100,000 – so grateful.

I got this notification of 100,000 views here on The Autoimmune Hippie a few days ago and I wanted to thank you all for reading along with me for these past six years now and also to express how grateful I am for all the blessings that I’ve been given in the midst of this everchanging autoimmune disease process.

It’s really something to read back to my first post in September of 2016, seeing a picture of my barefeet in Target, when I had to take off my shoes because I was having some crazy pain after working a few twelves in a row and I was struggling terribly with working my schedule and worsening symptoms and more frequent flares. I remember my feet being so tender I had to take my shoes off to make it through the store as things were definitely changing quickly with my body.

It’s a horrible mistake to deny the beast

Of course, I had no idea where this would take me and my family.

Since then, I’ve experienced disability, periods of immobility, the onset of CRPS cycling through both feet and becoming systemic, stress fractures in every metatarsal, weeks and weeks of hospitalization, numerous surgeries on both feet as well as one significant hip surgery, and months on end of IV antibiotics, among other medical issues.

It has been a ride.

(Since I wrote this post earlier today – but before I had a chance to proof and post it – I had a telemed rheumatologist appointment for a particularly nasty flare that has just wiped me out and has inflamed my whole body – but taken aim especially at my right wrist and ankle. My health status is just unpredictable and ever changing and this one really is rough. Well, this appointment was really. . . something – and I’ll be doing a separate post on that tomorrow.)

However, for all of the difficulties that have come with my diagnosis, the Lord has given me so many blessings along the way.

This space, The Autoimmune Hippie, has been such a gift. Through it, I have had a place to share that is so healing and helpful to me, and hopefully it is of service to others who might be walking a similar path as well. I am grateful to all of you who are here, reading, praying, and offering support. You are a blessing. ❤

Because of it and my dear friend, Cheryl, I found my way to be a part of the Southern Christian Writer’s Conference, where I have made many dear friends, had wonderful experiences, and learned so much.

As a part of the SCWC, I’ve seen my first book published, a dream come true and an absolute gift from God – and something I never could have dreamed when I first became disabled, facing so much daily pain, and feeling unsure of my purpose.

Written for my fellow spoonies, it is one way the Lord has used this illness I wouldn’t have thought possible.

Of course, in the initial shock, being so ill and giving up my work, I couldn’t have imagined starting over to do a new thing – but, as I share so often about my Bulldog adventures – the Lord has been so kind to allow me to return to school online.

Flares like the one I am experiencing now remind me that my body will do whatever it pleases – and make me especially thankful to have been given a way to go to State that my body can handle (mostly) and to have professors who have been just wonderful when my illness has not been cooperative.

Finally, of all this, I am so blessed to be an at home wife and mom, my joy, to my husband, our daughter, and our wild band of fur babies.

(I will take this moment to say that one HUGE blessing that has come to our family through all of this is Henry Herring the Service Puppy. Oh my word, how we love him. ❤ )

Though I have some limitations, I am grateful to be home with my people and able to do some things – making dinners, helping our daughter with her work schedule, momming about 😉 .  I love being home when my husband gets in and our evening routine together each night and our family nights when we’re all home too.

I am so tremendously blessed. ❤

Thank you all again so much for reading. I’m looking forward to lots more writing and sharing and seeing God’s blessings along the way.

Be well, everybody. Take care of yourselves and each other.

Grace and Blessings.

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