxious ruminating, especially over the health-related “what-if’s”, weeping more frustrated tears than my eyes could handle at the severity of the side effects, and giving in to paralysing fears that these health issues were never going to get under control and that I was never going to feel better again. Every morning for the past few months, I have woken within a baffling frustrating paradox…profoundly and genuinely grateful to be alive to try again, yet equally sad to be waking up to the same issues that baffled and challenged me the day before. Hopeful that “today would be the day” that I – we (doctors, etc) – would figure it all out, I was faithful to rising, faithful to showing up for my life, faithful for slogging it out, faithful to prayer, faithful to trusting that there was good stuff working its way through all of this…and faithful to love…faithful to loving God, husband, family, friends…and learning how to be faithful to loving self, expressed in forgiving myself – I felt a lot of guilt over the diagnosis and difficulty in controlling the diabetes in particular.  I’m trying to manage the anxiety and frustration by allowing myself to only have to deal with the unfolding day moment by moment, thereby lessening the angst to tolerable, manageable chunks. Still, there were many nights when I would get to the end of the day crumpled in a weary heap, weeping for help in understanding the core “why” of the various issues weighing me down, and then mustering enough strength and trust to listen for the answers.

I’m not sure how many answers actually came my way. Or perhaps more honestly, how good I have been at absorbing those answers. But somehow, there has been enough Peace and Grace leaking through the angst to help bolster me up enough to show up for each next day’s unfolding. Enough blessings to keep going, but enough challenges to keep me humble and constantly searching for strength and patience. And maybe in the end, that’s enough to have made it a year worth having struggled through…learning that I COULD and DID get through it all, relatively intact, mostly hopeful that we’ll be able to resolve most of these issues, most definitely still alive (whew!) – and very ready to get rid of some of this old baggage of useless anxiety and start fresh.

Yes, I’m glad to get to the end of this year. In my mind, 2016 looks like a clean slate, a new horizon, a new treasure chest full of possibilities – and I’m looking forward to that exhilarating feeling of starting over again, hopefully with a new mindset and new, improved medications, and new hope that will fuel me through to new answers and new resolutions to some of these issues that still need tending to. I’ve read enough to know that so much of the angst and illnesses we go through are rooted in our mindsets and attitudes. I’ve been working very hard to rewire my attic and nurture that positive gratitude attitude. It’s the only way I’ve been able to stay the course, diligently resolutely learning good coping strategies amidst the health struggles, naming blessings amidst the pain, and focusing on even the slimmest slivers of light and hope in the darkness.

I’m glad I made it through this year…there were frightening moments when it wasn’t so clear…but I did, thanks to so many people who helped me get through the health scares. It feels empowering to look back and realize the struggle and perseverance it took to get here. 2016 looks bright and shiny, like a newly minted coin. I’m ready. Wait, I’m even EAGER and determined to take on whatever little treasures and lessons it has tucked away in its pockets for me. Maybe I’m eager enough to not even wait until January 1st. Maybe I’ll jump into the “new” part right now. Bring it on, New Day. Bring it on New Year. Bring it on.  Let’s do this!

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Copyright © Sharon C. Matthies, Meanderings (blog), 2015. All rights reserved.
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About Sharon

I love to write. I love to write myself into being right here right now. Writing releases something in me that needs wings, writing opens doors and windows that I often don't even realize are possible, writing helps me breathe out the dusty old, and to breathe in the new and possible. My hope is that maybe writing here in this blog will bring new light into these dusty old hallways and help me to clear out the thinking processes and mindsets that just don't work for me anymore. I seek to breathe new light and life into the nooks and crannies of a soul that has been feeling somewhat lost and frayed because of the last few patches of road I've had to travel.
This entry was posted in anxiety, authenticity, coping, courage, depression, determination, empowerment, faith, fatigue, gratitude, grief, hope, inspiration, journey, life, Light, Love, meaning, mental health, panic attacks, perseverance, positive thinking, purpose, Sadness, self help, social anxiety and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Endings and Beginnings

  1. Angelika Schwarz says:

    How did I miss this? I’m so sorry Sharon that I haven’t responded… I don’t always get a notice that you have posted. I pray that 2016 will be a pain free, harmony filled and joyful year for you. You know I’m always here to lend you an ear. But I love your fighting attitude! Yeah! Bring it on! You can kick all those things that have been pulling you down. I know you can. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sharon says:

      Thank you, Angelika. It always helps to know I’m not alone. 2016 has been a great year so far, though the wrestling with the diabetes numbers continues. I’m at least more relaxed about it. As long as they’re mostly in the right ball park, I feel like I’m winning.

      And there’s always my horse. Everytime I think of my horse, my heart leaps for joy. All of these struggles pale in comparison to what so many of our friends have to endure on a daily basis.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Angelika Schwarz says:

    You have the joys of owning a horse, and the relief of not having to care for it. Can’t get better than that! You are winning, if those diabetes numbers are in the ball park. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sharon says:

      Thanks Angelika! Everytime I think of Lucero, my heart wants to dance for joy. It makes me very happy!

      And I’ve been keeping a record log of my glucose numbers this past month, and have been able to notice what spikes my sugar. There have been surprises (such as finding out that tomato sauce affects my sugar more than I had realized) and some nice surprises, like learning that dark chocolate does NOT spike my sugar at all! Everything in moderation.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Angelika Schwarz says:

    Great news… you may eat dark chocolate Easter eggs!


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