I have been wanting to write this post for a little over a week now. In fact I last opened the post on February 24th at 6:26pm according to wordpress. Yet the only progress I’ve made is the title, “I’m a Diamond.” So here it goes, let’s give it the old college try to get this swarm of ideas out of my head & onto your computer screen. (what the heck does that saying mean anyway? the last thing I did in college was try my very best, unless your very best means sliding in just under the amount of absences allotted before you get booted from your 8am math class)
I’m feeling a lot of pressure lately. So much pressure in fact that I can physically feel it. You know when you’re just sitting, sipping your coffee in what should be a somewhat peaceful moment of your day, no disasters (yet) & still you feel like a very fat snake has slipped loosely around your neck & is his putting his entire body weight on your shoulders as if you had on the heaviest scarf EVER.
That’s the pressure I’m talking about. That kind of pressure doesn’t grow from a one time crappy experience either. When you got a flat tire & then found out that your car took some fancy replacement valve that they didn’t have in stock & they had to call 12 dealerships to find it & you didn’t get home until 8pm, that was a ‘bad day’. ‘Boa Constrictor pressure’ as I’m now going to call it is a slow growing beast. He starts off as a small necklace. Just a little thing wrong in your life that you are pretty capable of handling. But then it gets worse, or maybe it doesn’t get worse maybe it just never lets up or maybe it’s something else completely random that happens & before you know it you have a statement piece around your neck. You know one those fabulous necklaces that can completely make a monochromatic maxi look like a magazine outfit but at the end of the day you have a headache because the thing was so darn heavy? Somehow, because of whatever your personal battle is, you are forced to wear that necklace every day & then one day you wake up & realize that you’ve forgotten what it’s like to walk your kids to the car on a beautiful blue day & just enjoy a crisp breeze, some warm sunshine & how darn cute your little one looks in those boots. Instead you’re in constant ‘what’s next?’ mode. What appointment is next, what’s next to cross off that never ending list you have…everything is just go, go, go because you have to. You have to go. That is how you end up with a boa constrictor on your shoulders.
You might be thinking where I’m going with this post is to tell you to take some time to enjoy the small moments in life, or prioritize about what’s worth your attention, don’t allow the bad things in life to take over…Well, I’m not. Because that sounds beautiful but it’s crap. Sometimes we have ‘HAVE TO’s’. What movie is that where she says, “my entire life is have to”??
It’s true. Sometimes life deals us cards, I take that back, life is not a random game of blackjack, let me say it how I think it is, sometimes God gives us a time in our lives where the burden is heavy. You cannot prioritize your way out of it.
You have a child with disabilities.
Your husband is in the military & you are on your own.
Your husband is gone.
There is pressure that is unavoidable in life. So what to do?
Every week I have 3-6 doctor appointments on average. (That includes physical therapy & lab visits, basically places I need to be because my body is wonky) Managing my health has honestly become a full time job, I joke that I’m the ‘office manager’ of MyDisease LLC because I’m constantly managing the schedule, gathering paperwork & don’t even get me started on the admin work of submitting things to my insurance company because EVERYONE good these days is out of network. Thank you Jesus that we are blessed enough to even be able to go out of network, I really see myself one day starting a charity that helps young moms like me, who are often the core group affected by most of these auto-immune diseases, get the financial help they need to see the best doctors. ‘The best’ can make or break you & it’s just not fair right now. I can’t go there for too long because it really breaks my heart…another post for a different time. My point was, awhile ago I asked my Dad if he would be my mental/medical record keeper & would help me keep track of all the events that have happened, so I was calling him while I was on my way to an appointment & was telling him about how I now have a rash as a side affect of my disease & it’s not only giving me acne like I’m a 14 year old greaseball (no thank you, been there, done that!) but it’s also making my fingertip skin split under my nails, I’m currently typing with 4 of those h-shaped fingertip band-aids on & yes I realize how pathetic that is, spell-check is working overtime in this post, but is it worse that what annoys me the most is that I gave myself a really cute manicure the other day & now its going to be ruined by band-aid gunk? I guess that’s for that priorities post I’m not writing today. Anyway, I was telling my Dad about yet the newest problem that is wrong with me which requires an appointment with yet another specialist & he mentioned something about how my little robot body was really falling apart (in a loving, funny way of course) which triggered an immediate visual in my head. My sickness has made me an ugly piece of coal. Go with me here…
The last three years have been the hardest years of my life, hands down, but being on such a long path of dealing with a difficulty has also meant my ugly piece of coal has been under a lot of consistent pressure. I’m sure you see where I’m going here, constant pressure turns coal into diamonds but don’t jump to the end just yet because I am NOT a finished sparkling diamond yet. Yet. You probably aren’t either, but here is what I want you to know…
When you feel the constant pressure (I kid you not Sam JUST yelled down to me “Sheldon pooped in the playroom & he also took the kitty poop out of the litter box again & it’s in the hallway!) I want you to remember something…
You are a diamond, you’re just still a little covered in coal. And this pressure that you’re under, this everyday, gorilla on your shoulders pressure, it’s all part of the plan to make you a diamond. The more pressure the bigger the sparkle will be. I truly believe that. 100%.
I think, I know God has great plans for me & I would not have been able to accomplish them if I hadn’t gone through all of this continuous pressure. Great things really do come from great trials. You know what too, every once in awhile I get a little glimmer of the sparkle that’s underneath. The other day I was able to tell a friend who is in the thick of a really hard time about my whole diamond theory & later she said that it really helped her & when she finds herself in one of those situations where you just can’t take anymore she tells herself, “I’m a diamond, I’m a diamond” Knowing that sharing the lesson I’ve learned helped her was a little glimmer of my sparkle that’s under the coal that covers my life right now.
For Christmas P surprised me with the most amazing diamond pendant, it’s actually a small yellow diamond on a delicate little chain & I’ve been wearing it every day since then. (Call me a little quacky but I believe God gave him the idea to buy me that, I never would have asked for it & I don’t even know if I told him about my obsessions with the beauty of yellow diamonds) When the pressure gets to be too much I rub my little diamond & remind myself, sometimes outloud & sometimes in public because Sophie has taught me to not care what people think, “I am a diamond. I am a diamond.” I really love having a tactical, physical item to remind me of important lessons in life so if you’re in the pressure cooker phase of your life too & you don’t have a sparkly bauble to wear I suggest you buy yourself one. It doesn’t have to be fancy, & it certainly doesn’t have to be a real diamond. You can find some really beautiful crystal & CZ ‘diamond’ pendants on Etsy.
Regardless, here’s what I wanted to tell you today. You my friend are a diamond, unfortunately things of great beauty like diamonds don’t come without great pressure & they always start off a little tarnished with black coal. Hang in there, be strong & have faith. Eventually there will be glimmers of the sparkle underneath & one day, one day you’ll be a stunning rock that makes Kim Kardashians’s ring look like a gumball machine trinket.