Monday, November 18, 2013

Depression - Fear - Anxiety

Depression, fear, and anxiety are three issues that affect most people today in some way. If you watch television or read a magazine, you will find your cure to these to be anti-depresssants or medicines to make the other medicines more effective. For those who are going through a hard time and have the feelings of depression, fear, and anxiety, the thought of having a quick-fix might be tempting.

As someone who has had friends struggle with these areas, people close to me, and even myself, I know there is no quick fix. In another blog, I discussed fear at length and how it can be overcome. It is not easy. Taking a pill every day might be a necessity at first, and in some cases it might be a necessity for longer. Every situation is different. There is only one true fix however for the feelings of depression, fear, and anxiety. Physical issues aside, the mental issue, the habit of thinking a certain way, can only be changed or helped with the Lord's help.

Someone suffering from a brain tumor, suicidal thoughts from a medication, or even someone with a meloncholy temperment can all be cured of the sinful aspect of depression, fear, and anxiety. In Philippians 4:6, the Bible says to not be anxious about anything. That is a command from God. His solution is prayer, supplication, and thanksgiving while asking God for help. He promises peace if we go to him in this way. Peace is the opposite of depression, fear, and anxiety. The knowledge of His present help in time of trouble, the knowledge of His presence results in not only a respectful fear of him, but a confident fear that He is in control over our every situation.

If you can consciously think about something, and find yourself thinking about it over and over in worry, then you are creating a habit that could change your mind in a way that is not positive. You can train your mind to think right, but you can also train your mind into believing things about yourself that God has never said. If you or even a child of yours suffers from obsessive compulsive behaviors, there is help in the Lord. It will not be easy. It takes work. A pill might help at first, but when it comes down to it, you have to just stop, and the Lord can give you the strength.

OCD tendencies can run in families I think. Perhaps it is from influence or even body make-up, but it happens. Sometimes kids who have special needs suffer from OCD behaviors. It's likely that Trenton will struggle with this. Anyone can struggle. It is how you handle the struggle that determines whether you will live a life of victory or a life filled with depression, fear, and anxiety.

You might wonder how you can help someone with a physical condition that actually causes the issues. There are obviously situations where someone has no mental understanding, that it would be impossible, but if there is understanding, it is possible. Changing the pattern of your thinking is not inherently spiritual, but I believe the without the help of Jesus Christ, it is impossible. In some cases they will still need medication, and there is often nothing we can do about that.

Since I know many people who use medication for help, this is not to offend them or try to stop them from what they are doing. It is just to create an awareness of what might be possible for them. I'm not a doctor. I don't know every medical illness that causes these symptoms, but I do know that we can learn to overcome wrong thinking with the help of the Lord. I know this from my own personal experience. I know the feeling of thinking something must be wrong with you because you just can't stop worrying. For me the solution was found in Philippians 4:6. Do not be anxious about anything. When I realized it was a command, it made it easier for me. For you it might take a different verse that will help. It is not easy. It is a fight.

As a mom of a child who will likely struggle with these issues down the road, I am preparing myself for his need to be medicated, but I have hope that he will have the understanding to be able to stop obsessive behaviors and be strong through Christ.

My reason for writing this today is because I needed it today. Depression over my son's issues, fear over the future, and anxiety over it all is a constant fight that must be fought. "But thanks be to God which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." I Corinthians 15:57

Saturday, November 16, 2013

The Need to Explain

Something that I have not gotten used to with Trenton is explaining him. Most people wave at him at first because he always looks like he's waving. Most people probably catch on after a few minutes that he has some type of disability. I don't worry about those people, because usually they don't say anything. It's the friendlier people who come up and chat and want to play with him that I feel the need to explain his disabilities to.

A birthday party that we went to the other night was one of those instances. Most people there may have known about him and that he had a disability, but everyone didn't. One lady was chatting with me, and she asked how old he is. That is usually my cue to explain why my 18 month old is riding in a stroller while her maybe 10 month old was going down the slides at the party. I proceeded to tell her about CHARGE syndrome. I suppose with this habit I am creating awareness.

Later the lady proceeded to ask me if he had involuntary movements or if that was a part of the syndrome, then I explained further. She brought her little boy over and told him that he was actually younger than Trenton. She obviously meant no harm, but it's those little things that tend to hurt. I've read a lot of "what not to say to a special needs parent" articles lately. I'm not really sure what the answer is, because in my case, I probably asked to be separated by explaining his issues. It's hard to know whether people really want to know or if they could care less.

Some of my explaining might stem from habits of fear. The fear of what people think is a prominent one that gets me at times.

"people will think I'm a bad mom because his nose is always snotty" - He can't help it, his body is made that way, and it would be raw if I wiped it every second

"people might wonder why I'm not holding him or cuddling him" - He doesn't love it. He could care less, and most of the time he cares not to be held.

"people might wonder why such a large child is just sitting there while we eat in a restaurant" - he has a g-tube and can't eat by mouth. He ate before we came.

These are all possible thoughts and answers that could be said for them. It is hard not to think this way. It's difficult not to wonder what people think. The solution is the same solution for any other worry or fear. "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication let your requests be made known onto Him." Philippians 4:6.

Just sharing some thoughts tonight. Hopefully they will benefit someone. Thanks for listening.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

When Answers Come

In a life filled with the mysteries of rare genetic disorders and illnesses, isn't it nice when answers come? In general, answers are a good thing, because they bring order, even when news is not good.

So often as Christians, we are told that we might never know why. This is true. Isn't it great, when God allows us to have some answers?

I know God gave me the mind I have to help deal with Trenton. I know I've been thought to be strange because I do look at things differently. I make connections, I research, and I always have had to figure things out. This can be detrimental to your spiritual life when you need to be living by faith, but when it comes to helping figure out medical problems or issues like this, it is an asset.

People that follow my posts on facebook may have noticed how often I requested prayer for our son getting sick. It was happening once a month almost since we moved to New York State. That's not a jab at the state! It just happened that way. I did not really pay much attention, because I thought it was just a cold. He has odd cold symptoms not typical of most people.

After really starting to think about the pattern that was developing, I started researching, talking to others, and I started to get answers. We are pretty sure that Trenton has been getting abdominal migraines also known as cyclic vomiting syndrome. It explains the about once a month vomiting at the same time every month for about the same length of time. Why did it start when we moved here? Well, we have an answer for that too! Trenton was taking beta blockers for his heart, and around the time we moved here, he had a growth spurt. The cardiologist said that he had outgrown the meds and no longer needed them for his heart. Turns out, beta blockers are a treatment for abdominal migraines! More answers, and we haven't even been to the doctor yet. One more discovery is that the migraines are often caused by the chemical histamine. Perhaps you have heard of anti-histamines that help allergy symptoms. Trenton is one big allergy symptom. If you have ever seen him, you might notice he usually has a snotty nose. It's not because we don't care enough to wipe it. It's because if we wiped it every time, it might cease to exist! Anyway, around the time of one of his episodes with vomiting, his nose is especially runny, but then when the main sickness begins, he completely dries up. I'm no doctor, but I believe this must have something to do with a histamine issue in the nose and the stomach. The stomach is also affected by histamines, so I think he may be getting to much during these times. He already takes an acid reducer, but there is another type that is called an H2 Histamine blocker. I'm going to talk to the GI doctor about switching to this type to see if it will prevent the illness. I love answers, and it's wonderful when we get them.

God is not against us having answers to our problems. Spiritually, He sent the best answer to the world's problems in the form of a sinless baby Jesus who would grow up, die the cruelest death of the day, and rise from the grave. He is still the answer today to all of our problems. In the trials of the day that are not spiritual, He is still the answer, because He is our hope. We know that if we love Him, He is working everthing out for our good. We won't always have the answers, but I am so thankful for the times when He allows us to have them. He is God and He is the Answer.