Valleys suck! And I should know, I’m a Valley Girl

Growing up in the 80’s in a neighborhood called Oak Valley, couldn’t have been any cooler! We were the Valley Girls, before it was cool to be a valley girl…. LIKE TOTALLY! Yes, it was definitely the cool side of town. Everyone wanted to be from “The Valley.” And if you weren’t cool enough to live in the Valley, you would aspire to hang out with the Valley kids…. in the Valley of course.

But the valleys that I’m talking about are not the childhood memories that I adore. They are the crappiest of crappy times in your life. Kinda like right . . . . . NOW. Yes, this valley that I am in, is not so glorious. I did some research last night about (go ahead, guess!) Lyme disease and now the associating term of the day “menstrual cramps.” I will keep this as bland as possible and not include too many gory details incase there are any men reading (damn you men!).

So, last night, I’m laying on the couch watching Duck Dynasty with the hubby, and all of a sudden I get really bad menstrual cramps. Why is this odd? 1) I’m not due for my period. 2) I don’t usually get cramps. 3) These were very intense. So, I google menstrual cramps and Lyme to find out that YES Lyme messes with your cycle and can throw you into menopause; can make your period MISERABLE; and it can even make your period come more frequently and last longer. WOW! Thank you Lyme – because it’s not enough that you have wreaked havoc on the rest of my body, you have to go there too?

Okay, vent over. Back to the topic. My point is this . . . . Lyme is crazy. I’ve been taking adrenal supplements to help boost my energy. They have been amazing. In fact, they worked so well, that I was starting to second guess myself. Maybe this was all in my head. Then BOOM – I fell into the valley!

At first, I was thankful because it reassured me that my symptoms are real and just because they disappear for a few days, doesn’t mean that I am not sick. I am sick and this is real. My pain is real, the cramps were real and in the middle of the night the intense pain that woke me out of a sound sleep was definitely real. I’m thankful that the Lord led me to those internet sites, so that it would be fresh in my mind, as I tried to decipher the pain.

Could it be possible that an ovarian cyst was causing the cramps, and then in the middle of the night it ruptured? It sounded way too similar to stories I had just read on a local Lyme forum. Panic set in. I froze with fear. When I was 16 years old, I was hospitalized for two weeks, due to an abscessed ovarian cyst that ruptured. It was painful, I almost died, and it destroyed my fallopian tubes, making it impossible for me to have children (without medical assistance). The idea that this could be happening again, in the middle of the night, freaked me out. The only thing that kept me calm, was knowing that this cyst was not infected. There was no fever, no infection . . . so it wouldn’t necessarily be the same outcome.

I woke my husband and asked him to google, what to do if an ovarian cyst ruptures. We also called my OB/GYN. She said it sounded very much like a rupture, and that there is nothing more to do – except to take some ibuprofen to reduce the inflammation. And of course call if the pain continues after a few days. That’s it? Seriously? Take two ibuprofen and call me in the morning? That’s almost comical.

My amazing hubby (amazing doesn’t even begin to describe him) went out at 4:00 am and got me ibuprofen and tucked me into bed; then went off to work. By the time my alarm went off a few hours later, I was actually feeling pretty good, considering the night I had.

But I had such an overwhelming desire (maybe the Holy Spirit leading me) to write about this today. Maybe it’s because no matter how bad things seem in one moment, if you pray and follow HIS plan, you’ll realize it’s not so bad. Or maybe I just needed to realize that Valleys aren’t that bad. Because after all, it’s a Valley that brought me to the Lord . . . . and without HIM I would still be floundering down there. But instead, I’m standing on the mountaintop praising and worshiping HIM! If you’re stuck in a Valley – look up. He’s there for you. You just have to go to HIM.

God is sovereign, which means that God is able to do what He pleases with whomever He chooses whenever He wishes. The prophet Jeremiah said, “I know, Lord, that our lives are not our own. We are not able to plan our own course” (Jeremiah 10:23, NLT). And we read in Proverbs 20:24, “The Lord directs our steps, so why try to understand everything along the way?” (NLT). That is the sovereignty of God.

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