Tag Archives: health

Health update – January 2017

31 Jan

 

Well, folks, as I’m writing this I’m fighting nausea like nobody’s business – along with a migraine, so forgive me if it doesn’t all make sense.

fightinglymemigraines

Here’s the update from my migraine app from this past month : I have had 1 attack-free day. They average at 34 1/2 hrs. I’m (supposedly) getting 8 hrs of sleep a night. 76% of them occur on a weekday. The pain average is 8, minimum a 7, maximum a 10. Fatigue/achiness, muscle stiffness and headache are the top 3 auras. Neck pain, interrupted sleep and lack of sleep are the top 3 triggers. Likely triggers are interrupted sleep, pre-cycle and neck pain. Symptoms are neck pain, jaw pain and fatigue. Frequent start positions are temples, eyes, jaw, neck and base of skull. Relief methods that seem to work are clonidine, pulsatilla, oils and food/water.

~While I love having this app, it isn’t as accurate as I’d really like. part of that problem is that one must pay close attention and then input said attention into the app. So. perhaps it’s not fully the app’s fault. (coughcough)   To compare with last month’s though, the average time has gone down, while my nightly sleep has gone up! Most are now occurring on weekdays, and average pain has gone down one level. Fatigue is still a major issue; neck pain is a consistent trigger and symptoms have stayed the same.

What’s interesting about this ‘synopsis’ is that I would have said the pain had gone up this month…. but! I will trust what I put in the app and roll with it.

Overall Health: Honestly, I’ve felt so rotten this month that it’s really started to affect my moods and productivity. The chronic pains that have flared up again are so bad that I just don’t want to move majority of the time. Heaven save me from living on the couch.

Treatment: I made the mistake of running out of several vitamins/supplements at the same time and have been paying for it….dearly. I’ve added almost all of them back in, as well as iron and feverfew. My Dr. says she has rarely seen someone as low in iron as I am. I’m also super high in fibrinogen, a protein that is essential for blood clot formation. I’ve been needing to take 3-4 clonidine a day for the migraines.

Migraines: They seem to have gotten more intense as the month has progressed. Only one hit a ’10’ though. something to be grateful for. The clonidine and natural pain killers I use haven’t been very effective. At all. Nothing has been touching these things = super fun, that.

Digestion and TMJ : Digestion has been some better. Jaw pain is about the same.

Sleep:  Aside from taking Theanine a few nights last week, I haven’t been taking anything to help me sleep. It’s so nice. I am waking up once or twice a night and am sometimes still able to get back to sleep when I wake early in the am. This is not to say that I’m waking up rested and refreshed (I was probably a pre-teen the last time that happened). I’m fighting exhaustion , and taking naps all the time.

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Memory/Brain fog:  This has been a continued struggle. I am praying that the iron i’m taking helps with blood flow and gets more oxygen to my brain, thus improving this. Fog hasn’t been too awful, but gets worse when i’m in a crowded room.

I get to add another few items to this months list:

Vision– my eyes are having a hard time focusing, even with my glasses on. it’s of course worse when I’m tired or the migraine is worse but it’s a pretty constant thing these days.

Feet/leg cramps –  these are back like crazy. i’m thankful that most of the time it’s just a matter of tenseness rather than straight up cramps but it’s still painful.

Dizziness- i’m having to remember to stand up slowly. no sudden movements.

Joint pain – like none other, people.

Nausea – Out of everything I’m adding here, this is the one that I’d ask to go away first. it’s what’s keeping me down today, when the migraine isn’t bad.

Moodiness – yes, it’s bad enough that it gets its own category. I was so glad when my moods evened out months ago that it’s frustrating this problem has resurfaced.

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I have also lost almost 5 lbs – and then promptly regained it.

Well, there it is – January’s health update! I’m not off to a very good start this year but my doctor is such an encourager, that I’m clinging to her optimism. I’ve also been going to a chiropractor for my back/hip pain and am summoning up the courage to call the dentist and make a TMJ appointment. So perhaps February will see a change.

Check out my Chronic Pain page to see all my health updates and health advice!

~Laura

 

 

 

Most Popular Posts of 2016

20 Jan

 

I had quite the time deciding which posts to share with you – how do I limit which ones to share? What about the ones that I loved but that didn’t get much love themselves? So. This took quite a while the other evening, paring it down to this – which is still too long, probably but I just couldn’t cut anymore. From doing this though, I see that my health posts are overall the most popular. I will try and write more with this focus for you guys but no promises. I’m over here making it a day at a time, wondering if the new ache I have is because of my Lyme or just an ache that everyone has from time to time. Fun stuff, that.

2016popularposts

Anyway! I’ll get off the rabbit trail and back to the topic! These first few posts are random/fun ones and the rest are organized for easy access. Enjoy, share the ones you love!

Currently – aka why SGL has been so silently lately

Our Weekend in Bend

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HEALTH:

The Big Health Update

Health Update – 8/23/16

Fighting Lyme and Chronic Migraines

Symptoms of my Lyme Disease

Unexpected Side Effects of Chronic Pain

The Tears of My Heart

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leaving the dog park

 

BOOKS REVIEWS:

My Top-15 Favorite books 2016

Book Review – May 2016

Book Review – August 2016

Book Review – The Little Prince

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WRITING:

Writing Shorts

Work in Progress – Amelia’s first caller

Sharing a bit of my Novel

Writing Short -Green Moment

Short Story Sharing – The Feud Changes

Short Story Sharing – The Book

Fun Times on Vacation back Home

 

See you next week,

Laura

 

 

Goals for 2017

13 Jan

You guys, this is just another sign that I’m a half-lame blogger. Two weeks in to January and I’m just now writing a goals post? Hanging my head in shame here folks.

goalsfor2017

 

My Big/Main GOALS:

~ get my first book published this yearwhether this means self-published or traditional, or a small publishing company (my preference!) 

~ Have my second book written in fullnow, since it took me three years to write the first one, I feel like this is a big goal for me but what with having the Ninja Writers and  the Plotting Workshop  (which I wouldn’t have either of these without Shaunta Grimes, so a big shout out to her!)  I feel like this is an attainable goal. 

~Lose weight/get healthier – this is honestly a tricky one for me and my Lyme disease/migraine body. I am hoping I will be able to lose the weight with the bacteria wreaking havoc, and that I will be able to beat the little suckers like my doctor thinks I will. 

My littler/baby step goals:

~Make writing a habit most every day  – I’m not going to push myself and say everyday because sometimes this worn-out body of mine demands a day (or more) of rest, which typically means flat on my back on the couch, but I digress. 

~Grow my blog traffic! – pretty basic one here. Grow SGL til it’s a real community!

~Start a book club on SGL – this is one that I probably won’t start til later on in the  year but it’s an idea that’s percolating!

~Read more books on Messianic Jewish living –  like Restoring the Jewishness of the Gospel

And, for kicks and giggles, a few monthly goals that I want to shoot for:

~Write a one-page letter to a new person – I was on Instagram earlier this week and saw someone was doing this as a daily thing. Now, I love and adore snail mail (sending and receiving) so I’m taking his idea and making it fit what I can do. One letter a month. Now I have a reason to stock up on stationary. (that might have been a motivator all by itself)

~Try a new recipe – time to try all those recipes I’ve been pinning!

~ Watch or read a documentary/biography I’ve had Under Our Skin in the to-watch list on Amazon for months now. I’ve been wanting to read A Chance to Die,  My Life in France and Three Cups of Tea

And now, because I just can’t resist sharing a few photos of the big snowstorm this week:

 

I’m thinking of compiling a 2017 TO-READ BOOK LIST, what with my goal of reading 52 books again this year!

~Laura

What’s your goal(s) for 2017? Share them in the comments, I’d love to hear them!

Health Update – Dec 2016

3 Jan

Hello again lovely readers! I really need to start keeping better notes on how I’ve been. A full month in between is hard to keep track of. Because, right now, I’m liable to say ‘I’ve felt awful this month’. But the truth is probably a little more of ‘ I took some steps backward in health but I had some really good days and have gotten better in this or that area.’ But, without really good notes, I just don’t remember. So. Goal for this coming month is to sit and write a bi-weekly account of how I’m doing.

For a quick report from my migraine app – Migraine Buddy –   Average duration was 43 hrs. Average sleep a night was 7 hrs. 57% happened on weekdays, 43% weekends. Average pain level was 8 , high was 9 and low 6. My top Auras were fatigue/achiness, tingling near eye(s) and weakness. My top 3 triggers were neck pain, too much activity and pre cycle. Top 3 symptoms were neck pain, fatigue and jaw pain. Frequent start positions were temples, eyes and neck. Reliefs that seem to work consistently are : clonidine, oils, belladonna/pulsatilla and heat pad.

So, things have changed a little – duration has gone down a little, they are more evenly spaced during the week/weekends, average pain has gone up, and the auras/triggers/symptoms changed one item.

 

fightinglymemigraines

Overall Health: Better than November – sort of.  As of the last few days I’ve been feeling more like myself than I have all month.

Treatment: I’m still taking two Xiao Chai Hu Tang a day. I have added in one Ashwagandha a day. I started – and had to stop- taking Banderol as the the side effects (major fatigue) were just too bad. The Chaste Tree Berry daily seems to be helping my calf cramps. As I run out of vitamins/supplements, I am going to see if I notice not being on them. Excepting EHB, Ashwandha and a few others. I need to add in iron and butterbur to my regime.

Migraines:  These things have been brutal this month. BRUTAL. I’m pretty sure I told my mom I was dying last monday. That was a migraine like I haven’t had in a long while. Severe to the maximum. I don’t think they’ve gotten better since last month. they might really have taken a turn for the worse. But, the activity that naturally follows the holidays might have something to do with that.

Digestion and TMJ : While my digestion has been better than it was last month, it is still rather…touchy. I’m starting to juice again regularly – I’m going to mix it up and incorporate veggies that are high in iron ( spinach, beet, beet greens, etc) , otherwise the juice is kale, cucumber, celery, carrots, lemon, ginger and apple. Jaw pain goes away faster but is popping like nobody’s business whenever it wants to

Sleep:  The biggest change this past month is probably that I quit taking melatonin every night. I noticed I was sleeping the same length – and waking up the same amount of times –  without it. I’m glad to have one less pill every day. My app says I’m getting about 7 hrs of sleep, and I kid you not, I can predict within a half hour of when I’ll wake up in the morning from when I go to bed. Apparently my internal wake-clock works really well.

My app says I’ve been getting about 7 hours a night but I certainly don’t feel like it! I am still waking up 2-3 times a night to go to the bathroom, and sometimes can’t go back to sleep the last time. I’ve been taking a lot of long naps lately – but still am exhausted by late evening.

Memory/Brain fog:  I feel like my memory has been slipping again. Joy oh joy. I’ve added brain fog into this category because I feel like it’s something that I forget to mention – having had it so long it’s just a part of life now. The fog was heavy most days of Dec, it would lift for part of the day but it doesn’t ever lift completely- especially in a group of people, it kind of covers me like a cloak when there’s a lot of noises buzzing around me.

I did get in to my dr. for a quick acupuncture last week. I found out my results for my nutrient test that I took before Christmas. I’m low in iron, Vitamin A and Vitamin D3  (which reminds me I’m supposed to up the dosage I’ve been taking). It seems like my body is sensitive to almost everything I take to get kill the infections. Sigh. There is always going to be some herxing   but when it’s severe – it’s not fun to have to keep trying new treatments only to have to go off because of what they do to you. But, we keep on keeping on. My dream is to be as healthy as possible (for me) by the end of the year. Which also means, losing some weight. So, I’m going to start working out (in my living room) tomorrow morning. Hopefully three times a week. Combine that with eating healthy and juicing lots, I am hoping to see improvements in my joint pain/cramps, digestion and some weight loss! Here’s to renewed motivation despite chronic pain and fatigue. Lyme disease, I will kick your butt.

~Laura

p.s. that link about herxing is on a site that has a LOT of great articles about Lyme.

p.p.s. this is a great article about Inflammation and Lyme Disease 

 

 

Symptoms of my Lyme Disease

9 Aug

Here is the ‘short’ list of symptoms I’ve been dealing with the past decade odd. I pulled this from the book Why Can’t I Get Better? by Richard Horowitz M.D. – and as such, each one has the different options that can happen. Like the second symptom down, I’ve only had weight gain, not loss. But either one can be a symptom so I put them down.

symptomsoflyme

unexplained fevers, sweats, chills or flushing

unexplained weight gain or loss

fatigue, tiredness

unexplained menstrual irregularity

upset stomach

change in bowel function

chest pain or soreness

shortness of breath, cough

heart palpitations, pulse skips, heart block

joint pain or swelling

stiffness of the joints, neck or back

muscle cramps or pain

twitching of the face or other muscles

headaches

neck cracks, neck stiffness

tingling or numbness, burning or stabbing sensations

eyes/vision: double, blurry, floaters

ears/hearing: buzzing, ringing, ear pain

increased motion sickness, vertigo

light-headedness, wooziness, poor balance, difficulty walking

confusion, difficulty thinking

difficulty with concentration or reading

forgetfulness, poor short-term memory

disorientation: getting lost, going wrong places

difficulty with speech or writing

mood swings, irritability, depression

disturbed sleep: too much or too little or early awakening

 

Many of these come and go. Nausea, legs or feet cramping, mood swings, heart palpitations for example. But the majority are on a daily basis, disturbed sleep, difficulty concentrating, maintaining normal temperature and disorientation. It’s a fun thing, being in this body of mine. heh. So often, I feel like I’m looking at the world through a hazy, gauzy veil – so close to being a part of it, but not able to quite reach through and get there. At the grocery store, the coffee shop or out to dinner – there’s a shroud that makes it hard to fully connect unless I focus. And, sometimes I mean really focus. Whether it’s migraine, leg cramps, overstimulation or mentally testing how my body feels to decide if I need to take another pain pill, there’s always something there to make it that much harder to connect.

Anyway, if you realize you have several of these symptoms I URGE you to go get tested for Lyme Disease. Pay attention to what your body is doing, don’t just assume that some things are just ‘how you are’ or that everybody deals with it. If I had mentioned some of these symptoms to my Dr. years ago we might have been able to diagnose me a lot sooner.

~Laura  

 

 

An Early Morning Health Update

15 Nov

I am surprised how quickly I got used to feeling some better. I don’t realize how nice it is until I have a week like this past one.

OY.

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My couch says ‘welcome back’. Abby the puppy says ‘why aren’t you playing with me’?  I have some fun projects in the works/waiting to be started and I just have no energy or motivation or ability to do them right now. Sigh.

I have found some things that help, typically, to cut the pain back much quicker than I hoped. They are natural, which I love. And I can take them once an hour – hallelujah. One is Pulsatilla and the other Belladonna. They look like little tiny beads, so if you hear me saying ‘i took the beads’, that’s what I’m talking about. Seriously, if I take Pulsatilla throughout the day and take Belladonna when the pain starts to get intense, on a normal, typical day   it’ll knock the severity out of the pain within half an hour. Which is brilliant, of course. But, on days like this past week, shrug. It doesn’t seem to touch the pain. I am so grateful it works majority of the time though!

I am also taking Xiao Yao San to help disperse the little black raincloud that has started forming over me these past months. I am so relieved that, most of the time, it helps. I am a laid back, happy person but, whoooeeeee! Something has gotten unbalanced in me because my mood has been….well. God has helped me bite my tongue and for that, I am grateful. Just this bit of a raincloud over me has made me think of people that struggle with depression and understand a tiny bit more what they are going through.

I started taking Berberine for the gut issues my new Dr. (yay a nice one!) thinks is the cause of a lot of my problems. But, my heart started thumping and my chest would get tender and tight. (I’ve had this periodically over the last 10 years, don’t freak out! it goes away after a while.) So, I had to stop taking the Berberine and overall the heart weirdness has stopped. I go back in beginning of December and I’m hoping I’ll get on something else to help heal my gut issues.

Let’s see – my blood tests showed I was low in several things so I am taking a few vitamins to get them up. I am excited because I just started taking an herb that is supposed to help with my energy levels! YAY!

We found out yesterday both our dogs have fleas and Lady is allergic to them. Which means if she’s awake she’s probably licking, scratching or chewing. Poor things. I am so glad I found a great vet that is just down the street from us, Lady loves them already. We didn’t have fleas in Central Oregon so it never even crossed my mind that that could be the problem! Welcome to the valley, eh?

I’m going to get back to writing on my novel, come back later in the week for a review on a great book! (if it means anything, it’s set in Ireland….scores tons of points right there for me!)

~Laura

 

 

2014 Resolutions

2 Jan

Well Friends, we are 2 days into the new year! As we all know, that includes making a list, whether it’s mental or written down, of what we would like to accomplish or change in our lives these next 364 days.

Bring on the new year,

with it’s fresh pages to write on

to create the story we dream of.

Bring on the  adventures

of which we long for.

Bring on  the trials 

of which we dread 

for it is in those moments that we grow the most

and become who we dream of being. 

I have been mulling it over and have come up with some questions for myself and all of you:

1)What is something outlandish/extravagant/outrageous/fantastic that you would love to do this year?

2) What are some things you think you could accomplish this year?

My mind spins with thoughts for question number 1 – i’ll give you a few of them :

~ get my health back! (you know, the health that i haven’t really had since i was 19)

~ travel somewhere exotic (Israel, Ireland, Scotland, Maine..etc.)

~ and some others that i can’t really share with the whole wide world!

thoughts for number 2 :

~ get in shape to run a 5k

~ start writing  again! (i fell out of the habit so easily! oy vay!)

~figure out my niche for this blog and get going on it!

~become a better housekeeper

So, there you have it friends –  I could make that list so much longer but i’m going to keep it short and sweet and focus on those! Please share with me what your goals are for this coming year,  i love hearing from my (albeit few) readers!

Happy New Year!

~Laura

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