Raw Thoughts

My heart feels sunburned today, as if it’s peeling and a bit dry. For 8 years, I have advocated for my daughter in her health struggles. I was largely dismissed, and diagnostic tests were not done despite multiple annual requests. We switched health care physician’s groups, and within months a scope was done. The scope confirms our hunches; that parts of her body are not communicating properly with each other. 

My emotions slosh back and forth like waves in a bathtub. I am angry, indignant, rage-filled, and overwhelmed with grief at the years she has lost. I am so angry about the injustice of our needing to be compliant with the health care protocols, so I dutifully took her to counseling to address the psychological aspect of her healing; while the physicians blindly prescribed the same medicine every visit; the medicine that probably contributed to this health issue! They failed to see her as a patient with emergent symptoms and instead blindly did what they always do, prescribe the medicine; get the kickbacks, keep her diagnostic costs down…while her health has faded. 

The worst part is the utter feeling of betrayal, knowing that I have spent countless hours and gas money to initiate change within the same health care provider; volunteering my time to ensure a smoother process for the next patients to enter the system behind me. 

As I held her yesterday and she sobbed, I thought back on the countless messes I have cleaned up for her; of the years of agonizing tears and questions of why she has to be the one to wrestle with this. 

Bitterness and rage would be so easy to embrace…but Christ stands in the way. 

I see Him.

I see His scars, the ones meant for me. 

I hear His agony when He asked why God had forsaken Him…and realize that God forsook Him for me. 

I sinned, I hated, I raged, I manipulated, I coveted, I wanted what I wanted…with no thought at all about anyone but myself. 

My mistakes and deliberate choices to serve myself have all nailed Christ to the cross…before I even was alive; before I sinned. 

I have been loved so deeply, so undeserved; how could I not  love others with the same depth of grace that has been lavished on me? 

I forgive them…every single Dr., Nurse, and Physician Assistant, all the bureaucrats that passed regulatory guidelines pressuring the medical providers to care more about seeing cost reduction and less about seeing the symptoms of their patients. I forgive myself for feeling trapped and tired, and failing to fight harder. 

The presence of forgiveness and grace doesn’t mean lack of accountability, however. I am more determined than ever to make things right for my daughter, who has lost 8 years of her life to an embarassing medical condition. I am tenacious in my dedication to be vocal on behalf of the voiceless. I refuse to sit idly by and allow other children to suffer through thinking that their Dr. has the only say in their health. Second opinions are an important part of discovery, and diagnostic tools are valuable tools to be utilized for the benefit of the PATIENT, not to be avoided for the benefit of the bottom line! 

I will be present and vocal at meetings, I will ask the toughest of questions, and I will not be bought. I will represent the voices of the poorest, the ones who don’t even realize that advocacy is their right. I will respectfully debate and persuade and hold accountable those in leadership. I will embrace the forgiveness of the one who forgave me, while still lovingly revealing areas where change is needed. 

My daughter deserves a legacy. Hers will be one that delicately embraces the passion of admitting the wrongs that were committed while gracefully offering forgiveness. It will be the most demanding and beautifully painful dance of my life. As I embrace my Father God, I trust that He will tenderly lead my steps to the music He sings over us. 

He is big enough and omnipresent enough to dance with you through your journey as well. Pour out your heart to Him, yell if necessary. Be breathless as He tenderly and strongly leads you into wholeness. Do you hear the music? I do. His song is your invitation. 

May our hearts have courage, may we leave our fears behind, may we boldly join Him on the dancefloor of life, and may we forgive as we have been forgiven.


Thankful Thursday – (a.k.a What the Heck is a “Cloud Break”?)

In my Wordless Wednesday post yesterday, I mentioned that the kids had given me a “Cloud Break”.

 Have you ever felt the weight of life so that it seems to be settled on you like a cloud?

Pre-CloudBreak (c)Gracie K Harold 2014

Pre-CloudBreak (c)Gracie K Harold 2014

We had a family friend die unexpectedly, and I managed to hold on to my cheerful facade at work,

only to find out that my work with them is done.

Rough, hard reality.

Sin sucks. Death sucks.

Catty, snide remarks under the guise of “religion” suck.

I was under a cloud.

I was devastated by our loss, and aching for our friends and their pain.

I whipped off my glasses yesterday and began sobbing as I sewed.

I had so many questions, which I hurled at God.

Violently and vulgarly.

 I screamed, “What the f@#%, God?  This is what happens when we follow you?  Freak accidents?!

Unexplained death? Sickness? Girls who are bitchy in the name of “piety”?

Christians who hear of a death, and move along like their agenda reeks of more importance than compassion?

Where the F@#% are you?”

At that exact moment, the sewing machine needle hit a straight pin, snapped in half and ricocheted,

bouncing off my cheekbone, a mere millimeter from my soft tissue under my eye.

I gulped in shock.

I remembered.

“I will never leave you or forsake you” Heb. 13:5

“I have loved you with an everlasting love, I have drawn you with loving goodness” Jer. 31:3

I remembered that life sucks sometimes.

Christians suck…a lot.

We just do.

Christ is here.

He suffered so I don’t have to be alone in my sucky reality.

Even when I blame him, He still loves me.

For that, I am thankful.

Additionally, he doesn’t just offer love, he offers


and then He gently lifts my eyes to see the breaks that he made

out of my gloom and despair.

CloudBreak Reality (c)Gracie K. Harold 2014

CloudBreak Reality (c)Gracie K. Harold 2014