Friday, November 29, 2013

Kitchen Chef Foam Mat - Chocolate (CHOCOLATE)

  • Chef Mat features a skid resistant bottom and beveled edge
  • Chef Mat promotes proper circulation, better posture and reduces muscle fatigue and stress
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  • It is resistant to stains and abrasions

List Price: $35.99
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Product Description
Chef's foam mat measures 30" x 20" that perfectly to be placed in front of your sink or stove. It features a leather-look surface with a basketweave pattern and the surface is stain-resistant. This mat incorporates skid resistant bottom and the foam inside the mat provides comfort and promotes proper circulation while long standing. It is also very easy to take care-just wipe clean with a damp cloth.

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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

LIfe is hard but so very Beautiful

Yesterday, I awoke in a groggy daze when my vision was still kinda blurred. And then as if remembering that it was time to get up, my body ached it's morning time ache, and I scrambled to get my legs beneath my body. The rest of the day, to be quite honest was a blur, there was stuff on my to do list so I raced here and there, all over the house... 'twas a cross between married-wifely duties, and oh-shooooot-we-have-fleas. So I whipped thru that list, then went out for coffee, came home and realized I have no idea where that cat the vet told me to watch went... looking high and low, in all her favourite hiding spots, the games box, on the sleeping bags, in the closet, on my chair, above the microwave, and everywhere in-between but alas no cat was found. Until I realized I went into the laundry room for a minute before getting called away...and upon a further search there behind the hot water tank is a little tiny cone surrounded face...poor snuffle-ufagous. Then suddenly it hit me, that growly angry tummy, I stopped everything and looked down at it like, oh dear, that was me...and in that moment I realized I hadn't eaten lunch.

As I stopped to think about it, this summer was harder than other summers past, it hurt more. As one DR. appointment after another dragged the summer away, waiting on test after test, and it was just plain hard. Monday I was afraid, and I cried out of pure frustration. This may seem strange if you've never endured chronic pain, or the frustration of our canadian medical system. Afraid because this school year has arrived and being on higher doses of Lyrica (strong pain medication) I feel a bit more energetic, like I can handle more. Thus I have challenged myself and taken three courses this semester. However, my fear is encouraged by the daunting voice in the back of my head telling me I can't do it, that I'll need surgery and then how will I continue, I could get sicker, and that life right now is too hard to continue to challenge myself. That voice is my own worst enemy and I don't agree with it. It makes me sad thinking of those fears yet I know I can push a little harder, I can go a little further, and every day I do it. Giving up is the easy way out. Life gets hard, the pain gets worse, but I feel like the little train that could, on those days I just keep saying "I think I can, I think I can...I know I can, I know I can..." there's so much wisdom to be found in children's books that apply to us even as we get older.....I would go as far as to say that those books apply more to us now as adults than as kids. There are struggles that I don't want to walk thru, there is sorrow I don't want to bear, but there is also hope. Hope and patience are virtues that as long as we hold on to them, the pain might not be so hard to bear each day.

When it is hard to hope and our patience seems thin we look up to and ask for help to a very big God who truly understands. And I think the healthiest part is that we can dialogue with God, about the pain he has asked us to walk thru. We can even go so far as to get angry as many others have in the past. We can come to him with all our emotions and in my opinion that's where the depth of my relationship with God dwells, in the ability to tell him I'm really frustrated, mad, confused, and scared because I don't understand why he has given me this kind of pain. Often I think of Job and his dialogue with God, I think he learnt more through that dialogue than he did in any devotional times he may have had, because he got to express his ugly feelings, the ones that most think you can not bring to God. In doing this he learnt to better trust God's judgement, he was put in his place when he got out of line, and in the end had a fuller understanding of who God is.

I think expression is hard because similarly with the church you might feel like your burdening the church with the heavy path your walking, when the church should be a place to share your burden. Often we don't bring angry emotions to God because we think it's a bad thing to do, we think it's too heavy, or inappropriate. He's a really Big God, that is bigger than your view of him. He can handle a child getting mad at him, just as a parent can handle sitting with a child that's angry and doesn't understand. I think if we make our relationship one-sided and share only the good stuff or only the bad stuff, or even only ask him for help but never say thank you...then perhaps we have put God in a box labeled "use in case of______". He is big and he is to be feared but he is good and also wants to know all the details of your life, why not try him? Test out your relationship with him by offering more of yourself, more areas of your life. He is not a genie, He is a father, a creator, and many more. This is my struggle I try to do it on my own when he's always there to help carry the load. It's easy to be frustrated with the church and complain that its like this, or like that, because we expect more of christians yet forget that they are just human trying thier best and in no way are they infallible. We get mad easily when the church or christians let us down yet do we tell them? It is not a good reflection of God when christians fail to be christ to each other. But as Ghandi said we need to be the change we wish to see in our world. Thus I want to be someone friends can come to, if you have a heavy burden let me lighten your load, if you need a cup of coffee and someone to listen I'll drop what I'm doing and put on some coffee.



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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

4pk Anti-Fatigue Flooring Interlocking Mats Expandable Grey 20.5" x 0.5" Each

  • Each Square: 20.5"L x 20.5"W x .38"D
  • Grey Anti-Fatigue Interlocking Mats With Textured Finish; Water Resistant, Easy To Clean, Shock Absorbing; Straight Edges Easily Convert To Interlocking Edges
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Product Description
Hard floors are hard on the body. Working on concrete surfaces can fatigue your feet, legs and back. Make your workspace workable with Interlocking Anti-Fatigue Floor Mats. Each square features puzzle-piece edges that lock tightly together with one another to form a nearly seamless foam surface. The finished straight-edges easily convert to interlocking edges by removing the precut pieces. Great for garages, workout rooms, playrooms and more! b179 anti-fatigue matting ... 30.0 x 22.0 x 20.5 27.4 x 19.4 6.1 4.0:1 ... adds security capacity per shelf: 100 lbs. tough grey or tan powder coat ... ... doors and interlocks onto two sidewall brackets padlock lugs on crossbar and side bar channel are located on each ... 1 grey universal ... the mats ... Anti Fatigue Floor Mat eBay - Electronics, Cars, Fashion ... Find great deals on eBay for Anti Fatigue Floor Mat in Door and Floor Mats. Shop with confidence. Anti Fatigue Mat eBay - Electronics, Cars, Fashion ... 12pk Anti-Fatigue Flooring Interlocking Mats Expandable ... Mats Expandable Grey 20.5 x 0.5 Each. ... 4pk Anti-Fatigue Flooring Interlocking Mats Expandable ...

Monday, November 25, 2013

Imprint Comfort Mat Croco Series 20-Inch by 36-Inch Mat, Goose

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Imprint Comfort Mat Croc Series

Sink your feet into the Cumulus9 with its proprietary Multi-Core Technology. Feel how it conforms to the shape of your feet and supports your arches for relief of back, leg and foot discomfort. The advantage is its proprietary multilayer cushioning system. The soft, upper layer luxuriously cushions your feet while the firm, lower layer provides soothing support. You'll want an Imprint Comfort Mat everywhere you work and stand--kitchen, laundry, bathroom, garage, workshop and more.

Durable construction will keep your mat looking and feeling good for years to come. We're so confident, we back it with a 7-year warranty.

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Sunday, November 24, 2013

My own everest

With a fiery rage my legs burned, there was a sharp pain-filled lightening storm brewing in my back and my  shoulders feel like the literal weight of the world has crashed down on them...yikes. So what has happened to me, you ask....well dear friends I have been victorious today. I hiked. enough said right!

I know I'm very proud of myself! It's an incredibly big deal, I feel like a party should be thrown. It's been.............I don't know how long since last I hiked, and I think it showed just a little bit as my huffing and puffing gave the big bad wold a run for his money. The majority of the time I hiked I couldn't help but think about the gossip that would follow, I mean sick people don't hike do they? and oh how much better I must be feeling now that I'm hiking. It's been bad enough not looking as sick as I feel but, oh the scandal of hiking! LOL. 

All that comes to mind is the quote “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”― Albert Einstein. I'm having a other people have those?

The thing about a fish climbing a tree is that it is not a probable thing. Thus if it does it wasn't it may not come down once it is up, or it may not do it again. Or in my case it may have been told that it probably couldn't climb the tree at all.


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Down the Rabbit Hole

Tomorrow I will go to the Naturalpath clinic and see my doctor. He will ask me if I want to do tests 6050 and 5085....and I will answer....?

He will reiterate a lot of information at me about the state of my ever decreasing health, we will discuss treatment options based on weather or not I do the tests. And I will sit stressed over the cost of these tests and how they will effect my future. I thought if perhaps I ignored them, they'd go away...nope. I thought if I set up crowdfunding perhaps they'd be funded by the gererousity of the public, which would take the stress off of me, it did not happen. I thought if I pretend I was okay I wouldn't have to worry over tests...I could not pretend to be okay at the same time as I run to the nearest washroom to be sick. Thus my options are dwindling as always, I can ignore them no more. The truth is the options he will give me tomorrow will not compare to my actual and very real options, which are: 

A) I do the $1500 dollar blood tests and fallback a semester because we can't afford to do both. Yet this option gives me the truth in 3-4 weeks of whether or not I have lyme and parasites causing my illness. 

B) I abstain from the blood tests, and wait till September 19th at 12:10pm when I go into Women's Hospital and discuss with a new specialist how investigative surgery will go. Signing away consent form after consent form giving her the ability to perform surgery to explore what my insides look like in the off chance that they could actually visually see what is causing my ailments.   

Seems like if I got the tests now I could find out the answers in time to know if I have lyme and treat it without needing the investigative surgery. I don't want surgery, I desperately don't won't surgery. Being drugged and cut open to further someones research in the off chance that something could be found does not sound like fun to me. Yet, option A of blood tests is too expensive, and we can't afford it. We already pay over $200 a month towards medical expensive (prescribed drugs, treatments, and specialist visits), I really don't want to lose another semester of school because I'm already 2 years behind where I should be in this bachelors degree. I've researched the blood tests in hopes that family and friends might help us with the cost but sheepishly I am having a very hard time asking anyone for help. These options don't seem like options to me they seem like death sentences. I do the tests I push myself back in school, yet find out answers and begin the choices between painful treatment options to cure my pain. I do the surgery and take a leap into the unknown will they find something maybe, can I handle the pain of healing from surgery and depression of no answers if nothing is to be found again? I don't know. All I know is I'm scared. I'm scared of always being in so much pain for so long and never knowing why. I feel like I have to jump down the rabbit hole in the pursuit of all my options because I can not sit here in pain and do nothing. I want to try to get the blood tests done, and have answers as well as know whether or not I should continue on with the surgery? while having high hopes of continuing with school come September.  

As far as options go I have set up a number of crowd funding options on here to try and cover the costs of the blood tests on GoGetFunding and IndieGoGo. As well as a facebook group that has paypal capabilities. I am not good at asking for help and so I'm not asking for your help I'm simply asking for a chance at hope.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Artsy Fartsy

So today I feel accomplished! I cleaned the bathroom, cleaned out the fridge, did dishes, and cut up all the veggies and other stuff into bite sized pieces for snacks or just to have on hand chopped up ready to be thrown into a meal. After that I spent two hours reading a textbook on Addictions.

Amazing fact of the day, go figure it's from my textbook, "In Canada, nine out of ten violent crimes are committed under the influence of alcohol and/or other illegal drugs."(from Dying for a Drink, by Anderson Spickard Jr.,MC and Barbara R. Thompson) That just makes you think, wow what if no one did those things would violent crime rates drop to only that one out of ten that were not using a substance.

After I finished reading textbooks I took a break to paint, I found watercolors in a box I was unpacking and realized, I always paint in oil for the bold colors of acrylic for the definition, but what the heck, lets try watercolor! I'm not gonna post how that went, it looks like a two year old got a hold of the paints so instead I'll post so better paintings I've done.  hope you like them :)

So do not compare my art to the bellow awesomeness. lol. the following pictures are just a few I found either amusing or really liked :) 

I wish this wall was close by, how cool would that be! I heard in a German class I took that people out there do cool art on walls like this all the time, and I think that's just the coolest thing it would make life a bit more surreal. I think art is more emotive, it's like everything the person was feeling at that moment right there, in front of you, its profound in it's own way of being an expression. I love that about art, even though in that moment that your painting it means one thing to you and, then a year, or so late someone else sees it and it brings up different feelings for them. Just so cool, how were made with creative streaks in us :)


Comments are very Welcome :)

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Midterm morning delight

Upon waking up I rushed, rushed, rushed, to get to class on time for 8 as class always starts at 8. I arrive with my precious Tim Horton's coffee (french vanilla with 1/4 coffee), in hand and sit down in my class room. I look around its silent, theres only two other student in the room and no teacher and it's like 2 minutes to 8AM. I'm going whaaaaatttt???is this some bad joke????Okay I'm thinking mabey everyone's late cause they're normally late cause unlike me, who wakes up an hour early, so I can get ready early and eat and then, drives a whole 15 minutes to get to class on time. They just walk five steps from their bedroom (dorm) to the classroom. a whole building away. 

I know I sound a bit like I'm making a big deal outta nothing cause well I am. The truth is I love the luxury of space and freedom and commuting gives me all that and more! LOL more as in I have a basement suite vs. a dorm, a hubby as my room mate vs. another girl I don't know. And a bit of quiet vs. chaos. For me it's great, my thyroid thanks me. Cause the less stress means the less pain, and sick days. YAY.

Any who sorry for the side track, So back to the midterm I'm sitting in class going WHHHAaaattttt??? I go to the lobby check my mailbox thinking may be there's a notice...but no shaa-bang. Only old notices that my mail box buddy (giving him the benifit of the doubt) forgot to throw out. Although when I fill through them I see that apparently I came an hour early to the exam room. Dang. SO I go back and relax it was kinda nice... I kinda enjoyed it... I played Angry Birds on my was awesome! 

When the students and professor arrived and we finally got to writing this thing I went through my method of test taking:
1. read the test instructions and questions (seeing that they are all essay questions I proceed to 2.)
2. write in point form all the notes to the essay questions ( to help my memory, so that when I come back I can review them and then write an essay with all the points, saves you from the chance of forgetting everything you studied about essay #4 cause You were too focused writing essay #1, 2, and 3...)
3. I write out each essay while afterward making sure I got all the points that I jotted down from 2. 

I finished three essays in an hour and a half and got home early yay. 


Question of the day: Whats your most awkward exam writing experience? Comment  your answers below and I will repost the top ones 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Chin up butter cup

Dorothy Thompson, said, “Only when we are no longer afraid do we begin to live.” I wish I was no longer afraid of making decisions, especially the big life changing ones like how old do I want to be when I have kids, What career choice will work best with our lives, and how will we afford things. I don't know, I don't know, and please can we talk about these later, or can I think about that and get back to you,... at this moment in time is the best answers I can give. Yet, I know I have to keep going, life doesn't stop for disorders and if I stop moving forward I end up being like a rock in a flowing river. The water of life will flow around past me, and essentially not deciding on anything and standing still is action through inaction. So, I am taking this reading week, break-time to think things through more, research ideas, draw up spreadsheets, and pro's and con's lists and perhaps even come to some conclusions. (I hope!) The thing that holds me back from making these decisions is being afraid of my disorders effects on my life. I have no control over food, sleep patterns, muscles sometimes, pain levels, energy levels, anything really. And honestly it's been really really hard. I don't know what the plan is for my life, I don't know what tomorrow will bring, but I know each day I wake up and see this painting (below) which says, "Good morning, This is God! I will be handling all of your problems today, and I will not need your help, so have a good day!" I can't help but smile because, I know he goes before me, and with me through each step I take. 

I have a disorder that is noticeable and reminds me daily that most of my choices are not my own, I can't plan or choose to be well enough for school, or life, but I can choose how I will react to the events that happen. Throughout these struggles the past few months I can see growth in being more honest with myself and others. Its hard to let people see you for how you are, for some reason we all try to look so perfect. Yet, in truth  some days are awesome and I'm happy, and there are other days when I'm just trying to take deep breathes and hold it all together, it's life. Disorder or not no one has it all together, we each have struggles and yet we plan ahead and state that this is our plan for life, to be a doctor, a photographer, or pastor; we're going to have a certain number of children and yet no one really knows how life is going to go except God. In that way I feel less afraid of having no control over my disorder, and circumstances because I am at peace in his hands. 

When I was a little girl I would stay up late under the covers reading the book of Proverbs because I wanted to be wise like solomon. I wanted to know what was the wisest thing to do and here I sit still wanting to know. The uncertainty of neuropathic pain and why one drug works over another seems highly undiscovered so far, and so I am on the strongest pain medications they can give me to treat the neuropathic and fibromyalgia pains. I worry that my liver may become to damaged from medications, or that I won't be able to keep going, that I'll start losing everything I'm fighting so hard to keep. I lost a course already, and that really sucked cause I know I tried my hardest, yet I know also that I need not worry as each day has been foreseen and each day I enter with a very big God.

 I wonder what he's up to. 


God allows us to experience the low points of life in order to teach us lessons we could not learn in any other way. The way we learn those lessons is not to deny the feelings but to find the meanings underlying them.
I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish He didn't trust me so much.


As I read this book review that mainly feature's the author Lous Heshbusiu's journey, I feel as though I am all too familiar, with all that she reports chronic illness to be.  Perhaps it is because of the raw state of pain at which I sit in bed with today, or because her account of chronic pain is so true for so many. David Biro wrote the review based on her 2009 book, Inside Chronic Pain: An Intimate and Critical Account. When your dealing with a disorder that no one can see, or fully understand, it is so comforting to read a positive account from another who has gone through a similar experience. It's as rare as finding gold, to come across not only someone who's felt as you do but, someone who has written about it.     
Despite its morbid subject matter, there are ways to turn illness narratives into compelling reads. One can ratchet up the drama and suspense (e.g. Frigyes Karinthy’s A Journey Round My Skull and Jill Bolte Taylor’s My Stroke of Insight). One can fill the narrative with deep insights (Oliver Sacks’s, A Leg to Stand On and Arthur Frank’s At the Will of the Body). Or one can aim for the lyrical brilliance of poetry (Anatole Broyard, Intoxicated by My Illness and Sarah Manguso, Two Kinds of Decay). In her new book, Inside Chronic Pain: An Intimate and Critical Account, however, Lous Heshusius chooses none of these strategies. Unlike Tennessee William’s Blanche Dubois, she will have neither romance nor magic; she wants to tell it like it is.
A courageous tack, clearly, since the reality is downright uncompelling and ugly. In a moment of inattention, the Dutch-born education professor now living in Canada was blindsided by another car as she pulled away from a stop sign. In that moment she exits a rewarding life, professionally and personally, and enters what she imagines to be ‘Hell’: constant, often paralyzing pain; endless visits to doctors and other health care providers (over 60 in all) who offer few answers and at times make the pain worse; and increasing loneliness as her world retracts inward and she becomes progressively isolated from friends and family.
This new life has lasted 11 years so far, she tells us in her memoir, and is still going. The living-hell of chronic pain is not something anyone would willingly choose to enter, even perhaps vicariously as a reader. It corresponds to what Arthur Frank (1995) termed a chaos narrative of illness. As opposed to the more comforting restitution narratives, such tales offer no happy endings or redemption, only darkness and stasis, a life resistant to meaning that will never get better. No wonder that others prefer to keep their distance. At a dinner party while Heshusius experiences a flaring of pain and could barely hold herself upright, everyone pretends nothing is wrong, even Heshusius herself: ‘We all took part in excluding me.’ The reality is just too painful to acknowledge. 

I think sometimes it's easiest, to pretend nothings wrong because the bitter truth of how you actually feel is sometime to hard for words to tell. Like right now, it's easier to type feelings to a blank page, than to go out tonight and actually say how I really feel. Some times it's just as simple as not wanting to hear the truth, myself, apart from telling another person. I find theres a large difference from being able to sit in bed, and go through the pain rather than speaking about it. Yet, not speaking about it and not having anything else new to say create a void between the person in pain and everyone else. That's a void I must admit I have trouble with, sometimes it feels painstaking trying to connect with another person, especially when I already feel alienated by the pain. 
And yet this is precisely why Heshusius’s book is so important. I used to think it was just doctors who turned their backs on patients they could no longer ‘help’. But the problem is much bigger, involving society as a whole, particularly in the West. As Susan Sontag (1978) noted a generation ago, the healthy will do everything they can to keep ‘the night side’ of life at bay. We are so obsessed with youth, health, and progress that we have no time for (or interest in) age, illness, and death. Yet for those who can’t escape the night side’s hellish precincts, the prevailing mindset is toxic. Pain by its very nature is a subjective, private affair. It’s difficult to think about, let alone communicate to others because its content is imperceptible and elusive. As such, it emphasizes the separateness between people (Biro, 2010). The problem becomes even worse, however, for patients like Heshusius in which there is no visible wound or lesion on a CAT scan. Now the issue is not merely one of unsharability (which is bad enough) but also unbelievabilty. How can someone possibly be in such severe pain when there is no tissue damage, no reason for it? The result is an echoing chamber of pain. Doctors, all but a few pain specialists, don’t have adequate training and experience, as Dr Scott Fishman notes in his excellent clinical commentary at the end of the book. When their materialist paradigm is turned on its head (pain without a physical source or without a fixable source), doctors are stymied and tend to prescribe medication indiscriminately or refer patients somewhere else, prolonging the endless cycle of suffering. Colleagues, friends, and family members, they too are often ill-equipped and skeptical. And even when they try to understand, their imaginative powers typically come up short – ‘What do you do all day?’ is a question that Heshusius is asked over and over again. Inevitably, the need to turn away is felt by the sufferer herself. Looking at an old photo one day, Heshusius is filled with grief: ‘I like this woman. I want to be her. How did she slip through my feelings?’ (p. 26) For many chronic pain patients like Heshusius, the alienation from others and from oneself, coupled with the belief that the pain will last forever, leads to a desire to end life – ‘How often have I wished I could lie down and simply die.’ (p. 3) Heshusius cites a recent article in the medical literature showing that among chronic illnesses, chronic pain is the second major cause of suicide after bipolar disorder, and ahead of depression and psychotic disorders.
"What do you do all day?" is too common a question, that the sufferer feels obligated to fulfil with productive events. Yet, I doubt an expectable answer is  "I dealt with pain all day!"  but it is the honest one, for most. The kind of pain that you often compare to wounds from weapon, stabbing pains, electric live wire shooting pains, throbbing pains, burning pains...etc. That is what I deal with all day, sure I try to be productive too, read a book, knit, do chores, exercise. But if I have done nothing but lay in bed, please excuse the lack of productivity. As it is because, it was all I could do to keep myself from going into the ER and begging to be admitted. 

As I read those last few lines of the review it resonates within me. Recently, the leader of my old small group from my youth days, posted pictures on facebook from when our group was younger -- I find myself looking at old pictures and it's like I travel back to those feelings of although less energy still energy that I had. I see that girl in the photo and she looks like a different person, that only resembles me. I like her! I want to be her again! With friends and energy, always having invitations to go out and have fun. I miss that girl, because slowly somehow I lost her, as I lost invites, as I lost touch with friends, as I faded in to the background. The grief of losing who I was, or wanted to be, does not feel past. But, as losing someone you were close too, their memory is always there. It's hard to be okay, with something that is not okay. The feelings are as hard as the pain, and it's maddening. 
Thankfully Heshusius doesn’t take this route and manages to find some measure of relief from pain which she desires to share with others. She urges her fellow sufferers to take an active role in their well-being – by not accepting what a doctor tells you, by willing you to keep changing doctors until you find the right one, and by doing your own research even when it leads down unconventional routes. This approach led Heshusius to prolotherapy, which though far from a cure, and certainly not a universal one, has helped her considerably. In addition, chronic pain patients often can no longer count on the old ways of finding pleasure and hope; since the past is gone and the future bleak, they must focus more on the present:‘here’ is the only place where I can really be. ‘This is it.’ Only this. Now. This pain above my left eye. This thought. This fear. The beauty of the music. The softness of this fur purring against me. The steel in my neck. This lying awake. (p. 39) Finally, in a world that makes no sense, patients must learn to create some sense and purpose for themselves. Heshusius does this by writing down her thoughts and later formalizing them in a story – a story that will hopefully contribute to the eventual lessening of pain as it reaches out to other sufferers (you are not alone) and informs the healthy (this is what we do all day and your ignorance and neglect makes our existence all the more intolerable). The Mayday Fund recently reported that there are now 70 million chronic pain patients living in the United States. Yet despite the alarming number, these sufferers and their disease are almost as invisible as their pain: in the genre of illness narratives, in medical school curricula, and in research funding. Let’s hope Heshusius’s courageous and empowering voice helps change that.

Sometimes it may seem silly that we do our own research into our symptoms as it is a doctors job, but I agree that it is important. In our technology era, often doctors are undereducated on new medical advances as they are already pressured for time and over booked. Looking into our own symptoms helps us find new resources and possible conclusions. The past is gone and the future does look bleak, so this last point is important, to live day by day. Our day's are all different, as pain does not schedule when it's going to join you.  Thus, it's the joy in the little things that we must relish as others who are healthy do not take time for them, when they can be what makes my day. When the sun is shining it is a moment to enjoy, and take note of, when this purring warm lump in my lap sits with me it's also a bright comforting moment to smile about. 


Lous Heshusius, Inside Chronic Pain: An Intimate and Critical Account, Cornell University Press, 2009; 167 pp.: 978080149
Reviewed by: David Biro, State University of New York, USA
Health XX(X) 1–3 © The Author(s) 2010 Reprints and permission: sagepub. DOI: 10.1177/1363459310364709
Biro DE (2010) The Language of Pain. New York: WW Norton. Broyard (1992) Intoxicated by My Illness. New York: Fawcett Columbine. Frank AW (1995) The Wounded Storyteller. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. Frank AW (2002) At the Will of the Body. New York: Mariner Books. Karinthy F (1992) A Journey Around My Skull. Budapest, Hungary: Corvina Books. Manguso S (2008) Two Kinds of Decay. New York: Farrar, Strauss & Giroux. Mayday Fund Report (2009) A Call to Revolutionize Chronic Pain Care in America: An Opportunity
in Health Care Reform. Sacks O (1998) A Leg to Stand On. New York: Touchstone. Sontag S (1978) Illness as Metaphor. New York: Farrar, Strauss & Giroux. Taylor JB (2006) My Stroke of Insight. New York: Plume.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Do or Do not there is no trying, only cattle prodding

As pulsating pains throb in my head, I wonder why the sudden onset of more symptoms; electric pains, chest pains, dizziness, high heart rate, and this odd sensation of, waves of pain filled numb tingles that pulsate from head to toe. It's like my heart isn't getting enough blood to my hands as fast as it needs to. The last is the oddest and most worry some symptom to deal with tonight, as it is just so incredibly painful and confusing. It started with cold numb tingling in my hands, and grew to a hard to describe feeling over this past week. Its like this painful tingling sensation that seems to pulsate, but not like a regular heart beat it goes, fast a few times and then regular and then fast again; but at the same time it   feels like when a phone gets fuzzy and I feel like sometime I feel my own body cutting out on me.

I'm light-headed and dizzy when standing or walking, which isn't unusual for me but seems a lot worse recently. The other thing troubling me is these really sharp stabbing pains that come with out warning, stabbing my lower right side and chest.... I suppose I should go in to the dr. but I'm having a hard enough time concentrating on anything, or focusing on things. So as I type my thoughts out forgive me if I get scatter brained...I feel a tad like a cow that needs prodding to move or do anything. My husband and I were watching this show on discovery channel about how they transport cows on big boats to get them to other markets in other countries. During the show you see the cows getting loaded on to the boats and as the cow rounds the corner off the truck and looks at the ramp on to the boat, theres this stubborn ox look that says,"Oh, hells no!" or "you expect me to go up that!HA!" and then the cow starts reversing his arse backwards into the truck bed. Thats how I feel when I'm flooded with pain as I open my eyes in the morning...or parts of the day as I endure the constant pain. On the show the australian cowboys start hollering and prodding at the cattle all the way up the boat. As I watched it was a very interesting show but I couldn't help feeling as though I could relate to those cows all week. I'm on as much tylenol and pain killers as I can be on but, it's not even close to enough. So, in both hope and desperation I continue to my search, scanning the internet for what the doctors are missing.

As well I continue to try to push past my fatigue and pain and have attempted, a bike ride this past weekend. I was excited to be on my bike in general as I haven't other than in the living room when I attempt to exercise. (explanation, we have a stand it fits into and is held up like a stationary bike, the wheels just spin. So you see I do not bike around this tiny place like a weirdo! he he) Any who, we threw our bikes in the car and took them down to Fort Langley where theres a very pretty trail along a river. I started out with my husband enjoying it but, about halfway I was in so much excruciating pain we had to take breaks as we turned around and headed back. Although my pain reared it's ugly ugly head, I count this as a win for me as I tried my best, and that's whats important at this point. When we left the house this morning we talked with our neighbours before getting in the car and heading out, and  I was asked how I was doing and if the doctors figured it out yet. This is a weary question as it's been 4 years of us no answers and although I am trying to accept that I'm going to deal with this for a while, any way I look at it I cannot accept my doctors conclusion: simply that we may never know. I thought it was hard choking down this pill that I'm living in awful pain that causes constant visits with specialists and the dr.'s I know by name in the ER. But accepting not ever knowing what is going on in my body is just beyond cruel, I mean its that dark thought in the back of my head, I don't say it out loud for fear it'd make it more acceptance at this moment can only be stretched so far. Like a rubber band if stretched to far I may spring back to being frustrated with even having to accept that I can't do what I want to, as in get out of bed or go hangout with friends without being half distracted by pain. I'm not telling him, he's mean when he says that and that Im mad that it sounds like he's giving up on me. Because thats mean, there's somethings you just don't say to someone dealing with high high amounts of pain on a daily basis, it makes it seem as though your sorry to tell me this but your really not, cause your bored with having me in and out of your office so often. Doctors need more tact I think, but so does the world. At least I can still say I get up each day, even when everything hurts and I try my best to do the most that I can. Some days the most I can is very little but others it's a bit more, like I mopped our house yesterday and I even cleaned the walls too! Okay true I pushed to far and ended up hurting, but I kept trying and went on the bike ride when I thought I felt better, which made me sicker. But the point is I tried and that is a feat in it's self when dealing with pain. With chronic pain of any sort, you can say what you know you can do; but it changes from day to day that the next you might not be able to and then have overcommitted yourself. And on the other end, you can say you can't handle doing things like going hiking, or biking, but unless you keep trying every now and then you might surprise yourself. It's important to keep trying, as often we can get stuck in a rut when we stop trying. Some accept that there in pain and can't do anything they want to too easily, they stay in bed or stop trying all together and that's very sad and understandable. As it's not easy mentally to deal with pain chronically, I get that, but don't lose hope or sight of trying because then you lose so much more than just your ability to do things. I know it's hard and I know very very well that it hurts but, I'm not taking this lying down and neither should anyone else.

Simply put giving up is the easy way out, trying is hard. When I can't plan my future, because I can't tell you what pain level tomorrow may bring, and all I know is this constant pain, this constant struggle, it's not just hard. Hard is an understatement. But that's always where faith steps in for me, I can't see the future, to say if I can handle having kids someday, I can't even see a few months ahead. I don't know if I'll be able to keep going through school to follow my dream of being a crisis counsellor, I can't say how I'm going to get through classes, I can't book a vacation in advance cause I can't say I'll be okay for it. Day by day it's hard, but each day my goal is simple and consistent, to try.

On another note, Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) was an Austrian neurologist who founded the practice of psychoanalysis, a system espousing the theory that unconscious motives dictate much of human behavior. He was a large support of atheism, similar to Jesse Ventura, former governor of Minnesota, who once said, “Organized religion is a sham and a crutch for weak-minded people who need strength in numbers.” Agreeing with him is pornographer Larry Flynt, who commented, “There's nothing good I can say about it [religion]. People use it as a crutch.” Ted Turner once simply said, "Christianity is a religion for losers!" Ventura, Flynt, Turner, and others who think like them view Christians as being emotionally feeble and in need of imaginary support to get through life. Their insinuation is that they themselves are strong and in no need of a supposed God to help them with their lives. The odd thing however is although there are famous people who view religion in general, not only christianity as a crutch, it is interesting and at least very notable that I have never heard of any famous people of whom suffered in life, and also held these same views. It's interesting how vocally against religion, faith, and God, people can be when they are doing well or having a normal good life.

My question is what do they do when they find out they have cancer, or untreatable disorders? Do they rally for the right of euthanasia? Or how else do they deal with a life of suffering and chronic pain? It's well known that when a guy comes into rob a bank, when buildings collapse, or more recently a guy goes into a movie theatre and shoots people, in these moment people cry out to God. Maybe they're not religiously specific and I don't think thats what matters, the point is they cry out to whatever they believe is out there. Contrary to Freud, I believe that this may be because some people have an illusion that if life is good and they have no need for a God, they do not find religion appealing. However when illness, trauma, or crisis enters their lives they cry out, to 'a' God. This idea of an illusion is more that they live happy lives without him and therefore don't need him, until crisis enters at which they proceed to get mad at 'a' God or cry for help to him. The illusion being that they are kidding themselves, this makes me wonder if deep within every human we take in the awe of the world and cannot deny that there is a divine design. I'm inclined to believe this because, when I study the anatomy of the brain I cannot help but be in awe of how intricate it is. I can understand people getting angry and turning away from God, or denying his existence based on his lack of being more like a genie, or which ever they believe justifies their choice, that's for them to deal with and work through. But, I have a very hard time understanding how people can be atheist, when divine design is all around them. What is their reasoning for the way their pain sensors send message to their brains telling them to pull their hand away from a hot kettle as they touch it. Even scientists cannot duplicate these pain sensors in a glove form to help lepers as it is too intricate and complex a design. (Philip Yancey goes into depth about this in his book: Where is God when it Hurts?) However, I'd be especially interested in learning how atheist deal with this issue of, comedian Dane Cook raises a valid point to me in his joke,
"He sneezed. debris's floating every where. Now at this point, I'm disgusted. And I'm grossed out by it. And at first, I'm thinking 'I'm going to go off on this guy'. And then I decided, 'Wait a second, Dane. Don't do that. Take the high road. Try to be polite'. So I turn to him and this is what I said. I looked at him and I went: 'Uh, God bless you' I say 'God bless you' by the way when someone sneezes. I don't say 'Bless you'. I don't say that because... I am not the lord. I can't do that. I'm just a messenger for big guns upstairs, you know what I'm saying? And I never go with 'Gesundheit'. I don't even know who says that. If I say 'Gesundheit', I feel like I'm honoring Hitler. Like I should be like 'Gesundheit!'. I end up on the History Channel 'cause a guy sneezed. 'God bless you'. This is what the guy comes back with. Here's where it starts to get out of control. The guy looks at me and very condescendingly goes: 'Uh, yeah. I'm an atheist'. What a jerk, right? I'm trying to be polite. I don't know you're an atheist. And even if I did, what am I supposed to say when an atheist sneezes? 'Uh, yeah, when you die, nothing happens'."

Another interesting question that is worth mention is how other religions explain the reasons for undeserved human suffering. (undeserved because most feel some people deserve what they get) So perhaps next post I'll think more on that but for now there's an interesting article on it.


A day without a perdurable is like a day without sunshine

Saturday, November 9, 2013


Thy-What!?! Are you listening to me? How could you do this to me? How can you be sooo tiny yet do so much damage? Today dear thyroid I have levels of frustrations towards you are onion layers deep, and similarly thinking about them also cause me to tear up. There are so many that every time I attempt to write you I get to sad to finish. So here's another try at saying everything that needs to be said, thats been weighing on me. 

It seems even when I show great strides of strength and prove to myself I'm still capable, you ruin it by being invisible to everyone else. I know I don't want them to treat me different with pity but I do want them to be happy with me for my big accomplishments. Yet can I really have both? I know I can't, I can't continually not tell people when I'm doing poorly and then be hurt when they don't understand. 

But, thyroid I feel like your not even trying to help anymore. I feel like I feel too much. It's date night but it got cancelled on account of having a hard time to figure out what to do. So it's moved to tomorrow. So That means I should probably be making dinner now but again I feel so incredibly warn out and frustrated that I just don't want to. 

The endurance it takes to have an invisible illness like you to piggy back with me everywhere, wears heavily on me and other like me. Dear thyroid just so you know carrying you around all this time is literally hurting my back, the rules of piggy backing does not mean you can bring friends, or bags, and your emotional baggage weighs a ton, who do you think you are! 

You've carved away so much of my life to fit yourself, and your needs in. I've lost so much of myself to  you. Book being read for counselling courses remind me that , "It's only natural that loss brings grieving - the loss can be of a person, a position, a place, or physical loss and health loss. Last week it weighed heavily on my mind, as I was bed ridden due to gradually worse pains, plus a new cold with a seal like barking cough.  It's hard to watch other's get the same cold and bounce back a few days later, when it is currently still knocking my socks off. But others are different from me and thats okay. 

Throughout this process of learning to live with the hashimoto's thyrioditis, neuropathic pain, and unknown cause of pain, as I have mentioned before, I feel bad like i'm being an elephant in the room, and frankly I'd rather lie about feelings than express them. When I lie about how I feel, I still feel bad for lying but I rather lie then tell the truth as others feel awkward and stubble around to find what to say, or don't understand. It makes me feel worse when people hear the truth and then treat me differently, or pity me, it just makes me feel weaker like a victim. And I was taught not to play the victim. 

So then, it's hard to safely feel like it’s ok to not be strong all the time. because I'm not "so strong" no, I’m really not. I’ve used maladaptive coping skills giving everyone the illusion of strength ..why? because everyone distances from real pain … vicious cycle. Thus lie or truth I feel bad either way the difference is others feelings. I don't like to make others uncomfortable when I say how I am, but I also don't like feeling uncomfortable from pity. Yet, "how are you?" is a an excessively used opening liner. And I could be vague but then I feel like I'm lying anyway. 

Oh, thyroid when we started seeing doctors and specialists 4-5 years ago I immediately began looking forward to the day when they would decode what my illness is and I would be back to normal. That's what I was working towards, getting back to my old self.  It took me till these last few months to start to realize that this was not going to happen. I was different. My body had changed in nearly every way possible. I was not going to get back to my old “normal.” Do you know how shocking it was to realize that truth? I can't even describe the feelings they were and are so fresh still. I liked the old normal. Wait, no. I LOVED my old normal. To realize that I couldn’t have my old normal back was heartbreaking. I wept. I grieved. And I got stuck..

I wanted to go back to how life used to be but I couldn’t find a way to make that happen. I tried pushing myself harder to be able to do the same things, and I just kept falling on my face getting back up and pushing my body harder. And You know what? It’s not possible to go back to my old "normal". Receiving a diagnosis is earth-shattering and life-altering but so is not receiving one, yet still being ill. I eventually am trying to accept that I CAN NOT be the same as I used to be. It just isn’t possible. But, still i grieve for my old normal. With time and help, I came to learn that it is possible to grieve FORWARD. What does that mean? It means I learned that I can grieve and weep and miss who I used to be and simultaneously move forward with life. For real? Yes, for real. Once I accepted the fact that I can’t go back to who I used to be, I could start seeking life. Here’s the thing, though—I had to take a step.  Here’s what my first step forward looked like: getting out of bed, getting dressed, getting out of the house, and doing something productive. No, it doesn’t sound like much, but that first step was HARD. It was easier to grieve for my old life without trying to live a new one. But there was no satisfaction in that. Accepting my new normal doesn’t make me stop missing my old normal, but accepting my new normal DID allow me to take that step forward towards life. And I found that moving forward means moving toward hope. 

I hate that some level of illness can prevent me from being who I was, it may be hard to relate to but it is a devastating loss. and so grieving over that loss helps start the healing to move on with life. Because dear thyroid, I get it you didn't mean to fail life just happens. The pain is unexplained and somethings in life we may never have answers to.  

So my tyrant-thyroid I'm left in the wreckage of your failure, and there are organs being impacted, and hurt every where. The aftermath of our car crash still feels so fresh, because it is. The wounds are still open, and I don't know how to patch it back together. I'm not going to lie to you, I don't like this new bodies boundaries, or this new life. I want my old pieces back cause it's hard to let go. I feel too much. I feel isolated, even those I make an extreme amount of effort to see and care about, seem to still treat me like I was. Its hard to let go of my old normal when it's the standard I'm held to. 

Yesterday I made a huge accomplishment, I hiked up the big, windy, hill that leads to my school, and I made it walking all by myself, that was HUGE. I talk about it and I get two reactions, some people are like so what? you walked up a hill. And others are like well, if that seems huge to you I guess you won't be able to go do.....fill in exciting adventure here... These reaction BLOW majorly!!! I did something big and I was persistent in getting to the top, in the cold snowy weather that made all my pains worse, I even turned down a ride up because I wanted to prove myself wrong that I could still do things. so those comments kinda hurt and unlike the sermon I heard in chapel, I did not guard my heart. Yet, I have come to accept that most people I interact with on a daily basis are not going to understand what I'm going through. and so I'm trying to teach myself that it is okay to not be completely understood cause I too don't completely understand what other people are going through either. this is a three steps forward two steps back kind of learning process. 
It's hard to deal with emotions and pain I'd rather one or the other. I'd rather  the pain almost more then the emotions on top. I get sooo tired and utterly exhausted I feel like I've crashed again. I wonder if the welbutrin no longer works, because I remember feeling awake when I started it. Yet, Even as I type up this update I feel my eye lids half closed and drooping, my head sore throbbing away, and just oh so much pain. Its hard to push on today when I hardly feel awake let alone the effort it takes to be happy or sad or in a mood I'm just kinda blah...this week the worst is the tired exhaustion by far. It's hard not to feel like crap when your feeling like your recovering from being ran over by a semi lol. I'm trying though. Last night I couldn't sleep so there I am 2 am sitting in the kitchen whispering my prayers to God. I felt calm and at peace talking with him, it's like he was just sitting there with me listening. I love those moments when we spend time together, I feel comforted, and stronger. but mostly I don't feel so alone in this, and that's big right now just to feel like he understands and he's so close. It's an amazing thing to have faith, and a relationship with a God that is always there. I can't do this on my own strength I feel like I've crashed, but on his strength, I know I'm going to be okay.