Of course, the chocolates are vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free, made with the purest, rawest Dutch-processed cocoa or even better, raw cacao, and made in an allergen-free facility to avoid cross contamination.
But you get the drift.
With Lyme & Co, you never know what you're gonna get. And if you're anything like me, that stresses you the heck out because you like planning and being able to schedule things on your calendar in advance and other organize-y things. But Lyme doesn't play that game. Nope, "planning" or "scheduling" isn't really in Lyme & Co's play book.
I've written about this in a different way before, but today another aspect came to mind and I have to write it down (er, type it out) before I forget. So far this year, I have left our house a grand total of 4 times. Granted we're only one month into the year, but only leaving the house 4 times in a month isn't exactly having a life in the sense most (non-chronically ill people) would consider. Two of those times I was blessed enough to attend a church service (the first times I had been since October, I think), and one time I "got out" it was to go to my parents house to spend a few days while Rog had a band trip out of town. (Actually, I just remembered my brother took me to Whole Foods during that weekend, so that brings my total to 5, but that was a trip I shouldn't have forced because I didn't have the energy and it was the day after a pretty intense herx and in hindsight it was really stupid to go and try to shop and ride in the car that long, but I DID get groceries I desperately needed so that part was worth it)
The 5th time was today, when for the first time in weeks I was having a day where my energy seemed okay enough I asked mom if she wouldn't mind driving me to Hobby Lobby so I could get valentine-making materials and also stop by the local natural health store to pick up a couple things. And surprisingly, since mom was able to push my wheelchair in the stores, I actually held up pretty well! I was able to look through and select paper, stickers, etc., and I was able to get the items I needed from the health store. We even were able to stop by the grocery and pick up a few things--and even though my energy diminished the longer we were out, it was so nice to be in the "real world" for a bit! And I was taken aback by the fact Lyme & Co decided to back off as much as they did for the 1.5 hours. It was like I had gotten coconut--a "chocolate filling" I didn't expect but thoroughly loved!
We then made the drive back to my house, and literally a couple blocks away from turning o nto our street, immediately after I had finished devouring the coconut center, I got a big bite of roman nougat--a "chocolate filling" I will eat if I absolutely have to but that I'd rather do without. (I apologize to anyone who's a roman nougat fan, it's just not my cup of tea. But I digress.) Anyway, before we turned onto my street, I hit the Lyme & Co wall (seemingly 6.022 X 10^23 times stronger and more forceful than the walls of Jericho AND the sound of Joshua's [et al.] trumpets combined--why Avogadro's number decided to make an appearance I'm still not sure but I'm gonna go with it), and every ounce of energy or strength I had with my coconut was snatched away and I was handed this disappointing roman nougat situation. I couldn't even unbuckle my own seatbelt and had to be carried into the house. I was missing my coconut!
Something cool occurred to me,, though, as I reflected on the afternoon/evening. I realized the "not knowing what you're gonna get" doesn't have to be intimidating. Okay, yeah, most of the time I prefer to know what to expect, to plan in advance, to avoid change and surprise and spur of the moment circumstances at all costs, and unexpected roman nougat aren't exactly my idea of a party, but there are times--as I continue to learn the longer I fight Lyme & Co--when the unexpected is actually a delightful coconut filling I'm able to relish while it lasts, and those moments make the roman nougat moments more tolerable.
Personally, I think Exclesiastes 7:14 sums it up best:
When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider this: God has made the one as well as the other. Therefore, no one can discover anything about their future. Ecclesiastes 7:14, NIV
So the next time you get a roman nougat (or whichever flavor you find least desirable), keep in mind that without the undesirable chocolates we encounter, we wouldn't be able to appreciate the delicious chocolates to their fullest extent.
And if you're a Lymie who can't exactly go buy/eat a box of Russell stover chocolate, and if you do allow yourself agave nectar, I'll share a link to the absolute BEST Lyme-friendly chocolate I've found. **I'm not advertising for this company or endorsing them for monetary gain, I just get excited when I find something delivious and have to share it with my fellow Lymies!** Seriously, these are all delicious!
Wow, what a broad topic to broach! Don’t worry, I’m not about to get overly-philosophical about how we have to search within ourselves and find the one thing we’re so passionate about we just know we’re going to change the world. No, that’s not what I’m writing about today.
Okay, this post is going to be a little different than an informational Lyme post (probably because it’s not an informational Lyme post…), but it’s the product of thinking too much on a night/morning when it’s past 6am and I haven’t yet slept a wink. So, tonight’s post sponsored in part by:
Lymesomnia! “When you think you’re tired, we’ll keep you wired!”
Closed captioning for this blog post brought to you by:
Saul Goodman & Associates We’re sponsoring simply because the writer is currently on season 5 of Breaking Bad and this is the only company/business her sleep-deprived brain deems okay to sponsor closed captioning. And she knew that she had better call Saul!
Now that I’ve gotten that out of my system, let’s proceed.
The poem that follows isn’t solely Lyme-related, but rather I had started writing a poem about my Godsend of a husband, Rog, and it kind of evolved into a poem about how blessed I am to have him by my side through the myriad of “adventures” we’ve endured in just 2.5 years of marriage. Which, of course, includes the entire Lyme journey we’re still fighting daily, but also includes various bumps in the road we couldn’t foresee (like the loss of two jobs for me–one due to entering an eating disorders treatment facility in 2011, which was another adventure in its own right, and one due to Lyme & co rendering me unable to work, a year and counting since that one was lost) that have left us, at times, more financially, emotionally, physically, and impatiently strained than we thought we could handle. But God continues to be at work and constantly reminds us that it’s all part of His good and perfect plan.
So, without yammering further, here’s the poem:
Often I look at a picture of you
and think, “how lucky I am”
Sometimes a memory from years past
Laughter and life in our eyes we both wish could’ve lasted.
But God had other plans for us
outside what we knew back then–
We certainly didn’t ask for this journey,
and often pray it will soon end.
Through trials of every possible kind,
mental, financial, physical, loss,
there is still one thing that always holds true–
Together, these bridges we cross.
Some people may think the hard things get easier
the more they show their face.
But we know different–they don’t become easier–
they’re just more commonplace.
But the commonplace things that not everyone sees,
are treasures I hold very dear.
How your eyes smile more than your mouth when you look at me–
In those moments, my worries are cleared.
And the silent way in which you go about your day
doing what has to be done–
You always make time to say to me
something purely intended for fun.
The way you talk to our cats and dog,
not realizing I’m listening in–
Even in little actions like this,
I’m reminded that daily I win.
I win because even through all the struggles
of the seemingly unending kind,
We’re traveling this journey of life hand-in-hand,
and I’m so glad you chose to take mine.
No one else could I imagine beside me
each and every day.
And I hope there have also been times when I
have helped you find your way.
This thing we signed up for, there’s no ‘passing Go’
to quickly skip over the bad.
But once we’re victorious over these battles,
just think of the stories we’ll have!
And someday down the road, later or soon,
whenever God deems it fit–
There’s no doubt in my mind we will live and embrace
all the fun and excitement we’ve missed!
Because me being sick doesn’t define our lives,
even though it oft feels that way.
But we will get the life we once had back again–
I truly can’t wait for that day!
The thing I most want to say to you, though,
the reason I’ve written this here,
is that in the middle of what looks a mess,
God makes my every blessing clear–
And the best of the best of all of the blessings is knowing that you’re with me here.
And that’s the one blessing of all of the blessings I always will hold most dear.
Copyright Becca Doss 2014