Six months ago I launched this blog. So, I guess you could call today a little anniversary. To mark the occasion, I thought I would share with you what writing this blog has meant to me and the things I am learning along the way.
After living with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome for 15+ years, I started feeling the urge to try and put a purpose to the illness. I have done this before, but the purpose seeking usually led me on a personal journey. This time I knew I was being led to somehow help others. I didn’t know what that looked like, but I knew there were other Christians out there that deal with the same syndromes. And I knew that I probably went to church with some of them, but I never speak of my illness (I’m going to blog about this soon), so how would anyone know? I knew there had to be a way for people of like minded faith who struggle with similar health issues to come together and support each other. I thought about starting a support group or getting involved with one, but that requires more time outside the house and I just didn’t have that time to give away from my family. My husband started a blog not too long ago, (stuffboysdo.com) so the blogging thing was on my mind. And I threw the idea around in my head for a long while before I started praying about it.
The only reason I started this blog was pure and simple. The Lord was calling me to do it. When the idea first came about, I spent months arguing with myself (and God) about how I didn’t have the time and I was ill equipped to WRITE. I have never written anything other than required writing assignments for college. I have never once considered writing for fun or even journaling. But there are TONS of people who have a blog who aren’t “writers”, we’re just people who have something to say. I was feeling the calling to TRY and minister to a specific group of people and it took form in the shape of a blog. I have heard people say that if you are going to write something, then you should write what you know. I certainly KNOW what it is like to live with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome and I’m a child of the King, so I thought, well, at least that’s a place to start.
I had no idea if anyone would ever read the blog outside of my family. I didn’t really intend to share it with friends or acquaintances, because the purpose was to reach Christians with fibro and/or cfs. I was not and still am not concerned with the amount of people reading the blog, just that I am reaching the people with fibro and/or cfs that want or need the spiritual encouragement. And I have found a good many of you – YAY!
I have learned so much in just the short six months since starting this blog. I realized that writing is HARD work. It doesn’t come easily or naturally for me. It takes time to come up with ideas and inspiration and then to appropriately work the blog post until I feel like it makes sense and speaks the idea that I want to convey. I have heard a quote that goes like this, “I don’t like to write. I like to have written.” (Wish I could credit that quote to someone, but so many different people have said it, I’m not sure where it originated.) And that is how I feel about this blog! 🙂 I love the feeling when I post a blog entry, knowing that it will hopefully encourage someone’s day, but the process is time consuming and well… lots of work! : )
One of the greatest rewards from starting this blog, is receiving comments, messages and emails about how people have been encouraged, inspired, and challenged. I am so encouraged by readers who share their stories with me and how God is working and using this blog to help them. It lifts me up! It encourages me to keep writing. To keep doing what I feel God has called me to do! To God be the glory! So, thank you to those of you who share with us on the blog! I have also made some new friends and have personally received support by engaging in relationships on the blog. Learning new tips and finding new resources because readers are so willing to share. Supporting one another on this journey both within illness and in the Christian life is rewarding!
Writing has been very healing for me. Emotionally speaking, it’s been very cathartic. It’s a great way to vent and express emotions that often don’t have a voice in my day to day life. I have never been so open and vulnerable in all my 16 years of illness. It feels good to have a safe place to let go of all the emotions that come with fibromyalgia and the stigma that goes with it. And to know that the group of people reading my exposed thoughts completely understand! Also, writing Biblical truths about chronic illness will often force me to look at things differently. So, I am learning and growing right alongside of you!
I often wonder if my readers think I have it all put together. Like somehow by encouraging you to do the right thing and telling you how I accomplish that in my own life that I somehow have it all figured out. I hope you don’t think that of me. I struggle like you do. My goal with this blog has always been to be an encouragement to those who need it – to those believers who have fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome and have felt the awful emotions that accompany it. Sometimes it feels so lonely and I thought that as Christians, what if there was place where we could come together and share – where there was spiritual encouragement specifically for those who share the same physical syndromes as myself. And I hope that is what this blog is!
He maketh me lie down in green pastures: He leadeth beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul!
Thank you all so much for coming on this journey with me! Thank you for reading and taking the time to encourage and inspire me! Love and blessings to all of you!