Some inspirations

Wow, 2 posts in 1 day!!  So unlike me!!

I got my journal out this morning and decided to start answering some of the 50 Questions that I spoke of in this post.  I had some of them written in a few words to remind me on the paper I originally printed when I found Mark and Angel’s site but I really want to start actually answering them.  While there I found another great post entitled 30 Challenges for 30 days of Growth.  Quite inspiring just like the 50 Questions post.  I’m not going to repost the 30 Challenges like I did the 50 Questions but instead tell you which ones I’m going to do for the month of Jan.

First, here are some answers to the 50 Questions:

1.  How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?

This is a hard one for me because I’m not sure I totally understand what they are asking.  I’m going to assume they mean how old do you feel along with not knowing how old you really are.  If this is the case then I feel like I’m about 75.  Any of you following this blog will understand why!!  Partly because I have so many doc appts to go to all the time but mostly because of all the aches all over my body.  I am way too young to feel this way at 35!

2. Which is worse, failing or never trying?

Never trying.  This is because if you never try something then you cannot learn from it.  Failure leads to a lesson learned, but if you never try something you live a stale and boring life.

3.  If life is so short, why do we do so many things we don’t like and like so many things we don’t do?

This is because at times we are required to do things we don’t necessarily like to do such as going to work when we don’t want to even if we love our job.  That is just one example.  In the meantime, we may not have the financial means to do the things we want to.  Or just may not have the time.  Our life may have other priorities such as work or children that currently keep us from being able to do what we want to at that moment.  Don’t take this wrong, I love my kids and wouldn’t trade them but life is much different after kids than it was before.

4. When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done?

Probably…………unfortunately.  There are many things I’d like to do and talk about doing but will likely never have the opportunity to do.

That’s a good start for that list for now.  More later.  Now onto the 30 challenges.  I have picked 5 (just numbered 1-5 for me but don’t match the numbers of the challenge on their site) to do in Jan:

1. Use words that encourage happiness

Just like they said, when someone asks how I’m doing I just usually answer ok or fine.  I’m going to try and change that to “Blessed” or something similar.  Because, really, even with my daily struggles I do know that there are TONS of others that have it way worse than me.  Being a nurse I see it daily.  Plus, I sometimes have a hard time remembering and reflecting on the reasons that I AM Blessed.  This will help with that.

2. Dedicate and hour a day to something you are passionate about

I think for this one I’m going to work on getting my ebay business back in order.  The passion here:  getting myself out of debt!!

3.  Concentrate on being positive at all times

I used to be this way.  I’m not sure where along the way I lost it either.  But I do know that I did.  I used to be the person that could see positive in ANY situation and show that to the person in it.  I want to get back there.

4. Document every day with one photograph and one paragraph

I used to do this one too.  I even have a 365 challenge photoblog about it.  But it’s not up to date at all!!  I have most of the pics but just stopped posting to it.  This will help me get back to it.

5. Get rid of one thing a day for 30 days

This one doesn’t need much explanation!!  Declutter my house!

Do you have similar lists of your own?  Do you want to start one?  I welcome comments on what I’ve written in the first 4 of the 50 Questions or comments about your own inspiring lists.

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Filed under 30 Challenges, 50 Questions, inspiration, life, Photography

Thyroid and Rheumotology appts

Appointments back to back days.  Always fun.  But both docs are great so really not too bad other than the time necessary to go to them.

My TSH is 1.20.  Very good for me!!  I’m symptom free from the Grave’s while on the methamazole.  So I’m now supposed to decrease my dose by 1/2 and see her again in 3 months.  Oops haven’t decreased it yet and it’s been two days.  Guess I better get on that!!  I also have to get another thyroid ultrasound.  It’s been since 2009 since I’ve had one.  That one was normal but the one the year before that had nodules on it.

Then the next day off to the rheumatologist.  My arthritis pain is day to day by how good or bad it is.  It’s all over: neck, low back, hands, wrists, elbows, hips, knees & ankles.  Some days I need nothing for it, others I take aspirin.  At the last appointment 6 months ago we tried Celebrex (which he gave me samples of) and it worked fairly well but my insurance wouldn’t pay for it.  So tried Mobic but it gave me restless legs syndrome and I barely slept for 3 days.  It was awful!  This time all the usual questions and pressing on my joints.  This time he decided it was time for “combo therapy”.  Aspirin (the only one that works for me) to combat the inflammation and Lyrica to stop the pain at the nerve endings.  I’m for now to only take it 3x a week and see how it works.  He was also very excited to hear that I was coming off night shift after 14 years.  He said that will improve my health tremendously.  As for the previous talk of Lupus or Sjögren’s Syndrome, it was brief.  He said it’s still on the table and only time will tell.  No bloodwork this time though!!  Yipee!  Recheck in 6 months.

Oh and I called my therapist to ask about starting the Lyrica to make sure it won’t mess with my moods.  They are fairly stable at this point so why rock the boat needlessly.  She comes back to work on Tues so will have to wait for her to call me back before I start it.

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Filed under autoimmune, bipolar type 2, grave's, Lupus, Sjögren's Syndrome

Weight issues

In lieu of the post on the functional medicine doctor I went to see I’m going to today write about one of the therapies he recommended for me.  (Yes, eventually I’ll get the post up about the actual visit with him!!)  For quite some time now I’ve struggled with being about 20-25 lbs overweight.  I know, not tremendous but overweight nevertheless.  And I am the type to carry my excess weight in my belly area……….the WORST area to carry it in.  Puts me at much greater risk of a heart attack.  My Grandmother had one in her early 50’s.  I’m only 35 but still, may as well get a jump on things right!!!

In this frequently mentioned “ghost post” that I keep eluding to I will go over what the doc said about the science of why having your fat stored there is so bad.  And also some of my lab results that are quite frightening.  In the meantime I wanted to get on here my starting, well re-starting point so that I can track my progress.  I say re-starting point because I was doing this right after my appointment and had lost 12 lbs in about 5 weeks.  But then I got nasty sick and ended up on steroids (gotta love that asthma) and just got off track.  I have since gained about 8 lbs back. Ugggh!!

But today I start again:

Wt: 171.4lbs

Waist measurement:  37 inches

(Note to self:  gotta still remember that you have forward progress.  When started 1st time in early Sept wt was 178.6 lbs and waist was 38 inches!!)

Goals:

Wt:  140-145 lbs

Waist:  34 inches

The method I’m using (which totally follows the science of why belly fat is so bad for you) is The Belly Fat Cure by Jorge Cruise.  It just works.  I’m certainly not getting paid by Jorge (wish I was!!) to put that on here but I am only because it works.  I was NEVER hungry.  Sure, I missed a few foods that I used to enjoy but it is so worth it to look and mostly to FEEL better.  I’m not sure I really noticed how much better I was feeling while on it.  But once I went off his lifestyle I almost immediately, like in a few short days, noticed that I was more tired, my joints hurt more again, etc.  It works!!

Today is a new day.  Back to the lifestyle that works so well for me!!  I’m going to try (we all know I’m not terribly good at it though) and blog a few times a week to track my progress.   My goal for that is at least 1x a week with wt updates etc.

Here goes………….

P.S. And a couple side notes:

1.  The superior oblique myokyma is acting up………my eyes are bugging me again.  Grrrr. I forget how frustrating it can be when it’s gone but man having that right eye bouncing is quite annoying.  Makes it hard to see, things occasionally double and gives me headaches.  Went back on my neurontin which treats it pretty well.  I had gotten to get off it for about 6 months.  Hopefully this episode won’t last too long.

2.  Have my next thyroid appt tomorrow for the Grave’s.  Gotta get my TSH checked today.

3.  Have my next appt with the rheumatologist on Thurs.  Will have to get more labs done for that appt too.  Wish I could pair them together a bit better, the labs that is.  Luckily I’m not afraid of needles.  We’ll see what he has to say about my joints etc.

4.  Had some really bad pain in my left hip.  MUCH more than the right or in any other joint.  Thought maybe it was that my arthritis was progress very rapidly in that hip which would seem weird but man was it bad.  Went to an orthopedist and he did a hip MRI looking for all kinds of stuff.  No tears to the capsule in the joint, no inflammation (meaning my arthritis isn’t RA which is what the rheumatologist had said, just plain ol OA).  Turns  out the pain was from bursitis which I’ve had before but mixed with the arthritis I didn’t really recognize it.  Got a cortisone injection into it and boy what a difference!!  I would say I’m back to pain free but that would be lying!!  Back to my baseline for pain now, which I certainly will take anyday!

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Filed under autoimmune, eye movement disorder, grave's, Weight Loss

Health Update

I said I was going to be better about keeping this blog up to date, but I really haven’t.  I just don’t seem to find the time or energy.  But I figured I’d give a quick health update….although with me it’s never really quick…..

I go in a few weeks to see the rheumatologist again.  Not sure if I ever said that I went to one in the past, but I went about 6 months ago for this unrelenting joint pain.  I’ve had in since my early 20’s but only in my bigger joints (hips, knees, etc)  Every few years a set of joints would be added until last year it started in my hands.  Basically now everywhere is involved except my feet and mid back.  I do have the pain in my lower back and my neck.  The rheumatologist found that I have osteoarthritis or OA (yipee, not rheumatoid) but he’s not yet sure from what.  Since I already have Grave’s Disease which is an autoimmune disorder he thinks that my OA is caused by another autoimmune disease.  He says only time will tell which one but he thinks it will be either Sjögren’s Syndrome or Lupus.  NEITHER OF WHICH I WANT TO HAVE.  Oh was I yelling there??  So sorry!!  Currently my labs are negative for either but I do have about 3/4 of the symptoms for the Sjögren’s Syndrome.  Either way my OA is fairly bad and I’m in pain daily.

Related to the above I’m going to see an orthopedist in a few weeks too.  I haven’t seen one since my mid 20’s for the joints and since they are getting so bad I want a re-eval at this point to see where they are at. 

My Grave’s is pretty stable currently on the methamazole.  Yipee!!

My migraines are FINALLY under control and have been for about 6 months now (maybe longer).  I am currently off all migraine meds and just getting botox treatments.  I get approx 20 injections in my forehead and along my head to my neck and shoulders every 3 months.  About the only time I get a headache now is if I’m sick and it’s a sinus headache or about a week before my next appointment.

My iron levels are stable and have been since my last iron infusion in Feb 2010.  In fact, I think after my next appt in 6 months my hematologist is going to discharge me!!

Then there is the asthma…..on a daily basis I am ok.  But when I get sick I’m really not.  I have been sick 3 times in the last 5 months with resp issues.  This last time was the worst episode I’ve ever had.  I have cough-varient asthma.  So, basically I begin coughing and cannot stop which closes off my airway.  I got acute bronchitis a monthish ago and had one of these attacks.  Went thru an entire inhaler in about a week (don’t do this!!) and then had to urgently go to the doc’s office and get a breathing treatment there.  I was ALREADY on steroids at this point so he tripled them and added all kinds of other meds.   I have to go back in a few weeks to check my lung functions.

I was able to go off my meds for my eyes.   I have that weird, rare eye movement disorder called superior oblique myokyma.  I have been off the meds for 3-4 months but a few days ago the symptoms restarted and the double vision is rearing it’s ugly head so back on them I go…..grrrr.

I think that’s about it for now.  Ok wait………..I went to see a functional health doc to try and tie some or all of this stuff together.  It was an awesome visit and I learned  ALOT!!  I will get to that in another post when I feel up to it.  It will be a novel!!  But a good one, some bad stuff but good overall.

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Filed under asthma, autoimmune, botox for migraines, eye movement disorder, grave's, headaches, iron deficiency, Lupus, Sjögren's Syndrome

50 Questions to make you think…….

While working on something for my 101 in 1001 list I came across this site:  marcandangel  and I love it.  It really makes you think.  It has some inspiring posts too.

I particularily like this post.  It has 50 questions “that wil free your mind”.  I wish I had a spot left on my 1001 list for it.  So, instead I will put answers to the questions on here.  It just won’t be an official part of my 101 in 1001 list. 

Here are the 50 Questions:

These questions have no right or wrong answers.

Because sometimes asking the right questions is the answer.

  1. How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?
  2. Which is worse, failing or never trying?
  3. If life is so short, why do we do so many things we don’t like and like so many things we don’t do?
  4. When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done?
  5. What is the one thing you’d most like to change about the world?
  6. If happiness was the national currency, what kind of work would make you rich?
  7. Are you doing what you believe in, or are you settling for what you are doing?
  8. If the average human life span was 40 years, how would you live your life differently?
  9. To what degree have you actually controlled the course your life has taken?
  10. Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things?
  11. You’re having lunch with three people you respect and admire.  They all start criticizing a close friend of yours, not knowing she is your friend.  The criticism is distasteful and unjustified.  What do you do?
  12. If you could offer a newborn child only one piece of advice, what would it be?
  13. Would you break the law to save a loved one?
  14. Have you ever seen insanity where you later saw creativity?
  15. What’s something you know you do differently than most people?
  16. How come the things that make you happy don’t make everyone happy?
  17. What one thing have you not done that you really want to do?  What’s holding you back?
  18. Are you holding onto something you need to let go of?
  19. If you had to move to a state or country besides the one you currently live in, where would you move and why?
  20. Do you push the elevator button more than once?  Do you really believe it makes the elevator faster?
  21. Would you rather be a worried genius or a joyful simpleton?
  22. Why are you, you?
  23. Have you been the kind of friend you want as a friend?
  24. Which is worse, when a good friend moves away, or losing touch with a good friend who lives right near you?
  25. What are you most grateful for?
  26. Would you rather lose all of your old memories, or never be able to make new ones?
  27. Is is possible to know the truth without challenging it first?
  28. Has your greatest fear ever come true?
  29. Do you remember that time 5 years ago when you were extremely upset?  Does it really matter now?
  30. What is your happiest childhood memory?  What makes it so special?
  31. At what time in your recent past have you felt most passionate and alive?
  32. If not now, then when?
  33. If you haven’t achieved it yet, what do you have to lose?
  34. Have you ever been with someone, said nothing, and walked away feeling like you just had the best conversation ever?
  35. Why do religions that support love cause so many wars?
  36. Is it possible to know, without a doubt, what is good and what is evil?
  37. If you just won a million dollars, would you quit your job?
  38. Would you rather have less work to do, or more work you actually enjoy doing?
  39. Do you feel like you’ve lived this day a hundred times before?
  40. When was the last time you marched into the dark with only the soft glow of an idea you strongly believed in?
  41. If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today?
  42. Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous?
  43. What is the difference between being alive and truly living?
  44. When is it time to stop calculating risk and rewards, and just go ahead and do what you know is right?
  45. If we learn from our mistakes, why are we always so afraid to make a mistake?
  46. What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you?
  47. When was the last time you noticed the sound of your own breathing?
  48. What do you love?  Have any of your recent actions openly expressed this love?
  49. In 5 years from now, will you rememberwhat you did yesterday?  What about the day before that?  Or the day before that?
  50. Decisions are being made right now.  The question is:  Are you making them for yourself, or are you letting others make them for you?

 

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101 in 1001

It’s time again!!  For a new 101 in 1001 list that is.  I did one before and did horribly on trying to finish it.  I don’t think I even did half of what was on it 😦  But this time I will strive to do much better. 

The new list is up on it’s own page.  Check it out and tell me what you think.

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It’s time!!

I think it’s time to revive this blog.  It’s been quite awhile since I’ve written anything and I need to get back to it.  I really like that it’s become a haven for those with low iron.  I’m glad to have helped anyone in that catagory!!

As to me, let’s do some health updates:

My iron has remained stable.  I went to the hematologist on 7/27 and really expected my ferritin to be low.  I’ve just started becoming symptomatic again.  Starting with the shortness of breath and the thigh muscle fatigue.  But my numbers are good so for now we just watch my symptoms and see where it goes.  Also, instead of waiting 6  months for my next check they are going to do it in 3.  It’s been since sometime in 2010 since I had my last infusion.

My asthma is doing well.  I’ve FINALLY learned to treat myself well when I get a cold.  That’s my biggest trigger for my asthma.  Instead of just using my rescue inhaler as needed I start on my steroid inhaler at the first sign of a cold.  It has done wonders.  No more wet cough for 6 weeks!!  It’s wonderful 🙂

I have started getting botox for my migraines!!  I rarely get those HUGE incapacitating migraines that knock you down for a few days.  Instead I get less severe ones about 5 days a week 😦  It’s awful to say the least.  After tying all the preventative meds in the book we finally got the insurance company to approve botox injections.  I can’t say it feels the greatest but it has done wonders.  I have gotten 2 treatments so far and am due for my 3rd next week.  They are done every 3 months.

The newest thing: I have been diagnosed with type 2 bipolar disorder.  I had been improperly diagnosed with major depression for quite awhile now but just never felt “better” or that it was the whole picture.  Bipolar disorder runs in my family and most of us have type 2 but my maternal grandfather does have the classic type 1. I am seeing a great APRN for it and she has me on the right med so I’m am doing great.  My moods are fairly stable and I’m much happier and less irritable.  I tend to be VERY affected by my surroundings the people in my life but therapy has helped with that and I am much more aware of it.  Being aware of how things affect me has made a huge difference for me.

And the last thing:  I’m going to a new doctor in a few weeks.  He is an intergrative health doctor.  He focuses on how hormones and allergies and more holistic things affect you.  I just got a ton of blood work done today for him before my first visit so that we can just sit down and get to business!!  More to come on that.

Oh…….one more…..I’m sure I’ve written about my chronic joint pain on here.  I FINALLY got around to going to a rheumatologist and I have early onset osteoarthritis.  He isn’t totally sure why but told me that I’m an “autoimmune mess”  Yep, his words.  I already have Grave’s Disease and he said it will be a matter of time before I develop Lupus or Sjorgren’s Disease.  The Sjorgren’s could already be present.  My labs were negative for it but I have about 3/4 of the symptoms so for now he is just watching me.

Ok, that’s the latest.  Come back and read me again.  I’ll do my best to stay active!!

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Filed under asthma, autoimmune, bipolar type 2, botox for migraines, grave's, headaches, iron deficiency, undiagnosed