Finding Joy

Many of you may not know this, because I really cannot remember if I mentioned this before… When my illnesses started they hit me hard and fast. Many times I’d go to work and the fluorescent lights would trigger a migraine or vertigo/dizziness. My fibromyalgia was in a flare that never went away. I was so fatigued all the time. The Lichen Sclerosus was itchy and burned as it transformed my vagina into something unrecognizable. I was miserable and spent more money in gas than I made due to my illnesses.

When I stopped working everything, except my asthma was in a full flare. My depression and anxiety were through the roof. I could barely move.

So I didn’t move much. I only got out of bed when I needed to eat or go to the restroom or shower. Unless I needed to visit family I did not leave the house. I gained weight. To this day my weight yo-yo’s back and forth.

I had began writing again before I stopped working. I did a lot of writing in bed. I started going to the library to research and to get reading material.

I learned there was a local writing group a year before I took the plunge. Finally, I called the library and was given a contact number for The Y-City Writers. It happened that there was a meeting that night. I didn’t have time to let the anxiety stop me from going. That was the best decision I ever made.

Even though I moved across the country, I still get out of bed daily. I have an online community of writers that I connect with daily. I am writing again. And my husband makes sure I get out of the house.

The pandemic set me back a little and I found that I am okay not peopling. In fact, my anxiety reached an all time high for a bit. Right now it’s under control. I went to see Garth Brooks a few weeks ago. I went to an Aviators game last weekend and this weekend I went to a charity softball game.

I am getting back out. I realize that my anxiety is my biggest roadblock and since the numbers of covid are on the rise, I may end up being a recluse again.

Fortunately even housebound I have friends in Ohio and Washington whom I meet with once a week. I have a book club weekly. And I have my House of Ink peeps. That money was the best I ever spent, because it gave me a writing community. The tools to rewrite my book which is keeping me occupied.

I guess what I wanted to say is that no matter how bad off you are, I hope you can find something that brings you joy. In this day and age you don’t have to be alone if you have a smartphone, tablet or computer. Sometimes taking one small step can get you back in society.

I miss have independence which the doctor took away when she took my license. I am going to ask my new doctor if he can reinstate it. I miss being able to go to grab a bite to eat when I don’t want anything in my kitchen. Or to meet a friend for lunch. Lyft was a nightmare when I called one in March. It took over an hour to get a ride. The first driver backed out when he was a couple blocks from me after dropping off another ride. Hopefully this will get better, but it would be nice to drive again.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Social Media

I have noticed people complaining when something they post on Twitter/Facebook etc. gets removed. What they fail to realize is that they do not own these sites. They aren’t even paying for them. The company can decide to remove anything or anyone they choose, because these services are a freebie.

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If you have something to say, start a blog. That way the people who want to see whatever it is that social media deemed inappropriate for their site can see it.

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Most likely, though, when a post has been removed it was deemed inappropriate. You’re probably spreading disinformation. I have had a few posts removed because I chose the wrong article to link to my post. Did I get upset? No. I just make sure I do due diligence when posting, which means I research both sides.

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If you want to continue posting then look into all sides of the issue. Or get a blog.

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If you blog, you can relax. Since most blogs are opinions. Yes, they can be informative or the person may have knowledge on the subject, but it’s still your perspective.

Not everyone has my experience with chronic illness. Many cannot live on the good days and rest on the bad, because for some there are no good days. I wish it wasn’t true, but it is what it is. I really want people to find something in their day to day lives that give them some happiness. I’ll post more on this in my next blog.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Chronic Illness

It’s nearly a week after the Garth Brooks Concert and I am still not fully recovered. It was hot, we walked more than I am used to and then the climb to the nose bleed seats. It’s taking my body time to recover this time.

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Don’t get me wrong, it was definitely worth it. Living life is always worth the payback. My only other alternative is to stay home and not do anything.

It’s bad enough that there are things I miss out on when I don’t feel well. I missed Rick Springfield because my back decided it was a good day for spasms. Occasionally anxiety keeps me from doing things, though this is getting less frequent as I recognize it for what it is. Unless it triggers vertigo or something I don’t listen to the anxiety.

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Live on the good days and rest on the bad. I keep this in my mind and I even live on some so-so days.

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Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Is It Worth It?

Saturday night we went to see Garth Brooks. It was fantastic.

I expected to be exhausted on Sunday, but I am still fatigued today. I managed to close all my rings on my iWatch just getting into the concert without turning on the exercise thing. We had to walk to get to the arena as there was no way to drop us in front. Then we trudged around the stadium to get to the door. Once inside we had to walk around to get to our seat. We didn’t think this out. Then because we were in the nosebleed seats we had to climb steps.

So was it worth it? Absolutely. Even though I hadn’t been feeling well for days before the concert, probably stress, I made the decision to go have fun.

I chose to live on the good (so-so) day even though I knew there might be consequences. So, here I am on Monday morning still exhausted. You know what? I’d do it all again.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Emergency Room

My hiatal hernia got blocked from one bite of a rib. I tried washing it down with water. That turned out to be a big mistake as it tried to choke me. Fortunately I was able to expel the water. Over and over. One might have thought I drank gallons of water with as much that came back out.

I have never went to the ER before for something like this. Only twice before for severe asthma attacks. Since tomorrow is a holiday I didn’t want to wait to go. Nor did I want to choke in my sleep.

I decided to go to the ER when I couldn’t even keep Mylanta down. Then when I tried to lie down I started expelling water/phlegm/Mylanta. Since I couldn’t take my medication and I was afraid to sleep in case I had reflux or vomiting while I slept, I thought it might be a good idea to go to the hospital.

Whatever nausea medication they gave me has the vomiting under control or maybe there simply isn’t any liquid left in there.

I’ve had my heart checked. I could have told them it’s not my heart. X-rays of my stomach and a CT Scan of my stomach.

I had morphine for the first time and I don’t ever want to again. How people can do that for fun is beyond me. I don’t recommend it. By the way… It hasn’t stopped the pain from the hernia nor anywhere else I have pain.

I am waiting on the results of all the tests now. I just hope I will be able to keep water down if they ever let me have some.


I am keeping water down now. The morphine must have relaxed the hernia, I think. My tests revealed a small mass in my left lobe of my chest that I will need to follow up on with my doctor.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Anxiety

Yesterday I spoke about how to stop anxiety. Today, I want to focus on why this is so important.

First what is anxiety? The dictionary says it’s a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome.

Many people with chronic diseases may live in a constant state of anxiety. The fear of the unknown can be debilitating. The Meniere’s can certainly cause anxiety, because it can change without warning.

Anxiety is something I can control. In fact at the beginning of the pandemic my anxiety rose out of control. This is when I asked my doctor for medication. The pandemic was an unknown to me. I was afraid of not being able to breathe. That’s my biggest fear. Asthma is scary to have when you have attacks and pneumonia is not something I ever want again.

One little pill a day helped me control the anxiety stemming from the pandemic. It was something my coping skills couldn’t stop, because it was my resting mind that woke me in a panic on a nightly basis.

I do not dwell on what will happen with the Meniere’s. If I did, I wouldn’t ever be able to do anything. If I get dizzy I take a breath, wait a moment or too until it passes and then I go on. If it doesn’t pass then I rest because my body is telling me to.

If I have vertigo I rest. Sometimes the vertigo is short or what I have learned is called mini spins to the Meniere’s community. Sometimes I have one or two and then nothing so I can get on with living. If they are more frequent I rest.

I bounce of walls frequently and hold on to things because of disequilibrium, but if I let anxiety about this control me, I wouldn’t do anything.

The one thing about anxiety is that it makes my symptoms worse, so I need to keep it at bay. If I lived everyday in a high state of anxiety I would be too sick to live.

Does this make sense to you?

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Just Breathe

One of my favorite authors posted a video to remind us to breathe. The video is here!

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As covid is on the rise again, I find my anxiety levels rising with it. There are several things I do to keep it at bay.

1. I take medication for anxiety.

2. I have been doing Yoga with Adrienne or some form of exercise.

3. I am writing.

4. I read!

5. I binge watch television.

6. I meet with friends on Houseparty, Zoom and Facebook Rooms.

What does all this do to stop my anxiety? It keeps my head occupied. I find my anxiety increases in the moments I don’t have anything to do.

If your anxiety is increasing too, find something you like to do. Something that gets you out of your head.

After my 2nd husband died, I found painting cathartic. I couldn’t write, so I slapped paint on canvas as an outlet. Sometimes I still do this, but it’s been harder with everyone home. I find painting with an audience who are not also painting nerve wracking.

Find something that gives you peace. When my life was falling apart during my first marriage, I took solace in nature by going for walks in the local parks in Columbus.

As you can see my coping strategies may vary, but that is good. It’s nice to have more than one type of coping things to do.

The only time all my anxiety creeps in is at night. I play ocean sounds to help drown out the tinnitus, external noise and my own thoughts. It helps a little.

Find what works for you.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Exercise

The doctor always said exercise helps. It was hard to believe when I felt like a concrete truck had dumped its load on me and then proceeded to drive over me. At the time I was unloading trucks and stocking shelves.

Now I know that exercise helps at least with my energy levels. When I do yoga in the mornings I am able to be more productive the rest of the day, at least most days.

I do it although I have constant pain. Fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, and costochondritis are with me almost constantly. Despite these things, I still get more energy when I workout.

It doesn’t have to be a strenuous exercise. Even the gentle practice I find on YouTube’s Yoga with Adrienne are enough to give me a boost. I select specific videos based on how I feel each day.

I skipped my morning workout yesterday, so I chose a bedtime yoga. It helped me slip into sleep faster. I feel much more rested this morning. I may have to begin doing two workouts a day since it seems to help.

There is exercise for everyone. My friend Traci (has spina bifida) taught tai chi to senior citizens. They all did it sitting down. The reason I like yoga, especially yoga at home, is that it can be modified for where one is at. T

here are days my balance is bad, so I stay low to the ground. At least I don’t have as far to go when I topple over. And yes I fall over when in table top position sometimes.

I found out when my shoulder froze that exercise helps. Though I have constant pain in my left shoulder due to the arthritis, I continually move it. I never want a useless arm again.

The same goes for my knee. I make it move whether it wants to or not. Even my fingers are given exercise to do. The arthritis may be changing their shape, but I constantly use them and even have a couple of things to squeeze to keep them as flexible as possible.

Do you exercise? Do you find it helpful? If you don’t, it is something you can ease into. My grandmother would hold her legs out in front of her while sitting without the benefit of a foot stool. She swore it helped her legs stay strong.

Baby steps when beginning exercise. Your body will tell you what you need. Even if it’s just squeezing a small ball. Or moving a ball with your feet from a sitting position.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Consequences

Whenever I go on a trip I have fun, but there is always a consequence when I get back home.

It depends on how active I was on my trip on the severity of the consequence. I am still exhausted and in pain after our trip to Sacramento to clean out Ralph’s aunt’s home, from our side trip to Virginia and our long drive home.

It doesn’t matter how much fun there was I pay for it later. Even after a relaxing trip I feel the payback. Still it’s better to live than worry that it will put me down for days after.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com

Virginia City Day Trip

While finishing organizing Aunt MaryLu’s house for the estate sale, Ralph, Juanita and I took a day trip to Virginia City where we met up with friends, Matt and Sue.

It was a fun day. Our first stop was a museum. We took a train ride while waiting on Matt and Sue to get in from Reno.

Did you know that Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) began his writing career in Virginia City? I didn’t know.

I was fascinated by the museum. They replicated and old school room, clothing shop and even a printing press office. Of course the was a lot of information on miners.

There is a story about Virginia City streets being paved in Silver. The muck that the dug out while digging would harden, so they paved the streets with it. When someone analyzed the muck, it was silver!

If you’re as old as me you might remember the Cartwright’s going to Virginia City, because their ranch was near Lake Tahoe. Unfortunately very little if any of the show was filmed there.

When we met up with Matt and Sue we had lunch at a busy coffee shop. Then we browsed the stores. I managed to get in over ten thousand steps that day.

I am paying for it with pain and mini spins. Fortunately, I am back home in Vegas and can rest.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

https://mycrazylife2go.com