Motivational Monday…

When they tell you not to bite off more than you can chew…you need to listen.  The problem is, maybe “they” have never been broke.  Maybe “they” have never been in debt.  And I’m definitely thinking “they” don’t know what it’s like to worry and/or stress over whether or not you will have enough to pay for groceries.  Sometimes, people have to do what they must in order to survive.  Even if this means adding to their stress.

Ways to survive this type of stress are to take breaks during your work day.  I read recently that you should set a timer.  Every 50 minutes or so.  Ha.  But I think that would help me out with my current craziness because then I would realize I have not eaten lunch…that e-mail can really wait.

Go to yoga.  I say this quite frequently.  But seriously.  Either that or learn to meditate…unless having some type of wine port attached is legal.  I don’t think it is yet.

If I was the boss, wait I am the boss of myself, sort of, I would make mandatory no work after 5 p.m. ever.  No work on weekends, ever.  And that sort of thing rules.  I really wish I could do that to myself.  Why is it people who work from home end up working more???  Someone forgot to mention that to me. 

Someone smart in your company needs to streamline the processes for other people.  I really liked to make things easier on other teachers when I was a teacher.  I liked group planning because IF it ran the way it was supposed to, oh yeah it didn’t, but if and when it did on rare occasions, you would really come out with like a version of the easy button.  EVERY company needs this.  I can’t stand it when there is no version of something that everyone needs to use.  I end up creating my own documents for future reference.

So that’s my motivational tips for today.  If there is an easy button, use it folks.  Just use it.



The Thief…

The Thief…part 1

I remember when it first started. Old age, I thought, was a bitch. Little did I know that it was not, in fact, normal aches and pains. The first sign was when my shoulders started tensing up. They hurt so bad I could not cross my arms in front of me. Each day I would get up, put on my “happy face” and work a full day with 18 tiny people staring at me. I sang songs, songs about being happy. I had to force the pain down each and every day. Doctors couldn’t help me. It was just a flare. Bursitis said one. Arthralgia with a question mark wrote another. Cortisone shot said yet another. So I agreed. I had the shot and was in the worst pain I have almost ever felt in my life. It froze my shoulder up even more and then I cried each time I moved. I had to prop my arm on a pillow that night. I couldn’t even change out of the clothes I was in.

Over time, the pain moved to my spine. It started at the base of my neck and went down until I could feel every single vertebra in my entire spine. I was never aware of my bones before. They were simply there. The pain radiated out to my shoulder blades. I became angry and more distant with people. I was coming home from work and just withdrawing into my own shell. I would put blankets all over me because I could not get warm. I had heating pads on my back and shoulders. I’d try to do things, but simply couldn’t function after working all day long.

Whenever I tried to sleep, I could feel the bones. I would toss and turn and try to get comfortable. By the time I got to sleep, my husband was bringing me coffee. Coffee was the only way to get me up in the morning, and yet it felt like I had just gone to sleep. The cycle was horribly draining on my well-being. Not just physical, but mentally as well. There was not one person I could tell this to. Not one. Do you know what they had called me at work? Mrs. Happy. I was Mrs. Freaking Happy.

I’d alternate between praying and being mad at God. He knew what I was going through. He knew, and yet there were no answers. None. One day a co-worker slapped me on the arm and I almost slapped her across the face for touching me. Yup. I did. It took all the self-control I had to say through gritted teeth “Never, ever touch me again.”   We were not particularly close, and she had a habit of thinking things were funny and slapping my arm like I agreed. The only thing I thought was funny at the moment was watching her face as I explained how much what she did hurt. Yes, it wasn’t nice, I know.  Pain doesn’t care.

Around that time I realized I couldn’t work around people and keep up appearances. That’s when a plan starting forming in my head that I needed to work on getting better if such a thing was possible. The pain, fatigue, and doubt about whether I would be able to hold down a job with my amount of pain wore me down. Every night I would cry. If I wasn’t crying, I was pretending I was fine…until I started getting sick to my stomach almost every single day. At that point, I could no longer pretend I was fine. Food was making me violently ill and I had not been allergic to any food before in my life. A thief came in and stole my youth. I looked like a 20 something year old healthy adult with the body of an 80-year-old woman on the inside.

More to come…



Rules are to keep us safe…

So my daughter got into a bicycle accident at a friend’s house.  I was almost there.  Almost.  There.  I got a call from a number I didn’t know while standing on the porch of her friend’s house.  Now, be warned.  We have rules at our house.  What do you get when you have a military raised dad and a teacher mama?  You get a few rules.  Wear closed toe shows at all times when riding a bicycle.  Wear a helmet.  Simple enough.

What do you get when you go to a friend’s house with perhaps not the same kind of rules.  You get a phone call.  On the porch.  Then they said come in and your child is bloody.  Not cool.  I tried really hard to be cool.  But I was so not cool.  I was way beyond not cool.  I was furious.  Furious at this other momma for letting my child get hurt on her watch because my child rode her daughter’s bike without closed toe shoes and a helmet.  Furious at my child for forgetting our rules at another person’s house.  Furious at the blood.  Furious at the toenail that was no longer on her foot.  And furious I had to do this alone because my husband was in a class all day.

It was all perfectly rational in my head.  But at that moment, all I could do was be calm.  I could only say “What happened?”, and thank you. I’ve got it from here.  We never let her ride a bike without a helmet and closed toe shoes so I am taking her to urgent care.  Thank you.  I think I did a pretty good job of being cool.

She knew I was mad.  My daughter knew I was mad.  But mostly I was worried.  Upset and worried.  I could not let that show through because there was so much blood.  When it was all said and done, my daughter’s knees were torn up.  One so bad I could hardly look at it.  Her toes were all damaged on her right foot and she was missing a toenail.  I hope you can read this…sorry.  But you have to know.  Please, please, please understand that if anything happened to another person’s child at my house I would never forgive myself.  So I had to calm down.

The momma called me later and I said, it’s ok.  She knew better.  She did.  She was upset as well, so I felt better.  I also felt better knowing the momma was going to buy helmets for all 4 of her little children.  How did they not have them already?  I have no idea.  So I extended grace because I needed to come at this from a place of mutual understanding.  She did not want my child to get hurt.  I know this.  I know how I would feel; however, she did need to remember that wearing a helmet is a law for a reason.  So maybe I saved her children’s lives.  I don’t know.  All I know is I had to be calm.  Look at my hurt child.  And tell her it’s going to be okay.  She’s going to have one heck of a scar on her knee, but we all have scars.  They help us remember. 


Motivational Monday…

Today is my husband’s name day.  Day of birth as you might call it.  Years ago, I met a shy poet who told me the only thing he wanted for his birthday, was me.  He is, quite frankly, the love of my life.  Then why am I so stressed out all the time?  Ha.  I don’t know.

This was an interesting article on Stress Symptoms and the warning signs.  The health problems that are exacerbated by stress include some of my own.  So I started thinking about why people with autoimmune diseases would tend to be more stressed out than others.  I thought about the article I read when researching my topic on neurotransmitters and the stomach.  The blog post New Year, New Brain?

When am I most irritable?  When do I start getting mad or not being able to let something go?  When I have had a bad flare up??  When I have eaten something that makes me hurt and be in pain?  Yes.  I focus most on what is wrong when I am in pain.  Why do I do that?  Some sort of pathway that was there for a while.  Okay, next step.  Recognize the signs.

So, after I realize what I am doing, my next step is to focus on doing things I like.  Things that make me happy.  Reading.  Holding my dogs.  Writing.  Snuggling with my kids.  Hugging my husband.  One tight hug to let me know it’s okay.  Him getting me to focus on the fact that it will be okay, even if it’s not okay at this moment.

I have used my “hibernate and ignore” tactic in order not to let things upset me.  Stress is very bad for my health in more ways than one.  So I say to anyone out there with stress, ummm, well let’s just say everyone reading this, as difficult as it is, focus on the positive.  Just keep swimming.  Just keep swimming.  Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming.  What do we do?  We swimmm.  Oops.  You are still here.  Ahem.





A few things…remember that post where I talked about being Scorpio?  You know the one where I basically said the worst thing you can do to a Scorpio is lie to them or try to manipulate them?  Yeah, that’s the one.  Well, I really wish people walked around with those pop up bubbles above their heads.  For example, mine would say, “Don’t lie to her.  It isn’t worth it.  She knows the truth.”  It would make life easier and simpler if we could be honest.  At least, I think so.

I know a few guys who might have some pop up bubbles referring to a particular cleansing product…that way their future girlfriends already know.  It just really would help some sisters out.  That’s all I’m saying.  Perhaps you know some people and have already thought of what their bubbles would say.  “bat-shit crazy” “liar” “call the police”  These come to mind as being helpful.  Anyway, I guess life is a gamble.  You gamble with friendship.  You gamble with trust.  You even gamble on love.  Sometimes, you get lucky.  Then, there are times, you think it’s about to go your way and you lose it all.

I stay in a state of mild irritation with society most of the time.  Why?  Because I expect more.  My husband tells me that’s my problem.  I have come to expect that people are basically going to do the right thing, and then, when they don’t, I feel let down.  He keeps very few friends close.  He actually expects the opposite.  He expects people are going to let him down, and when they don’t, he is pleasantly surprised.  Every time I make new friends, I hope that they will be people who would get my back like I’d get theirs.  I always hope they won’t let me down…that they would take up for me if needed.  Because the bottom line is, I’d do it for them.  And they know that.  So tonight, I will release the irritation I have been holding and grasp onto this one thought…people are not always going to be able to give me the truth.  It’s ok.  They won’t always have my back.  But the true friends, you know the ones, those are the ones who are worth staying up for.  Those are the ones I would go to jail for.  I hope I never find myself in that situation, but you know what I mean.

LiesEvery lie is two lies — the lie we tell others and the lie we tell ourselves to justify it.

“Support” groups…

Many of you know that I have been in a battle with genetic illness for a while now.  Some days are better than others which is why I started “Motivational” Mondays this year.  It is not only to motivate you, oh no, it is to hold myself accountable for the advice I give.  I have a hard time doing that.  Don’t tell anyone.  Anyway, I have to take deep breaths when I encounter people who make me mad just like you do.  But last night, I jumped in a battle that was not entirely my own.

Let me tell you why.  I believe that we are all here together whether we like it or not.  You do not have to like me, but you should always show some respect when you are speaking to me or others even on the internet.  It is not an invisible wall for you to shield yourself and hide your true character.  On the contrary, that’s why I said “invisible”.  You think because you are not known and standing in front of me that you can mouth off to people and no one will stand up to you.  You are sadly mistaken my cyber-bully, no manners, wanna-be a big shot guy (random angry man, not you now).

I don’t know how you were raised, maybe in a barn, but men should be taught to respect women.  Your cussing ladies out in my “support” group was not needed even if one of them always has to have the last word.  Believe me, I know how irritating it can be when people think they are right, and perhaps they aren’t, but you sir, only called them names and provided no logical reasons.  If you noticed the long-winded rant a few weeks ago between myself and lady who has to have the last word, you will note sir that I did not cuss her out.  Not even once.  What I did instead was to use 3 articles from different journals of medicine.  I quoted my doctor’s advice, and reminded her I said this was not about other people, that this was what worked for ME.  So in conclusion, remember, this quote I posted last night:  “People do not seem to realize that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

So thanks for leaving after I called you out on your ridiculous manners.  It’s sad you are much older than me and appear to have a granddaughter.  Not sure how you would feel if someone resorted to name calling of her, but try using research to back your intolerable rant next time.

“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”  ~Warren Buffett

Feeling sad.

How do you process grief when a loved one dies suddenly?  What do you do to cope with your feelings?  I’m going to be honest with you.  I am going to chat with someone.  That’s right.  I am admitting it.  I am going to seek outside help.  Too many things have been going on in my life and I have been trying to tie up all the strings, but it is very much like trying to hold on to a bouquet of balloons.  Some of the strings are in my hand…others are hiding in the bunch and are starting to slip out.  Some days I want to be like that meme that says “It’s Friday!  F-ck this shit.  Just kidding.  It’s still Thursday, and I need those.”  Today was one of those days for many, many reasons.

I don’t know how all of my other friends feel about me admitting this here, but we have lost so many people I think I need to just say it.  My friend had not been sick…that is to say, not on the outside.  It appears he was suffering from depression.  I think the hardest thing about using that word is that it is so misunderstood.  Life is hard to deal with folks.  Even famous people get depressed.  One that I often quote and admire who battled depression is Sir Winston Churchill.  Just because people can’t see what’s happening to you on the inside doesn’t mean you ignore it.  Here is a good list to read.  Until we meet again.

“There’s nothing, repeat, nothing to be ashamed of when you’re going through a depression. If you get help, the chances of your licking it are really good. But, you have to get yourself onto a safe path.”  ~Mike Wallace