Monday, April 27, 2009

Answer to Prayer

God answers all prayers – sometimes the answer is No.
22 years ago, when I first got sick, someone prayed over me, assuring me that this would heal me.  I had a lengthy remission, but I was not "cured".
A lot of things have happened over the past 22 years.  A lot of privately-funded research has found interesting things, and a lot of government-funded research money has been proven to be misused for research into things that have nothing to do with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
More importantly, in the past 22 years, I've learned a lot, developed more advocacy skills, and found a helpful tool called The Internet.  The book that probably wouldn't have been published 22 years ago can now be written as a  blog without the interference of a publisher (who would certainly want to censor some of the things I say in order to avoid potential legal problems).  Without a full-time job, I have the time necessary to do concerted advocacy work.
Things fell into place too easily once I made the decision to be an outspoken public advocate.  A specialist had told me that because doctors allowed me to deteriorate too far without proper treatment, I would never work full-time again, so I no longer had to worry about a future employer googling me and finding out that I have CFS – my career as a paralegal is over.  I had nothing to lose and everything to gain.
At the first public advocacy event I attended, I met someone who became my right arm, co-author  and editor; someone who knows even more about CFS politics than I do, and is always willing to help me with a study citation or a better word.  He introduced me, in person and via e-mail, to other advocates.
In the past, whenever things fell into place this easily, it was a signal that I was doing what God wanted me to do.  Looking back, so much of what I did in the past was preparing me for what I do today.
The faith healer's prayer that I be cured was answered with a resounding No. 
The correct prayer, "Thy will be done" has been answered with all the tools that I needed to be effective in this new role.  On days when I need to feel well enough to do advocacy, I am.  I was even able to attend the Reno conference in March – most years, I haven't felt up to doing much of anything in March.  Clearly, this is what I was meant to do.

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