Monday, January 12, 2015

In the blink of an eye

If there's anything that I've learned from the 8 deaths that have happened since last April it's that anything and everything will happen in the blink of an eye.

It's amazing how things can be fine one minute and then in the next it's a complete disaster.

I feel like it's all a blur.

One of the things that happened this weekend that I want to get into is how unexpected and fast pain can hit you without you even noticing it was approaching.

I had planned to come home for a few reasons this weekend and then along the way I ended up attending 2 funerals along with my original plans. I had only intended on attending one funeral and didn't think I would be staying any extra days (this is how much of a shock and just an example of how fast something can happen) therefore I didn't pack any extra meds.

Side note: I've had this disease for how long?? 17 would think that by now I would always carry around extra meds just in case....well....I don't.

So I had my pills up until last night, but didn't have any for today.
My body is so used to the medicine being at a certain time that when it doesn't get it, it then begins to act like a terrible two year old throwing a tantrum.

Here's how pain surprised attacked me today.
8:00 breakfast without meds
9:00 right knee began to hurt (sign of rain, sign of flare, or sign of no meds)
11:30 Right wrist begins to disobey me when I want it to work (rule out rain, sign of flare, or sign of no meds)
By 12:45 I could barely move both of my wrists without some sort of pain and my right knee was throbbing. It was then that I remembered that "oh kara, you smart person you, you didn't take your meds this morning because you didn't pack any".

That fast. Within 4 hours, 3 of my joints were throwing a fit.
All because I didn't have a magical pill that prevents this from happening.

It's scary, really.

Now, I have to say that I've been functioning under high stress let's strike that...
I've been living in high stress situations since March. That on top of no meds can create bad bad bad flares or breakdowns or both,

Luckily, I haven't had a major flare in a while (KNOCK ON WOOD) and I hope to not have one any time in the future.

How am I handling the high stress situations you ask?!
Yeah, I don't know the answer to that.

I mean, I just push forward. I distract myself. I remind myself of the day and only think about what needs to be done in order to survive it. I think about my papa and how he made it so long fighting what he had. I think about how I can't let anything stop me because if I do, then I'll actually feel the pain.

Feeling the pain.

Now that's a topic right there.

In the blink of an eye you can go from being completely distracted and focused on something else and then...
it hits you....

you feel the pain.

I know there are 2 types of pain that I teeter totter from on a regular basis.

Those two types are emotional and physical of course!

But really, they will hit you out of nowhere.

For me I do the really healthy thing (SARCASM) where I just keep pushing myself and distract myself because I know once I slow down I'll feel it all.

It's like I mentioned a few blogs ago, the feeling you get when you've been working all day and you finally come home to lay down on your bed and then BOOM there it is. The weight of your day has piled itself on your lower back and now you can't breathe without feeling it.

That's a physical example.

An emotional one would be that you are doing alright lately and then you walk into your grandma's house to see that there are 2 bags of chips ahoy cookies on the counter knowing that your papa used to buy the BOGO ones for you because those are your favorite cookies and it hits you. He didn't do that.

Pain will hit you when you least expect it.
In fact, you can't live your life expecting the pain.
What kind of life is that?

Instead, you have to be aware of what makes the pain better, manageable, what makes it leave.

I call my friends when I'm in the middle of crying just so they can tell me random things about their day. I push through it and distract myself. I sleep. I watch netflix uncontrollably. I lay in bed if I'm hurting and hide under the covers. All of these things help the different kinds of pain that I experience.

What helps you?

It's best to know because like I said above, it happens in the blink of an eye.
You can't prevent it from coming (I mean, you can try but it's gonna catch up to you), but you can have the solutions to help it go away,

Think about those and use them. See if it helps and then let me know...
I mean, after all, I'm no expert lol! I like hearing what helps you too!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Typical New Year Post

I know, I know, I haven't written anything in a while. I've had a few people tell me that I need to write more and that they miss reading my blog. I appreciate that more than you know.

To hear someone say that they are actually reading it and enjoying it, just makes me so happy!

So here goes the typical new year post.

I decided not to make one on facebook because there is just too much to say.

Let me start out by saying that 2014 was a sucky year.
No, it wasn't sucky, it was just downright the worst year my family has ever had.

We had 6 deaths in my family. SIX.
Granted, one of those was a close family friend and the other was my dog...but really...I'm counting them.

My medicines changed and lab results came back bad more times than the amount of date offers I had in the last two years (that's really not hard to do lol!).

The statement, "When it rains, it pours" is totally true.

Don't get me wrong, there were some highlights to 2014! I was able to visit California for the first time and fell in love with it. I was also able to go see one of my best friends in DC, then road trip back with her. I'm doing well in school and also applied for the Ph.D program. I've also learned so much within the last year that I feel like I'm as old as my bones now.

I'm a really big believer in finding the positive in the negative situations and if you go back in my posts, you'll see that. You'll see that I mention looking past the negativity and knowing that you have the power to overcome and survive what's in front of you in previous posts.

But here's the ugly truth...

Every single person hides behind a happy mask. We do it all the time, but this year we did it more than usual.

We pretend we are okay and tell ourselves that we are okay because we think that if we do it enough, we will actually, honestly believe it.

I do it all the time with my Arthritis and I guarantee you that you've done it before as well.

You think that if you put on a smile and say, "I'm not in pain today, I got this.", that it will be fine.

It won't. But we do it anyway.

Now, once again, I like to find the positive in the negatives, but you know that if you read my posts, I'm honest with you too.

I love the "you can do it" attitude. But go back to one of my very first posts, the "It's ok" post and you'll see what I'm trying to get at here.

It's ok to not be ok.

I'm still working on trying to admit it myself, but after this year, it couldn't be more true.

I'm walking around with a smile on my face, but in reality I can barely catch my breath because the pain in my lower back keeps taking it away.

My grandmother says she's doing great, and she really is, but I know there are times when she won't admit that the pain she feels is like a bullet that went straight through her heart because she lost the love of her life and nothing can fix that.

Now I'm not saying that we are ever going to let our real feelings show when we are out and about, I know I have too much pride for that. Hahaha! I'm too stubborn as well!

What I'm really getting at here is that yes you can push yourself and yes you can be positive all you want, but it's ok to let it go sometimes. It's ok to admit to yourself that you are in pain and that you are hurting.

The funny thing here is that the first step is admitting that you have a problem and then working on how you can fix that problem.

So let's work on admitting that we aren't ok and then focus on the power we have to overcome it, survive it, and push past it.

We normally just want the quick fix, I do all the time.
But in 2015, let's see how we can really fix the pain and stress that we are experiencing.

Note: When I say pain here, I'm really meaning everything but the physical pain lol! When I find a way to fix the physical pain, I'll let you know.

But really, It's ok to not be ok.

That's something I'm going to work on in 2015.
I'm not saying it's going to be easy.
I'm not saying that I'm going to succeed.
I'm saying that I'm going to try.

Look, there's the positive peggy coming back out...Finally Peggy...finally.

So in 2015 I'm going to:

Workout more (Yeah, let's see how long this lasts)
Write more
Live more.
Learn to be ok with not being ok.

Here's to a new year filled with hope, happiness, and good health!

Disclaimer note: This post is not me admitting that I have a problem, it's me saying that I need to admit that I have a problem. ;)