Jun 26, 2011

I think I'm done...

...blogging! I have decided to officially stop blogging! I just never think about it anymore and my interest is on other things right now. I still like to read a few blogs, but it is only a few these days. Every time I think I'm going to start blogging on a more regular basis, I get busy or interested in something else. My main focus right now, besides my family and my walk with God, is my yoga practice and studying anatomy for yoga. Who would have ever thought anatomy could be so interesting?! When I very first started blogging a few years ago, it was mainly about gluten free food and honestly I do NOT want to focus on food anymore. Then I kind of blogged about health issues and that gets old real fast! I live with my issues everyday and I don't find it helpful to focus on that either. I guess I basically feel like I don't have much to say and I would much rather have my nose in a book or my body on my yoga mat.:) Thanks for reading!!

Jun 24, 2011

Achy Breaky Heart

I woke up this morning with a very heavy heart! You see, I have recently been keeping up with two sad stories and my heart is breaking for those involved. You can read what I'm talking about here and here. I know God is working, but I also believe we are supposed to grieve and pray for those that are suffering. The weird part is, I don't even know the girl with cancer and the mother of the baby in the hospital, I only met while at yoga retreat last fall. I just know I need to pray for them!

When reading stories like these, it also makes me more grateful for my own life. It makes my illness and problems seem so small in comparison. It also makes me realize that while we can do our best to be healthy~eat the right foods and exercise etc., it is GOD who determines our path in life. I know this, but it seems more real now. It is only by God's grace that I am not lying in a hospital bed with cancer or have a child in the hospital. God is good ALL the time, but some things are hard to understand and our hearts grieve for those that are suffering.

If you read this post, please say a prayer for the Baby Daisy and for Susan. I know there can be a lot of negative things about how dependent we are on technology these days, but one good thing is we can spread the word for prayer faster and farther than ever before!

Jun 18, 2011

The Beauty of Yoga

Yoga is so much more than how far you can reach your leg etc., but it is also a beautiful practice.





(All images found on Google images)

Jun 15, 2011

Work to Do

Portable Computer | Free Pictures
Hey there! I mentioned in my last post that I wanted to start posting more often and then~I got a laptop! Yay! It's not a brand new one but it will save my poor back from sitting at the desktop too long. Because I now have this laptop, I can blog from anywhere which will be SUPER nice! I just have some work to do to get everything going on the laptop. it was my son's and there are some things I need to change etc. I also need to download my camera software (which I first need to find!) in order to post any pictures. AND, I need to find a way to keep a certain someone in my house from leaving the laptop on constantly and running my battery completely out! I am actually on the desktop now because my laptop died during the night:( Not to worry though~it is currently being revived. Anyway, hopefully I will be in full swing soon!

I taught yoga yesterday and can I just say I LOVE what I do now!! It was such an awesome class and the ladies are just fabulous! I also have two young boys (9&10) in my class and they do GREAT! One of them is SO cute because he takes me serious when I remind them to make sure they are breathing~SO cute! I love to hear him doing his deep breathing:) We are in the process of finding another place to meet so that I won't have to pay so much rent. I do have a small prayer request too. Not only do we need to find another building, but I would appreciate prayer for growth in the class and prayer that I would receive enough donations to help bring in some income for my family. I am VERY pleased with the turn out so far, but my desire is for the class to really reach a lot of people. As for donations, people are being generous, but by the time I pay what I think is a high rent, I don't make much profit. I'm not in this for the money, but making some certainly wouldn't hurt. I also have a facebook page now that you can 'like' and it would help spread the word:)

Jun 11, 2011

Loving Life:)

Okay, so I bet you thought I had fallen off the face of the earth, huh? Well, I didn't. I've just been busy with life~that kind of happens when you have three youngin's (15, 18 and 20). Gosh, when did I become so old?! Anyway, in my last post, forever ago, I was sharing that I had finally quit work. I'm tellin' ya, I LOVE not working!!!!! When I first stopped working, I was happily catching up on all kinds of things that had been neglected for too long, but that got old real fast. I am happy to have time to do more around my house, but I really don't want my life to be all about cleaning~UGH! My hubby's work schedule is different now so I am also VERY happy to be spending more time with him. We have been trying to walk together about 3 times a week and I LOVE that!

As for yoga, I am teaching one class a week right now and hope to maybe add more later. I don't want to over-commit myself. Did I mention that I LOVE not working?:) Yeah, so anyway, I do also love teaching yoga! It's not a big money maker as I made the classes donation based, but I truly am blessed to be able to teach.

In the health department, I am NOT magically cured because I am no longer working. One of the reasons I have not been blogging much is that I have had a lot to work through emotionally and just coming to terms with where I am physically. Don't get me wrong, I have improved some since quitting work. I am still going to physical therapy twice a week, trying to eat right (that's SO hard), and trying to learn to be active without overdoing it (so NOT good at that one!). I think before I quit my job, I thought that I WOULD magically be better and it was pretty depressing to realize that that was not the case. I am learning not to take the little things for granted and to appreciate what my body CAN do instead of focusing on what I can't do. I DO still have PAIN and lots of fatigue, but I get to stay home and rest when I need to:) On top of that, I LOVE MY FAMILY!!!!

Hope you all are doing well and thanks so much for stopping by:) I hope to start posting more often, but who knows what tomorrow will bring!

Apr 27, 2011

It Is What It Is

Well, today was my official last day of work!! Can I get a BIG Hallelujah shout?! Time to start a new season of my life that does NOT include scrubbing other people's toilets:) As excited as I am, this is also a little scary~like, I really did it~I quit, after 8 years! Yikes! You see, I am the type of person that likes to have everything all figured out and I like to KNOW what is going to happen tomorrow or next week. Now, I HAVE NO IDEA!!

I have taken steps to start teaching yoga twice a week, but ultimately, I really don't have any control over how many people (if any) come to my classes. I'm also nervous about the teaching itself. I don't know how my body is going to feel from one day to the next. You don't even want to hear all the other 'what if's' going through my head. Believe me, there are LOTS!

I just came from physical therapy and I have mentioned before how much I like my PT and how we talk the whole time she is killing  working on me. She was laughing at me today because I seem to always want things to be different than they are or I am always thinking 'what if' kind of stuff. For instance, I asked her, "What if I'm not better by the time my insurance is done paying for visits?" Then I said, "I hope it's pretty tomorrow." I could give you more examples, but you get the idea. I am ALWAYS thinking ahead and it adds to the tension and pain in my body. I also ignore my body and clean (and move dressers:) when I shouldn't be! And I wonder why I keep taking 2 steps forward and 1-2 steps back with  my pain.

I said all that to say that I just need to learn that 'it is what it is'. Why can't I just live in the now and be at peace and content. The therapist suggested that I go to behavioral therapy, but I'm not really up for that. I'm not sure I need therapy (although I might:), but one thing I AM sure of is that I NEED GOD! I've been really thinking about this verse this week:

"The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace..." Romans 8:6

The mind controlled by the Spirit (of God) is LIFE and PEACE! I do NOT have peace when I am trying to control or figure everything out! I know this in my head, but need to LIVE IT:)

How about you? Can any of you relate to my struggle? I know I'm not alone in this~we could all just go to therapy together:)  

Apr 26, 2011


I seriously did not mean to go so long between post! I have not been on the computer as much lately and it has actually been kind of nice:) I have been trying to get some priorities straight around here and it feels good to slow down and rethink some things. Tomorrow is my LAST CLEANING DAY!!!! I am excited beyond belief and have been feeling like I am somehow starting over. I have had more motivation to do things around my own house! I spent all day yesterday cleaning  (my house) and LOVED the feeling of accomplishment~and the feeling of pain meds., hehe:) It's amazing how quiting my job is helping me look at life through a different set of eyes! My eating is better, my mood is better, my body~not so much~yet.

Just wanted to pop in and say "HI" and I'm still here! I hope to be back to regular posting soon:) Thanks for stopping by!

Apr 14, 2011

Takin' the Plunge!

I am FINALLY doing it!! I AM QUITING MY CLEANING JOB!!!! This past week has been a whirlwind of decisions, emotions and business stuff. Let me back up a bit:) In my last post, I was telling you about my wonderful physical therapist and how she encourages me. Well, one thing she said to me last week that I didn't talk about was this "If you keep going like you are, you will eventually get to the point that you can't do anything!" At the time, I kind of shrugged it off, but it just kept coming back to me. I started thinking about why I just kept doing something that is obviously detrimental to my health. My number one reason was FEAR! I was SO afraid that if I quit, we would sink financially. Granted, I don't make that much, but it does help put food on the table. I decided it was high time that I trust God completely and take a huge leap of faith. After prayer and tears and talking with my mom and my best friend~I had made my decision. My mom was very helpful because she also has fibro. I talked with my husband that night and it was official!

Now what? I am actually taking two giant leaps of faith! Not only am I quiting cleaning, but I am also going to start teaching yoga~GASP! A yoga teacher near me sent me a link about this guy that teaches yoga from his wheelchair! What?! Okay, if he can do it, surely I can do it. My therapist has given me the go ahead and I have two places already lined up to teach. Man, things happen fast! I am supposed to start the first week of May. I still have two more weeks to finish out my cleaning.

I am excited to see how my body improves once the cleaning is over and, of course, I am very excited about finally being able to do something I love! There is potential to make MORE teaching yoga than I was able to make cleaning. I am still battling fear of the unknown, but I just have to keep taking it to God. He knows my situation~duh!

Apr 6, 2011

Pieces to the Puzzle

                             I went to physical therapy today and can I just say I love my PT! Not only is she awesome at bodywork and improving my pain, she is also very knowledgeable about health and nutrition. She has suffered with Lyme's disease and she can totally relate to people like me. Every time I go, we talk a lot about the pieces of the puzzle that are going to bring me to a better place with my health. I don't do a very good job at putting the pieces together on my own and it is SO helpful to have someone reminding me why I'm doing certain things. The pieces to my puzzle are: diet, exercise, sleep/rest, changing careers~hopefully, supplements and working with several different Dr.s.

The one that seems to get me the most is diet! We talked a lot about that today and I realize that I am not serving myself or bettering my health when I get slack in my eating. When you have a chronic illness or even suffer emotionally, it is SO easy to think that food will make you feel better. For instance, I don't feel good so I think a piece of cake will make me feel better. What I don't take into consideration is what that piece of cake will make me feel like after the joy of eating it is all over. Don't get me wrong, I don't sit around eating cake all the time, but sometimes I just get so tired of caring what I eat. I think I just want something to bring me pleasure~even if it is only for 5 minutes! After talking with the PT today, I feel a little more encouraged to eat healthy for the right reasons. Sometimes the cravings for junk are more than I can bear, but I am only harming myself if I give in. I KNOW certain foods aggravate my health and I am praying for strength to stay away from those foods.

It is easy to feel overwhelmed by all the different pieces to the puzzle. I have to remember that when you sit down to work a puzzle, the pieces don't just fall into place instantly. I recently started working on a 1,000 piece puzzle and it reminded me of the patience it takes to fit the pieces together. My health puzzle can be no different. I have been trying to figure things out for YEARS and I'm STILL not there, BUT I know more than I did a year ago:) My PT gives me hope because she has also traveled a long journey with her health and it has paid off for her. I just have to take it one piece at a time:)

Is there a puzzle in your life that you are having to be patient with? I would love to hear from more of my readers:)

Apr 4, 2011

Birthday Bash

Yesterday was my daughter's 15th birthday! Boy, do I feel old! She is the youngest of my three children and I can't even believe how fast the years have gone by! She TOTALLY got spoiled this weekend by her Aunt. They left early Friday morning to go to Pigeon Forge, Tn. Here are a few pictures of The Inn at Christmas Place where they stayed.

They shopped 'til they dropped on Friday and then Saturday went to Dollywood for a day of roller coaster riding.

Elizabeth loves owls~sign says "will work for worms":)
All that roller coaster riding worked up an appetite so they then headed to the Dixie Stampede for a show and dinner.

Elizabeth finally arrived home around 4pm Sunday from her weekend full of fun! That evening, she had some friends over for pizza, cake and ice cream~and lots of laughs:)

I'm pretty sure Elizabeth would say that this was the BEST birthday EVER!! Happy Birthday Lillybeth:)

Apr 2, 2011

Keepin' it Simple

It amazes me that I used to LOVE to cook and always wanted to try new recipes. I spent most weekends making homemade gluten free bread and all sorts of other goodies. Getting a new food magazine in the mail was like Christmas to me! Now, I have NO desire to cook~zero!!!! A lot has changed with my health since the days that I cooked all the time. I used to be really good about making a menu and sticking to it. In fact, I felt lost without it. Now, a menu stresses me out! I spend all this time making the menu and shopping for all the stuff and then when it comes time for me to cook what's on the menu, I have NO energy for it. I have also learned that buying fresh veggies is a waste of money for me~gasp! I know, why would I not want to buy fresh veggies? Simple~because I let them rot! I throw more veggies in the trash than I actually use. Obviously I don't do this just out of pure carelessness, I just don't have the energy to mess with them. I have zucchini and cabbage in my fridge right now that need to be used, but I have had a BAD last couple of days and I am not about to cut veggies!

So, to make sure I am getting some veggies and fairly healthy meals without having to slave in the kitchen, I am buying frozen veggies and keeping meals simple. For breakfast today, I had a PureFit bar. It was the first one I had ever had and I liked it well enough that I will buy more. Simple breakfast~check:)

For lunch I had this:
Chicken breast, steamed veggies and gluten free toast
All I had to do was steam the frozen veggies, toss the chicken in the skillet and the toast in the oven. I bought a box of all natural chicken breast that are individually wrapped so I can take one out when I want and not have to cook the whole bag at once. Totally yummy! Simple lunch~check:)

Then for dinner I had this:
Homemade beans and 'weanies'

I had some leftover beans that I cooked the other day. I cooked up an Applegate Organic sausage and added it to the beans for a very filling dinner. I also munched on some kettle corn (LOVE this stuff!) while the sausage was cooking. I have a full tummy and I didn't kill myself cooking. Now that's the kind of meals I like!:)

Do you like to fix complicated gourmet meals or keep things simple? Simple can be yummy and healthy!

Mar 31, 2011

Transition Time

I wrote in this post last week about my Dr. and my physical therapist both recommending a change in my 'career'. I have been thinking a LOT about that and praying a LOT about that! The thing is, I WANT TO TEACH YOGA!! I don't want to get a job doing anything else! I don't want to be a secretary or a banker or anything else. I feel like God gave me this desire to teach Holy Yoga for a reason and He provided in miraculous ways for me to do the training. I keep thinking to myself, "Why would God provide like He did if I were never going to be able to teach?". Well, I obviously do NOT have the answers, but I do feel like I am getting some direction. I am SO thankful that God cares about this kind of stuff in our lives!

I went to therapy again yesterday and talked to the therapist the whole time she was working on me about my desire to teach yoga and stop cleaning. My main question for her was if she thought my body could handle teaching. My myofascial pain is improving~not gone but improving:) I have been able to do yoga three times this week and it didn't kill me!! YAY!! I do have to be extra careful, but the therapist thinks I can do enough to teach. That was the most encouraging news I have had in months!! Seriously!! She also thinks having a job I LOVE would be more beneficial to my health than doing something I really do not like~that is a nice way to put it:)

One good point the therapist made, was that we have never had a chance to see how my body would respond if I were ONLY doing yoga and NOT cleaning. I had never really thought about that before, but it hasn't left my mind since. Where do I go from here? I can't really afford to stop cleaning cold turkey, so my only option really is to keep cleaning AND try to get my yoga up and running. I'm not sure if my body can handle both, but I'll never know if I don't take a leap of faith! God knows my situation and I am really crying out to Him for wisdom. Who knows, He could do a miracle and make a way for me to stop cleaning tomorrow! If not, I am praying He will give me the grace to clean while I start teaching. Praying for lots of students to come my way:)!

Have you had to take a leap of faith recently? I would love to hear about it:) Thanks for reading my blog!

Mar 29, 2011

A Timely Devotion

I read this devotion today and couldn't believe how 'on the spot' it was for me so I thought I would share it with you:) This is from 'Streams In The Desert' by L.B Cowman.

                              " See how the lilies of the field grow" (Matthew     6:28)
      "Many years ago there was a monk who needed olive oil, so he planted an olive tree sapling. After he finished planting it, he prayed, 'Lord, my tree needs rain so its tender roots may drink and grow. Send gentle showers.' And the Lord sent gentle showers. Then the monk prayed, 'Lord, my tree needs sun. Please send it sun.' And the sun shone, gliding the once-dripping clouds. 'Now send frost, dear Lord, to strengthen its branches,' cried the monk. And soon the little tree was covered in sparkling frost, but by evening it had died.
       The monk sought out a brother monk in his cell and told him of his strange experience. After hearing the story, the other monk said,'I also planted a little tree. See how it is thriving! But I entrust my tree to it's God. He who made it knows better than a man like me what it needs. I gave God no constraints or conditions, except to pray, 'Lord, send what it needs--whether that be storm or sunshine, wind, rain, or frost. You made it, and you know best what it needs."

I read this and realized how many times I think I know what is best for my children or myself. I think I have it all figured out. I think I know better than God how to care for things and that is SO NOT TRUE!! I am always fretting and worrying and wanting things to go a certain way because I think that way is best, when really I am killing the tree!! I am trying to learn to STOP trying to control everything and realize that if God can cause the lilies in the field to flourish, or the olive tree to thrive, then surely He knows what is best for me and my family! I can trust Him with my children, my health, my finances, my marriage and anything else in my life, but I don't always live like I trust Him.

Are there areas in your life that you are trying to control or having a hard time trusting Him? I am a control freak and that really needs to change!!

Mar 28, 2011

A Taxing Day

Today has been a LONG day!! It started out with this:
SNOW!! Seriously?!

I thought it was supposed to be SRING! Does that look like spring to you? I didn't think so! It didn't stick around long though so all is good. I'm not a big fan of snow~especially at the end of March.

Today was TAX day~ugh! Before I could get started on taxes, I had to tidy up a bit. I can't concentrate when things are all in disarray. My cats have decided that finding any available paper and shredding it into 5 billion pieces is a fun hobby. I am NOT a fan of their new form of entertainment! I cleaned all that up and then decided I needed to dust and vacuum the computer room. Have you ever noticed that the more you clean, the more you find to clean? I HATE it when that happens!

I eventually was able to sit down and get to work on the dreaded taxes and I decided to get my daughter involved. We home school and I thought what better way for her to learn some 'real life' skills. She was actually very helpful:) We worked until well past lunch and didn't even realize it! The problem with taxes, or ours anyway, is that I have to spend HOURS making sure everything is right because I am self-employed. I have decided being self-employed is a royal pain in the neck! Not only does it make taxes harder, we have to pay self-employment taxes which eats up some of what little income I make. I finally finished up about 7 this evening and then proceeded to head straight for the pain meds.:) Sitting at the computer ALL day does a number on the back!!

All in all, it was a decent day. The snow didn't stick around, taxes are done and my daughter learned a thing or two. Now I am ready to go chill. I have been on this computer long enough:)

Did any of you get snow? Do you find it easier to concentrate when things are tidy?

In other news, I am now able to reply to your comments through email (if your email address is available). Look forward to 'chatting' with more of my readers:)

Mar 27, 2011

Just Another Phase

This is not the most current picture but one my favorites:)
This weekend has been an interesting one! Who would have thought I am old enough to have my firstborn moving out?! My 20 yr. old is out on his own and it seems like just yesterday he was a tiny tot getting into everything. In light of my son moving out, I have been doing a LOT of reflecting and remembering.

When my kids were very small, I remember thinking "This is just a phase". What I didn't realize was that kids go from one phase right smack into another one! I DON'T mean that in a bad way at all. Some of the phases have been hard, but others have been lots of fun. Over the last few days, I could (and have) very easily sit and think about all the things I wish I would have done differently. I wish we would have laughed more and stressed less. I wish I would have just enjoyed my kids more instead of all the things I felt I HAD to get done. I guess every parent probably goes through the 'wishing' and 'what if's'. I have to remind myself that it is ONLY by the grace of God that my kids have turned out okay. I have not been a perfect parent and I don't think there is such a thing, but I have done the best that I knew how. I am grateful for all the lessons I have learned through raising my children. I don't know how many times I have felt like God was smacking me right between the eyes when dealing with my kids~like, duh, I am doing the same thing they are!!

While I have done a lot of reflecting and wishing, I also realize that this moment is what we raise them for. Our job as parents is to raise our kids the best we can~to hopefully know and love God, to hopefully know how to love and serve others, to know how to earn a living and care for a family and to make wise choices (like not living on PopTarts:). Even if they don't always make wise choices, it is our job to love them and show Christ to them. I can't say that I have done any of this perfectly, but I have given them my whole heart. This next phase of my son's life is an exciting one. It is one that I will see what kind of man he has become. I have invested 20 years into this boy's life and I am not done yet. It may look different now, but he will always be my 'child'.

I still have an 18-1/2 yr. old son at home and my daughter is getting ready to turn 15, so my parenting days are nowhere near over. I still need lots of grace and I'm sure I have a lot more to learn about God and myself through my parenting.

P.S. Thanks to all of you lovely readers who left comments on my last post!! Comments are so fun:) I have also had fun giving my blog a face lift! I wanted something cheery and this template makes me happy:) Can you tell I'm ready for Spring?!

Mar 26, 2011

Time on my Mat:)

Ahh, I finally spent some time on my yoga mat this morning! I haven't done yoga in what seems like forever! I have learned a lot about my body since going to physical therapy and my view of yoga is changing~for the better. Before, I looked at yoga as 'exercise' and a 'workout'. I wanted to get the most out of my practice~as in gaining 7 lbs. of muscle over the last year. I always thought that if I didn't sweat and feel like I was going to kill over, then I didn't do enough or do it right. Fast forward to now~I just want to be on my mat! I just want the quiet and stillness that yoga brings. I want to slow down and pay attention to what I'm feeling!

One thing I have learned through physical therapy is that I don't breathe right. You would think that as long as you're alive, you must be breathing right, but that is not always the case. I read somewhere (don't remember where) that 98% of people do not breathe properly. I do what is called paradoxical breathing and it is not good for my health. It basically means that when I inhale, my belly typically moves inward instead of expanding out and making space for more air. When you inhale, your belly should get bigger! When you exhale, your belly should sink in. Pay attention to how you are breathing today and see if you may need to work on breathing properly:)

In light of what I have learned about my breathing, I spent this morning's yoga practice REALLY focusing on my breath. I moved very deliberately, very slowly, and very cautiously. I didn't worry about doing all my favorite challenging poses. I played a very slow, relaxing CD and tried to listen to my body. I don't think I hurt myself this time! I think I'll call my new style of yoga 'Slow Motion Yoga':)

I also like to have a scripture or something to ponder in my practice. This is what I focused on this morning: 

   "Oh, dear heart, what is your condition? Are you torn with anguish? Are you sorely distressed? Are you lonely? Are you pushed aside? Then cry to God. No one else can help you. He is your only hope. Wonderful hope! Cry to Him, for He can help you. I tell you, in that cry of yours will be the pure and true worship God desires. He desires a sincere cry far more than the slaughter of ten thousand rams or the pouring out of rivers of oil (Mic. 6:7)... See then, poor, weeping, and distracted ones, that it is not ritualism, it is not the performance of pompous ceremonies, it is not bowing and struggling, it is not using sacred words, but it is crying to God in the hour of trouble that is the most acceptable sacrifice your spirit can bring before the throne of God."
                                                                         Charles Spurgeon
Hope you all have a blessed weekend!

Mar 24, 2011

Eight LONG Years!

Most of you probably already know that I clean houses for a living. I have cut back a lot recently due to my health and am now only cleaning two houses a week~compared to 5-6 a week. Cutting back has helped some but I honestly think I need a change. I went to physical therapy yesterday and my regular Dr. today and they BOTH suggested a change in my career! The therapist said she thinks I have the worst job for my health! The Dr. suggested maybe going back to school or finding an easier job. I have been cleaning for eight years as of next week and my body is DONE!

The problem is, I don't know where to go from here. I have spent the last 20 years raising children and being self-employed either babysitting or cleaning. The last 'real' job I had was at a bank right before I started cleaning. So, I don't have a lot (or any) experience with all the computer stuff I might need to get a good part time job. Another problem is that I can make more money in less time by cleaning than I could make working part time somewhere. I like being my own boss and making my own schedule. What I DON'T like is what it does to my body!

I am certified to teach yoga, but that is not really an option until I get my chronic myofascial pain under control. It is improving, but not to the point that I would feel comfortable teaching yoga. I guess I really need to pray about what to do. Do I be patient and wait to be able to teach yoga, or do I look for a part time job doing who knows what? Have any of you ever gone back to work after years of not working~for someone else that is? I would love to hear your thoughts:)

In other news, I am back on Savella. I had said before that I was NOT going to take it again, but after talking with my Dr., I have decided to give it one more shot. He assured me that the weak feeling should go away, but it may take a month or two. So, no more Naltrexone~which means I can take pain meds. when needed:)

Hope you are all well! I have been blog reading some, but just haven't been much in the computer mood lately:) Thanks for stopping by!

Mar 18, 2011

Need to Clean it up a Bit

Over the years, I have read LOTS of diet and health books~and I do mean LOTS! Right now I'm reading a book called 'Why We Hurt'. It's not a diet book, but he does talk a lot about how diet can affect our health in positive or not so positive ways. I have probably been on every diet known to mankind, either trying to lose weight or trying to feel better. I haven't really found a specific diet to help with fibro. and I don't think there is one out there. What I DO know, is that eating good, whole, clean foods is best for overall health. It seems like no matter what you read about health, eating whole foods is a common theme. It doesn't matter if you are reading about grain free, low-fat, vegan or whatever. I think most people would agree that whole foods are best regardless of what type of diet you follow. Now, of course, that doesn't mean that we all eat the foods we should. Our taste buds crave all kinds of sugary, processed foods. Our taste buds can be our worst enemies!

The more I read about the benefits of eating whole foods, the more I realize, I'm not doing a very good job at it. You may be asking what a whole food is. Well, it's whole grain oats (the slow cooking kind) instead of boxed cereal. That is just one example. The more a food is 'messed' with before it gets to your table, the less whole it is. Lately, I have been feeling like I am eating way too many processed grains: blue corn chips, gluten free bread, rice pasta, gluten free crackers and cookies. Thankfully, my body starts letting me know that it wants REAL food, like veggies and fruit! The more processed food we eat, the more we usually want.

I have gotten bored with food and have not been motivated to cook. I found myself yesterday wanting a BIG yummy salad, but didn't feel like fixing it and didn't have much on hand to make it an interesting salad. So, what did I eat instead: a sandwich on gluten free bread with blue corn chips on the side. Then I went searching for dessert, but didn't have any. 

I am hoping that today, I will have the motivation to eat more things like this:
Black bean burger with sweet potato

fresh peaches

salad with edamame

green smoothie

These are the kinds of foods that I want to be eating! They do make me feel better than processed food! So, why am I not eating like this? I need to go to the store and I have been lazy about my food choices. How about you, are there any food choices you need to work on?

By the way, that workout yesterday~GOT ME!! More on that another day. Let's just say, I need to learn moderation!! I'm off to physical therapy and will most likely get lectured about overdoing it! Have a great day!

Mar 16, 2011

We'll See...

Do you like to exercise? I DO!! About 12-13 years ago I learned to love exercise for the first time in my life. I had three young children and had some weight leftover from pregnancy that I wanted to lose. So, I learned to exercise and found that it made me feel really good. My main form of exercise has changed over the years from one thing to another, but I have been pretty consistent with doing something. I have done FIRM workouts a LOT along with some other videos I had. I never had a gym membership and didn't see the need for one. Over the last few years, my main form of exercise has been lots of walking and cleaning houses for a living. Then, almost two years ago I added yoga to my list of favorites. I also have a history with some dance.

When my fibro. became full blown about 8 months ago, my ability to exercise was greatly challenged. I found it very difficult to do even the simplest things that I used to love to do! I think this has been one of the hardest parts of fibro. and chronic fatigue. Right now, my physical therapist isn't recommending that I do anything other than some walking~which I tend to even overdo that. In a nutshell, not being able to exercise like I have in the past is driving me CRAZY!! My brain wants to do so much more!! So, today I walked on the treadmill for about 20 minutes and then decided I wanted to try to do some of this:

This is the New York City Ballet workout that I used to do a LOT. I have used the book so much that it is literally falling apart! I did refrain from doing the whole thing though. It felt SO good! I did the ab exercises (most of them) and the floor exercises. I can not lay flat on my back, so I made sure I put a pillow under my head to support my neck. My PT had me have x-rays of my neck recently and there are some issues that were concerning, so I have to be pretty careful.

Anyway, I am just really praying that what I did today will not aggravate my body! Sometimes I don't realize I've overdone it until it's too late~like the time I tried to do P90X~not the smartest decision I've ever made. I just want to find something that I can do that won't hurt me! I feel like I am losing a lot of muscle and turning into a blob of flab! Will my body be able to handle a ballet workout? I guess we'll see~

Mar 15, 2011


What's all the excitement about? Well, my son FINALLY got a car!! Do you know what this means? Let me just paint the picture for you. He is 18 and in college classes 5 days a week and two nights a week. He has a girlfriend that lives about 30 minutes from our house and she doesn't have a car either. I work two days a week and have physical therapy usually two days a week, not to mention grocery shopping etc. So, you can imagine how tricky it has been to get my son where he needs to be at the same time I need to be somewhere. Talk about stressful! I am excited beyond belief that this stress has been lifted off of me!

My kids don't seem to understand that even driving around here and there can be exhausting for someone like me. Like, they REALLY don't get it. I know it has been hard for them to understand why I have such a hard time doing certain things or being on the go all the time. Now, I will be able to be home more instead of going out every single day~woohoo!! There is also the fact that sometimes I would let my son take my car but then that meant if I did NEED to go somewhere, I couldn't. So happy that the problem is solved and he can take his own car to school, work and dating:)

As a follow up to my post yesterday, I have decided to stay on naltrexone, at least until I can talk to my Dr. again. I am trying 5-HTP again and praying that I will feel the benefits from that. No more Savella! I took one dose yesterday morning, but none after that and I can already tell a difference in how weak I was feeling. I didn't sleep well at all last night though, but at least I don't have to run my son everywhere!:) Did I mention that I'm excited about that?!

By the way, sorry I'm not too on top of putting pictures in my post, but I decided when I started this blog that I would not let picureless post keep me from blogging if I felt like blogging:) Have a great day!

Mar 14, 2011

Oh, I Forgot About That!

I know it's been a while since I have posted, but I wanted to talk a bit about being on Naltrexone vs. Savella. I have been on Naltrexone for barely over a month and the main difference I can tell is having a bit more energy. While that is a VERY good thing, it hasn't helped with pain at all. My Dr. said it could take a couple of months before we will know if it is going to work for me. The HUGE downfall to being on Naltrexone is that while being on it, I can't take any kind of pain meds. I can take things like Aleve, but that honestly does NOTHING for my pain. There have been many times over this last month that I would have given my left arm for some strong drugs! Not really, but you get the idea:)

Another downfall to being on Naltrexone is that is does NOTHING for depression. People who are not chronically ill may not understand this, but hurting pretty much all the time and being tired all the time can get pretty depressing! I realized the other day that I was tempted to voluntarily drive my car into a concrete wall! I know~NOT a good way to be thinking! I thought at least I could just lay in a hospital bed and be pumped full of morhine~oh, but wait, I couldn't do that because morphine and Naltrexone would not mix!! Then on top of being hurt, depressed and lying in a hospital bed, I would also be puking my guts up. I decided that was not a good option:) I don't really want to drive into a concrete wall, but I DO want some relief from pain and depression!

After having terribly wrong thinking, I decided maybe I better go back on the Savella. At least it would help with the depression and I could take pain meds. when I need them (after going off Naltrexone). I started Savella back on Friday, but there is something I forgot about when taking it. Yeah, it makes me a little sick at first, but I can handle that.What I can't handle is how weak I feel. I had completely forgotten that I felt like this when I was on it before! I'm talking weak to the point that when I get out of the shower, I have to sit on the toilet seat just to catch my breath and not feel like I'm gonna pass out! I'm talking weak to the point that walking from one end of the house to the other is exhausting~ and I have a small house! I am always tired, but this is a different kind of tired and it only got worse the longer I was on the Savella. How could I have forgotten that?! Well, probably because I was never sure if it was the Savella causing it. I just chalked it up as normal Chronic Fatigue but after being off of it and then starting it back, I now know it is the Savella.

Now what? I think I'm between a rock and a hard place! Now I'm thinking maybe I should just give the Naltrexone more time. But what about the depression? I don't know. I really don't like the idea of trying yet another medication. I have used 5-HTP for depression in the past and may give that another shot. In the meantime, I will continue to do my best to trust God. There have been a lot of things in my life that I have not understood and this is one of them, but I WILL keep going to God! He is my only hope of any kind of peace in the midst of my circumstances. I NEED HIM!! Sometimes I feel like He is right in front of me, but I'm having trouble 'seeing' Him. This is when I have to choose to simply trust:)

Feb 17, 2011

Myofascial Pain

It's amazing what you learn when your health is on the blink! I am learning all sorts of things I didn't know about muscles and what is called the fascia. A lot of people with Fibromyalgia also have Myofascial pain, but they are not the same kind of pain. I went to physical therapy yesterday specifically for myofascial pain relief and feel like I have a little better understanding of what is going on in my body. You can read a brief explanation of myofascial pain here. I would probably butcher any explanation I could give, so you are better off reading up on it yourself if interested:) All I can say is that it HURTS!! The physical therapy hurt, but it was kind of a good hurt~if that makes any sense. She told me I would probably be sore afterwards and she was right! She also said that what she did on me was 'light' because she didn't want to hurt me even more. If that was light, I would have died from whatever she considers 'heavy'. Don't get me wrong, I trust her in that what she did will eventually help, it's just that sometimes things may feel worse before they get better. I really did like the therapist and she was very knowledgeable. I will be seeing her once a week as well as another therapist that I have already been seeing for a while.

Due to having a better understanding of myofascial pain, I also now have a better understanding as to why I CAN NOT do yoga! Myofascial pain can NOT be stretched out! It has to be released or manipulated by someone else. That explains why every time I would try to stretch to relieve my pain, it would only make it worse! This gives me hope that after some time with therapy, I will be able to do yoga again! I don't know how long it will take, but if I'm learning anything through illness, it's to be patient. Both of the therapist that I see are recommending that I not do any kind of exercise other than swimming for a while. So, I am going to a warm water therapy pool today and I CAN'T WAIT!!! See, there are some good things that come from having limitations:)

Feb 3, 2011

The Longest Dr. Visit of my Life!

I have been meaning to post an update of my latest Dr. appointment and just haven't had time to sit down and do it! Anyway, last Monday I went to a new Dr. for my fibromyalgia and some other health issues that I have been struggling with for a LONG time. I went with a dear friend from my church, who also has fibro. I spent the night at her house the night before because it was a 2-1/2 hour drive and we had to be there by 8:30. We packed our food for the day and headed out bright and EARLY that morning~and it was COLD! I don't like early or cold:)

The first thing they did when I got there was take blood. Then they let me eat my breakfast~yay! I had the most complete physical I have ever had in my life! After the physical exam, we spent the rest of the day (literally!) talking about the best course of action for me. I have never had a Dr. that asked so many questions and spent so long explaining things. As we were talking, he would sometimes just stop and THINK! Most Dr.s spend about 10 minutes with you and then hand you a prescription and send you on your way. Don't get me wrong, I still really like my regular Dr. and he DOES take time to listen to me, but most Dr.s I have been to are not like that.

Anyway, this new Dr. put a LOT of thought into what would be best for me. I also liked him because he is an MD but he also does alternative therapies. He tries to keep things as natural as possible and I appreciate that:)

So, here's the scoop~
1~He changed my hormones that I was on. I had been on Vagifem for a while without much (if any) success and he changed me to a natural Estriol cream. Estriol is the safest of the three types of estrogen. I was using the Vagifem 3 nights a week and now I am using Estriol twice a day! I have had SERIOUS female issues for the last 2 yrs. and 4 months and he is hoping this will help. He also has me using a natural progesterone cream twice a day. Then, a couple of days ago, he called to tell me that my testosterone is low for my age so now I am waiting to get that shipped to me. He uses a pharmacy in Alabama for all hormones because he feels like the quality is best from them. I am just so happy that all these hormones are bio-identical/natural:)

2~He changed my diet! Oh boy, that one is HARD! I am gluten free, dairy free, completely sugar free (not even stevia for a while), grain free and low-oxalate! Talk about a little overwhelmed! He also wants me to only eat every 5 hours. I thought that would be really hard, but as long as I eat like he told me too, I am very satisfied. He stressed to NOT eat a low fat diet and to make sure I get adequate protein for my weight. He also stressed the importance of eating good clean meat~like grass fed etc. Good thing we have deer meat in the freezer. You can't get much cleaner than that:) I am going to start blogging at Living Free again just to have a place to share my meals/ideas etc. on such a restricted diet. Hope you'll come on over and visit me there too!

3~He changed me from Savella to low dose Naltrexone. I am totally off of the Savella now and just started the Naltrexone last night. You can read up on low dose Naltrexone here. I am also taking several vitamins/supplements and probiotics. I thought it was interesting that he said that you can't truly be healthy unless you have a healthy gut! I haven't had a healthy gut for years, but I feel like we are on the right track. I feel good about changing medicine because I feel like if he is willing to prescribe a 'drug', then he must feel it is pretty safe. I have read some testimonies from people who have tried Naltrexone and had good results so I am hopeful:)

I know this was a really long update, so I'll close now:) I will still be posting here about health stuff, but will also be posting at my old blog about yummy food stuff! My friend and I laugh because we can't ever talk to each other without talking about FOOD at some point:) Living Free is a place where I can do that too.

Hope you are all having a blessed week!

Jan 29, 2011

Yummy in my Tummy!

Yesterday was one of those days that I didn't feel like doing ANYTHING! Thankfully, I have a daughter that can cook and take care of me:) She made me the most delicious lunch! I told her she has to make the same dish for me at least once a week! I don't even know what all she put in it but it was SO yummy!

First of all, she made me a fresh loaf of my favorite bread (grain free, sugar free). Then she stir fried a bunch of different veggies and cooked 1/2 of a spaghetti squash. The veggies are SUPER yummy because she added a can of light coconut milk and seasoned it to perfection. I think she used cumin(my FAVE!), cinnamon, chili powder, garlic, turmeric and who knows what else. She put the veggies over spaghetti squash and sprinkled with fresh Parmesan, served with a piece of fresh bread. There was no way I could eat all that she put on my plate, but I sure gave it my best shot! Oh, I almost forgot, it also had chicken with wheat free tamari sauce mixed in. I had the leftovers with eggs for breakfast this morning and still have more to keep me happy for maybe another day :) My daughter will make her future hubby very happy with her cooking skills~she's only 14 though so it will be a while before that happens.

Quick update: I had a visit with a new Dr. last Monday that went really well. He changed my diet, my hormones and my Savella (to something he feels is much safer). I was at his office from 8:30am until 3pm and he was the most thorough Dr. I have EVER been to. He literally spent HOURS examining me, talking and asking questions! I'll try to post more later about it but I can at least say that I am very hopeful that he will be able to help me:)

Do you have a dish that you could eat over and over and never get tired of it?

Jan 20, 2011

Well, There Goes That (Savella)!

I posted yesterday that I am still on Savella and as of today I am going to have to come off of it! Our insurance changed as of Jan. 1st and the new insurance will not pay enough on the Savella for me to be able to afford it. So, I am tapering down starting today.

Today started off pretty good with physical therapy. Then it kind of started sliding down hill from there! There are several stressful things going on right now and I am just trying to breath~and pray. I need the Lord to help me be content and not fearful or anxious.

I'm headed to teach a yoga class at my church. I'm hoping I can teach without hurting myself and I know it will be good for me to chill for a while.

"I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances." (Philippians 4:11) Well, I'm trying anyway:)

Jan 19, 2011

A New Favorite

I have been on the hunt for a grain free bread that does NOT use nuts and I finally found one that I LOVE! I actually had my daughter make it for me and she did a superb job:) I found the original recipe HERE. I had my daughter change a couple of minor details though. If I EVER follow a recipe perfectly, that would be a miracle. I had her leave out the sesame seeds because my tummy doesn't like them and she used coconut oil instead of butter and less than it called for. Anyway, it is pretty near perfect! Today, I had a grilled ham and cheese sandwich~which is something I don't normally eat, but I totally enjoyed it!
Had a dill pickle with my sandwich~yum!

Isn't that a pretty loaf?:)

I use a smaller than normal loaf pan to get a good height on my bread, but it's not a mini loaf pan either. Perfect for gluten free breads that don't rise very much. Check out the recipe~it sure is tasty and easy to make!

In case you are wondering, I am still on Savella. I was going to stop taking it but I agreed with my hubby to keep taking it until I had my follow up with the Dr. I had that appointment on Monday and he suggested increasing the dose. I agreed to try that for a month. I have little to no side affects so I figured it wouldn't hurt to try it a little longer. I know lots of people don't take any kind of medication and that's great, but my body is just not doing well. If the Savella ends up helping, I would be SO happy! As of right now, still not much change though.

Jan 13, 2011

Where Have I Been?

Honestly, I have been on my couch or my bed a LOT these last couple of weeks! I have wanted to blog but just haven't had the energy or even clear thinking enough to do it. I am still taking Savella, but am going for a follow up with my Dr. on Monday to talk to him more about it. It isn't making me sick and I have had very little side affects from it (except for a few days), but I can't tell that it is helping AT ALL. I thought it was going to help at first because the first three days I took it I seemed to feel some better. By the fourth day, I felt like I always do. The last two weeks, I have actually felt worse! So, we'll see what the Doc says.

I am also pursuing another avenue of treatment. I am going to see another Dr. on the 24th. I really love my regular Dr., but there is a lady at my church with Fibro. and this other Dr. is really helping her with some alternative treatments. I also have some other issues that NO ONE has been able to help me with and I'm hoping the new Dr. will have some insight on how to treat me. The new Dr. had some diet recommendations for my friend at church so I am trying what he told her to do. I don't want to go into detail yet about it because it may or may not help. I just figure it's worth a shot. At this point, I am willing to do just about anything if it will help me feel better:)

I want to say too, that I am SO blessed by my church family!! When I am at my lowest, there is always a shoulder to cry on~literally~and people to pray. I am also being blessed with financial help to see this new Dr. Otherwise, I would not even be able to think about going! So, even when things look the worst, there are blessings being poured out:)

I will try to update more often. I have been reading other blogs when I feel like sitting at the computer~versus being on my couch~which is where I'm heading now:) Thanks for stopping by!

Jan 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Did you have big plans to celebrate ringing in the New Year? I NEVER make plans for New Years Eve because I NEVER make it til midnight~lol! Hubby and I stayed home and watched movies and I fell asleep on the couch. Exciting, huh? It may not sound too exciting, but we are both happy to stay home for a quiet night. All my youngin's were at other people's houses until well after midnight. My boys and a friend of theirs have not even been to bed~AT ALL!! Boy, to be young again! I'm getting ready to start some chocolate chip pancakes for them:)

Hubby goes back to work on Monday which means the Holidays will officially be over. I still have my tree up because I got it up kind of late. It's too much work to put it up and then take it right back down. I'll probably do that sometime this week. I have mixed emotions about getting back to 'normal' routine. It has been so nice to be on 'holiday' for the last two weeks with my family. Now, it's time for my daughter to get back to work on homeschooling and for life to resume as usual.

Resolutions? I don't have any! I have learned something about myself. I do MUCH better setting small daily goals than I do trying to set goals for an entire year. I wouldn't remember half of them anyway:) I used to be so schedule oriented and wanted everything planned out just right. Well, life doesn't happen that way and it would always just stress me out! I used to spend HOURS planning the school year and daily schedule only to find within the first two weeks of the homeschool year, that my 'perfect' schedule wasn't so perfect. I do still like to be fairly organized, but I have learned to give myself LOTS of grace! There are just too many variables in life for things to go how I want them to go~especially raising three teens!

Okay, off to make pancakes!

Do you set New Years Resolutions? I pray this year is FULL of blessings for each and every one of you!!