What I wish I'd done differently with my anxiety problem

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Those were crazy awful days. 

If you're suffering from anxiety, you don't even need me to expound. You already know how embarrassing, debilitating, and terrifying this anxiety stuff is. 

I lived through a few years of those crazy awful days. Praying and praying for things to change. Dreading each new day. Dreading each dark night. 

Afraid to explain to my loved ones how bad it was. 

Bewildered that this was happening to me.

I did the best I could. I pushed through the panic. I lived as normally as I possibly could. I begged God to take it from me. I knew I couldn't live the rest of my life in this state. But nothing was changing on its own.

And I finally realized I had to choose life. I could be passive no more. This would take work, this would require difficult choices, but I had to live. Something had to change.

And that's what I wish I'd done so much sooner.

I was a little too proud. A little too strong. A little too spiritual to let anxiety mar my reputation. 

And those things were part of what created my problem. 

But Jesus is merciful. He's familiar with those too proud, too strong, too spiritual, and He whispers to them to stop carrying their own load and take His yoke instead. He offers a yoke that is easy and a burden that is light. 

And sometimes that means falling down in tears, admitting how heavy our load really is. How we're just not enough. How desperately we need help. 

He took me to that place. He humbled me, and allowed me to see that weakness is the perfect place to meet Him. 

I sought help. 

I received wise Christian counseling.

I went to an alternative physician. 

I was ready to receive help, and by God’s grace, the answers began to come. My adrenal system was depleted. I'd put out for so long, I had nothing left. 

For the following years I took hormonal replacement drops, naturally replenishing my adrenal system, gradually building up all that I'd torn down. And through counseling, reading, prayer, and conversation with trusted friends, I worked through the stresses and traumas that brought on the adrenal fatigue.

Day by day, month by month, little by little, anxiety faded and peace returned.

I wish I would've known sooner. I wish I'd admitted my need for help sooner. That's what I'd change. But then again, that's where I learned more of God's grace. 

I didn't have to be perfect. I didn't have to always be strong. I didn't even have to find healing the perfect way at the perfect time. Because God pursued me and covered me with grace.

If you're living through those crazy awful days, I pray you'll find the grace and courage to seek help. 

Continue to take refuge in the Word of God. 

Allow yourself to rest in the hands of your Heavenly Father. He’s pursuing you and promises to work everything together for your good.

Ask Him to guide you to the right doctor, the right counselor, a place where you'll begin to find some of the answers you need.

Your path to healing will be unique, but it will be perfectly crafted by your Maker. 

Yet as you journey, know this: This place of anxiety is where you’ll know — not just theorize about — the sustaining grace of God. 

This is where you’ll learn to treasure the presence of Jesus, not just His gifts. 

That is what I wouldn’t change — my deepened faith in my loving, faithful Savior.

It’s a delicate balance, isn’t it friend? 

Resting and trusting when the Lord tells you to be still and remember that He is God. Then acting in faith when He tells you to step out of the boat and walk on water. 

Don’t let fear or pride hold you back. Cling to the hand of the Great Physician, and move forward.

I’m praying for you today.

{For more specifics on how I acquired adrenal fatigue and anxiety issues, as well as a more detailed story of my recovery, read Take Courage: Choosing faith on my journey of fear, a brief memoir available for only $2.99 on amazon.com.}

Blessings,

Jennifer


Jennifer Ebenhack

Jennifer’s eight eventful years in Haiti produced a gift of brokenness through which she has discovered the depths of God’s healing grace. She passes that grace on to others through her blog, life coaching, and her ebook Take Courage: Choosing faith on my journey of fear. She is currently writing a memoir of her family’s nine-year adoption process and gripping experiences in Haiti.