Thankful for My Breath

Last fall, the day before Halloween, I got sick. I felt fine all day and then wham … about 4 PM it hit me. I felt miserable for about 1-2 weeks. I slowly improved, except for a lingering cough that I couldn’t shake. Unfortunately as someone who has developed weather and exercise-induced asthma in her adult life, coughing seems to be the norm anywhere from November through February – or all of November through February, so I didn’t think much about it.


It was affecting my work, my worship (I couldn’t sing at church without stopping to cough more often than singing), my relationships, and my health. I coughed all the time and so hard it literally hurt my ribs. I would use my inhaler and it would help some … but not enough. I even had two instances where I couldn’t catch my breath for about 5 minutes. That’s just plain scary


Before you think I was just being irresponsible, I would have moments, or days, where I felt like I was improving, so it seemed silly to go to the doctor when I was “on the upswing.” Only I wasn’t.

Finally, after disrupting everyone around me for about 8 weeks, and growing steadily concerned myself because I realized I was getting worse, not better, and it was getting harder and harder to breathe regularly, I went to the doctor. I was diagnosed with an asthma exasperation that had gotten quite serious. They prescribed steroids and my inhaler, with the concern that if this didn’t clear it up, I would have to go on daily maintenance medication. (I really hate taking medication if I don’t have to, so to hear that was quite disheartening.) 


The first dose of prednisone worked, while I was on it, but the day it was finished, I was back to not being able to catch my breath and coughing continuously. So I called and they did another round, this time a taper which lasted longer and along with my inhaler, and plenty of rest, it reduced the inflammation that had grown out of control for 8 weeks. In the meantime, my husband bought me a natural remedy to use as needed if I started coughing again, before things got out of control.


I am happy to report it’s been about 3 months now since I’ve been off the steroid. I’ve only used my inhaler maybe twice and the natural remedy about five times total. (It’s a twice daily medication when asthma is at its worst, so five times in three months shows how much my breathing has improved.) I used it again yesterday at the beginning signs of discomfort and within 15 minutes I was breathing calmly and the coughing had stopped. 


I say this to give God all the glory, honor and praise for healing me. Every Sunday when I enter into praise and worship at our church and sing as loudly as possible, I thank Him for every inhale and exhale of my lungs that is done without coughing and without discomfort.


I have stopped taking my breath for granted. Every time I sing at home or in the car, I’m reminded of 8 weeks of coughing, stopping and starting, and hoarseness from an inflamed, raw throat. And I praise God for His healing and the ability to sing again.


May I never take His blessings for granted again …


What is one thing you’re praising God for today? One blessing He has given that maybe in the past you never really thought about?

4 Replies to “Thankful for My Breath”

  1. I love the praise song “Great are You Lord,” which includes these lyrics:

    It’s Your breath…in my lungs
    So I pour out my praise..I pour out my praise
    It’s Your breath…in my lungs
    So I pour out my praise to You only

    I like to emphasize the word Your. It makes me reflect on how every breath we take is a gift from Him and not to be taken for granted. Thanks for sharing your journey, Cheri.

    1. Yes, you are so right! That song really does describe my thankfulness that God gives me my ability to breathe again. That is one of my favorite songs too. Those lyrics are so powerful! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  2. Health issues can be quite scary. Glad you’re doing better. Praising God today for a good night’s sleep. Doesn’t always happen and work is too busy to be tired.

    1. Praising God with you for a restful sleep last night. Thank you for sharing your praise this morning friend! Praying blessings over your day – that God will help you accomplish more than you think possible. 🙂

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