Author Archives: livingfaithfullywithautoimmunedisease Author:Tabitha

About livingfaithfullywithautoimmunedisease Author:Tabitha

Hi! However you have landed on my page, I want to take the time to welcome you into my life with autoimmune disease. So, I'm Tabitha and I have mixed connective tissue disease. Mixed connective tissue disease is sort of an umbrella term used to describe features like Lupus, systemic sclerosis, and polymyositis. Most often other problems will develop like Raynauds, joint pains, skin abnormalities, muscle weakness, fatigue, and problems with internal organs. Simply put, I have a lot of stuff going on with my body that is hard to figure out. I am married to my husband David, of 22 years! We have a sixteen year old girl and a thirteen year old boy. Life has not been easy to say the least for the last 6 or so years for any of us. There have been many hospital stays, near death experiences, many sick days, and special times that have been missed. With that being said, we have cherished the moments we have shared and made the best of the times we have had to cut short. Autoimmune Disease does not define me though, it is simply a part of my life, and bad genes. If you passed me by in public you may not even know that I am sick, more than likely I would smile and when asked I would say I am good. That's because despite all the chaos going on in my body, I am....good. I simply could not face each day without my faith. God is my constant, and my strength. When I am afraid, he is all I have. I hope to encourage you and serve as an example that even though life is not perfect, there is always hope.

What’s my purpose?

Ephesians 2: 10
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
 
This life was never meant to be mere survival, although that is the mode most people seem to be in. You were created with a plan, and a purpose. 
 
Jeremiah 29:11
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
 
You were fashioned in His likeness, fearfully and wonderfully made, God never makes mistakes,  The beauty about your life is, you were created with a specific plan that God has prepared just for you to do.
 
It wasn’t designed for the Pastor, or the lady in the seat in front of you at church, that seems to be involved in everything, no this one is just for you, no one else, for your life. 
 
Your mission in life is His mission He made just for you. Today, discover that mission, that work, that perfect plan that God has for you to do. God knows what you are capable of even if you are not sure what you are capable of doing, He knows you better than you know yourself. Go for it!

New post…quick update and thought

I can face things that are not in my control, because I rest in knowing that God is in control.

They say that which does not kill will make you stronger and right now I am I believing that. I continue to have major swallowing problems along with my lupus and connective tissue disease. Night after night, I struggle going to sleep with anxiety of what might happen when I am unconscious. In the last few months I have had aspiration pneumonia from food and fluid getting into my lungs twice and I went into sepsis the last time. I have been seeking treatment tirelessly, praying for a miracle. I have so many rare diseases, that nobody knows how to begin to treat me. It really does something to the mind when the doctors look you in the eyes, and say, there is nothing we can do but I am referring you to another service.

I know that my fate really lies in God. I am resilient because of God, and even though I am weakened right now, my strength lays in my heavenly father. God is in control of this so no matter what I will not fear the outcome and I will remain faithful and hopeful.

Our trip to Tampa Aquarium.

We have already had quite the excitement for September with Hurricane Dorian threatening to hit Florida’s east coast. Last weekends plans were interrupted so today headed down south just a couple of hours away and we celebrated my son’s thirteenth birthday at the Tampa Bar Aquarium today. I don’t get out much these days but today I used my power chair and I have to say that it was refreshing to do something normal.

Tampa Bay 2019
Otters
Turles swimming above our heads in the aquarium.
I am so in love with the turtles.
Stingrays
Sea Turtle…My favorite picture!

Life is not fair.

Life is not always fair but I do believe that everything happens for a reason and God always has a plan, even if I don’t see it. Last month I had aspiration pneumonia, twice, and just three weeks ago I was in sepsis. Now I am suffering once again with food that I swallow sitting in the bottom of my esophagus. My esophagus is paralyzed and does not push food through so I choke every night. The doctors are at a loss on how to help me, so I am left with a daily fight with eating.

It might be easy to try and blame God on my illness, because after all I have prayed so much for healing and it just seems like my prayers for healing go unanswered. However, through all of this I have peace, I have hope and I know where my help comes from. So have they really gone unanswered?

I know God did not cause me to have the past that I have and He certainly did not make me sick; that is just a product of living in a fallen world. So, where does God fit in the grander scheme of my life? He is my source, my rescuer, my comforter, my healer. I have come to realize that even though I am expecting a physical healing, God heals in many different ways and that is ok with me.

Grateful for every breath.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, ” Be joyful always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

As I sit here this morning, I can’t help but be extremely grateful for every breath that I take….literally

Today, I am heading to Jacksonville, Florida at Mayo Clinic for what seems like it might be one of many visits to come.

Last weekend, I was admitted to the hospital for multifocal pneumonia. Sunday morning I woke up with chest pain and shortness of breath. I didn’t know it was as severe as it was but my body was is in a fight or flight mode. My esophagus is not pushing food and drink down like it should which has caused me to aspirate food and fluid at night into my lungs. My entire right lung is now compromised with infection and nodules obstructing my air.

Even with all of that, I remain grateful. I know that I am blessed and that God has a plan even when noone else does.

I am grateful for God’s love. And, I know, that because of God’s love, he has given me everything I have ever needed. I know that the very breath that I take, that each moment I have is a gift of God’s love just for me! Every moment of my existence is proof of his grace and everlasting love for me!


Gratitude changes my whole perspective in tough situations and I know that I can find peace and hope by keep an attitude of gratitude.

Here’s the trick though, I can’t just pull out the “I’m grateful card” the moment disaster strikes and expect to find peace and a new look on life. It doesn’t work like that. I have to build my gratitude daily, it takes work. I have to be aware of ALL things God has done and is doing and I have to practice a grateful heart. I can’t control a lot of things going on in my life right now but I am in charge of my heart, and my mind.

Gratitude takes nothing for granted, it recognizes God with a new sense of wonder and all we have to do is praise the goodness of God. A grateful person knows that God is good, not just by hearsay but by experience. And that is what makes all the difference.

I know that the lessons that I learn in my lowest of lows are preparing me to receive the blessings of my highest highs. This time will be no different. How do I know? Because he says so..


NIV Romans 8:39
neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.


One of the things that I consciously try to do is be aware of the little things in my life. Keeping the little things in the front of my mind allows me to be more aware of God moving in my life. I haven’t always been like this, the negative would overpower my thinking in the midst of hard times. The simple mindset of gratitude has greatly impacted the way that I face my mountains in my life. As for me, I will walk by faith, not by sight with a grateful heart.