Archive for August, 2011

Roller Coaster Companion – The Ups and Downs of Sciatica

The Scenic Railway at Luna Park (Melbourne, Au...

Image via Wikipedia

Up and down. Side to side. Slow climb up. Now curve left, then plunge. Straight away with increasing speed, then upside down and straight through to do it all over again.

The previous descriptions may sound like a typical roller coaster ride at any amusement park, but I am actually using a word picture to describe what the last four months of my life has been with Sciatica: with a pinch in my back, I jump up out of bed, and then lay back down, because I cannot stand or sit for too long. I try to position myself on one side, but then feel a pain in my hip and have to switch to the other side. A slow climb to prolonged sitting after chiropractor adjustments gives me confidence, but then the injury comes back and I plunge back into bed. Again, I continue with chiropractor, massage, stretches and walking. With my constant routine I begin increasing speed, even up to walking 3 miles per day (for over a month) and holding steady to sitting as much as I would like. But then all of a sudden, I find myself upside down with hurt and starting my ascent all over again. I’m tired and discouraged, not willing to go this route again, and having to fight my way off the roller coaster before it gets up to swiftness again.

In a previous post I explained what Sciatica is and how it affected my daily routine. I am writing this because I am finding myself, once again, racking up “frequent roller miles.” Don’t get me wrong, I love a good roller coaster ride! I love the thrill of going fast, whipping around bends and then anticipating the next plummet. But when it is involuntary, it freaks me out. No one likes to do something they don’t want to; forcing them to get on a ride when they are unwilling is not a pleasant thing to do. It can cause anxiety, distrust and bitterness. And I admit I can be that way when I am in pain – unpleasant and restless.

Traveling Companion

If you had to go on a trip from point A to point B, while suffering, would you rather go it alone or with a close friend? I would guess that most of you would say that you would go with a close friend.

Any road that is traveled alone is long and tiresome. But with a comrade, you are encouraged and uplifted.

When you are weak, they become strong. When you fall, they lift you up (Ecclesiastes 4:10). True friends will go the distance. Loyal friends will help you when no one else will dare to cast their glance upon you. And a faithful friend will carry your burden, even if they have to ride beside you in the same car on the same track to the same place. They never leave your side!

I have one of those friends. My friend sympathizes, because He walked a similar path of suffering. The anguish and pain He felt puts my complaints and unwillingness (to walk this road) to shame. Because Jesus took my chastisement upon Him and willingly suffered stripes upon His back for my healing (Isiah 53:5), I can be confident that there is nothing I will go through that He cannot identify with. I can look to Him with confidence that I will not go through anything that will over through my faith or derail His plans for my life (even Sciatica).

So for now, I sit buckled to hope, anticipating the next stop, knowing that my faithful Traveling Companion will never leave me nor forsake me (Hebrews 13:5), as I ride this roller coaster called Sciatica.

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