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Showing posts from July, 2014

Second tript to the pain clinic

My second visit to the pain clinic has relieved some of my concerns. I mean I completely failed to achieve the set out goal of exercising one hour a day, right? So I assumed it was going to be some sort of push to achieve that.

It was not. I wonder if he had said that from the onset to see in fact what I could achieve without implying I could not in fact do it. Like suggesting I would not be able to achieve that goal anywhere near that right away would put me in that mindset and I would then achieve less? Perhaps so.

Fact remains I only was able to do ten minutes a day on the stationary bike trying my damndest. And I was not able to, in that month, get any more than that. So not advancement on top of that.

Epic fail I thought. Nowhere near the goal. I suck.

Also what the hell was up with that goal when I have fibromyalgia anyway? Seemed insanely impossible. Not productive to me at all.

You go through all this trouble to explain things and they say nothing left for you but to exercise.…

Pain/Full - What a shrink thinks blog

"Pain can sever relatedness, but it can also blast open a portal to connection. It reminds us of our own vulnerability, our mortality, and our powerlessness as an inherent aspect of our humanity. Pain can teach us how to be tender to others, and can lay a foundation for empathy, and intimacy to flourish."
This is a great piece from a psychologist who gets chronic migraines. Worth the read. What a shrink thinks.

"I grew up in a haunted house with a parent disabled, possessed and ultimately devoured alive by chronic physical pain. One day, Pain, an occasional intrusive visitor, burst its way in, and never ever left. Pain sat with us at the dinner table, rode with us in the car, spent sleepless night in front of the television reclining in barca-lounger, or in a home hospital bed manipulated by magic buttons. Pain spent up all of our financial resources, taught us to walk on eggshells, pressured us to forgive all outbursts and unreason, and garnered the tongue…

A poem: The Bright

Women with #migraines experience more headaches during the #menopausal transition

I am not sure why they needed a study on this when it was already established but then again neuros love their studies... and often do not believe a damn thing without them. So a good thing then.

So here we go with the obvious:

“Our study is the first to actually show that migraines tend to worsen during the peri-menopause and early menopause years,” said Vincent T. Martin, MD,  co-director of the University of Cincinnati Headache and Facial Pain Program.
Generally, women hit the peri-menopause years in their 40s, when their menstrual periods become irregular or more frequent. When periods stop for 12 consecutive months, they’ve hit menopause.
“In fact, we found that headaches worsen by about 50 to 60 percent during those time periods,” Martin said.  WCPO
If you suffer from frequent migraines during peri-menopause, new treatments could be on the horizon.
Dr. Martin pinponts a few ideas to blunt the pain caused by those falling estrogen levels:
Oral contraceptives taken continuously …

Friendship and socializing

Today at the shrinks office he asked me if I have any close friends I talk to or hang out with. The answer being no. He asked me if I still talk to some of the people I worked with. The answer being no, but not because I don't want to but because I just have not been up to it.

I have in my life had some pretty awesome friends. I am however, very introverted. I do not mind me, myself and I.

This makes it really easy to become a hermit. For a couple of easy reasons. People move short or long distances away and I have a hard time keeping in contact with them when that happens. I have a hard time commuting Anywhere for Any reason. Other times people have life changes that make them busier such as having children and they have less time to do things and so when they do, I would have to be available, but I am not always available. I am often health compromised. So often I drift apart from people who are busy and neither of us notice it too much.

And then there is the simple fact that pa…

JD Schramm: Break the silence for suicide attempt survivors


That is a statistic we do not hear often. 19 of of 20 people survive the first suicide attempt. 37% who fail that first attempt will succeed a second time. A very high risk group.

Without question people are uncomfortable with suicide. So surviving it you will find a lot of people do not want to have a serious conversation with you about it. And it can lead to a sense of isolation and shame.

People with a chronic illness and/or chronic pain are at a higher risk for suicide or suicidal ideation. Just physical pain from chronic pain alone is a risk factor to suicide that is very much ignored.

No one thinks about the resources a person need after surviving a suicide attempt as we flounder to survive. We have to choose to survive first. I mean there was a reason we tried to commit suicide in the first place. So we have to find some reason to choose not to. Even if that reason is not ourselves at first. And the suicide attempt is a traumatic experience that we have to deal with a…

peri-menopause and menopause and #migraines

I am not old enough for menopause but I do get hormonal related migraines so it is interesting to know what I will be in for. Pre-menopause and menopause can be extremely hard years of migraineurs. Depending on the woman the perimenopausal years can start in the 40's and menopause in the 50's. The increase "migraine frequency may occur because of an increase in trigeminal nerve sensitivity to falling estrogen levels." Seven portions

Research done in 2011, and I have had this confirmed by personal stories as well, suggests that hysterectomies do not help bypass this either. Going through it naturally seems to have a better likelihood of reducing the migraines after it is all said and done. But... "Both results are conditional though, depending greatly on whether or not a woman’s migraines earlier in life were closely related to her menstruation. If a woman experienced menstrual migraine or menstrually-related migraine as her most severe migraine each month, t…

Morning #migraine strikes of lightning

I hate it when you are just sleeping and minding your own sleeping business... then suddenly...

Migraine lightning
Obviously the stage 1 and 2 of the migraine were occurring while you were blissfully in slumberland. So no way you could treat this the instant you became aware of it. You had no awareness at the time.
No your first awareness is the sizzle and throb of pain. Blink aware and there it is. Pain. Better than any damn alarm clock in existence although you don't want to get up or move. You think maybe if you lay there longer it will help. It doesn't. Laying there hurts more. Like your pillow is made out of rocks.
What a way to set off the day. To a full blown migraine that will not abort with a triptan because it is past the point of no return. Lovely.

Slow and steady with my exercise... not as planned

This is in fact what I believe about improvements when we have a chronic illness. If we want to exercise same goes I think. It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.

And I had to be reminded of this today with my persistent leg pain after days of all this aerobic exercise on my stationary bike. Exercise that is only 10 minutes a day but feels like a freaking marathon to me. I think that pain clinic seriously overestimated my capacity in this regard and also I think the speed at which I could simply jump into this. I think it is a mistake on their part certainly, since the first pain clinic got it. It makes me feel rather like a loser to know that each day all I can do is this 10 minutes after pushing myself and even on my pain killer. When the pain clinic expects an hour. An hour? Not going to happen. I am not even sure half an hour is going to happen any time soon. And I am fine with that. Because I have found pacing myself makes a lot of sense in the past wit…

Epic #pain day

What do you do for those Epic pain days? Those days that exceed your pain tolerance? How do you cope with that exceptional level of pain that defies all reason?

I generally call these 'lost days' because they are lost to all productive activities and all other activities as well. They are just lost to pain. We can do nothing but manage our pain as best we can and ride it out.

Yet it is not as easy as all that. The pain is intense and digs right into your very soul. It is at these times I am at the highest risk of depressive thoughts. Of even suicidal ideation. The pain just circles around the brain as it does and you lose your sense of past and future. Locked into this moment that seems stretched on to eternity. And you believe there is just no end to the pain. In general. To this pain, yes, eventually, to all pain... no, never. And that haunts you during these most intense moments. So I must find ways to distract my thoughts at all costs because this being consumed by the pa…

Migraine diary and exercise

The pain clinic has requested that I do a migraine diary to track my pain while doing the exercises they requested to see what sort of improvements there are.

There are lots of things I could say about exercising so far. Seriously is not fun. Makes migraines worse. Makes vertigo worse. I can't seem to physically get to the level the pain clinic wants due to the FM, because of muscle fatigue partly and the pain. That muscle fatigue starts fast and just gets worse and worse fast with aerobic exercise... I run out of oomph fast. Then run out of whatever is left over pushing through the fatigue. Then it is just pain.

Point being is that tracking migraines through a change is a good way to see if that change is doing anything to improve the situation. And so far no, no, it is not. And one thing I have always loathed about migraine diaries is that they are very depressing. It is a lot like this 8,8,8,9,9,8,9,7. And it just makes you very aware that you have no break. Ever. Also makes me…

Aerobic exercise fun

Aerobic exercise is the gig the pain clinic has suggested I attempt. And quite a bit of it as well.

As you might expect since I have been having trouble with just mild exercise that this has been painful so far. Also though I have been having trouble choosing what to do. First a gym is expensive so I thought why not try free first.

I had these old rollerblades and I thought why not give them a go? I used to love rollerblading. Ironically under the theory that exercise helps improve chronic migraines... well I exercised a lot when my migraines went chronic. I had no license so walked everywhere and rollerbladed a lot for fun, despite it being painful. So not even sure how this theory really even works. But whatever. So I drag these out and, well, they are a little worse for wear but before I buy new ones I definitely wanted to see if I was capable of using them. The answer is no, I am definitely not capable of using them. I have no sense of balance. Of where my body is. Of how to stabi…

The postive look on #stress

It is interesting to think that our belief about stress affects how it affects us. How you think and how you act changes the effects of stress. I have always believed that positive stress is not harmful but that negative stress could be. So this is pretty fascinating.

Daily Gratitude and Happier App

Tracking your daily gratitude and what you are thankful for has been proven to help with mood. I found this app to help you track it called Happier.  They also have a Blog. iTunes App store. 
Anyway, nice easy way to track your daily happy. I was not doing so well tracking it on paper, but I like doing it on the iPhone. Simple and easy to do.

Science of daily gratitude: "In one study on gratitude, conducted by Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D., at the University of California at Davis and his colleague Mike McCullough at the University of Miami, randomly assigned participants were given one of three tasks. Each week, participants kept a short journal. One group briefly described five things they were grateful for that had occurred in the past week, another five recorded daily hassles from the previous week that displeased them, and the neutral group was asked to list five events or circumstances that affected them, but they were not told whether to focus on the positive or on the …

Mini vacation to Manitoba

Took a short vacation to visit my spouses family in Manitoba. They live on a reservation out that way. Turns out it is also a wifi and cell dead zone so I was completely out of touch and feeling rather disconnected.

It is about a 10 hour drive from where we live and I only drove for a couple hours of that there, and the same back. So my spouse did a hell of a lot of driving.

Both trips I got a lot of visual aura activity from the bright sunlight in my eyes on the road. Even with sunglasses on. Even with my hat on some of the time. Too much sun just makes the auras come out to play. Made the center of my vision pulse and warp like the closing and opening of the petals of a flower made out of white and black light. Vivid against the blue sky and bothersome over the road and cars. I also got vertigo from both trips. I suspect from just too long in a moving car but the little bit of driving likely did not help. On the way there the vertigo lasted all day. It is worse now though. So it mi…