Things Get Exciting Again (Unfortunately)

August 14, 2017

Well… Just when I decide to cut back on blogging, things get exciting again. Go figure! First off, our trusty gas station is having a sewer problem and we can no longer go there to use the bathroom. It’s awful and I left with a headache the last time we went.

Now we have to drive 13 minutes into Rapid City to use the bathroom. First we tried Walmart but I reacted there. We eventually settled on McDonald’s. It’s a newer building so I do okay there. It’s just kind of awkward to go in and buy a bottled water so we can use the bathroom every day. I’m pretty sure they’re going to pick up on it if they haven’t already. Whatever. I’m kind of used to being weird and I’m finding that I don’t really care what strangers think of us anymore.

Secondly, our ranchers are painting their house and I noticed it was affecting me a little bit on Thursday. I seemed to be tolerating it though and was still able to do most of the laundry even though I was extra fatigued.

It was on Friday that things really got bad. The ranchers burn their trash and we often have to leave when that happens. On Friday the smoke was particularly problematic because they were burning the empty paint cans along with everything else. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to leave before it started affecting me. I got a headache, brain fog, fatigue and severe anxiety. We left and I decontaminated several times but I was too far gone.

I was a mess for almost all of Saturday and Brett had to do all the chores by himself and clean the van. Poor guy! In the afternoon we decided to move the van further away from the house and I started to feel a little bit better. The runaway anxiety calmed down but I was still really tired and foggy brained.

We’re not exactly sure what’s going on but at this point we’re thinking it might be a cumulative thing. Maybe my body would have handled the paint fumes just fine if I hadn’t been exposed to problematic toxins at the gas station and Walmart. The smoke from the burning trash was definitely what pushed me over the edge but I’m not exactly sure why I’m not bouncing back as quickly as other times.

Who knows… Maybe it’s the smoke plumes from Montana wildfires? There was also a huge motorcycle rally in Sturgis this week. Maybe all the extra people and motorcycles increased the total load of pollution and cross-contamination in the city? Maybe we need to deep clean the van? Maybe it’s time to replace our clothing again?

We’ll see. Last night we moved even farther into the prairie and away from the house. I seem to be improving already so we’re hoping for the best.


By the way, Brett and I made a beautiful PDF of my favorite resources for suffering souls. I created the content and he made it look fancy with his superduper graphic design skills. It’s available for free to my email subscribers. Click here to sign up and receive 5 Resources for the Suffering Soul.

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17 Comments

  • Bella Erazo

    That’s terrible!!! The burning is so polluting for the environment and toxic for you! I am so sorry! I’ll be praying.

    August 14, 2017 at 2:08 pm Reply
    • Ana Harris

      Thanks for the prayers!

      August 16, 2017 at 3:58 pm Reply
  • Charis Rae

    Ugh, I’m so sorry that that has happened, but glad that you’re beginning to feel better. Praying for continued healing and strength. <3

    August 14, 2017 at 3:05 pm Reply
    • Ana Harris

      Thank you so much for your faithful prayers Charis.

      August 16, 2017 at 3:59 pm Reply
  • Laura Davison

    Oh that’s awful! I hope you continue to improve and that this won’t mean you need to be uprooted again.

    August 14, 2017 at 3:42 pm Reply
    • Ana Harris

      Thank you Laura! That’s what we’re hoping too.

      August 16, 2017 at 3:59 pm Reply
  • Hailey

    Praying for you! My dad is actually sitting here on the couch next to me, wearing his Sturgis motorcycle shirt right now – he doesn’t have a motorcycle, but a few years back he had to travel to Sturgis and make a video about a missionary who ministered to people at the rally for [my dad’s] job.

    August 14, 2017 at 5:20 pm Reply
    • Ana Harris

      Oh wow! That’s really cool Hailey!

      August 16, 2017 at 4:00 pm Reply
  • Leslie

    Who burns paint cans? Last I checked, the cans don’t burn anyway. It seems like a sure recipe for toxins that would be harmful to anyone.

    August 14, 2017 at 5:24 pm Reply
    • Ana Harris

      Yeah… I think it’s a generational thing. A lot of older ranchers still do it.

      August 16, 2017 at 4:00 pm Reply
  • Hannah Maynard Bartlett

    A couple of people who work at a food cart near my coffee shop come by to use our bathroom. I’m sure that the employees at the McDonald’s don’t mind you using theirs, especially if you are kind to them or smile and thank them. I’m sorry you have to travel further just to use the bathroom. I hope it continues to be a place you can tolerate!

    August 14, 2017 at 9:38 pm Reply
    • Ana Harris

      Aww… Thanks Hannah! That’s good to know! 😊❤️

      August 16, 2017 at 4:01 pm Reply
  • James

    Burning stuff can make for some super toxic smoke (just ask all the 9/11 responders who got sick and all the folks who fight incinerators being built in their neighborhood). I know a day or two can feel like forever when you experience a setback like this but I’m glad that you are already feeling better.

    August 14, 2017 at 11:31 pm Reply
  • Michael

    That’s horrible! Praying that things get better.

    August 15, 2017 at 9:38 am Reply
    • Ana Harris

      Thank you so much Michael!

      August 16, 2017 at 4:01 pm Reply
  • Sharon Cleek

    Dear Brett and Ana, I am a little covicted that I just read your blog and rarely respond. I definitely pray a ton for you and am so happy that you are getting some relief and healing. May God continue to guide your next steps and clearly show you the best path to take. Larry and I were just talking about Joseph. He didn’t really know what God was up to but continued to follow Him with his whole heart trusting it would all work out. And I’m sure he had “stuff” to work through like you are doing, Ana. May you be encouraged today knowing God is holding you both in His arms close to His heart and loves you so very very much and continues to work out that glorious plan for your lives. Keep pressing on. Larry and I love you and will continue to be praying. Thanks so much for blogging.

    August 16, 2017 at 5:56 am Reply
    • Ana Harris

      Aww… It’s so good to hear from you Mrs. Cleek. Thank you so much for your ongoing prayers and encouragement. We’re so grateful! The story of Joseph has definitely been an encouragement to us over these last few years. It’s good to be reminded that there’s so much God is doing that we can’t yet see. 💕

      August 16, 2017 at 4:03 pm Reply

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