Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A World-Sized Swirly

As I was putting my little boy to bed last night I was thinking of my bout of Labyrinthitis and this post when I suddenly drew a conclusion...experiencing vertigo is like receiving several world-sized swirlies, not that I have ever experienced the typical head in the toilet kind myself. But really, it is like having your head stuck in your little world and then having that world just spin and spin around you. Honestly, I think I'd prefer to receive a good old fashion swirly in the bathroom thrown to what I have experienced with this whole inner ear problem. It has been a ride.

So two weeks ago today, I woke up at 5:00 am with the room just spinning around me. I thought it was weird but fell back to sleep when it stopped but then just 15 minutes later it started up again, but worse. I then began my vertigo ride of terror. It was horrid. I was spinning and whirling and swirling all the while having the garbage can as my only view. I was certain that something was really wrong, terribly wrong. As my husband went to the computer in search of some clarity the thought seriously crossed my mind that I had a brain tumor and then he came back with a few options. He said it could be an inner ear problem and one more option that I don't recall and then he paused and said it also mentioned brain tumor. I was scared to say the least. While I whirled and spinned and lost my cookies several times I looked at my kids and my honey and cried. I really was scared, scared that what I had would cause me to leave my little family.

As we know the story ends much better than that - Labyrinthitis a deep inner problem, not a brain tumor or anything close to that in severity. I still think of this as the most horrible sickness I have ever experienced considering I get motion sick probably easier than anyone I have ever met. I can get sick driving in my own neighborhood if I am not paying attention. But with all of that said I would take a bout of physical vertigo any day over the spiritual whirlwind we can experience when we are selectively obedient.

" In the premortal existence, ours was not a selective obedience. We did not pick and choose which parts of the eternal plan to follow. I learned that lesson on our first night flying solo in pilot training when all of us were given the instruction: “Don’t fly acrobatic patterns at night. You are beginning pilots without instrument flight training.” Some time later, an otherwise good pilot and a great friend chose to disobey that command. As he flew loops and barrel rolls through the night sky over Texas, he looked through the cockpit canopy and thought he saw stars above him, but he was really seeing the lights of oil rigs below. He was experiencing vertigo: the g-forces on his plane made it seem he was right side up, yet he was upside down. As he pulled up on the stick to climb higher into the night sky, he dove toward the earth and crashed into the twinkling lights of the oil field below.

When you are flying an airplane, if you change your position by just one degree at a time, your inner ear cannot detect the change. Brethren young and old, when we practice selective obedience, we change our position relative to the Lord—and usually by only one degree at a time. As the deceptive forces of the adversary work on us, we cannot detect them, and we experience spiritual vertigo. While it may seem like we are going in a safe direction, we are in fact headed for disaster. In the preexistence, our decision to follow the Lord was all-or-nothing. Following that pattern through our mortal probation will get each of us back to our Heavenly Father" (Robert D. Hales, “To the Aaronic Priesthood: Preparing for the Decade of Decision,” Ensign, May 2007, 48–51).

Let us keep our "spiritual inner ears" strong so that we don't begin to lose our balance, to become dizzy along the straight path, and thus lead ourselves to a deadly spiritual fall caused my spiritual vertigo. Let us remember that we cannot afford to be selectively obedient. I have seen too many lose focus, begin to wobble, and finally spin out of control. Let us stay away from the world-sized spiritual swirly that Satan offers.


LKP said...

hey, i too had a go with viral labrynthitis several years back. and boy have you hit the nail on the head! hope things settle soon. thanks for this post. wonderful, absolutely wonderful!

katers said...

Excellent post! You're a great example in finding spiritual meaning in even the crappiest parts of life.

I hope you're feeling better. That sounds awful! Sending lots of love and prayers your way!

Alicia said...

I'm so glad to hear you don't have a tumor or anything serious. I like the parallel you made to the spiritual vertigo too. Have a great day and thanks for your example!

Laurie said...

I agree, vertigo is the WORST!!

Great spiritual application, though! :) Thanks.

Michaela Stephens said...

That's an enormous object lesson in your life; thanks for sharing it!

My mom experienced that vertigo for a few years, but eventually she got over it. She told me that playing the piano helped her because she had to work so hard to focus on the notes.

Mark and Kristen said...

Thanks for the post. You're good at lighting a fire under me.