Move It or Lose It

That phrase takes on a whole new meaning when you have arthritis, fibromyalgia or any chronic illness. When my shoulder froze last year it was because I babied it.

I stopped moving it because it hurt and it didn’t support me when I did yoga. Maybe I should have modified my yoga, but I should never have stopped moving the arm.

It took me months of Physical Therapy to be able to move it again. Nearly a year later I am still moving it, though it hurts at times.

When my lower back started spasming, which it does periodically, I knew I needed a long term plan. My doctor set me up with Physical Therapy. I am now armed with exercises that strengthen my lower back and have no pain when walking or sitting. There is arthritis in the area so it’s tender to touch.

Even my fingers move better after I exercise them. They are the area on my body that is the most damaged by arthritis.


Vertigo you make the world go round.
Why won’t you let me off?
I never asked to be on this merry-go-round with you.
Even when you’re still, I still feel off.
The earth seems to tilt or feel like I am walking on a sponge.
I never asked for you in my life.
You are part of this disease I have called Meniere’s. You brought your uninvited friends tinnitus, migraine and hyperacusis to the party.
I never wanted this party.
Yet you continue the rave whether I want it or not. Please go away!

Rita L Smith
April 6, 2021


Vertigo awakened me several times throughout the night. It’s 5 am and I am still having the occasional spin. My head is wonky and I am seeing trails when I move something in front of my face.


I should have known when my tinnitus ramped up in volume and changed to a kind of test tone sound that something was up.

This isn’t what I had planned for my day. Hopefully it won’t alter my plans too much. I may need to choose a gentler yoga video to do today or maybe Adrienne’s desk yoga. Hopefully, I can write without problems. My glasses have blue light filter lenses, so the screen shouldn’t affect me.

That’s my morning so far. I hope the day gets better. Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Getting back into Shape

I started Yoga with Adrienne again. You can find her videos free on YouTube. She has many to choose from and I like her welcoming style. My cat, 🐈‍⬛ Blaze, has been assisting. She is a tough taskmaster. If she thinks I need to stay in plank or downward dog she will get under me so I cannot do the next move.

Today, I had physical therapy too. So, I really got in a workout today. Thankfully the PT is working so my back no longer spasms. I took two weeks off because of my hiatal hernia, but I did some of my exercises at home.

I am feeling better. Last week everything hurt. I guess when you don’t use parts, exercise will do that. I have worked through the pain.

I closed all my rings on my Apple Watch before noon today. It’s been awhile since I did that. I really want to take off this weight I put back on. Wish me luck.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Does Disability Limit Me?

The simple answer to that question is yes. It is more complex than that though. As you may have noticed from my posts, I still live a fulfilling life.

I may not run any marathons, but let’s be serious, I never did. I cannot do everything I want to do, even on good days, I often find myself unable to do things because of my vestibular issues.

It is frustrating, but I deal with it. I still am able to do many amazing things. When we went to Bryce Canyon, I sat at the top and enjoyed the view, while Ralph took the trails. I enjoyed the beauty and didn’t tumble into the canyon.

On days I feel less tipsy, I can take shorter hikes. I have recently discovered that climbing over rocks is difficult even on good days. They can be a trigger to unbalance me.

I couldn’t follow Ralph and the dogs up there. I was okay up until that point. Walking sticks help, but aren’t always practical for climbing.

It is almost a guarantee that if I take that hike or even vacation, I will be down the next day or so. For me there is always payback and for many others as well.

What I am saying is do not compare others to me or me to others, because we are all different. And things can change at the drop of a hat for any of us. Be kind always.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Birthday Weekend

My husband is on a mission to make up for last year’s birthday. You know the one when everything shutdown. Covid messed up plans for more than just me… it messed up the whole world.

Yesterday we got up bright and early to beat the crowds… and we did. There was virtually no one at the Bellagio Conservatory.

It was lovely as always. If there had been people traffic moved in one direction, everyone is required to wear masks and remain six feet apart.

Today’s adventure took us to the Neon Museum where all the old signs go to die or not. It’s kind of like a retirement home for vintage Vegas.

While I was at the Neon Museum I was on the lookout for the mysterious Silver Slipper from the Zodiac series by Vicki Pettersson. Alas, I did not find it in the museum. I think I may have spied it from the parking lot beyond the wall in the “boneyard”, but I couldn’t get a better view from any angle.

Here are a few slippers I found. One in the museum, one in front and one on Fremont Street.

There’s so much to do in Vegas. I am glad I don’t have to do it all in one swoop.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Mea Culpa

Occasionally I do something so dumb that I cannot believe it. Rarely do I do anything that effects my health.

This was me several days this week!

All last week my hernia and reflux had been acting up. I was miserable and in pain, because the costochondritis decided to join the party too.

At my follow up appointment for the Emagality, I mentioned to my doctor about the hiatal hernia and reflux flare. So, he gave me Dexilant to replace my Omeprazole for a month. When I went to remove the Omeprazole from my weekly medication container I discovered I hadn’t been taking it. No wonder I was so miserable.

I will probably be getting surgery in the future for this hernia. I am hoping to get through the pandemic before that happens.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Joshua Tree National Park

Visiting Joshua Tree National Park has been one of my greatest desires since I first heard about it. Something had always prevented us from going. Finally the stars aligned and we made it.

Let me tell you that photos do not do it justice. Though I was enamored by what I saw, when I was actually standing among the Joshua trees, flora and fauna it was so much more majestic.

The only thing that would have made it more spectacular is if we had waited a few weeks for the desert to bloom. That would have been the icing on the cake.

The park is just a few hours from Vegas, so it’s technically a day trip, though we stayed overnight. Our driver didn’t want to be exhausted on the return trip. (I don’t blame her.) Frankly my hiatal hernia has been acting up causing reflux and pain, so rest was good. On the bright side my back was much better. Physical therapy has been working.

One thing was strange about this trip was trying to find an open restroom. California isn’t open for eating in dining, though fast food places are open~you order on the app and you can go into pick up. The restrooms are closed. Even some gas stations restrooms are closed. It made things quite interesting. Fortunately, we survived without any accidents! 😂 It was close for me though, the dangers of taking 400mg of magnesium for migraines is real. (If no one has informed you that supplement gives you the runs.)

I enjoyed my trip immensely. I think we all needed to get away. I haven’t been feeling well and as a result have been getting grumpy, throw in my anxiety about Covid and I am sure living with me is a nightmare. Ralph has been working part time, going to church and visiting his parents, so he gets out of the house. I have too much anxiety to attend church and haven’t wanted to accidentally give Ralph’s parents covid, so I stay home. My circle is small, Colleen, who drove this trip, is part of it. She has been overworking and needed to get away. I am glad she went because she got to see how amazing Joshua Tree National Park is. She hadn’t found the pictures so enthralling as I had.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Physical Therapy

My lower back hurts on and off all the time. I thought it was going to start a spasm that would cause me tremendous pain so I called my doctor.


Today I began Physical Therapy. It appears I am out of alignment. I thought my right side was longer than my left, but it’s not the case. This misalignment is from where my pain stems.

My therapist started to realign my joints today. And… this is a big one, I got Needles.

Dry needling is a treatment performed by skilled, trained physical therapists, certified in the procedure. A thin monofilament needle penetrates the skin and treats underlying muscular trigger points for the management of neuromusculoskeletal pain and movement impairments.

The relief was immediate after this simple procedure. It’s not like acupuncture where the needles are left in for a bit. These are put in and then taken back out. It almost felt like pressure being released in my sorest spot.

I will do this 3x/week for 6 weeks. I’ll be getting exercises too. Movement is lubricant. So keep on moving.