“And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
2 Corinthians 12:7-10
The Apostle Paul referred to it as a “Thorn in the flesh.” (Many think Pauls thorn in the flesh was his poor eyesight.) Today, we call it a disability or chronic illness. Mine happens to be an inner-ear disorder called bilateral Meniere’s. Vertigo, nausea, Tinnitus, loss of balance and migraines.
No biggie. I’ve been living with the diagnosis since 1984 but as the years go on, it seems to last longer. So I’m at home most of the time and I have to do basic chores more differently. For example, Laundry.
Loading the machines isn’t too bad. As long as I don’t need to bend over to pick up the clothing. Unloading the dryer, however, can be a problem on bad days. I don’t know about you, but I grew up drying clothes on the line outside. When I took the clothes off the line, I folded them and placed them in the basket so that ironing would be easier. I carried that over to the dryer too. It’s so much easier. However, bending over is a problem.
We have a drop-leaf table in the laundry room against the wall opposite the washer and dryer. I thought it would be great for folding clothes. On good days, it is! However, on bad days, that means turning as I take the clothes out of the dryer, turn 180 degrees and place them onto the table to fold. Big vertigo trigger! So this is what I do.
This might not be great for the dryer but when I open the dryer door, I stack all of the undershirts and tops that need to be folded, face down over the dryer door while I fold the smaller things and place them in the basket. Now, I have a stack of undershirts and Tee shirts to fold all at once. Usually on the laundry table unless it is cluttered!
This time I opted to fold them on the bed for my sweet hubby to put away. So much simpler and more efficient. At least it is for this gal.
I hope I haven’t bored you with my folding technique. I know there are many people who are suffering and also unable to do the simple tasks they were once able to do. I try to do only one or two loads at a time but not more than that on one day unless I am vertigo free. God’s grace helps me find simple ways to do the things that must be done.
Part of that grace is the blessing of my husband, John.
He is such a blessing! Especially when he does the laundry or brings “carry out” dinner!
He even runs the vacuum cleaner! He does the laundry and I fold it. Great team, right?
I think so!
As wives, our “thorn in the flesh” is also felt by our husbands who may not be natural cooks or fond of washing dishes. They sacrifice a lot for us and are often overlooked.
I just want to praise the Lord for my husband of almost 34 years. John Purdy, you are a blessing and I love you!
There are many blogs and support groups out there for those of us who live with chronic illness. One of my favorites is written by my friend, Lisa Erhman. Please click on her link below.
Praying for the Lord’s presence, praising Him for your husband’s willingness to help.
You’ve learned so much through your thorn, Kathy. Thank you for your always grateful spirit, which really brings honor to God. And your honored John in such a sweet way! God’s blessings as you continue to write and show us what it means to follow Christ in the daily sufferings you face.