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Thoughts on Fear, Anxiety & Healing



Nearly a month ago I started a file on the laptop called COVID-19 Journal. When I journal, I normally write in an old fashioned journal with pen and paper, but somehow my mind is running faster than my pen can write, so the click clack of the keys on the keyboard get the thoughts out a lot faster.

Today, as I was writing my thoughts, it came to me that perhaps, in this time of uncertainty there are others fighting a battle with anxiety. I know that I am not alone, but us anxiety fighting people don't often talk about it, do we? So, I thought I would share my thoughts on anxiety and healing...as raw and imperfect as they are, in the hopes that my raw and imperfect thoughts will be of encouragement to someone else in battle today:

April 8, 2020
The concept and reality of healing has been in my life for a long time. Twenty two years ago, I was a scared 22 year old and close family and friends gathered in my parent’s living room and flooded the gates of heaven with prayers of healing, as my head was anointed with oil and we believed for healing from cancer as I awaited surgery. That day I received healing.

Nearly ten years ago Jason and I stood over a bassinet in the NICU, pleading for life and healing over Mikail’s little body as his brain was damaged from a stroke. We learned that year that sometimes the healing comes with time and lots of work, but the miracle remains. We learned that year that our brains are fascinating; that they can create new neurons around the damage and a normal life and healing can take place.

Two months ago I was desperate and broken…the physical ramifications of anxiety crippling me, causing anxiety attacks not just at home anymore, but randomly out in public as well, landing me in the E.R. Logically I knew that there was nothing to panic about, but if a trigger hit, there was no amount of logic that could tell my body that it was not in trouble and that I was not, in fact, dying.

At around this time, we had been gifted the most amazing gift of a trip to Disneyland and I was so incredibly grateful, but how was I going to manage the crowds, the noise, and the hustle and bustle of Disneyland with my anxiety? I wanted this trip for us…for Olivia so badly, but was so afraid me and my anxiety would ruin the whole trip.

Over the next number of weeks, this still small voice kept telling me to go up for prayer and healing at Church. I didn’t want to. Yes, I wanted to be healed, but to be vulnerable and say out loud the words that I wanted to be healed of anxiety? For people to truly know this is a battle I fight every single day? I didn’t want people to know how bad it really was. Finally, weeks went by and I found myself walking up to receive healing. I had to say the words out loud and there was no judgement. There were hands held out to pray for me, to hold me up, to touch my forehead with anointing and there amidst it He was. The Holy Spirit’s presence was palpable and I could feel the healing take place.

We went to Disneyland and had the most amazing time. We did three full days, back to back and I didn’t have to return to the hotel room early on any of the days. There was no sense of panic the whole time. It was such an incredible gift. I believed in the healing I had received. It was a miracle that I had not only survived Disneyland, but absolutely loved it.

We came home and the next day the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic and life as we knew it was no longer the same. We self isolated because we had traveled and experienced minor sore throat/cold symptoms after we returned. We were tested because we’d traveled recently and after 5 long days we received negative results. Praise the Lord. Jason’s salary and hours were reduced. Schools were closed. I was suddenly a homeschooling mom working from home, who never planned to home school because it wouldn’t be good for my mental health or our family dynamics. Hello, reality!

Suddenly I started to question my healing. I wasn’t sleeping well. I wasn’t getting the alone time I needed to recharge. I was allowing my mind to reel with all the what ifs:
Mikail died of a community spread disease that ended in pneumonia that killed him. What if Olivia would die as well? How does one survive the death of all of your children?
What if Jason got it and died? He gets pneumonia so easily. How would we survive? How would I float two houses that we are renovating and are both not near sell-able? How would we feed ourselves? Pay the bills on two houses? How would I get a job? It’s not like they are short on teachers these days.
What if Jason and I both died and Olivia would have lost her brother and parents? How would she handle that? Could she handle that? Who would take care of her? There’s no travelling allowed, so how would she be sent to her appointed guardians in Ontario?
My mind was reeling out of control. Panic knocked on my door.

The stress of the unknowns and the sudden unwanted changes in our lives caused those feelings of anxiety to threaten to take over me again, until I heard that still small voice remind me, you are healed, but sometimes full healing takes time. My thoughts turned to Mikail and the brain damage his infant stroke caused. Through hard work, we were able to help new neurons develop and grow around the damage and he met all of his milestones, but it took time and hard work, but it was a miracle, nonetheless. Perhaps it is similar for me with anxiety. Perhaps my body has memorized these previous ways of reacting to stress, trauma, and unknowns and it will take time to fully undo the reactions my body has in regards to anxiety. Perhaps, I am living the miracle right now. The healing has already come, my body has just not caught up.

I have been walking in this concept daily. When anxiety threatens, I remind myself that the healing has already taken place…we are just teaching my physical body to catch up with that fact. So, when anxiety does threaten, I reach out to God, who is already right there, and we walk through it together and my body listens.

God, you’re such a safe and powerful place to find refuge!
You’re a proven help in time of trouble—
more than enough and always available whenever I need you.
So we will never fear even if every structure of support were to crumble away. We will not fear even when the earth quakes and shakes, moving mountains and casting them into the sea.
3For the raging roar of stormy winds and crashing waves
cannot erode our faith in you.
Psalm 46:1-3 TPT

What an amazing reminder. He is our refuge. He is our help in times of trouble. He is always available. He is our healer.

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