Day 4 – getting healthy with chronic pain diary

  • Started reading “Goddesses Never Age” by Christiane Northrup, M.D. Very inspiring and hopeful look at aging!
  • Took another ride on my electric bike! Love it so far! Although, my sciatic nerve is making my enjoyment harder right now.
  • Had dinner with an old friend at Olive Garden. Was proud of myself that I passed on candy and sweetened drinks while out. Trying to cut way back on sugar, but not going crazy with it.
  • Wondering if it is worth it health-wise to switch from sugary sodas to zero sugar sodas. I feel like artificial sweeteners aren’t great for us either, but the sugar seems to be affecting my insulin more as time goes by. Eventually I hope to cut way back on soda in general, but I do love it.
  • Got a great new massage heating pad that I thought I would hate at first because the massage parts are so hard and lumpy, but it actually works and feels great! Sometimes it is good to try stuff out, even if you think you might not like it!

day 3 – getting healthy with chronic pain diary

Today has been a bad pain day. From the start my feet have been hurting, but I tried to get a little exercise and socializing in anyway. We went to a small local craft fair and then went to do some regular shopping, so I felt like I got a decent amount of walking in altogether. I’ve even been adding extra bits of walking by not having my husband drop me off at the door, which he often does when I am in pain or not feeling well. Unfortunately, my feet aren’t very happy with me at all for putting them through all the walking.

When we got back home, my electric bike was here! After hours of frustrating and headache-inducing assembly (those instructions sucked!), we got it put together and mostly in good shape. Still having trouble with the seat, so need to work on that. I took it for a quick spin and wow…the difference! Those things take off at a pretty good speed! I set it on low power, so I still peddled a lot and got in some good exercise, but it was so nice having the extra help on any uphill bits! This bike may be a major game changer!

My diet hasn’t been so good today. Started out the day with Girl Scout cookies and KFC, so you can imagine. Tomorrow is another day though and I’ll try again!

Day 2 – Getting Healthy with chronic Pain Diary

Today I went with my husband and his “little brother” (Big Brothers/Big Sisters) to an Elk Farm nearby. I was really worried about the over 2 hour round-trip drive, as driving aggravates my migraines and neck pain so much, but I prepared by taking Ibuprofen, muscle relaxers and using Lidocaine before we left. Luckily that seemed to ward off the worst case scenario.

At the farm we saw a bunch of Elk, walked a few short trails, did a small maze, played a little basketball (I may have cheated and used the kid-sized hoops), ate some Elk BBQ (tastes like hamburger, but supposed to be healthier for you), homemade applesauce, farm-made ice cream, and then headed home. Glad I got some exercise in and had some fun, something that can be lacking in my life when my pain levels are bad for extended periods of time.

Now I’m beat and think I will curl up with a heating pad for a while.

Day 1

In an effort to motivate, hold myself accountable, and blog more consistently, I’m going to start journaling/blogging every day about my struggles, failures, and triumphs with trying to become healthier while dealing with chronic pain/chronic illness (eating better, exercising, being more social, finding things that make my soul happy). I know some days I might not succeed and I will be honest about my feelings, experiences, and worries along the way. I hope you will follow along!

For today, my first day, it has been pretty good. Went with my husband to a Freethought luncheon at Bob Evans and had some interesting conversations with some pretty smart guys. Ate grilled chicken and french fries and 50/50 sweet/unsweet tea (grilled chicken a good choice, um, fries, maybe not). Working on cutting down on sugars, so stepping down gradually with the combo sweet/unsweet tea. Dinner was tuna, grapes, and crackers. And a couple s’mores afterwards.

After lunch, husband and I went for a walk around a local lake, probably 15 minutes, maybe a little more. I’m aiming for 20 minutes of exercise every day, but if I get at least 10, that’s a start. Ordered an electric bike that I’m very excited to try out! Should be here sometime next week. Also, my new heat/massage jacket arrived today, so tried it out. I think I like the massage even better than the heat. Saving up to try out an infrared heating pad!

Short personal health update

The past week or so has been rough. Twice I’ve gotten super sick while out on short trips and had to lay down in the backseat and pray I didn’t throw up till we got home. When getting out of the car I was so dizzy I almost collapsed against the car. Chronic vestibular migraines are no joke. Feeling pretty low but hanging in there. I wish the depression and isolation didn’t set in during flare ups like this…honestly that can almost be as bad as the illness itself.

Poetry – Minor bouts of mania

minor bouts of mania
fun guy
get things done
depressed
sit in dark room
give me
whatever I want
clean the house
contact
reach out
talkative
grocery store line
love me
they all love me
bulldoze you all

Personal post – Worst disability of mine

As many of you know, I’ve had a bunch of health problems for a long time. Even as a kid I had chronic stomach, ear, and sinus issues. At 19, I developed my first chronic pain condition. My medical rap sheet is a mile long.

But, I’ve NEVER experienced anything as disabling as these chronic migraines I’ve had the past few years. Migraines up to 20+ days a month, and pretty much ALL DAY when I have them. The longest straight stretch was 9 days of migraines. I also get excruciating neck pain, vertigo, and nausea with the migraines. Perhaps the worst thing is that when I have them, I can’t read or write. I can’t watch tv. I can’t stand to be in the car. Even if I don’t have a migraine, a long drive will almost always guarantee I’ll develop one, so we plan very few getaways, even when we want, need, and can afford them. There is no escape. Just long days and nights laying in the dark silence, hoping to God the pain stops.

So far meds haven’t worked too well. Botox didn’t work. Tomorrow I try my first nerve block and I’m cautiously hopeful. Still, through it all, I try to remember how lucky I am that I don’t have to work, as I have no clue how I could ever hold down a job like this. I’m thankful that my husband is committed to taking care of me and loving me even when life sucks. I’m glad my kitties bring me a smile. I’m glad to have social media to vent to lol. Looking for things to be grateful for makes you feel better, even at your worst.

Why I’ve Been MIA (and my 39th birthday!)

Hi everyone! I know it has been a while since you heard from me! I went from blogging everyday or every other day, to struggling to blog once or twice a week, to just not blogging at all for over a month. I think part of it might have been burnout, part of it was a deep depression I was going through, and part of it was feeling somewhat like I put a lot of effort into blogging and didn’t feel like I always got a lot out of it.

Have you ever felt that way? I decided I wanted to concentrate more on my “real” life instead of spending so much time online and on social media. Have you ever felt like maybe you were neglecting your real life by spending too much time online? I think it is a huge problem in today’s society. We miss out on so much by always being on our phones, computers, etc. I want to make sure I am fully present in my life and experiencing real things, not just simulated things or living vicariously through others.

By the way, today is my 39th birthday! I figured it would be a good time to check in, since I’ve been meaning to write something on here but just kept putting it off. Once you get out of the habit, it can be hard to get back in. Anyhow, I can’t believe that I’m so close to 40 now! That used to sound so old! It kind of still does to be honest lol. I feel like I should still be in my 20’s, but here I am!

To celebrate my birthday, I think I’m going to do something I always wanted to do as a kid, but never got to…I’m having a party at Chuck E. Cheese. I’m gonna eat some pizza and chocolate cake, play some skeeball and video games, and pretend to be a kid again. We all need that once in a while.

By the way, I went to an art class yesterday and I created this cute little Halloween picture, thought you guys might like it 🙂

Fellow Blogger Drama

(If you enjoy personal drama posts, you’ll like this one lol. I’m not going to name the person or blog, as I don’t think that is necessary or constructive, but the whole set of circumstances hurt my feelings and disappointed me and I wanted to vent.)

Ok, so I had this blogger friend. One that I thought of as a close friend and great source of mutual support. Something rare to find in the blogging community. She also blogs about many of the issues I blog about (mental illness, etc.) We encouraged each other consistently and even supported each other outside of WordPress by reading and reviewing each other’s books. I really thought of her as a close blogging/online friend.

Then one day she posted about a medical procedure that I had been told by my psychiatrist was dangerous and could have some serious side effects. I mentioned what I had been advised about the procedure by my doctor in a comment on the post, although I did explain that I certainly was no expert on the subject and wasn’t entirely sure if my doctor gave me completely accurate information and that I would have to investigate the subject further.

Because of me even questioning the safety of the procedure, it seemed like she just cut off all communication with me. I waited a while thinking maybe I hadn’t worded things right and had hurt her feelings or something and wanted to give her time to cool off. However, even though I tried to keep supporting her because I wanted to salvage our friendship, she refused to respond. Eventually I decided to email her and apologize if I had misspoken, hurt her feelings, or offended her as I definitely did NOT have any intention of doing so.

She emailed me back (I do appreciate that, because had she not, I never would have gotten any closure on the whole issue), and told me that since I had “promoted stigmatizing misinformation” that she pretty much blocked me automatically across the board.

So, am I the asshole for thinking this was an overreaction and being very hurt by the blatant rejection of someone I had considered a close blogger friend? How would you feel?

Mental Illness – Personal or Societal Issue?

Do you ever stop to wonder if the exploding rates of mental illness might signify that there isn’t a personal issue going on with many people, but instead, a societal or lifestyle issue? The pandemic has shown without a doubt that outside influences can make huge differences in collective mental health. The isolation, the fear of the virus, the missing out on all the things you love to do – these affected us hugely in the past couple years.

Even before the pandemic though, mental illness had been a steadily growing problem. Most of the time the medical establishment treats it all as a personal issue. You must have a chemical imbalance, a mood disorder, or you are doing things wrong and somehow causing your own problems. But what if WE aren’t causing the problem? What if the system is?

In our world, people have become increasingly isolated and lonely, way before the pandemic started. The internet has brought some great things, but it has also made it so that we rely less on real, local community. We were made to be tribal, group animals, but many of us have lost our tribe long ago. Even when we try to build a sense of community, I feel like many of us have no idea how to go about doing that in our disconnected, busy, hustle culture.

We also live in a world where many people are forced to work ridiculous hours at jobs they hate just to survive. And then they barely survive at that. They are swimming in debt and praying nothing major goes wrong between paychecks. Corporations are treated better and are often given more rights than us. We are told to consume and we will feel better, but that only leads to emptiness and more debt.

If you happen to be disabled, like me, you are often made to feel like you are a drain on society and are weak and useless. Depending on the disability, you can become even more isolated and lonely. Many of us have few close family ties to begin with, and frequently, family members and friends eventually end up moving away from each other so they can get a good job and survive.

And don’t even get me started on the corruption, genocide, and other downright criminal activity the government leeches off us to support. Or how we are out of touch with the natural world around us, and even worse, destroying it at a rapid rate.

Maybe it isn’t you. Maybe it isn’t me. Maybe it is all of us, and maybe it is time we make some huge changes.