I've had a series of ailments lately. In December I started getting these terribly persistent headaches that just would not go away. No amount of over the counter pain meds would put so much as a dent in them. Having spent so much time in the presence of seriously ill children, my imagination would run wild and suddenly it's not a headache--it's a brain tumor, an aneurysm, a blood clot. After 6 days, I went to the hospital.
"Are you under stress?"
"Well, let me see--I just started a new job, it's Christmas Eve, my in-laws are visiting, I'm a mother of 3, my husband travels four days a week and I'm smack in the middle of graduate school. Sure, I'm stressed. Who isn't?"
They scanned my brain (no tumor or anything else alarming) pumped me full of steroids and sent me home. By morning, it was gone. It's come back 4 times since and though each headache has stuck around longer, they've gotten much milder. This past Tuesday ended the most recent headache of 9 days. The day before, Monday, I felt this strange tingling in my arm--like it was about to fall asleep or was trying to wake up. Again, my mind goes on a rampage--I'm having a stroke! No, the doctor says--probably a pinched nerve. Well, how do I unpinch it? Ibuprofen--lots of it. Well, that wasn't really working but as the next four days passed, it got better.
On Sunday I woke up with this horrible crick in my neck--like maybe I slept on it wrong or moved my head too fast. It was awful! I was worried about being able to drive because it hurt so much to move my neck. Ice, heat and more drugs. Nothing is working. I'm suffering through pain after pain, all the while, wondering how in the heck I'm ticking Satan off because he's after me. Something good must be coming!
I always pray first. Always. Even if it's just in the second or two before the pill goes down. But the pain is just so terrible and I find myself doubting. If I really believed in prayer why am I taking Tylenol? (There he goes again, trying to get under my skin!) But what I know is that Tylenol doesn't mean my prayers are weak. It's the prayer that makes my Tylenol stronger.