Just Be

It’s been months since I’ve been up at 2:45 a.m. because my mind cannot be distracted from the unrelenting amount of pain.

It’s been weeks since I’ve not been able to sleep because my body is too awake, too uncomfortable, and too sad to just be quiet.

I’m exhausted. I’m tired. I’m fatigued. I’m hurting.

My joints are grinding and creaking. My bones are aching. My muscles are tensing.

I don’t know if it’s because it’s been just over two weeks since starting a new round of antibiotics. I don’t know if it’s because I just got home from Minnesota and I prefer to be.

Whatever the reason, it is. It just is.


It’s been a while since I’ve written anything regarding physical pains and symptoms. And it’s definitely been a while since I’ve written anything at 3 a.m.

I’ve started a treatment protocol that it’s expected that I feel more excruciating pain, more extreme discomfort, and more severe pin-pointed aches. However, the fact of knowing something is going to happen, doesn’t necessarily dampen the effects of the actual event (or symptoms). Chronic pain is real, and when the pain shifts or intensifies, it’s a game changer. However, this is my reality, and I’m going to accept it and keep going forward.

Yes, I know that I’m going to be in pain. Yes, I know that it’s going to get a bit harder to do what I want. But, I also know that I’ve been there before. Maybe not in the exact same place, but I’ve been down the whole ‘get worse before you get better’ road a few times. I know that I’ll get down on myself. I know that certain days won’t go as well as I’d hoped. I know that my mental state might waiver. I know that my body may scream and yell at me. I know that my life will keep going. I know that God is still my God. I know that I’m still loved. I know that I’m strong. I know that I’m capable. I know that I have the tools and resources to power through whatever life throws at me. I know that I am and will be.

This pain that I’m experiencing is a level of pain I don’t have much experience in managing, yet. It’s pretty intense, and it’s mainly from my waist, down. My left knee is becoming increasingly useless; to the point that yoga is beginning to become nearly impossible without my knee brace. My legs ache, like bricks are falling down on them by the ton. My hips are stiff and feel as if they’re locking. My ankles click and twinge. This pain has been becoming more profound over the past few days. I’ve amounted it to me being more active and physical than previous months, but I’m afraid it’s a bit more than that. My current pain management techniques aren’t doing the trick as well as they had been, and I’m not sure what else to do, other than type out my thoughts; after all, it’s a fairly good distraction if I do say so myself. So for now, this is what it is. I need to allow myself to just be. 

minnehaha16painis.jpgI know this pain isn’t going to go away in the next 8 hours, or possibly 8 days. I know that my battle with Chronic Lyme Disease isn’t over. I know that I need to keep fighting and working hard. But, I do know that I can choose to smile about the things that make me smile. I can laugh at the things that make me laugh. I can choose positive distractions over wallowing in my pain. I can decide to push through the bad pain, and stretch my body to feel good pain. I can do what I know best, and that’s to just be. I’m not going to make it more dramatic than it is. I’m going to accept what is, and I’m going to appreciate what I’ve been given. I’m going to be strong, because I know am. I’m going to love myself just the way I am, exactly where I am, because God will do good things. He always does. I’m going to continue to live my life  how I want to live it, just maybe at a different pace than I’d imagined. I’m going to keep putting one foot in front of the other, no matter how long it takes me to walk a mile. I’m determined to get through. I’ve made it this far, so what’s a few (hundred) more steps?

I have an inordinate amount of things to be thankful for, which include, but are not limited to: no daily headaches, no paralysis episodes in extremities, my friends and family,  the Lyme community, my camera, my doctor, my Lord and Savior, my parents, medicine, yoga, Netflix, music, the ability to write, the ability to see, the ability to move, the ability to walk, the ability to speak, the ability to rest, the ability to smile, the ability to do what makes my heart happy, the ability to go to Minnesota, my physical strength, my mental strength, I’m loved, my comfy bed, my caring and adorable dogs, coffee, tea, water, food, and so much more.

So, for now, I will let it be. I will just be. I will accept and keep moving forward. I will strive for positivity, but I will be okay when things don’t go well.

“So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time. Live carefree before God; he is most careful with you.” ~ 1 Peter 5:5-7

Elise Hendrickson

P.S. This was a bit of a ramble, and I intentionally avoided editing it too much. When I have words running through my mind like this, I try to be completely transparent and raw, for personal meaning. But, also to show that I have random thoughts, and that my thoughts aren’t always edited and spell-checked. 

*All photos are taken and edited by Elise Hendrickson.*


2 thoughts on “Just Be

  1. Thanks for sharing your unedited thoughts & feelings Elise. I remember the year I spent recovering from a head-on automobile collision & 8 broken bones. Not at all at the level of what you are dealing with. But I remember 2 steps forward, 2 steps back, and sometimes 3 steps back. That was the hardest. I told my Dr. I don’t mind long plateaus but I hate sliding backwards. Keeping you in my prayers. You have a great approach of doing what you can, when you can and letting yourself heal & recover all the rest of the time. Praying for pain relief and progress.

    Liked by 1 person

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