Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Q and A


My friend Kendra (I don't remember if I ever knew you lived in the Philippines. Seems like new information to me! I lived there from 18 months to 3 years and I don't remember much, but is my very first memory too!) gave me a blogger award with these rules:
 
    1. Thank your Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog and answer the questions they presented.
    2. Link back to the blogger who awarded you.
    3. Copy & paste the pink Liebster Award logo to your blog.
    4. Nominate 5 blogs to receive the award who have less than 3,000 followers. Create a new list of 11 questions for them.
    5. Inform them of their nomination.
    So here goes.
     The questions I answered:
     
    1- If you were a food, what would you be? - probably fajitas, maybe chow mein or cinnamon rolls
     
    2- What breed of dog do you love most, if at all? - cat person here ;)
     
    3- When pressed, what is your go-to meal? - grilled chicken
     
    4- What was the last book you read? - currently reading "Queen Esther's Secrets to Womanhood" by Ginger Garrett, last finished book, Amish novel "The Promise Box" by Tricia Goyer
     
    5- Have you ever "put a sock" on your dominant hand and tried to live a day using only your non dominant hand? - no sock, since my non-dominate hand is my primarily stroked one, so I would be totally helpless if I "socked" my "good" hand too!
     
    6- If you could take a dream vacation, where would it be? - Probably Ireland (just with hubby) or Disneyworld (with family), but I would love to make it to Israel someday too!
     
    7- What is your favorite tv show? - Was Home Makeover
     
    8- What do you think of eating Moose!? - Bet it taste good, I think the closest I've ever come is Elk
     
    9- Have you ever been to Disneyworld? - nope, Land yes, World no
     
    10- Who is your favorite cartoon character? Pooh Bear, Dorie the fish, minions
     
    11- Coffee or Tea? tea, please!
Now onto the steps, nominations and new questions:

-2 Thank you, Kendra! Her blog is http://queenofbrusselsprouts.blogspot.com/ and I just love her to pieces (and know you will love her fantastic food ideas too).
 
3-

4- 5
 
My nominations are:
Lynn at Let All Creation Sing
Andrea from Persist Without Exception (neat interview about the author here)
(Denise, you were originally on my list too, but I guess Kendra beat me to you!)
 
My questions for these ladies:
1 Favorite book (and why)?
2 Any pets?
3 Biggest blessing? Biggest challenge?
4 Favorite desert?
5 Most interesting travels?
6 Greatest dream?
7 Favorite color and why?
8 What would you change about where you live? (i.e., more mountains, closer to the beach, more rural, etc.)
9 Are you a keeper/collector/clutter gal, or is simple sweeter?
10 Favorite Bible verse(s) and why?
11 Besides Jesus, who, living or dead, that you don't usually spend time with, would you like to spend an hour talking to (and why)?
 
-----------------------
I've been pretty dizzy this week, but tonight is the last dose of the medication I think is responsible, so hopefully soon I'll become more functional again!

Last night was a rough night for the family, homework wise. Rick was at a meeting and I'm at about 2nd grade level, academically, so there at least half a dozen different times when I had a child in tears. We ended sending everyone to bed around 10 PM, two still without having finished today's assignments. For the most part, this charter school thing has really been the best option for our family this year, but days like these I feel my losses and deficits so very profoundly!

A few more current updates are at Stroke Of Grace if you care to read more news. :) 
 
 
 
One more question I have? What exactly IS a Liebster award? I'm guessing maybe it was started by a woman named Libby??? Anyone know?
(Edited to add that Lynn researched for me. This is all that was found. Basically it just sounds like a fun way to let your readers know of other great blogs you read.)

Saturday, March 1, 2014

give-away time!

 
So yes, I really am asking for shares! (OK, I'll take lots of hugs too, if you insist.) If you could please pass around my Stroke Of Grace blog and help people find me, I'm really working hard to expand my audience before I start presenting book proposals to publishes again, so it would help me a ton if you click on the blue "Join This Site" button (Google Friend Connect) on the right side bar, of that page. Thanks! You might even win these earrings (pictured below) if you join my membership drive contest this week. :)
 
http://strokeofgrace.blogspot.com/2014/02/28-month-giveaway.html
 

Monday, January 27, 2014

World A-spinnin' So Fast!

It's been a busy birthday month at our house. Our oldest turned 14 a few days before Christmas (my mom had a birthday and kidney stone emergency room trip a few days before that), my mom had surgery in early January (yes, I just had 3 emergency room trips and the same emergency surgery in November and earlier in December!), then our Little Bear turned 8 last week and his sister turned 11 this weekend.


Now we seem to be passing a tummy bug around the family. I just rescheduled today's MRI for Valentine's Day because I told them they don't want me bringing these germs to their office. Thankfully, this just seems to be a 12-24 hour thing, so I am hopeful that tomorrow will remain as currently scheduled. (One can dream anyway, right?) So much for my neurologist's warning to avoid illness at all costs because it might set me back so hard. :(



Looking back through the past few months of posts, the most widely read one has been my thoughts on Christian women and head coverings. Our infertility and pregnancy / adoption loss story, The Family That God Built, also has had a bit of traffic (though not as much as I expected for such an amazing, shout-it-from-the-rooftops God story)! My one word for 2014 seemed to get a few people thinking. My 2 year, 3 month stroke update has had a few reads but not many comments. I love comments! *hint - hint* ;)


The main reason I'm posting today is to tell you about an exciting Facebook group Shelly Hendricks and I get to host today through this April. We feel so blessed to have been members of various (in)courager groups (an outreach of DaySpring) over the past months (that's pretty much how we met, or at least how a brief acquaintance and casual interaction turned into deep friendship). This season we can't wait to have you join us in community and belonging and friendship as well! Come on over and be encouraged.

Whether your need is a small group of women seeking God through chronic illness. Shelly and I be thrilled to welcome you into the HOPE group, but maybe you would feel more comfortable in any of the other small families such as infertility, adoption, special needs, any stage of motherhood (including prodigal and adult children as well as brand new and all stages in between), singleness, marriage, professional, stay-at-home, structured Bible study, just hang out, teachers (at home or in a classroom), writers, artists and more! Basically, if you are a woman, with an interest in knowing God more, there is a group for you! My biggest problem was choosing just one part of my life to focus on right now, as there are so many, many amazing choices!

The online support culminates the last weekend of April with a chance (no one will twist your arm to try to make you attend, but you may realize you really want to by then!) to attend a local get together of the (in)RealLife conference, thousands of women, around the globe, gathering 2, 3, 10, 12 at a time, and getting to watch a few short videos with other local Christian woman from all walks of life. Tearing down the denominational, social and other barriers that keep us apart and simply learning to love one another.

We need the blessing of you in community with us. And even if you don't know it yet, even if you are an introverted personality and the idea of sharing in someone else's journey terrifies or intimidates you and you can't imagine (*gasp*) sharing any piece of your own heart, you need community more than you realize. Please at least give us a try. We don't bite (too hard, anyway ;) ), I promise!



Taking an abrupt turn in subject matter, may I bother you once again to ask for your support? I have been nominated as a WEGO  Health Activist (a pretty big deal, actually) and am humbled and thrilled by the initial nomination. However, they are asking for additional endorsements (think website "votes") of my nomination. You may vote daily. The highest three number of endorsements in each category are then considered for final winner selection, so any further progress I make is up to you all here. To vote, go to https://awards.wegohealth.com/nominees/jenni-767 then down arrow to the purple "endorse" button on the right, below my picture. Click the button. They may ask for your email address and that will be it. You may come again tomorrow (and the day after that, and the day after that...) if you really want to help my numbers. :) Thanks so much! You are also welcome to click on the blue button on the left side of the screen if you want to leave a comment about your reason for nomination.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

New Year

I survived my kidney stone and life is returning to a somewhat normal routine, other than the fact that my mom now has 3 kidney stones and is scheduled for surgery on the 9th! Life is never dull!
 
 
A new year ahead of us. This is my new word of the year and why.
 
 
  
I'm running a Pampered Chef party for the next week, to help a friend. Please feel free to join us!
 


A dear friend of mine, Holley Gerth, is launching a new blogging challenge every Wednesday this year called Coffee for Your Heart. I don't want to make this a priority over the book I hope to submit to a publisher this year, but I am hoping to do a few of these, probably mostly here at InfertilityMom but maybe a few over on Stroke of Grace.

 
As we close out one year and head into the next, I want to say that the biggest blessing, thus far, to come from these strokes has been some beautiful friendships, both brand new and deepened ones. At first it seemed the strokes had taken away or weakened a lot of close relationships in my life. This week I've been reflecting on new and deeper friendships God has blessed me with since and directly because of the strokes! To so many, thank you!!!


Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5:17
 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The Family That God Built

I wrote up this little re-introduction for an infertility support group I used to be involved with (if you were ever part of Ladies In Waiting before the merger with Hannah's Prayer and the message boards, we would be delighted to have you join our reunion group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/29821283957/ ) too! I wanted to share it herel, but first, since nearly everyone that has posted there so far, are also now "InfertilityMom"s, I recently shared,

"Praise the Lord to see how many children he has added to so many families here, by births, adoptions, or some combination. What a testimony from this infertile flock to attest to God's overwhelming grace! But what of the equally amazing grace stories that haven't really been told yet here? Any old LIWs willing to share if you are still waiting or God has closed the doors??? We would love to celebrate with you God's sustaining grace and how He has uniquely woven your story and continues to walk with you. Please share!"

Without further ado, here's our family's miracle story:

Julie Donahue started LIW (online) about the time I started HP (offline). In 1996 I began venturing more into the online world, via my husband's encouragement. Julie, who had pretty much just been only on AOL, found me on a (non-AOL) public infertility message board, we got to know each other, realized were lived only a few hours apart, John and Julie drove up to meet us, I joined LIW, Julie eventually suggested a ministry merge (HP had the legal structure and LIW had the multi-issue vision and network). A couple years later that what God led us to do!

Rick and I got married in 1992 and started TTC pretty much right away. Within that first year I was already seeing an "infertility specialist" (ob/gyn with an interest in infertility, I didn't even know what an RE was!) and was on Clomid. After about 18 months of progressively stronger doses of Clomid, (yes, 3 times more than they now suggest as a lifetime cap for number of cycles on this medication!) we stopped the drug because insurance wouldn't go any further and we were told I was allergic to Rick's sperm so would never get pregnant without at least IUI.
In a rebound effect after stopping all that Clomid (even though I rarely ever ovulated on it), I ovulated and got pregnant in early December, 1994. I miscarried just after Christmas day (first negative test on the 24th, so went through Christmas suspecting trouble). Noel Alexis, our Christmas Minister of Needs, because she addressed the need to become parents, even though she did not stay here.

 "Big J." was conceived on injectables, Metformin and via IUI after our first try resulted in hyperstimulation and a forced cycle sidelined while I recovered. He was born, full term, but tiny (4 pounds 13 ounces) just before Christmas, 1999, coming home on Christmas Eve! Early testing indicated that he was likely a twin, but I cannot let my heart go there.

Seven serious adoption leads (never a bring-home child for us), prior to J., but as far as we know, there were no more pregnancies over the next 4+ years prior to his birth (between him and Noel). Two more (natural conception!) pregnancies/miscarriages around his first birthday (Joel Samuel, then Hannah Rose who was due on J's second birthday) then no pregnancies again for over a year. We were working with an agency about adopting a daughter from China at this point and I was daily praying for "Ruth and her birthmom." Little did we know how God was already planning to answer those prayers...

"Princess R." was born (after high risk pregnancy and bedrest starting at 25 weeks) in January, 2003, after I had been told I could not ever get pregnant again (less than 5% chance even with medical aid) and if I somehow managed, I would absolutely NOT carry another baby to live birth. I was on Metformin when we conceived her a few months after the 3 1/2 hour laparoscopy that had delivered this news just a few months before! Otherwise, it was "natural" conception and she was my biggest (6 pounds, 5 ounces) and longest carried baby.

After two year of pretty brutal post partum depression (in part triggered by God's redirection from adoption to another bio baby when I had done so much to relinquish the dream of pregnancy to God), I started getting a baby itch again. Rick was not interested because he had seen how hard the last pregnancy had been on me, both physically and emotionally, so we were actually trying to prevent pregnancy for the first season in our entire marriage. Once again, our plans must have made God laugh, because Little J. (who put me on bedrest at just 19 weeks!) came a month early, January 2006, and came home on R's 3rd birthday! It is then that I really realized how much PPD had impacted my first 2 years with R., as God very much used J. to restore joy and laughter to our home. God's surprises are amazing. I joyfully call J. our "bonus baby."

When I had a semi-emergency hysterectomy the fall before J.'s3rd birthday, I knew God was absolutely closing the door to more biological children, but I held onto the dream/hope that we still might adopt some day. After my strokes, 2 years ago, this door is firmly closed as well. I still have twinges of desire and "could-have-been" moments, but overall I am content with the knowledge that we are truly finished. It was a long road, but after 7 years of no bring home babies, I'm still in awe that we are blessed with THREE today. They are "perfectly spaced" at almost exactly 3 years apart each time and I laugh and frequently comment, even still, that no one would ever guess we were infertile just by looking at our family!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Reformed Heart

From Facebook
Two years ago I was in the hospital, not even aware of October passing into November.

Last year I was home but don't really remember the date (other than to tell you that my creative kids came up with the idea of doing black eyes with make up and wearing white t-shirts with the letter P on them, so they were 3 "black-eyed peas").  It was probably a pretty normal homeschool day otherwise. I would guess we spent that evening with my parents since this is the general tradition for our family.

This year my kids are in public school for the first time and Oct. 31 is a BIG deal there, with parties and a festival to plan and costumes and all. Last night I tried to curl our daughter's hair to go with her Merida (from Brave) dress we had been given. We watch a tutorial on using drinking straws to make Merida's wild ringlets. I was frustrated that I didn't have the hand dexterity to even do one last night, so my husband stepped in. Looks adorable though! Our little guy has a thrift store muscle costume and is going as batman. We will spend the evening playing games with Nana and Grandpa tonight. :)

Facebook
Halloween has always been my least favorite day of the year (other than that it was my childhood best friend's birthday). Much to my surprise, I'm finding that it no longer bothers me much because it is so fake compared to the truth of God' glory! I even carved a pumpkin this year. I couldn't seem to get a creative image (right side, artistic, brain damage) but carved the word "LIGHT" in block letters (and did a great job, if I do say so myself!) and told my husband, "Light shines in darkness." He smiled, looked a little in awe, and nodded, "Yes. Yes it does."

So today I celebrate this day the Lord has made and instead of hiding and wishing for the day to pass quickly, I rejoice in how the day was redeemed for His glory when Martin Luther posted 95 theses on the door of the church establishment that was getting too caught up in "earning" salvation rather than grace and Christ alone. Happy Reformation Day!

From Facebook

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Headcoverings

I know this post is bound to open up a can of worms. I am not presuming to be your teacher here. I believe when God wants to get your attention on an issue, it is the Holy Spirit's job to bring about conviction, NOT mine!

After talking with a few friends, let me be clear that this is NOT a matter of "becoming a Christian" and I am speaking here of an issue I only believe is applicable for consideration by those who already are believers in the Lord Jesus Christ! If this does not describe your view of your own relationship with God, please do not get caught up in my thoughts here or let anything I'm thinking about stand between you and Jesus!!!

I'm pondering these things only because I already love Jesus and want to express that on a deeper level than I have before. I totally believe this is a secondary issues behind the simply truth that God asks us to come to Him, simply believing that He is (if you aren't there, challenge Him to show you He exists and cares about your life), that I am imperfect and that He traded His perfect life in exchange for my pardon, but that He is powerful enough that even death couldn't hold Him, so I can totally trust that He will hold me, into Eternity, when I put my trust in Him.

In a different context, my pastor wrote some words, based on John 4:2 (Although Jesus himself did not baptize, but only his disciples.), that capture the "secondary issue" nature of what I'm trying to express here: "Human works, including baptism, doesn't save anyone. If it did, then Jesus really missed the boat because He failed to baptize a single soul. So the thing that anybody can do Jesus did not do and the thing nobody can do, Jesus did. He offered his life for mine. The perfect for the imperfect. The sinless for the sinner. The righteous for the unrighteous."

I'm sharing my thoughts here because I get asked about my personal convictions often enough that it will be helpful to me to have a central place to share my ideas. This is primarily a compilation of emails I have already shared with individual concerning this topic (slightly edited in structure to better fit with a blogging platform rather than email). The Scripture passage, written to the early church, that I'm pondering is:
But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.  Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head. But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.  For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man. For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man.  Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man. For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.  Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.  For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God.
 Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered?  Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him? But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering.  But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God. - 1 Corinthians 11: 3-16, AKJV
You may or may not agree with anything I post here (or think I'm on the right tract in some areas but too legalistic or lax in others) and that is totally OK. In fact, if God has put a different view upon your heart, I would love you to leave a (kindly worded) comment to tell me about it. As long as you are sharing in a loving manner, I truly would like to learn what you think!
 


I will be happy to share my personal opinions on this matter. Please keep in mind, they are exactly that. I know very many, very strong, Godly men and women who I highly respect Biblically, who do NOT share these views. But I am happy to share my thoughts on why I have come to these personal convictions.
 
The explanation I was raised with is that tradition of women wearing head covering  “was cultural” and I know NO one else locally who is following this conviction. It is probably the single area my mom and I are the least sinked, theologically, as we have very similar views on just about every other issue.

I do have one friend, locally, with similar beliefs, but her husband doesn’t share her views, so I have encouraged her that I feel she is being most God-honoring by respecting her husband’s conviction for her not to wear a hat. Nothing like saying, “I’m wearing this to show submission to my husband who does not think I should be wearing this!” In this case, I think it is the husband who is taking on the accountability before God for the choice he has made in leading his wife!
 
I had never really given this passage much thought or study of my own for well over 30 years of figuring the cultural argument took care of it, until one specific phrase jumped off the page at kept nagging at my heart, that the instruction for a woman to cover her head was given in part, “because of the angels.” Do I understand exactly what that means or how it works? I do not, but if there is a supernatural element here, I can no longer be content with the thought that this text was speaking to the fashion trends of the day.
 
God is eternal and unchanging. His angels, while created beings, like us, are seeing our obedience (or lack of) to the Lord to somehow help them better understand God’s character, His holiness. If simply putting something over my head to show God’s authority over my husband, then my husband’s authority over me, somehow brings glory and honor to God, who am I to balk at this minor request?
 
Fashion wise, it is no longer (since about the 60s) the norm in our culture. This is where things get a little tricky. I have heard the argument that a head covering should NOT be “trendy” but should be easily identifiable as set apart from culture, so a cute hat or head band or whatever, that blends into society norms, doesn’t cut it. I have also read that the Greek word used here indicates a “hanging down veil” that totally covers one’s hair (there is another school of thought that God’s coverings always come in pairs, but that the first covering is totally enclosed within the second, thus a woman’s hair, her glory, is to be fully concealed beneath a veil or the very point of covering at all is nullified).
 
It may be that with further prayer and study God refines my views here, but at this point, I think the second argument (hanging down veil) actually nullifies the first (should not fit into daily culture) because a “hanging down veil” exactly WAS the cultural norm of the day Paul was writing. He did not instruct that some odd custom was to be instated that would instantly set a woman apart by one glance (I think here of how distinctly a Muslim woman stands out in today’s culture) but he used a word that simply indicated the acceptable head covering of that day. Realizing it is more paraphrase that strict translation, I like how the Contemporary English Version puts it simply, “a woman ought to wear something on her head.” [Speaking of paraphrases, I usually enjoy the fresh perspective The Message offers to enhance my understanding of any given passage of Scripture, but I'm afraid that their translation of this particular passage badly muddies the waters and strays terribly far from the original intent of language selected.]
 
I personally feel that what that “something” is gets into legalism where the point here, in my mind, is simply some outward symbol of obedience and submission. To me there is little difference between Jesus’s instructions for believers to practice communion (a topic Paul reiterates later in this very chapter) or baptism and Paul’s instruction concerning head cover (men should not, women should, for prayer and prophesy). He ever foresaw this cultural conflict when he asked us to do this, telling us not to argue the point because there is “no other practice” for the church. To me, that’s pretty clear cut, this is what God commands and He doesn’t give room for other options.
 
I really liked what Amy wrote about grace on her thread though:

I think if you believe the Lord is convicting you to cover your head, that is what you must do! I don't think He convicts us of all of the same things at the same times, though, so I think if He has not personally convicted you out of your intimate relationship with Him, you do not need to. The OT is full of laws that God knew we wouldn't be able to keep, thus pointing us to our need for a Savior. Jesus's death on the cross gives us grace so that we are free from the law. However, if we are in relationship with Him and He asks us to do something, we need to obey. Grace is not an excuse to keep on sinning, but grace covers all sin! Where sin abounded, grace abounded much more (Romans 5:20).

Imagine if the day you become a Christian you are expected to follow all of the commandments right away and if you don't you're not a "good" Christian. We are none of us good enough Christians! Our standard is Christ and not each other. The harder we try out of our own power to be good Christians, the harder it is. Only through Christ are we able to do anything.

I think we can learn so much from each other, though. God does speak through other believers, so perhaps someone reading this thread is about to be personally convicted to cover their head. :)
 
To me it is such a strong and very clear mandate, and yet, I know I am in the minority within my Christian circles. Does that mean all my friends are in sin if I am right then? That is really between them and God. If so, I was in sin in this area for more than 30 years before God started working the slightest conviction in my heart on this issue! Bottom line, we all sin, in countless ways, every single day. That I feel convicted that God is asking me to cover my head in no way makes me any “more spiritual” than the next woman. It simply means that in this one area, I would be in outright rebellion to what God has convicted me if I did not obey what I believe He has called me to. To think otherwise leads me into more sin of pride, judgment, and self glorification! Since the whole point is to bring God glory in the first place, how very sad! :(
 
God died for us all. We are all under way more grace than we could ever earn! God gives very few instructions to believers (baptism, communion, and I believe how we treat our heads to reflect His order of authority), but not keeping these instructions doesn’t nullify His grace nor the validity of salvation. Not by works...
 
Practically speaking, there are times when it is a hassle (socially, physically, or emotionally) to cover. That’s when I have to remind myself that it is a heart issue, spirituality, we are dealing with here. Is my heart in a posture of submission that I am then willing to humbly reflect (even when I’m the only one) with my head? Over time, I am becoming more comfortable with this practice. I’ve found some really cute (and culturally appropriate) hats, head bands, large flower clips I can put on my head, etc. But, at least for me, I think that was part of what God has been working on in my heart, doing what He asked even when I feel terribly alone and conspicuous, simply because I am striving to be obedient.
 
When I first started to cover I did a lot of scarves (I could wear around my neck until church service started, then quietly slip up over my head), and while I still do this occasionally, I have gradually found what works better for me. For a while I tried to keep something on my head at all times, sometimes even just reaching my hand up over my head when we prayed each morning. Then I came to peace with the fact that in our society, living under someone’s roof is a sign of being under their authority, so I figured that as long as I am physically under my husband’s roof, I am already symbolically covered and can pray without ceasing within these walls without needing to do anything extra to prepare my heart before God.
 
When I step out my door, out from under his symbolic covering, I am getting in the habit of trying to always wear a hat or head band or at least have a scarf around my neck, that I can quickly pull up over my head, for moments of prayer, for teaching, for sudden or unexpected witnessing opportunities (this is why it is easier to pretty much wear the hat or headband because I don’t want my culturally odd practice to be a stumbling block to others), etc. I still take special time to prepare my head with some kind of covering if I know I am headed to church or public speaking in the name of Christ or something like that, but it really takes very little to strive to be prepared in season and out.
 
Most Christian I speak with believe that long hair is a woman's covering, but in studying the passage I just don't believe that is the case, was already coming to this conviction even before my hair had to be cut for medical reasons. Interestingly, when it was medicinally chopped off I did feel quite "shorn" and shameful over the fact, unlike any time I have chosen short hair cuts in the past, but much as many women speak of feeling about their lack of choice over their bald heads from chemotherapy. As several local friends can attest, this is when my passion for head covering really grew, to cover my own sudden loss of what I had thought of as my covering.
 
I am told that when my pastor came to pray with me in ICU (even prior to my hair cut), I grabbed a tissue and put it on my head. This idea makes me smile because at a time when I had little awareness, God honored my desire to honor Him with my head and heart. :) Again, I really think it is simply an outward reflection of an inward commitment, sort of like a wedding ring doesn’t make you married, just is a symbol showing that you are.

ETA: I found this article long after I had already shared my thoughts, but it offered some additional perspective, such as why head covering may only be demanded of married: http://www.lightofmashiach.org/women/headcovering.html
But I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head. But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head—it is the same as having her head shaved. For if a woman does not cover her head, she might as well have her hair cut off; but if it is a disgrace for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, then she should cover her head. A man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. For man did not come from woman, but woman from man; neither was man created for woman, but woman for man.  It is for this reason that a woman ought to have authority over her own head, because of the angels. Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man, nor is man independent of woman. For as woman came from man, so also man is born of woman. But everything comes from God. Judge for yourselves: Is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered? Does not the very nature of things teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a disgrace to him, but that if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For long hair is given to her as a covering. If anyone wants to be contentious about this, we have no other practice—nor do the churches of God. - 1 Corinthians 11:3-16, NIV