I sat at my desk, ready to work, fingers on my keyboard, my drafts spread around my computer in methodical piles. I wanted to finish rewriting some of the chapters in my book. But, my post-concussion symptoms from an auto accident in 2014 prevented me from working. Pin needle pains poked my head and jabbed my face. My eyes blurred and my head ached. Thinking hurt.
Like a toddler, I had a fit pleading with God to let me have my way. I’m ready to be healed. I’ve waited long enough, Lord. I have seven days left to meet my deadline. See me. Hear me. Feel my tears. I will sit here until you give me sentences one at a time.
Sometimes God says no.
Sometimes God says wait.
Sometimes God has mercy on whining children like me.
I had enough faith to move a mountain. But my mountain of symptoms from a traumatic brain injury didn’t move. I obeyed my doctors, said my prayers and ate plenty of protein as prescribed by my neurologist. Tears dripped down my cheeks. I didn’t get my way, but my next steps pulled me out of my frustration.
Six Things I Do When Things Don’t Go My Way
1. Focus on what I can do instead of what I can’t. On days when I can’t think, I set up shop in my garage and refinish furniture. When I can’t read, I listen to audio books. When I can’t work on my book, I groom my dogs. My action of doing something instead of continuing to whine fuels an attitude of gratitude.
2. Go back to basics. God is not mean. Even when my life is a mess, I can trust His heart, which is good. He must have a way to make something good come from my injury. God has a purpose and nothing can thwart God’s will.
3. Allow myself to feel emotions. I stomp my feet, pound my desk in frustration and cry until I run out of tears.
4. Reach outward instead of isolating. I call a friend and ask them to pray for me. I talk about my annoyances instead of holding them inside.
5. Get out of myself and focus on others. Someone out there has worse problems than me. I make it a point to do something nice for someone else. I send a note of encouragement, pay for a stranger’s coffee or make my family chocolate chip cookies.
6. Have a thankful heart. When I’m not thankful for my circumstances, I am thankful for something. I list simple things I’m thankful for: the sunshine on my face, my pets, my husband who loves me in spite of my flaws. I remind myself of answered prayers and the ability to think positive thoughts.
Psalm 119:68 You are good and do only good; teach me your decrees. (New Living Translation)