Monday, May 30, 2011
It was 94 degrees today in the shade and its 10:54pm and still 77 degrees outside. Perfect weather if the main attraction is outside. I live for weather like this and since it was a holiday weekend I was invited to huge party that I REALLY wanted to go to. Eric didn’t want to take me because he says I am too old. Just because most of the people there would be in their late 20’s and early to mid 30’s he thought we would not fit in even though I’ve known some of these people for 15 years.
So how do we get past the things in life that really disappoint us? How do we keep from throwing them into a corner of our mind like dirty laundry until they stack up so high and smell so musty that they are in danger of becoming resentments?
(To be continued)
Sunday, May 29, 2011
Well, it seems safe to say that summer in Pennsylvania has finally arrived and I, for one, am loving every minute of it. That is another lesson I learned since being injured; to appreciate the small things and be grateful for every moment I feel healthy and mentally fit. It wasn’t so very long ago that morning were the worst part of the day for me; when waking up was a disappointing, frightening and overwhelming experience so intense that I faced each new day wishing, if only for a moment, that I had not awakened at all.
Thankfully, I have not awoke with this attitude for quite some time. I’m still not a morning person, it takes me about three hours to shake all the cobwebs out of my head and I wake up stiff and achy and probably in the most pain of the day. But with the help of my attendants who take care of my stiffness by doing my range of motion exercises and give me morning medications which contain both pain and anti-spasmotic medications my pain begins to feel better. Mornings certainly are the busiest part of the day and the only issue I take with the way things are done is that we start too late. My morning girl comes in at 9:30am.
At any rate, I’ve been looking the small things, the small triumphs, the small gains, the small steps forward, the small kindnesses and the small victories for they all add up. At first it seems like you’re not gaining anything or going anywhere but then they start to add up and you can see the progress in your life or that you’ve made to your life. Always remember to consider and be thankful for the little things…you could be missing a lot to be grateful for and make yourself feel more confident, have a better outlook and self image.
Saturday, May 28, 2011
This is the first time I’ve been able to post in a week due to some problem with google. I’d like to apologize for not having anything ready for you, my friends.
I will catch you up on things here which have been crazy tomorrow night. As always I appreciate your patience in this matter. Keep on telling yourselves what special and lovable people you are…until tomorrow…goodnight and may you and yours be blessed.
Saturday, May 21, 2011
Letting go of resentments takes time, patience and practice. The first thing I had to do was realize was that I was powerless over what fate the person or persons I resented (or in my case, hated with a passion I had never felt before) were going to live no matter what type of revenge scenario I fantasized about unless I somehow found the way, the means and gumption to actually go through with it. And even then how could I ever be sure they had suffered enough unless I made it my life’s works to do so and even if that was legal what kind of life would I have? Would it truly be fulfilling? What could possibly be lost by simply trying to let it go and let a power greater then myself handle the justice of a world filled with so much injustice? After all, I’m not Wonder Woman and I simply don’t possess that kind of power let alone time and energy to concoct a scheme of revenge viable enough to pull off and dreadful enough to fit what I believed to be the crime and I thought the severity of the punishment should be.
So after really thinking these things through, I decided nothing could be lost and I could always resume plans for revenge after letting let go of the resentment and relinquishing control of the situation to God. I cannot say it easy or that it happened all at once overnight. It seemed that as I began to focus my thoughts and energy on my nightly routine, the nightmares became less frequent(oh yes, what they did to me caused me to have nightmares well after it was over!) because my mind had something else to concentrate on before sleep instead of inevitably going back to those haunting memories time and time again. I always began my meditation/muscle flexing and relaxing with the Lord’s Prayer, although any prayer will do just fine and ended with prayer of thanks and gratitude at the progress I making and for the fact that I KNEW He would heal me and someday make me walk again when He ready..ThenI started thanking Him before I would finish but during my meditative exercise relation program just in case I fell asleep before I was through. Honestly, friends it’s hard to make room in your heart for resentments when it’s already filled with gratitude. So you see everything I do to unload all that heavy unhealthy baggage I do has another purpose equally important function. If shedding resentments can be a fringe benefit then I say that’s great and thank you God. I’ll be happy without that weight dragging down and coloring my every thought and therefore every word that comes out of my mouth.
And not that it really matters but they both DID get their punishment and it didn’t come from me. My fiancée suffers every day with peripheral polyneuropathy which is quite painful and the other party may still be on house arrest or incarcerated for numerous offenses and may still not have her children because of her arrests, convictions and involvement with drugs. You can read all about it on my facebook page if you are at all interested. I feel vindicated and all I did was let go and let God handle the situation…which he did…with a vengeance.
Until next time my friends please take care of the most important person in your life…YOU!
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Please allow me to summarize. We have discussed gratitude, treating our employees, our other half, and our gifts from heaven itself, our children with dignity, respect and appreciation. We also talked about exercise and diet. I do believe we may have touched on vitamins and supplements in passing as well as different ways to keep a positive attitude. Well, I’m only half through with different ideas you can try to help you maintain a more positive outlook on life.
Try to find some sense of spirituality in your life. If you believe in God great; if you don’t then try to intellectually think to yourself that there must be a power greater than you are. You can’t honestly believe you are the greatest power in the universe do you? At any rate if you are truly an atheist and cannot find a higher power in anything, all is not lost. Although prayer and faith are strong weapons in the battle to maintaining a positive attitude, it can still be done in other ways that will probably lead to believe anyway. However, it is not a prerequisite to feeling good.
Meditation is an excellent tool to clear the mind of circular thoughts, worries, and resentments. Let’s talk about resentments for just a minute. Holding on to resentment doesn’t hurt the person or persons you are angry with. Or in my case, hated with a passion so deep I wished worse things than death upon the person and her children. Finally, I let it go and put it in God’s hands and she got was coming to her without me clouding my mind, weighing down my soul and coloring my daily outlook on life which is what resentment will do to you. If you’re interested you can read all about her fate on my facebook page in my photos, album – look who got busted now – to see her mugshot and simply scroll down my page far enough to read the many police reports. But seriously friends, LET GO of your resentments all they do is hurt you and the other person is oblivious to your feelings. The weight that is lifted alone is worth the effort of letting go.
I will dedicate the next blog entirely to letting go of resentments and meditation as ways to keep a happy, healthy and positive attitude as much as we possibly can.
(To be continued)
Monday, May 16, 2011
We keep sugar in the house to cook with but you’d be hard pressed to find any salt anywhere in our cupboards. We don’t even cook with it. So when Eric was diagnosed with high blood pressure we knew it had to be from stress or some other bad element in his diet like sugar. Sugar is unhealthy for you in so many ways I hope I remember to list them all.
Introducing sugar to a child’s diet too early can set in action unhealthy eating habits that can last a lifetime, not to mention cause an addiction like habit for sugar you won’t be able to break. Too much sugar interferes with every body system but especially the way the digestive tract works, which makes one more prone to infection of any kind, because it weakens the immune system and throws the endocrine system ( your glands) off kilter.
Now comes the task of finding all that sugar they so cleverly and not so cleverly try to hide from you. The number one culprit is high fructose corn syrup. If you see this listed as an ingredient run don’t walk the other way. It may also just say corn syrup, glucose, fructose, lactose, or dextrose. These are all just ways of listing a certain type of sugar. Read the Nutrition Facts, it will always list total carbohydrates and carbs from SUGAR. It will be a percentage but if it’s more than 10, you probably don’t want it as a regular meal. I’m not telling you to never eat a fatty and sweet delicious snack or dessert for heaven’s sake I do and I weigh 107lbs. I’m talking about overall health and what your MAIN diet consists of. If you deprive yourself forever you will not be very happy and we’re talking about keeping and maintaining a positive attitude. So treat yourself, ONCE IN AWHILE and try to eat a high protein healthy diet the rest of the time. You will be happier because you will look and FEEL better.
(to be continued)
Friday, May 13, 2011
Also, the better you are feeling physically the better your outlook will be. That’s why my diet and vitamin and supplement regiment is so important to me. There are just a couple of rules of thumb for a basic healthy diet. Drink LOTS of water, at least nine 8 oz. glasses a day. Don’t drink pop or soda, not even diet, it is horrid for you. Cut out or at least down on sugar and salt, both terrible for your mind and body. Cut down on BAD fat, believe it or not there IS such a thing as good fat. These fats contain essential fatty acids which are called Omegas. There are two you need for optimum health: omega 3 and omega 6. You can get omega 3’s mainly from cold water oily fish such as tuna, herring, salmon and mackerel and omega 6’s from walnuts, canola oil, flax seeds and soy beans. But lucky for us, everything comes in a supplement these days so you’ll know you are getting enough. There is also evidence that omega 3 fatty acids can treat depression! These types of fats are called polyunsaturated and most people know that saturated fat is no good for you, but monounsaturated fats and trans fats are just as bad.
And last but not least cut out preservatives at least MSG. Read the label! Chances are if it comes premade, it’s loaded with fat, salt, sugar and/or preservatives. That goes for a lot of these frozen “healthy” meals. When in doubt, read the label. Of course, this is where they do their very best to confuse you. Allow me to help you out.
Don‘t just read the front of the box where it states in bold letters LOW IN SATURATED FAT! Meanwhile, if you take the time to read the Nutrition Facts, you may find it is 35 % monounsaturated fat which is basically Crisco. Or it may truly be low in fat and to make up for the loss of flavor the manufacturer may have added extra sugar. And sugar has many aliases. You should try to learn as many as possible because of the top three saboteurs ( sugar, fat and salt) of the American diet, sugar is the worst because it acts like a drug on your body systems and brain, it causes many health problems and ALL age groups are affected by it.
(TO BE CONTINUED)
Well then, how DO we stay positive in world so fraught with negativity? I’ve already talked about three ways: try to stay grateful, be good to others and teach your children to have strong and healthy self esteems. But there are many tips I’d like to share with you that I use every day to keep from sinking into that dark and lonely place so hard to escape from once I’m in it.
No matter how crappy I feel I work out. It’s something that I did before my accident and it never failed to make me feel better. Unfortunately now, I have so few muscle left that aren’t paralyzed, I must get very creative with my workouts just to make them affective enough to get my endorphins flowing. There are certain chemicals in your brain that when your body produces enough of them you get a natural “high”. This is what happens when you exercise. Your brain releases endorphins which are the body’s natural defense against pain and they are a “feel good” chemical for your brain. I workout six days a week no matter how tired, how anxious, how down, how busy or even how under the weather I may be feeling. I highly recommend it as a way to keep a positive attitude.
(to be continued)
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Make others feel appreciated. Tell your caregivers everyday how much you admire, value and respect them and that they did a good job EVERYDAY! Praise your children on a job well done or for having an especially good grade or drawing or painting something really outstanding. Break the cycle of the dysfunctional family. Don’t ever use your children as emotional punching bags after your husband or significant other has just finished berating you about some stupid insignificant thing and tried to crush your self esteem. Be aware of these things, they happen every day to seemingly “normal” families. Really think about your relationship or family dynamic. Is it like this in any way, shape or form? If so, what are you prepared to do to save you own and if you have kids, their self esteem, image, worth and confidence? How many friends do you have that have been told their little one needs to be on some type of medication for some type of syndrome that didn’t even exist 20 years ago when I was raising my son? How many of you have friends who have sons and daughters with drug problems? It’s an epidemic! How can we maintain a positive attitude in such a world?
( to be continued)
( to be continued)
This is Michelle,Me,Billy,Sharlene and Eric
Saturday, May 7, 2011
The way I ended my blog last night tells that my head is not in a very good space right now. I got off topic and started to vent about my own real or imagined reasons for feeling bad. One thing that I always try to remember that I discovered through years of therapy is that other people aren’t capable of MAKING me feel a certain way. It’s my reaction to what they do or say that dictates my emotions. I may disagree with, be angered by, think what they’ve done or said was unfair but in the end I can choose how to feel and react about it. And if I think about it long enough there’s always a simple logical albeit sometimes painful reason behind it all. But most of the time it’s not as big a monster as I made it in my head.
My anxiety has been on high since Bill left and I haven’t heard a word from him. I could hunt him down all over God’s creation but I won’t. I won’t make a call, send an email or take a drive, I’m too afraid to know where he is and what he’s doing. But I’m afraid not knowing as well. I’m telling you friends I’ve been teetering on the edge of a high panic state for about a week now. I believe I need to pull ALL the tricks out of the bag on this one so onward and upward keeping a positive attitude.
An attitude of gratitude is good way of remembering to be grateful for the things you have because believe it or not things can get worse. The first thing I do when feeling like things are coming undone is try to thank God (or whatever or whomever you feel is a higher power, force, or creator) for all the things I am truly blessed to have which are many. Try not to let the negative junk into your thoughts, like what you really need and have been doing without, only your blessings that you are especially thankful to have, to be, to live with every day.
Friday, May 6, 2011
Sometimes it’s almost impossible to keep a positive outlook, attitude, personality and self image when life is treating me especially hard. Sometimes I feel like I am sliding into deep, dark, dank hole with slippery, slimy sides and no hand holds. Life is tough for everyone but especially for those of us with physical disabilities. That’s why I’m dedicating this series of blogs to attaining and maintaining a positive attitude; to keeping my head above the dark hole and managing to climb out once and awhile.
Those of us that are disabled differ from the able bodied emotionally, psychologically, mentally and physically. And I do not mean this in any derogatory manner. We simply have greater stressors on these areas of our lives due to the SCI/SCD than the average able bodied individual has. That’s one of the reasons why I arm myself so thoroughly with vitamins, minerals, supplements and herbs that I do on a daily basis. And God knows there are many days that I absolutely do NOT feel like working out, using my percussion vest or going through my bed time meditation routine but I DO. I keep pushing through the boredom, I keep pushing through the pain, I keep pushing through the fear, I keep pushing through the ever looming black dragon’s shadow of depression. I can barely speak to Eric he’s such a drain on my good karma. It’s as if he can’t stand to see a glimmer of a smile begin to cross my face.
(To be continued)
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
So that unwelcomed knock on the door DID come and we were obliged to let the two state troopers into our home so they could take a look around and make certain that there were no drugs or guns in the house (good thing they didn’t look very much). Eric and Bill pretended that everything was alright, they had an altercation outside, resolved their differences and everything was settled now. Nothing could have been further from the truth. I had just breathed my first sigh of relief when Billy said something smart – assed to me and Eric heard him.
Looking back I don’t even know why I wanted him to stay so badly. Maybe I was trying to save him, I’m sure I was, I’m his mother after all. But after all the stealing, not just because they were my pain meds, he knew I had an appointment with my pain specialist and that they wanted me to bring all my medication in with me. He also stole money out of my purse…all of it and my things like my tweezers and other grooming tools. Before he left, he told me I was a terrible mother and always chose my man over him. He confessed to stealing our pills then took back his confession and said we never did anything for him.
I wish I would have insisted that move out here with us when we first bought the house 1997 when he was 14 years old. He could have kept in touch with his old pals and he could easily have made new friends in different school. Eric would be a different man because he may not have had the affairs. I would be happier because I would be closer to both of them. God, why can’t we go back in time?
In the end Bill said what he had to say, packed up his meager belongings and even took the food his bum stamps had purchased, even though he blew through that the first week and we gladly fed him the rest of the month. I tried to explain to him that we needed to make the food last a whole month. We tried to teach him so many things in three months and UNteach him so many more. At first Eric couldn’t have been more generous, accommodating and supportive and I couldn’t have been more emotionally available, loving and always praising his accomplishments. But Bill either wouldn’t or couldn’t be completely honest with us.
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
We were almost home without incident and then Billy woke up and started blaming me and making excuses for his mistakes and thievery that very morning. Well, Eric had simply had enough and began defending me and reminding Bill that HE was the one that was in the wrong , HE was the one who waited until I finally fell asleep at 6:00am and tip-toed into MY room cleaned me out of every pain pill he could and then proceeded to go upstairs into Eric’s room which NO ONE is allowed to do and fin ally found inside Eric’s CLOSET a briefcase where we keep ALL of our of meds and he couldn’t open it short of breaking it because it was locked. He also went on a raiding party downstairs because I keep my money in my purse in my wallet which is in my backpack all kept in the closet in the middle room. The next morning I was going to buy the little thief a pack of cigarettes and opened my wallet to find it only had 4 dollars in it. Well, I ended up giving him my 4 bucks AND told him it was okay to bum the rest off of Eric.
By the time we finally got in the house, Bill and Eric were at each other’s throats. No amount of arguing, pleading, threatening, crying, laying of guilt trips would even gain ten seconds of either of their attentions. It was as if I was invisible and can’t begin to describe the frustration, anxiety and sheer anger at their refusal to acknowledge my presence. But mostly, I was just frightened; scared that Eric would really get a gun this time and someone would get hurt.
But the situation came to a head before we even stepped foot in the house. Billy said something to Eric and it was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Eric threw down Bill’s X-box onto the back patio and Bill flipped out. So once again, my wishes swept aside like so much dust, they physically began to fight. Bill, of course, fought dirty pulling Eric’s pants down and then jumping him and trying to choke him to death with his own necklace. I don’t know what Eric did to Billy. I got everyone calmed down enough to come inside and I hoped the state police that I called wouldn’t come after all. But if dialed 911, they are obligated to come and at least check the situation out.
(To be continued)