Tag Archives: fibromyalgia

Reflections on 2013

Nicole Leon - Blog Writer

Nicole Leon – Blog Writer

This year has had non-stop events of so much more than I could ever imagine.  I have experienced many disappointments and a few triumphs.  This year was very challenging with an added bonus diagnosis of a chronic disease that will also be with me for the rest of my life and an illness that can be fatal.

 

Losses

BFFs for life!

BFFs for life!

Over the course of the year, I have lost some friends and I know some people say that if they stop talking to you or don’t talk to you as much they aren’t your real friends. But here’s the thing there are people who are placed in your life for a short time and some for a long time.  I do feel that things have changed with a lot of people but that happens. I miss them but there isn’t anything I can do about it.  We all get busy with life and responsibilities.  There are people who I still wish I had a chance to meet before I move but I know that with my chronic health problems that has made it hard to do that.  It’s not my fault that I’m chronically ill and all I can do is move on. There will always be positive and encouraging people around to support me. I have reconnected with people I knew in high school and that connection has helped me with forgiving others and rebuilding those friendships.

 

 

Moving On

Jamaica view

Jamaica view

I understand that I will be moving forward to something large with this move. It’s huge! I have never moved this far, let alone out of the country. It was something that I had hoped that I wouldn’t have to do as I wanted to stay right here where I was born and raised.  However, certain events did not work out and my only other choice was to move.

I admit I will miss participating in my few hobbies such as couponing and receiving good free stuff.  So that means no more mail! I LOVE receiving mail.  I’m working on changing that by getting involved with crafts while I’m living in my new home and swap out postcards and handmade cards with others worldwide.  I know that I’ll be able to do crafts while I’m there as my fibromyalgia pain goes down a bit. I think it would help me to get through intense homesickness.  I’m trying to fight through the changes my chronic illnesses have forced upon me.  They have completely changed the way I react, and act with others.  I’m fighting through all of that.

 

 

Winnings

black-woman-excited11

  • The great things of this year included visiting family and having family visit us too.
  • I somehow managed to enjoy the little things in life such as finding ways to make myself laugh and keep a positive outlook of my life.
  • I have lost over 30 pounds in the last few months and while I have some ways to go I’m very happy to see the changes. I can thank going into an old exercise fitness workout called Richard Simmons’ Sweatin’ to the Oldies and walking.  I really want to get his new 3 DVD set as he has some exercises for people like me.
  • Seeing the NASA Space Shuttle Endeavour at the California Science Center.  I got very emotional seeing the shuttle as I have watched it take off into space and land many times in my life.  Space and exploration have always interested me.
  • Fight to keep a positive attitude and outlook.  I may not have always succeeded but I remain hopeful even when hope seems hopeless.  I know it’s not.  I keep going through persevering.

 

KittySickDayEven right now I’m battling with the flu that has refused to leave my body which is nonstop fun with chronic illnesses. Despite all of this, I’m sitting up and trying to continuously move forward each day of my life.

The Daily Fight Series

Gratitude

Gratitude

Today is one of those days where I have to fight even harder to get up and moving around. Each day is different and I never know how I’ll feel. Today my back hurts more than anything and the muscle spasms hurt on top of that. My arms, legs, feet, head, and yes even my eyelashes hurt! There is no way to escape the various issues that fibromyalgia and the other illnesses I deal with too.

Even though I don’t feel well I got up out of my bed anyway. I still wonder if I should get a cane but 14+ years later I have refused to get one. I hold onto the furniture, and walls to get around my home. Sometimes I fall down and that hurts but you know what? I get right back up again.

I thought about my goals and what I would like to do today.

Goals for today included:

  1. Paid work
  2. Create my third post for the week
  3. Make a final decision on my topics for next week
  4. Comment on blogs of fellow bloggers
  5. Spend time reading blogs and the news
  6. Encourage others

So that looks like a lot but I’ve managed to complete over half of my goals.

I take my time while completing my goals. Now keep in mind I don’t always succeed but I keep going anyway and that is the most important part. I know that people may not be able to understand what I’m going through but all I can hope is they will reach deep inside to find compassion in their hearts.

What is a TENS Unit?

Picture taken by Nicole Leon

Picture taken by Nicole Leon

This is one of the top questions I’m asked on Instagram regarding the TENS unit I received from a Fibro Angel who made my Santa wish come true as I was unable to afford one. The TENS unit stands for Transcutaneous electrical neuromuscular stimulation which is a type of electrical pump that helps to stimulate the nerves.  It sends out pulses of electricity through the adhesive electrodes that is applied to the skin.   The stimulation helps to block out the pain signals and controls pain.  The TENS unit helps both chronic and acute pain by reducing pain in the area.

I have fibromyalgia which is a long-term illness that causes a number of problems including:

  • All over body pain
  • Aches
  • Tenderness in the tissues, tendons, muscles and joints
  • Sensitivity to changes in weather, activity levels, stress, and depression
  • Lowered ability to work out or exercise
  • Migraine/Tension headaches
  • Sleep disorders
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Concentration and memory problems
  • Tingling and numbness in limbs
  • Neck pain
  • Back pain

Physical therapists use TENS units as a therapy option to help with controlling their patient’s pain.  The TENS unit is a handheld device that is small and portable.

TENS units are now more affordable and can be purchased online and at the local drug store. I have found that the device is helpful when my fibromyalgia pain isn’t too high. However, when my pain is too high it takes a long time for the TENS unit to ease the pain and at times can make the pain worse.  The TENS unit is a tool that may or may not work for others.  It’s a treatment option to look into and try it out to see if it works for you.

 

Kickstart Up My Future

bookpencilWow! I have had such a busy week that I didn’t get a chance to finish my posts for this week.  I decided to make this a personal blog post as this is after all my blog.  I have been battling with various health ailments which unfortunately prevented me from being able to write.  I’m always adjusting and working on better plans to help me deal with major hiccups like this.  All I can do is hang in there and do the best that I can.

On that note I decided that I need to go after the business tools to help me meet my goals.  So you will see a GoFundMe campaign starting next month and I encourage you to support my cause.  I see something great and magnificent in my future but I need help to get there.  For the first time in a long time I am seeking help.  It took a lot out of me to put aside my pride and allow others to help me.  While I am doing the best that I can to help myself, I will need the assistance from others too.  Thank you and Happy Holidays!

 

 

Fibromyalgia and Fitness

Water AerobicsAs a sufferer of Fibromyalgia for over 14 years it has been a continuous fight to stay healthy through eating the right foods and regularly exercising.  Fibromyalgia brings about intense muscle pain, deep aches, stabbing pain, and fatigue. The thought of exercise seems like a far fetched idea with all of the issues the person is suffering through but exercise helps in various ways.  Exercise through movement will keep one’s body fit, improve their mood, and finally relieve pain.  Keep in mind that high-impact cardio exercises isn’t the best approach to start with but low-impact aerobics such as swimming, stretching, water fitness aerobics, Pilates, yoga, walking or tai-chi.  These exercises help with losing weight, reducing overall stress, and releasing endorphins. 

Some of the best exercises that have worked for me are warm water aerobics, walking indoors, yoga, tai-chi, stretching, and Richard Simmons’ exercise DVDs.  I have found that the exercises have helped me to lose weight and bring on a sense of pure relaxation. I enjoy the feelings of relaxation and while I experience a brief reduction of pain that unfortunately comes back, I feel it is well worth the effort. 

Several things to consider:

·         Consult with your doctor before beginning any type of exercise program

·         Don’t do any intense workout activities as it can increase soreness

·         Stretch before and after each time you exercise

·         Choose exercise activities you can handle and understand your limitations

·         Start out your exercise in slow increments and then build up the pace slowly

 

water-aerobicsrezAll of these exercises are the perfect options to start out with and get your body in shape.  These exercises assist with relieving stress, improves mood and depression, improving sleep, reducing pain, and bringing forth much needed relaxation. 

 

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