The Lenhart Family

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


What I Want You to Know About Being Disabled(or living with chronic pain)

Today has been a rock bottom place for me. There is this adorable little girl dressed up as the cutest Minnie Mouse and I have begged God for weeks that today would be a "good" day and I could take her trick or treating for the first time in her life... But today I'm stuck in bed, on medication that makes me sleep, and trying to find beauty even on the ugly days.

Many of you know that my back/ spinal injury has caused my health to be up and down since I fractured several vertebrae back in 2006. Two spinal fusions, three operations, numerous epidural injections, countless physical therapy sessions, 2 pricey TENS units, hours and hours of massage therapy, and lots and lots of prayers has brought to a place right now where my bad days outweigh my good ones. Where hopelessness has unfortunately taken root and I'm literally holding on and claiming the promises of God because that is all I have.

So why write a depressing post? Believe me the last thing I desire is your pity or to be THAT negative person but what I do desire is to be UNDERSTOOD. 

I want my kids to know when you look up in the bleachers at your football game and I' m not sitting next to your dad, there is NO place I'd rather be than cheering you on (because I am and always will be the biggest cheerleader in you life both on and off the field). I want you to I miss being your taxi driver, because if I could get those dang head phone outta your ears, we always have the BEST conversations in the car. 

I want my baby to know it breaks my heart to not be playing on the floor with you (building blocks and crashing them down, playing with your little people farm, playing babies or having tea parties with you)! It rips my heart to shreds that when you come home from your day with daddy that you run into our bedroom "Mommy! Mommy!" because you know that is where I'll be. It also hurts more than I could have ever imagined when I have to shut my door because we can't play right now, and you wiggle the knob/ bang on the crying for me, shouting "MOMMY!", holding whatever baby or toy you've brought us to do (seriously THAT is the hands down hardest part). 

I want my husband who fasts and prays and picks up the slack that "appreciation" doesn't describe what I feel!! That I'm sorry when I lash out in anger and I'd give anything to have our lives back.

I want my best friends to know that every time I can't follow through with a lunch date or a promise to babysit your kids, IT KILLS ME! I want you to know we would love to have dinner, a coffee date,  or my personal fav a game night but "good days" are usually spent loving my kids first and foremost. I want you to know whether it's been weeks/ months/ or years since we hung out I love you dearly. True friends can pick up right where they left off no matter how long it's been since you've seen them (we just have more to talk about to catch up). I need my friends more than I ever have before and yet they are because of my inability to "do stuff" are more distant than before.

I want my church and the people who I minister to that parts of my soul feels deadened because I can't do what I love, be as connected in your lives as I want, and serve to my greatest potential in the role as pastor's wife right now. Truth be told, I cringe when people ask how I'm feeling because telling the truth makes me feel like a Debbie Downer or Negative Nelly... That's not who I am naturally so avoid the question or put a positive spin on it when I can.

I want my nursing students to know I miss them like crazy. They have all the potential in the world to make amazing RN's and I will be there to see them walk across that stage receive their diploma and pin them! (I also miss my paycheck but God is teaching us dependence on Him like NEVER before)

My family, my friends, my church family deserve more than I can give in this current season.  

Jake and I have always embraced a transparency in our ministry and we will never ascribe to a fake it til we make way of doing "church" .... 

So I have to confess that right now I feel like an epic failure and like I'm constantly disappointing people and not being faithful to my commitments. I have never struggled with depression and hopeless like this but part of my healing means bringing into light that which has been in darkness.

I believe that there is a spiritual element too to it all. The enemy wants to make me ineffective and unable to accomplish what God has for me. 

All this to say.... God is faithful and we are already praising Him for the healing that we know is coming. We are fighting to get our life back. Please in the meantime, be praying for our family and be patient with us and the "new normal" we are trying to adapt to!

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