I am happy to report that I was well enough to return to work for two days last week. I was so grateful to go back after being off sick for three weeks. I admit, I felt a little odd being there. It was eerie that my desk was just as I had left it. I hadn’t shut down my computer on that last day I left work. I had left some papers out on my desk that night, too, which I rarely do.
Back in October, my diet changed. I felt depressed about being released as bishop, though I was in denial of that. I kind of let go of common sense for a while. I was eating a lot of sweets and processed foods, and as a result, I was somewhat “calorically enhanced” for a time, if you know what I mean. That is one of the main things that I believe led to a flare up of what we now think is rheumatoid arthritis. The flare lasted three months.
In an effort to get better, I am eating vegetables, nuts and seeds almost exclusively now. I know you think I am crazy, but I am sensitive to foods that will likely never bother you. I know that might sound like a tough diet, but there is little that is more important to me right now getting my immune system calmed down, so I am giving it every reason I can to get back into shape by feeding it all the right things.
I was also able to go back to the gym and work out yesterday. Well, I say that tongue in cheek. It actually was a very light work out, but every step on the treadmill was a gift. It felt amazing to be there.
We also went to the Provo Temple yesterday as a family. I was able to baptize and confirm our daughter in behalf of several of our ancestors. When I stepped into that font, I felt like I was stepping into the pool of Bethesda.
I continue to think often of those I’ve known over the years who couldn’t return to work or normal life after having a serious illness or accident. It is difficult for me to comprehend how difficult that might be.
A serious illness can be a life-changing experience, even a sanctifying experience. My outlook on life has radically changed. It felt like I passed through the valley of the shadow of death. Maybe I did, maybe I didn’t. I don’t know. But I feel like I have been resurrected.
One thing for sure is that I have much more to be grateful for than I ever would have imagined. It is hard to take for granted the things I took for granted a few weeks ago.