Friday, December 31, 2010

Our Future is Spotless

"Our future is spotless" I interpret this to mean that the year 2011 is about to begin and what we do with 2011 as a blank slate, is our individual choice.

Will you choose to be positive?
Will you recognize when others need your help?
Will you choose to take the class you want to take because it's what YOU want for yourself?
Will you choose to eat well? Drive carefully? Tend to your health?
Will you choose to parent well?
Will you choose to share your wealth? I'm not talking about money.
Will you choose to believe in a higher power? Or not?
Will you find the style of book you enjoy?
Will you be proud of your tone of voice?
Will you volunteer for those less fortunate?

I hope that you will recognize that YOUR "future is spotless" like a blank canvas...paint your life colorful and clear.

Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Happy Holidays!

I apologize for not posting the last few weeks. In preparation for the holiday and our kids (and their I sounding old?) to come home, I found myself eliminating, in order to get through the day. I know you all relate, with or without Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue.

I wish you all a happy holiday season. I hope you are able to be with your family or friends and to enjoy the love you share with each other. Try to remember to take breaks and allow others to help. If it isn't done by now, resign to the realization, it doesn't need to be done. Now this last comment I should erase as I will definitely have trouble following. ;D

My love and friendship I send to you. You all are a part of my daily living with these dreaded diseases and I wish you well.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Fibromyalgia is the Pitts!!!

I'm tired of this disease! Can we get back to the original "normal"?

My hands are more stiff than usual and they have been shaking today. Actually, everything has been stiffer. Light head and more mucous. Neck is tight as well as my lower back. Cramping in my back muscles and thighs. Having trouble raising my left arm.

Have I bitched enough?

Today was a beautiful day on the Oregon coast. Can't believe it is December. Rain will be moving back in and I will believe.

Collected a few Christmas decorations for our RV and moved the rest to Grandpa's house. On the 15th we will be moving our RV to Grandpa's. Will use most of my holiday decorations there. The kids will be home for the holiday. Will be wonderful to have them together.

We will join our friends, the Fergusons and Parkes for a seafood dinner at Norma's on Monday. Wednesday we will have a crab lunch with our friends, the Rickerts.

Hoping for a good night sleep!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

"God Knows What He Is Doing"

"God Knows What He Is Doing"

Dolly Parton

I watched The Nat Berkus Show this morning. His guest was Dolly Parton. As she spoke to a gentleman who lost his wife during childbirth, she made the above quote as part of their conversation. When I heard the quote I immediately thought about myself dealing with Fibromyalgia. I'm sure most of us have wondered why the Good Lord gave us this disease. Because there is no cure, we are left to cope with a variety of symptoms as long as my arm.
I go on blind faith that God knows what he is doing.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Saturday, November 27, 2010

I need to apologize upfront...I need a "bitch post."

The last several weeks have been difficult. My cognitive is in left field. I can tell by looking at Dwain's face that he is getting tired of trying to understand me. I can't blame him. It's frustrating for me also. He will never truly understand how much.

The work we do in the park includes cleaning Yurts. We clean Yurts minimum four days a week. My neck, arms, wrists, shoulders and remaining back area are aggravated. I have had strong cramping in my back. Only way to have them relax is for Dwain to massage the cramping area. I'm thankful that he understands my mime because sometimes it hurts to bad to speak. We only have two weeks left at the park and I will be glad to move on.

I am sleeping well, which is helpful (thank you Trazodone!), even when I can't feel that it helps. This is a typical complaint with Fibromyalgia patients.

Fibromyalgia is playing havoc with my broken finger. Most of the time, it feels like it is healing. Then my finger will feel different sensations like burning and aching. The burning is a Fibro sensation. The aching may be Fibro or just that it is broken. Who knows! I still can't use it. Who knew that little pinky did so much!

My IBS is starting to raise its ugly head. Right now I'm managing well but I can tell it is just on the edge of blowing up. I'm sure it is from over working my body and the stress of the holiday season.

Christmas is coming. I've done very little shopping. My stomach is starting to gifts purchased and wrapped, haven't figured out menus for the time kids will be home.

I can't get ahead, let alone even.

Dwain has been snappy. I feel I'm walking on egg shells. My reaction is to tense, causing additional pain.

I can't move very fast. Seems everything happens in slow motion. So frustrating.

On a happy note. I have an appointment to get my haircut. That will be nice.

A second happy note...a former classmate was in the park today...Bill Potter. We visited nearly an hour. It was nice to see him.

A third happy note....Had a wonderful telephone visit with Lyla. How happy she is. I also did texting with Patrick and Joshua. I spoke with Seth briefly on Friday and Adam and Heather on Saturday.

Glad to be able to pour out some frustrations.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Leave The Rest To God

Live Simply
Love Generously
Care Deeply
Speak Kindly
Leave The Rest To God
I received this quote (author unknown) as a part of an email from a friend. We should strive to follow this advice. I believe "Leave The Rest To God" is difficult for some. If I leave me worries and troubles to God, I have less stress. The physical act of "letting go" is different than merely thinking about it. It takes practice. I'm so much better at letting go after a lifetime of practice. I hope my children will be able to give their worries to God sooner.
In relation to my Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue, living simply, loving generously, caring deeply and speaking kindly, all provide my illnesses a better chance of "laying low."
Learning to "Live Simply" has brought its challenges. I must break down my life to short, simple experiences but enjoy them to the fullest. I can no longer participate in outside activities as I once did. I must be more selective, rather than trying to accomplish more than I can handle.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Wrinkles Don't Hurt!

"There is always a lot to be thankful for
if you take the time to look.
For example,
I'm sitting here thinking how nice it is that wrinkles don't hurt."
Bet you can't think of a good reason for weight gain. My Mother-in-Law told me not to worry about the weight I was gaining. She said the weight filled in any wrinkles I may have, "If you loose weight you may have wrinkles." I was so lucky to have her in my life, the lives of my children and their children. I am thankful for the best Mother-in-law.
Mother-in-Laws and Wrinkles Don't Need To Hurt
Today is a rainy day. What's to be thankful about the rain? The rain waters the grass, foliage and trees. It makes the "green" greener, flowers bloom and rivers run deeper. The sound of the rain on our roof is comforting. Rain is relaxing for me. I am thankful for the rain.
Rain Does Not Hurt
My dog Lucy provides lap therapy. She loves me unconditionally and I her. Lucy does not lick my face, she bumps it with her nose....sometimes a lot. :D She tries to protect me. She doesn't know she is only nine pounds. I'm one of her favorite people friends. She provides me with endless comic relief. I am thankful for Lucy.
Lucy Does Not Hurt
Dwain is playing his harmonica, learning a new song. Because of my proximity to him, the sounds is shrill. Fibromyalgia increases my hearing sensitivities. When I hear him play from a distance, I can appreciate his musical talent and I am thankful.
Music Does Not Hurt
I have Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I have pain throughout my body. I choose to live my life the best I can. Yes, I do not sleep but 1.5 hours a night. I always remember to take my sleep medication. Yes, I have IBS, but have learned how to control it. Yes, I have Restless Leg Syndrome and am fortunate not to know when I am kicking Dwain. Yes, I have hearing and visual sensitivities, but I have learned how to cope. Yes, I am always fatigued. Remembering to pace myself is an on going battle.
Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue DOES Hurt
So be thankful for everything you have or wished you didn't have. There is a silver lining for everything. If you choose NOT to see it and let Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue plunge you to the depth of despair, you loose.
Loosing DOES Hurt

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Change in the Weather

It's fall, soon to be winter. The weather cycle continues as we spring into spring, and run to summer. I enjoy all the seasons with fall as my favorite. Each season has its own purpose and beauty....

Winter can be cold and rainy, with freezing temperatures and a chance of snow and ice.

Spring brings beautiful flowers and color is everywhere.

Summer's warm sun shines a bright light on all the earth.

Fall brings color to the leaves and a warm east wind.

Those with Fibromyalgia can have additional pain during different seasons. For me, it is summer. My body protests the heat and I have increased pain. For others it is winter with the chilling cold.

I have increased symptoms with a cold wind which is an issue during three of the seasons. A cold wind makes my arms, back and thighs cold to the bone. This type of cold does not go away until I'm under a warm blanket. A friend gave me a heated lap blanket. I hope it never wears out! ;D

Friday, October 22, 2010

Today is the Day!

Today is the first day of the rest of your life ... What will you do with it?

Will you advocate for yourself? Choose to be proactive.

Will you locate a physician who will work with you to find the right medication and who will give you good medical advice?

Will you decide to loose weight or continue on a path to obesity?

I hope you choose to be proactive and advocate for yourself. Find a physician with whom you are comfortable and can openly discuss your medical needs. The first question should be whether they believe in Fibromyalgia and if they treat Fibromyalgia patients. You want them for the long haul, so interview like you would if you could chose your child's teacher. Your daily existence depends on how your physician treats you. If they do not fight for your health, what do you have? The answer, we know to well...high level pain, migraines, IBS, etc. We deserve to feel the best that we can while living with Fibromyalgia or any other chronic disease. Because you will interact often with the physician's do they interact with you? Be strong, advocate for yourself and be proactive!!

The song, "I am Woman Hear Me Roar" comes to mind. :D

Because it is difficult for many of us to do aerobic exercise, obesity is becoming a problem. Obesity is a medical condition by itself. I've come to the conclusion that I need an exercise buddy. Someone to stretch with me and to go on a walk daily. Because we travel, my buddy is usually my husband. For some reason when I want to walk, he doesn't. It's difficult to mesh our schedules.

I hope we all can make a committment to helping our bodies to heal.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I AM Fibromyalgia

Let me introduce myself. I am Fibromyalgia. A chronic medical condition caused by a malfunction of the Central Nervous System with dysfunctional hypersensitive nerves. I cause multiple pain sensations. I play havoc with muscles causing them to be weak. The tendons and ligaments are not left out either.

I do not allow sleep. You may sleep for an hour, but then are awake the remainder of the night. Your body is exhausted. Your muscles, etc have no time to regenerate energy = pain. The body can become so tired that it becomes nauseated. Fatigue will drag you down. Even if you take medication to give you a full night's sleep.

Substance P causes different pain sensations. Cramping, burning, stabbing, dull, sunburn, just to name a few. Some have pain over their entire body. Others in different parts of their body. The pain can move from one location to another.

I also cause a decrease in Serotonin. Serotonin helps mask the sensation of pain. So, an increase in the sensation of pain and a decrease in masking the pain .... I've got it covered!!

You can have trouble with IBS, causing you to have as many as a dozen bowel movements a day. Others become constipated.

I am good at playing havoc with eye sight. Poor guys get an eye exam and new glasses. Soon after, I change their vision. I change it often so new glasses don't help. There are times I cause eyes to burn or to be dry. You can see spots before your eyes. For Debbie, they are not spots but thin, odd shaped floaters. They disappear and reappear when exhaustion sets in. When you go to the grocery store, the different colors on the grocery shelves can run together making it difficult to focus. Heaven forbid that a lady should pass you in the isle wearing strong perfume. These situations can cause a dandy headache or migraine.

Balance is not as good after I move in. As you become exhausted, it is hard to pick up your feet. They can drag and cause tripping. If your sight is wacko, that also plays into your balance.

Tension headaches are with you constantly, getting worse with fatigue.

Migraines are a specialty. For example, they come on when you reach your physical limit, are stressed or eat something that would trigger a migraine.

How about Plantar Fasciitis? Pain in the bottom of your feet. It is worse in the morning, but bothers you all day.

Loud sounds, bright lights. Boy is that fun. Sounds can be louder and light is brighter the more tired you become. Even though the lights are not bright for the average person or the room noise is not loud, it is to the Fibro sufferer. They are magnified.

You will also be frustrated with weather issues. Some feel better in the heat while others have increased pain. Then there are some who feel better in the cooler weather of winter, leaving others with increased pain.

For some folks, specific foods cause increased pain. Examples include seafood, wine and sugar, to name a few.

When you are fatigued, the muscles in your throat will restrict and not allow food to be swallowed. You need water to help get the food down.

Watch out for chest pain. This pain is not a heart attack. The nerves along with the muscles, tendons, and ligaments can become hypersensitive which results in Fibromyalgia pain.

As Fibromyalgia, I cause cognitive problems. You will replace words with other words while you are talking, typing or writing. Sometimes you know when this happens, sometimes you don't. During a conversation, Debbie's mind goes blank and can't say the correct word. She knows what the word is, can see a visual picture of the word and can see the word written, but she can't verbalize the word out loud.

Memory, what memory? I wipe out bits and pieces of your memory...such fun! You either can't remember what you WERE talking about, what you were GOING to talk about, or an accurate VIEW of a story. This will cause anxiety because of the frustration, so you tense = pain.

You won't be able to concentrate. It's almost like you have Attention Deficit. Focusing is a challenge. A combination of cognitive, memory issues and focusing is called Fibrofog.

I mess with your emotions and cause depression. Some are so depressed they take their own life. I hate to cause that extreme emotion, but it does happen. Anxiety messes with the fright or flight emotion. This will cause your body to tense and not know what to do. That's a fun accomplishment for me.

Restless Leg Syndrome is when the muscles contract causing limbs to jerk. I'm not sure why they refer to it as a "leg syndrome" because the arms are involved too. I don't leave out any part of the body. I even cause the creepy crawlies. This is when it feels like you have a bug crawling on you. You scratch even though there is nothing there.

When Debbie's body becomes exhausted, she sweats. When she sits down, sweating subsides. She has over taxed her body. The body can only do so much while on your feet. Again, frustration = pain.

Goose bumps happen even on a warm day. I create them at the least on the arms and thighs. I make that area of the body feel very cold. Debbie's husband, Dwain, calls this a "cold snap."

Itchy spots can appear in the palm of your hand or other areas. Usually in what can be called "hot spots." Sometimes they show up because of a change in medication.

Tingling and numbness to any of your body parts, but the limbs are my first choice.

You can loose some of your hair. Commonly this will happen soon after I come to live with you on a daily basis. It just thins so not a big deal, at least for me.

Would you like to raise your blood pressure? I can arrange it. Whether it is because of stress or your medication.

I don't want to leave out your mouth. Cold and canker sores in or outside of the mouth are common. I also arrange for you to have excess phlegm in your throat.


My IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) flared yesterday. Shouldn't be surprised when I had increased pain and exhaustion the day before. I hate this symptom. Can't do anything without running to the bathroom. On Slippery Elm. If you haven't tried Slippery Elm, give it a try. It soothes the intestinal tract and calms the cramping. Best remedy .... getting off my feet helps too.

When I was working, I would go on average 12 times a day. I saw the doctor and she prescribed medication to help with the cramping. The medication cut the amount of times I'd go to half, but still miserable. I got the heads up about Slippery Elm from my local health store owner. It was hard for me to talk to a man about my bathroom habits. But so glad I did as he put me on the right track. In the beginning, I drank a warm cup of Slippery Elm three times a day. I am now able to have it as needed. Hope tomorrow is a better day.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Dwain and I are getting used to our new yard and have enjoyed the time to do so. I don't think Lucy has adjusted as well. She had a couple of accidents and she is not eating as usual. Don't get me wrong, she is eating well, just a different pattern. This may also be attributed to her getting older. Who knows? Just like raising kids, we will wait and see how it sorts out. :D

I've had good visits with friends this week. To see my family and friends is what draws me to the Oregon Coast. Of course the Pacific Ocean is no slouch. Lucy and I walked on the beach today. I picked up a grocery bag of garbage. I walked to far. I was exhausted by the time we returned home. I had lunch and took an hour nap. When I woke, I felt like crap. The Fibromyalgia pain in my legs was miserable. I spent most of the afternoon in my chair.

I fixed dinner and it tasted like terrible. I hate it when I spend time on a meal and it doesn't taste good. I've never been a good cook. I told Dwain I will never make spaghetti again. He will need to make it. To stand on my feet when my legs and hips hurt more than usual and think I'm making a nice meal, then to fail is not acceptable to me. I don't like spaghetti but I still try to make a good sauce because I know Dwain loves it. I don't know what I'm doing wrong.

My heart is breaking for one of my blogging friends. Her Mom is in the hospital and not expected to live much longer. Reading her posts reminds me of when my parents passed. It was a tough time. I expected to enjoy blogging and to be on Facebook, I expected to enjoy getting to know others and to share mutual issues. Since beginning to blog and post on Facebook, I have lost one to suicide and now going through another's Mom's death. In each case they live in another state. It feels like I can't help enough because they are to far away. I can only be verbally supportive and when their Mom is dying, it doesn't feel like enough to me.

Friday, October 8, 2010

We've Moved!

We had a good time last weekend. Dwain went hunting with Matt, Patrick and Joshua on Greenhorn Mountain. Greehorn is west of Sumpter. Josh was the only one to get a buck on opening morning. It was his first buck and he shot it on the run, which is difficult to do. They returned to Wallowa on Sunday.

I stayed with Heather. We shopped 'til we dropped for two days. Nice to have one on one with her with no interruptions. My Fibromyalgia was on high alert, but I paced myself as best as I could. I knew I would pay for it later.

Dwain and I left Wallowa Monday morning and traveled to LaCentler, Washington. I napped on the way down. We spent two days with Adam, Carrie and Lyla. Lyla will be two on Monday, October 11. She is so loved and ahead of those her age. What a treasure. Adam and Lyla will be spending part of Monday with us. We will celebrate her birthday.

I jammed my left pinky finger on Thursday. The swelling is going down slowly. It throbs. I hold it up over my heart and feels better. While typing, I use my little finger for an "a".....ouch! The visual bruising is almost gone.

We are now parked at Manhattan Beach Wayside State Park. The wayside is located north of Rockaway on Highway 101. The last hosts left the park in good shape. We can hear the ocean from our parking spot. It's a short walk to the beach. The high school that we graduated from is across the street. Dwain used to run on this area of the beach training for track season. We had Chinese dinner with Dwain's Dad and Step Mom the evening we arrived.

Okay, I'm now paying for the increased activity before we left Wallowa Lake, the time with Heather and family then Adam and family. The good part is that with this volunteer job, I can take occasional breaks.

Monday, September 27, 2010

I Need Help!

My last two posts show no line breaks. This does not happen on every post, just periodically...anyone know how to rectify this problem?

When Will I Learn?

Last night I stayed on the computer until about midnight. I feel like I don't have enough time to complete my projects. I didn't know it would take that long or I would've stopped sooner. I went to bed and read for about 20 minutes to relax. I woke about 5:30 am and had to pee...back to bed...relax, relax, need to relax...can't! :( Dwain got up about 6:00am. I turned on my light to read a bit, hoping it would relax luck. Finally up at 6:30 am. My head and body hurt from the lack of sleep. Once I ate breakfast and took my medicine, I felt better.

Went to the Chiropractor, grocery store and the Vet for Lucy's dog food. When I arrived home, I took the shortest path to my door and banged the top of my head ... didn't duck low enough. Once I put the cold items in the fridge or freezer I laid down. I had 45 minutes before selling wood, I couldn't sleep. So frustrating.

I KNOW not to stay up late;
I KNOW concentrating on relaxing, does not work for me;
I KNOW that I can't ignore the sensation of needing to pee; and
I KNOW to duck lower.


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Advice from the Moon

Advice from the Moon
Live life to the fullest
Be someone to look up to
Don't be phased by difficulties
Take time to reflect
Enjoy a little space
Honor the cycles of nature
Light up the Night!
Ilan Shamer
This advice was given to my husband Dwain and I as part of a "Thank You" packet for volunteering at Wallowa Lake State Park. It's printed beautifully and I'll frame it.
I believe it gives us things to think about.
Live life to the fullest. This is tough for a Fibromyalgia patient. By the time you are diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, you realize life as you know it, is never going to be the same. We need to learn and accept our limitations, learn how to read our body. Then do what we want to do. Yes, we may not be climbing mountains, but we can instruct someone on how to climb mountains. We must adjust to what our new "can do" is. Soon after I was diagnosed and realized that I would not be able to lead my life as usual, I said to Dwain, "how are we going to do the things we do, like go hiking?" Dwain said, "We can go on a hike. We hike 'til you get tired. Then we rest 'til you are ready to go on." I needed to adjust my thinking. We may not hike the entire hike and we will rest when we need to. You learn to be happy with that. Besides, while resting, you enjoy the views rather than walk past them.
Be someone to look up to. If you lead life to YOUR fullest, others will look up to you. You can learn alot by watching someone you admire. Be that someone, choose how you want to live your life.
Don't be phased by difficulties. Difficulties being our limitations. It's easier said than done, but when we are faced with a difficult situation, we must let it go and not dwell on it. The more we dwell, the more stress. Stress is not our friend...who wants to hurt more?
Take time to reflect. Reflect how your Fibromyalgia is taking its toll. Assess what you need to do to make your life healthier and happier. Reflect on the positive things Fibromyalgia has given you. Positive? What is positive about Fibro? For me, it was continuing to take hikes and enjoying the view. I'm taking more time to enjoy my life. If I did not have Fibromyalgia pain and Chronic Fatigue, my life might be perfect.
Enjoy a little space. Do you enjoy "ME" time through out your day? I wish I had more "ME" time. I rarely receive assistance from my husband on household duties. So there is always something to do. To have "ME" time I must put off household chores. It's hard to relax when you know you have work to do. We need time in our day to totally relax..we need to strive for that time.
Honor the cycles of nature. Here are a few thoughts thinking about nature in different contexts.
We have pain reaction to Mother Nature's seasons, either summer or winter. Remember to dress appopriately and/or have the AC ready. We have increased pain when our monthly cycle arrives. We need to have our chores complete so you can take that time for relaxation.
Light up the night! Share your smile, the twinkle in your eyes...stay positive. :D
My message is to be positive. Advocating for yourself. Assess your limitations and adjust to make your life more complete.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

I want to share a photo of my little Lucy in her cute sweatshirt. Lucy is 6 months old. She gives us alot of love and entertainment. I'm sure she lowers our blood pressure!

The park hosts and staff fell in love with Lucy too.

I had a long day of cleaning park sites. Only one more day and we will have two days off. We are both ready to leave the park. We call the feeling "hitch itch" which is a reference to hitching up our fifth wheel and movin' on. Today we had a potluck with the other hosts and staff. It was staff's way of thanking us for our volunteerism. We will have another pot luck in a few days with just the park hosts. Our final goodbye to each other. Dwain plans to cook a pot roast in the dutch oven. I'm making a lemon pie.

Once we leave the park we will go to Heather's in Wallowa. Dwain will go hunting with Matt and our grandsons for several days. I will be spending time with Heather. I'm hoping for a few relaxful days.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Cold Sores --- Yuck!

I must have said something negative because I have cold sores galore!

They started appearing Saturday afternoon on my left, lower lip. A batch has even moved just down from my lip. I've never had them spread down before. This morning I noticed that another batch has started on my right, lower lip. I may be using a straw to drink my meals. :P

It's been some time since I've had a cold sore so I've been fortunate. They appear about a week after a stressful period, which I had last week.

I take Lysine, 500 mg, one a day as maintenance. I increase to three times a day when I have a cold sore. I use a Lysine topical cream to keep the sore moist. After they start healing, they can crack and bleed.

I understand that cold sores are common for Fibromyalgia sufferers.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Are You Interested?

Are you interested in traveling or living in an RV? How about taking better photos with your camera:

My husband, Dwain and I are full-time RVers. We both contribute to our blog entitled Periodically we post tips we have learned through trial and error. We enjoy sharing our successes and our failures produce interesting conclusions. Having Fibromyalgia has created issues while full-timing. I don't feel as alone on the road when I can blog and check in with my Fibromyalgia friends on Facebook, The Real Fibromyalgia Support Group.

Dwain has a blog entitled Being a photographer, he writes how to use your camera and shares what he has learned. We volunteer in Oregon State Parks. He has lead hiking groups interested in learning more about their cameras and taking photos.

If you have an interest, take a look!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Frustration and Anxiety

I'm starting to feel like I'm behind on to many things. It's pretty bad when you feel accomplished because you've washed the dirty dishes!

I sleep well at night, I Boldhave the help of Trazodone. :D I have NOT rested during the day for three days. Intellectually I know I can't function without resting often. However, sometimes, you can't rest. This statement is not accurate...I can always rest, however, I try to do it all. I STILL need to learn to delegate. :(

Volunteering in a State Park provides getting to know other hosts. This time of year, there are 10 hosts working the park. A couple left this morning so we had a potluck last night. The weather threatened rain. We have a pop-up canopy with four sides that can enclose a picnic table. Dwain decided EVERYONE could come to our yard for the potluck. I hurried trying to prepare for company and anxiety kicked in. Dinner was scheduled for 6 pm. Two couples showed up at 4:30 pm. Here I am trying to get ready and wanting to sit down to visit with them. Once they were here, the other hosts came over. They were all here by 5 pm. My heart is beating fast. I can't think straight, darn cognitive issues. I'm feeling tired and defeated. Dwain was fixing chili with corn bread in the dutch oven. I mixed up the corn bread. Then he told me he wanted the recipe doubled. I could feel myself crumbling, wanting to cry. I did mix another batch of corn bread. A change of plans always upset my apple cart then anxiety blows me up. I'm so conscience of how it makes me feel and I fight to be calm. It's a struggle.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Do You Have A Pattern?

I have patterns in my day. I realized early that if I associate something with what I want to accomplish, I remember to do it. :D Here are some of my examples:

Almost 40 years ago, I went on birth control pills. The doctor explained the importance of not missing a pill, keeping them in order. I placed the pill packet next to my tooth brush...bush my teeth, take a pill. I needed that pattern in order to remember to take my pill.

When I shower, I wash myself in an order. After getting out of the shower, I have a routine before dressing. If I don't follow my order or if I get interrupted, I will forget something. I know no one wants me to forget to wash any parts!

If distracted while baking, I will miss an ingredient. A good example is a few years ago during Thanksgiving, I forgot sugar in the pumpkin pie. The taste was one ate pie. :( I must concentrate!

When Seth and Heather were babies, Heather needed to come off formula and drink 2% milk. I put her bottles on the left side of the fridge and Seth's on the right. When I carried them, Heather was on the left, Seth on the right. I needed an association to remember whose bottle was whose. From that time on, if I needed to keep anything separated, I used the analogy of their position in utero. Many years later, I used the same analogy when my grandsons were born. Although not twins, I place my first born grandson on the right and second born on the left, just as my first born.

To an outsider without Fibromyalgia, these patterns may appear that I have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. On the contrary, those with Fibromyalgia Disease, often draw a blank mind. Having a pattern or order of procedure, helps to complete tasks. I even have my vitamins and prescription medication purposefully positioned in my medicine cabinet.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Happy Anniversary!

Today is our 38th wedding anniversary. We dated five years prior to getting married so we have been together a long time.

We worked in the park, cleaning sites. This evening we enjoyed a Mexican dinner. The waiter sung along with the piped in Hispanic music and was very personable with everyone. He makes a pretty good margarita too!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

This is Me

One of the blogs I follow, posted more about the writer personally. I so enjoyed the posting, that I've decided to do the same here. You won't learn about my bank account (sorry) but more about ME. :D My intention is to write info that even my best friends might not know.

My Dad and Mom met at a community dance in 1950. They married a few months later. When I was born my parents lived on a dairy farm on Lommen Road off of Highway 53 in Mohler, Oregon, which is now known as part of Nehalem, Oregon. My Dad was the hired hand. Not long after my birth, my parents moved to an apartment above the Mohler Store. Dad worked for the store driving a hay truck. He picked up the hay in the valley bringing it back to the store. He would also deliver to local farms. Periodically I road to the valley with Dad. He always shared Juicy Fruit Gum with me. I felt special spending the day with my Dad. Walt the Milk Man picked me up every day after his delivery to the store. He would take me to Alice's Restaurant for coffee. As you walked into Alice's, were cups hanging on the wall. I had my favorite and selected it every day. I would get 1/4 cup of coffee and the rest milk with two teaspoons of sugar. After our coffee, Walt would take me home as he continued his delivery route. I have many fond memories living above the store.

I have three younger brothers. Ken is 19 months younger, Bob is 5 years younger and Shawn who is almost 13 years younger. When Shawn was a couple months old, Mom had a post-natal stroke. I became the Mom of the house, cooking, laundry, taking care of the baby. It was a busy time. The doctor told Mom she was going to die. Fortunately, she did not and was able to resume her Momma duties after several months.

My parents began drinking heavily when I was in 7th grade. We didn't know how their drinking would hurt our family until many years later. Fortunately they were happy drunks instead of mean or violent. Ken and I had to alternate weekends when we wanted to have fun with friends.

I graduated from Neah-Kah-Nie High School in Rockaway, Oregon. Dwain and I started dating the fall of our junior year. We dated three additional years after high school before marrying September 1, 1972. We will celebrate 38 years of marriage this year.

I worked as a legal secretary for the majority of my adult life, either for attorneys or the court.

We have three children, Seth and Heather, twins born 35 years ago. Our youngest Adam is 32. I am so proud of the adults they have become. We have three amazing grandchildren, Patrick, 14, Joshua, 12 and Lyla who will be two in October. We also have two step grandchildren, Jeff, 16 and Kendra 13.

We retired seven years ago, just after my Fibromyalgia came to live with us full-time. We have done many miles of travel, park hosted from time to time and have enjoyed ourselves.

I hope you have learned something new about me whether you are learning for the first time or have known me for many years.

Monday, August 23, 2010

It's A Better Day :D

Feeling so much better today.

My back is maintaining. Saw my Chiropractor today.

My depressive mood is gone! I hope it stays away for EVER!!

My biggest worry today is for my sister-in-law, Marcy. She has been taken by ambulance to OHSU in Portland. They know she was dehydrated, severely anemic, had a stroke atleast 48 hours ago (she didn't know it happened) and, if all that isn't enough, she has an aneurysm near her brain stem. My brother has taken care of their three small children, leaving them with family and the last I heard he was driving the two hour trip to Portland. He will call me later with an update. I hope she will be ok. I would hate to loose her. Her Mom died of after having a stroke, then an aneurysm so she is understandably scared.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

AWESOME Blog Friends

I have wonderful people who read my blog. Thank you for your encouraging words. I know we live this vicious cycle...pain, depression, then doing ok. We know what it takes to exist in our world. It's a constant battle to balance what we feel and what we portray. Always trying to push ourselves to participate. I think I'm tired of trying. I need a couple of days to do nothing, but take care of myself.

Today is a quiet day in the park. Sunday is a transition with another round of campers. Reservations are slowing down with schools starting. It's a good time to do the extra projects in the park. Today is a cool day, cloudy. The sun is due back this coming week and Labor Day weekend will be upon us. We also start loosing hosts. They are moving on to their next assignment. That leaves an extra load on us who stay until the new hosts arrive.

Our 38th wedding Anniversary is September 1st. The longer we are married, the more amazed I am of our journey. Dwain and I met the first time as toddlers. Our parents square danced together so we saw each other periodically during our young years. We went to separate grade schools, but the same high school. We started dating the fall of our junior year. We dated three additional years out of high school before marrying. We have three awesome kids, who are leading productive, happy lives. They have terrific mates and our grandchildren are amazing. I count my blessings in the family department daily.

My bulging disks are doing better today. I continue my exercises and will see my Chiropractor on Monday.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Coping With Fibromyalgia

I am in a period of coping poorly with my Fibro. I'm not resting as I should, pain has increased. My bulging lumbar disks in my lower back are acting up. A muscle or tendon near my elbow hurts as it does when I park host, from over use. AND my left shoulder is having the same issue as my right elbow. I'm a mess!

Because my physical self is so painful, my emotional self is suffering too. I know the remedy is to rest, but how will household chores get done? Dwain has never been helpful in that department. He did wash his breakfast plate this morning. He has been shampooing the carpet, one room at a time. I do appreciate him taking on that challenge. I just wish I could have the engery level I had prior to my diagnosis of Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue. The sad part is that I never will have that wish. When I get emotional the depression starts to rear it's ugly head. I must fight to stay above it. Depression is one more thing I gotta do. I don't have time for it so I must work hard NOT to have it on my "To Do" list. OK, pitty party over!

Lucy has had two days of eating well and not throwing up. She is a happy puppy and I'm so glad we have her. She is a treasure. She is now 5.5 months old.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

AWESOME Family Time!!!

Our trip to the Oregon Coast was AWESOME!!!!

I took the eight hour drive with my daughter, two grandsons and step-granddaughter. We shared a rental beach house with my cousins Cheryl and Jenn, their two kids plus another cousin. The kids were near the same age and got along well. It was a relaxing visit. I stayed up late a couple nights and paid for it later. But not as hard as I expected. I am so thankful.

Dwain held down the home front and our park duties. Our Lucy was sick while I was away. Today is the first day she has eaten normally. Dwain has had 10-12 people on his photography hikes. He enjoys the outdoors, hiking and sharing what he knows about photography. The hike is a major challenge for me. I've decided I will take the hikes for the exercise. I'm not much help in the photography department, but have found to be useful in other areas. My pace is slow, so I bring up the rear.

I have misplaced my camera. I took many photos while at the coast so hoping it shows up soon.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

A Hard Day. :(

Been a hard day...increased Fibromyalgia pain, exhaustion. I took a nap this morning then again this afternoon. Today is our day off from doing park duties. I'm thankful for the timing. I've done very little. So hopeful that Sunday will be a better day.

This coming week I will be traveling to the coast for a visit with family from California. I'm excited to see my Aunt, two cousins and their two kids. Hoping to see granddaughter Lyla too.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Our weekly schedule has changed in the park. We will however be cleaning yurts a couple days a week. We also have two interpretive days and one evening selling wood. The interpretive will be combining photography, nature, hikes. Dwain is putting together the program. It is nice to have a variety in our day.

My Fibromyalgia is on high alert today. The hike yesterday was to much. Boy are my arms and legs sore. I don't have sore muscles, but the extra pain of Fibromyalgia. I did sleep like a log last night. I'm sure the hike helped me there.

I've had a hard time keeping up with the house work. You'd think that in a 37' Fifth Wheel, there wouldn't be much to clean...there isn't. I can't keep the table clear. It always has things I need to take care of on it. If I am too tired to wash the dishes, they set in the sink as a constant reminder that I have something that needs done. It may be time to have a serious talk with Dwain about needing his help.

Having Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome connect with every aspect of my life. I fight not to be depressed.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

WOW! What a Day!

Dwain is putting together a program for the park. It will include a hike, nature, wildlife and photography. I am to be involved in some capacity. Right now, I don't know how I will fit. I may figure it out while I'm attending the program.

This morning Dwain said he wanted to take a hike. He wanted me to go with him. My heart sank. How can I? I remembered what he said when I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. I was having a pity party thinking of all the activities I will no longer be able to participate in. When we were talking about hiking, he said, "Don't worry. We will stop when you need to and we will enjoy the scenery 'til you are ready to continue." I think of that conversation often. Dwain made it impossible for me to FAIL. So off we went for a mile and a quarter hike. It was tough, with alot of rocks and roots. There were many places on the trial where you had to be careful. If you weren't, you would end up falling in a canyon with a rushing river. We did stop several times while climbing. We crossed the river once and climbed switchbacks. Our destination was a beautiful waterfall. Every muscle hurt and I didn't think I would make it. Dwain said anytime I wanted to turn around and go back, we would. I knew that if I can feel the pain while doing the activity, I have over extended myself and will pay for it later. We still had the mile and a quarter return trip. :(

We arrived at the waterfall and it was gorgeous. We took Lucy. Initially she was afraid of the roar of the powerful water. She settled down and explored the area. I dunked her feet in the water hoping it would help with the heat. We gave her water often and she did well. As did I...

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Trial and Error

Here is a post I wrote several days ago. Had to close it down before I was done...

My medical doctor agreed with me that the painful sensations in my left thigh could be a Fibromyalgia symptom. She prescribed Amitriptyline, 25 mg to start. After two doses, I haven't noticed a change in my leg pain. If the medication does not work, she wants to do an MRI from my knees to my waist.

We have had thunder and lightening the last few days, mostly from 4 - 6 pm. I am glad for the rain that accompanies the thunder and lightening as it helps keep the forest fires down.

We have three days off this week...feels good!

Grandson Josh got a clean bill of health from his medical doctor. His two ear infections are clear! Poor guy had dental work done yesterday. He threw up in the dental chair. He reacted to the laughing gas. Not the first time it has happened. They need to know that he is a tough one and do without the gas. Obviously it doesn't agree with him.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Today I Hate Having Fibromyalgia!!

I hate having Fibromyalgia today!! Blessings have come my way because of Fibro. But today my pain level is high and my cognitive function is at zero. I know this is because I cleaned sites in the park today. Half way through my legs were rubber. I could tell I was staggering a bit when I was on my feet. I tried napping once we were done, but my eyes felt as big as dinner plates. Couldn't sleep, but rested a couple hours with my Lucy. My body was continuously jerking. Not just my legs but my whole body. Maybe the jerks kept me awake.

I am looking forward to seeing my doctor tomorrow about the sensations and pain in my left thigh. I expect she will say it is something I need to get used to. This doctor does not believe in prescribing pain medication so I hope she has suggestions.

Lucy had a shower this afternoon! It's been 10 days since she was spayed. She looks so fluffy. After 10 days her fur was looking awful and she was beginning to smell like a dog. :D

We had BBQ'd pork ribs for dinner. They were soooo good. I put them in the crock pot this morning on low then Dwain grilled them with a little BBQ sauce. We also had corn on the cob and a good green salad. mmmmmmmmmmm

Saturday, July 24, 2010

It's Saaaturrrrday!

Spent this morning watching for the eagles and their three fledglings. We saw only one adult and one fledgling. The young are moving further away from the nest. We may need to stop speaking about the eagles and move on to Dwain giving photography tips to the tourists. Wallowa Lake was beautiful as usual. Many boats, fishing and for pleasure. Canadian geese and Merganser ducks. Swallows and Kill Deer birds were busy looking for breakfast.

We came home for lunch then took a nap. Did laundry and dishes, fixed spaghetti for dinner. Not much happening today. The weather is hot so my body is resisting. My left thigh is intense tonight. I have an appointment with my medical doctor on Monday afternoon. I've tried ice and heat. Neither helps.

In October we will be hosting at Manhattan Beach Wayside. Then at Nehalem Bay State Park during November and December. I was worried about Christmas but the host coordinator said they can work around holiday-time.

Pardon my rambling tonight.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Hi Friends

It's been about a month since I've posted. Way to long! I've missed writing. I've had a tough month, Fibromyalgia-wise. Between a Fibromyalgia flare and working at the State Park, I haven't been able to keep up with my household chores. For those of you who don't know me or have not read my entire blog, Dwain and I live in a 37' Montana Fifth Wheel. I should not have trouble keeping up this small space, but I do. Dwain is no help in the housekeeping department. I did grocery shopping a week ago and there are still two bags sitting in the corner of the kitchen. I have only done what must be done. Can't give anymore.

The burning on my left thigh is worse. It has spread to the inside of my leg and up my hip to my butt. It burns, cramps and feels like something is stabbing me. It also hurts to have pants on. I am convinced it is a Fibromyalgia symptom. I went to the Chiropractor. She believes it might be Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD). Apparently my leg would have been injured sometime back. Now the nerves are reacting to the injury in a delayed reaction. Sure could be Fibro related as it involves the nerves. Apparently Chiropractic adjustments will not help. I made an appointment with my medical doctor for Monday.

This week will be a busy camp week. Three of the park hosts will be leaving the end of the week and new hosts arriving. When there is a turn over, it is extra busy for those hosts staying until the new hosts have gone through their orientation and can begin their duties.

Our Josh turned 12 this week. He has a new bike! He has been battling his own health issues, but is feeling much better.

We had Lucy spayed last week. Can't give her a bath for 10-14 days. Her fur doesn't look right...she needs a bath, but must wait 'til Sunday at the earliest. Her incision looks good. She has a Kong I fill with treats. She must work to free the treats from inside the Kong. Most dogs lick to release the treats. Lucy works the traditional way periodically. Most of the time she picks up the Kong, puts her head back then drops the Kong. It's like she is throwing it. Treats fall out often enough for her to continue this practice. She's smart as well as cute!!!

I hope everyone has been well.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Summer Begins!

Today is the first day of summer. Fortunately we didn't have rain like we have had. Tomorrow is to be beautiful with thunder storms Wednesday afternoon. Such unusual weather patterns for this time of year.

I've been very tired today. Took an hour nap with Lucy, but still feels like I weight 20 pounds heavier. The burn in my leg continues. Between the two and the usual Fibromyalgia pain, it's been a rough day. Hopefully tomorrow will be better. I hadn't thought about the possibility of it being "spine" related until I received a comment about the possibility. I am overdue for my Chiropractic appointment. Guess I better make an appointment.

We have enjoyed the grandchildren of one of the other hosts. Tomorrow we will take the older two fishing and their grandparents will be cleaning campsites for us. Sounds like a good swap to me!!!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Day Off!

Today is my day off from camp duties. Our friend Ray is here until Friday. Dwain and Ray were gone most of the day doing guy stuff. Lucy and I hung out together. We did very little. I needed a day to catch my breath.

The outside of my left thigh has a large area that is numb. When on my feet for a little while, it burns intensely. I've had numb areas on my legs and arms before. Also have had burning sensations, but this is by far the worst combination I've experienced. I get relief by sitting down. I tried a Vicodin, but no success. Also a first time a pain medication did not help. A little scary cause when you need it, you need it, you know ...

My Seth and Steve will be here for a visit in about two weeks. I'm sooo excited. I don't see my kids enough. We will only have four days, but our family will all be together so we will make the most of our time. Then back to Wallowa Lake for the rest of July.

Don't remember if I've mentioned it, but our grandson, Josh was voted on to the Wallowa County All-Star Team. An honor he earned by playing his best.

Way past my bedtime ...

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Today we cleaned camp sites after the campers left. Not a difficult job...pick up liter, clean the fire pit and rake the site. Campers were slow in leaving today so the time drug out. It also caused me to be on my feet longer. Had to take a pain pill, which I haven't done for quite awhile. My left thigh cramps and burns beyond my tolerance lately. When I'm not working in the park, I can sit and rest. I switched doctors a couple years ago. This clinic does not prescribe pain medication. They want to control pain through medication, not narcotics. I told them I would be a happy woman if they could. However, it's not happening. I'm thankful I have a few pain pills left. Not sure what I will do when I run out. My plan is to have a serious conversation with my doctor when I see her next.

A classmate from our school days, Ray, came to Wallowa Lake to spend four days with us. Tonight he took us to dinner. We are having a good visit.

Weather has been nice. Cool in the am, averaging 38. Once the sun comes up it warms up quickly.

Lucy has a Vet appointment tomorrow for her second shots. Then I have an appointment for a haircut. I can't keep my arms over my head to blow dry or use a curling iron. So keeping it short helps keep my arm pain down.

Our Joshua made the Major All-Star team for the second year!!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Beautiful Day!

Today was a beautiful day. A few clouds, but mostly sunny, about 75 degrees. We are park hosting at beautiful Wallowa Lake State Park in NE Oregon. We were able to be outside most of the day.

I took a nice nap this afternoon, in between hosting duties. Lucy is getting used to napping with me in the early afternoon. She has such a cute face, that it is nice to wake up to. :D She has not had an accident in the RV for over a week.

Tomorrow we will be doing interpretive work on eagles. The park has spotting scopes and a pair of binoculars for the campers to look at a nesting eagles and their three babies.

My left thigh area has been burning alot. This happens mostly when I've been on my feet too long. I am thankful I'm only having the burning in one leg. :D

Thursday, June 10, 2010

"God blesses us...

"God blesses us in spite of our lives, not because of our lives."
Max Lucado
When I read this quote, I agreed. Then I started thinking of my blessings. Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue have allowed me to be more aware of my blessings and to enjoy them. God has blessed me with an amazing family, special friends and a lifestyle that is conducive to my Fibromyalgia pain.
When you are in constant pain and exhausted, you don't always think of your blessings. Usually we are ready to punch someone! When I take a walk, I look at the flowers closely, rather than just passing by. While with my grandsons, I notice the freckles across their noses. My granddaughter has soft curly hair like her Dad, my son. It would be easy to look past these small characteristics. Because my lifestyle has slowed, I am able to appreciate the little things in life. I hope you do too.

Monday, June 7, 2010

This week has been a challenge. I haven't blogged. Sometimes it is one more thing to do. I do enjoy posting as it helps we see my day.

My Fibromyalgia symptoms are still at a higher level, altho better than a week ago. Guess I'm moving forward. My Chronic Fatigue continues to be aggressive. I'm taking two and two and a half hour naps and still ready for bed early.

Saturday I wore my legs out and knew I was close to them giving way. We had wood shed duty (selling wood) for four hours. Dwain was kind and let me sit in a chair to collect the campers' receipt and tally while he loaded the wood. I felt like I was not holding up my end of the job, but he insisted. I was grateful, but had to get to a place of being ok with his generosity. I'm sure others have the same frustration. I want so badly to be normal. Sometimes it's hard to accept my Fibromyalgia. But must move on .....

We are enjoying the other campground hosts. They are friendly and do their work well. Our duties are to clean the camp sites once the camper has left (two days a week), sell wood (two days a week) and on Sunday we will do an interpretive program. Dwain will teach basic photography, taking the campers over a nature trial, ending up on a viewing platform where they can learn about eagles. That's my learn about eagles and provide information. We have an eagle and two fledglings (baby eagles) in a nest. The park provides binoculars and spotting scopes. A couple days ago I walked to the marina area. It was a perfect sky, warm, adults and children were fishing and/or picnicking. The eagle was flying over head. It was very calming and I soaked it up for awhile.

We are attending grandson Patrick's spring music concert tonight. Always an enjoyable evening. He is an 8th grader and plays with the high school band. After he attended the Seattle Heritage Music Festival, he received a invitation to audition for a band that is traveling to New York, time at Julliard then a concert at Carnige Hall.

Tomorrow our youngest son Adam, daughter-in-law, Carrie and granddaughter, Lyla will arrive for a two day visit. Hard to Lyla is 20 months. I'm grateful they can take the time to visit as it is a 6 hour drive.

It's only about three weeks until our oldest son, Seth and his partner Steve will visit from Chicago. They will spend July 4th with us. That is also Dwain's birthday. Very excited for their visit. I wish we all lived near one another. I miss seeing my kids daily.

Lucy continues to grow, but not by much. She will be three months on Monday and is still potty training. There are moments when I think she's "got it" but not yet! She did take me to the door this morning, but not since. She is due a Vet appointment next week for a checkup and second set of shots. She is a source of great entertainment...a funny puppy. She is a snuggler, which I have enjoyed. We took a nap together yesterday. :D

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Hard Day :>(

What a day this has been. Every time I took a step, I want three backwards. It has rained all day. Taking Lucy out for potty calls is an ordeal. Neither one of us wants to get wet, so we battle tugging on the leash.

Dwain isn't much help with Lucy. He has taken the stand that Lucy is my dog and I should take care of her totally. He plays with her and lets her sit in his lap, but when it comes to taking her outside or watching her so she doesn't do her business in the house, he's worthless. Lucy might be closer to him when she is doing something wrong, and he will tell me what is happening, expects me to stop what I'm doing. I'm about to loose my patience. If he would loose the attitude and pitch in once in awhile, that would be nice. HE got two naps today...not I. I'm about to loose my patience.

I'm having a hard time with my Chronic Fatigue and nod off periodically. I had to force myself to stay awake.

We have moved our home to Wallowa Lake State Park. We will be camp hosts for the month of June and maybe July. We had our orientation today. Soon after lunch our friends came to visit. After they left I started dinner preparation. About 6 pm my Aunt came for a visit. I did get one load of towels and a rug washed today, I am so tired I can't think straight. My cognitive is running amuck.

So off to bed to catch a few winks before Lucy wakes up. After two nights of 8 hours straight, she got up twice last night.

Monday, May 31, 2010


Our friends from the coast came to visit this weekend. They arrived on Friday and were able to stay until Monday morning. We have been friends for nearly 40 years. We raised our children together. They were able to see Wallowa County, fish, hunt and visit, visit, visit. Oh..we ate a lot too! We had long days, ending with a campfire and smores. :D It will take some time for my body to recoup.

My sinus infection is better, altho the phlem is thick in my throat. I will have another cup of hot tea and add vinegar and honey. The phlem is a symptom of my Fibromyalgia. The more tired I am the thicker it is. It also increases after I eat.

We are moving to Wallowa Lake State Park tomorrow. We will be park hosting for two months. It's a beautiful park. We work in the morning so afternoon and evenings are free to do as we want, including attending our grandsons' baseball games.

Our new addition, Lucy, fits in well. She doesn't allow me free time. She slept thru the night last night. We had 8 hours of sleep. I hope it is the beginning of sleeping again.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

I've been living with a sinus infection and our new puppy Lucy. The combination has not been good for my Fibro. Hence why I haven't been on blogging. My body protested wildly. Usually when I have a flare I am able to be on my computer. But the combination of the three, knocked me down. I had to increase my Neurotin. But I'm doing better and so is Lucy. I'm still moving slower.

Lucy is improving with her house skills. Yesterday she went to the door twice and again first thing this morning. She is also sleeping in her crate well. Friday morning she even put herself in the crate for a nap. :) She is getting up 2x a night. I will be soooo happy when she decreases the night potty calls. :)

Our friends from the coast are here this weekend. It is good to see them. We are having a wonderful visit. Today the guys are off to see the lay of the land. The girls are going to do a little shopping. My grandkids will babysit Lucy. I've been having increased pain in my upper legs so don't know how long this shopping spree will last for me. That's ok, there are many places to sit and enjoy the busy activity of the small town of Joseph.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Here I Am!

Hi! My name is Lucy Sue. I am nine weeks old and I have been living with Dwain and Debbie for three days. I love my new home. I'm a little spoiled, but not enough to be obnoxious...yet. :D

I went to the Double Arrow Veterinary Hospital yesterday. WOW! What an experience. First the Vet Tech weighed me. I am 2.5#. I may be small, but don't under estimate the weight I can throw around. Next she used a thermometer in my little bottom. My temperature was just right. She took my picture for their file. Dr. Greenshields came in and had a big smile when he saw me. Little did I know that he was going to poke me with a needle and make me drink something that tasted like bananas. I think they are going to keep me healthy. Dr. G poked, squeezed and lifted. I had been taking a nice nap before we got to the clinic. :(

Before we left Dwain and Debbie bought me a new halter and leash. Guess what color? PINK!!!
I have some great tasting food and treats too. I also have two new toys.

Because I'm small, I get cold easily. Debbie thinks she might find a sweater for me. Our friends, Clarence and Debbie gave me a nice crate. Dwain put my food and water in the back of the crate along with a blanket. I don't mind going in the crate to have a bite to eat and drink, but they want me to sleep in there. That's going to take alot of convincing as I'd much rather sleep on the couch or on the floor next to their feet. Actually, I like to drape myself across their foot. Debbie thinks that is because I miss my five brothers and sisters. That might be, as their feet are the same size as my siblings.

They want me to sleep when it is dark outside. I would rather be awake at night and sleep during the day. What's wrong with that? Many people have this schedule, granted most are teenagers and those under 30. Just because Dwain and Debbie happen to be over 30 (he he), should I change what makes me happy? Besides, Debbie stays up with me. That won't last much longer, because she says she can't take it anymore. Her Fibromyalgia is flaring. I don't like to make her hurt, so we may need to compromise. While I'm taking a cat nap...oh...I'm a dog...they put me in my crate. I show them...I wake up immediately and come out of the crate and sleep in front of it.

I went to Josh's baseball game last night. There were kids who wanted to hold me. It was nice for awhile, but I was glad Debbie retrieved me. Patrick then came along and saved me from Debbie's lap. Unfortunately, he dropped something, bent over to pick it up and I tumbled out of his arms. That hurt! But I survived. I have a voice like my sister Heather and the whole ball field heard me.

Time for me to sleep for a couple hours more.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My Name is Lucy!

We have named our puppy Lucy! A more true statement is I named our puppy Lucy. Dwain informed me that this is "my puppy." He would've named her Pepper. He is enjoying her as much as I am, although he might not admit it. In the past it would have been the other way around. I knew he would have been ok with having a dog so when I finally got to a point where I was ready, it was a matter of keeping our eyes open for the right one. While our eyes were busy, Dwain decided we didn't want a dog...we would want to train our dog and in order to best insure that feat, was to find a puppy. He didn't want to be up in the middle of the night and we all know that someone with Fibromyalgia doesn't want to loose sleep either. If you read my last post, you know I found Lucy at Josh's baseball game. Dwain was trying to protect me when he said no to the puppy. I love him for that protection. I'm strong-willed too and I stood my ground and he let Lucy come home with us without saying another word. I was fortunate for not fighting about it. I have often read that pets in the home help reduce stress. For myself, I wanted a lap dog that I could love, enjoy and in return she might lower the tension in my body. What I have noticed is that Dwain is smiling more. He has been down this past winter and spring. So another gift. I love finding gifts during my day. The trick is to be aware that you are receiving them. Lucy is a gift for both of us. On that note I have been the one up at night with Lucy. Of course living in a 37' RV, Dwain isn't sleeping either. My Fibro is miserable due to the lack of sleep. I have periodically taken a Vicodin. Because I have lived through raising three children, I know that Lucy will eventually sleep through the night. I hope I can hold out 'til she gets tired enough to sleep through the night! We took Lucy for her first Vet appointment this morning. She weighs 2.5# and is perfect! Goes again in a month for her next shot then after two months she can be fixed.

Josh has a ball game tonight. There are no more puppies to bring home so we will go and enjoy the game. Josh is the starting pitcher of this game!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Our New Puppy

We have a cute puppy at our house! She is 8-9 weeks old. Her Momma is a Dachshund. Her Father is unknown. She has very wavey black hair. There's speculation that the Father may be a Cocker Spaniel. She has a little snout which makes me wonder about him being a Poodle. Her former owner said she was mellow like her Momma and the runt of the litter. That helped me know I wanted her to come home with us. Dwain was not receptive. We were at Josh's baseball game and the owner had brought her to the game with their family. I let Dwain know that even though he didn't want a dog, I did. Those who know me would think I flipped. As I have never been a dog person. Once she starts sleeping through the night, I will be happy. Last night, being our first night together, she played 40 minutes then slept for an hour. This was her pattern all night. Needless to say, I enjoyed the play time but going outside for her to potty in my bathrobe and broken sleep, was not so fun. I am anxious for unbroken sleep to come back to my night time already. She came from a home with seven kids and three puppy siblings still at home. I expected separation anxiety. My Fibromyalgia is flaring. :( Our friends have given us a dog kennel, which was kind. I'm hoping I come to understand the need for it. Dwain has a plan and said it will be good to have. I will keep you posted on my adventures with this "little bit."

Monday, May 17, 2010

I have a new puppy!!! More info tomorrow. :D

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Dwain and spent a good part of the day helping my Aunt Donna and Uncle David empty a U-Haul truck. They have moved from the Oregon coast to the town of Enterprise in eastern Oregon. We will see them often as we spend the summer 30 minutes from Enterprise. I was starting to have break through pain, cramping and weakness in my legs and arms by the time we finished. We had a nice lunch from Heavenly's and a good visit before heading home.

David is a retired RN and volunteers his time with AARP. Donna is an RN and works at our local hospital. Donna is my Mom's youngest sister. There is about three years difference between Donna and I. We feel more like sisters than Aunt and Niece.

My body is feeling better tonight. I have a headache, but I think that is because I did not have a nap. I'm hope I don't pay for the lifting and up and down stairs tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Feeling Fortunate

I belong to Facebook Fibromyalgia support sites. I have learned a few things from getting to know the ladies and gentlemen who frequent the sites.

Many are troubled with deep depression. Depression shows up in my life regularly but not deep like I see on the sites. Mine will last a day then I move on. I need a pity party for the day. Dealing with constant pain over your entire body 24/7 and a list of symptoms as long as your arm, your physical abilities deminished, will send anyone into depression. The ones with deep depression tend to voice issues of others not understanding or not being supportive. Some will not go for counseling to learn how to cope with their depression and pain. There have been many reasons why..they don't want to be known as someone who needs counseling, their husband doesn't want people to know his wife is seeking counseling, they don't have insurance or enough money.

Because Fibromyalgia is a silent disease, meaning there are no visible signs, they have trouble with family members and friends who think they are lazy. When my Fibromyalgia came to stay with me full time, I told Dwain that I should paint little red dots on my face so he would know I didn't feel good. Another comment often given to Fibromyalgia sufferers is, "You must be feeling better. You look good." If someone spent enough time with a Fibromyalgia sufferer, they would see physical signs of the disease, slow gate, a wince, sigh, trouble swallowing, anxiety issues, exhaustion.

Many can't find a medication that relieves their symptoms. They go from one medication to another. Others can't find a sleep aide, so they are not sleeping, which increases their pain level. I have been fortunate that every medication given to me has worked. I would like them to work better, but at least they work. I understand that until there is a cure, I will always have symptoms. To the degree the medication works, is how I will feel.

Finding a balance of Fibromyalgia symptoms is a personal journey. Every one is affected by Fibro differently, we require different levels of medication. We must find a balance of the amount of energy we can expend. My Fibromyalgia is balanced between my pain, medication and rest periods.

I am saddened by the posts that are written. I pray for these ladies and gentlemen daily. I am more fortunate than many.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

I would like to wish everyone a Happy Mother's Day!

My weekend will be full. My oldest kids, Seth and Heather, will celebrate their 35th birthday. When did I get so old??? Seth lives too far away in Chicago. Heather lives in NE Oregon in the small town of Wallowa. I wish we all lived near each other so we could be together often. I don't like not being with my kids when on their birthday. We celebrated their birth together until after they left home to create their own adult lives. I still get sentimental about their births. I guess it's a Mother's right.

Josh has a baseball game Saturday afternoon. After, we will do a little shopping in Joseph at Mad Mary's birthday celebration. Mad Mary's is a great store for shopping. Then to dinner.

Sunday, we will celebrate Mother's Day by going to church then to Heather's to spend the afternoon and have BBQ chicken for dinner.

On Monday I need to send the kids back to school and the grown ups back to work so I can rest!

Happy Mother's Day to everyone!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Slow Days

I've had a couple nice days at a slower pace. I can see where I need to vacuum, dust, etc. These won't leave. They will be there when I finally get busy.

I made two trips to the post office. The first trip was tuff. My legs were giving out as I got home. I headed straight for my chair and got my legs up. After lunch I took an hour and a half nap. I made a second trip to the post office which was easier than the first.

After dinner we went to Matt and Heather's for a short visit. When we returned I noticed walking from the car to the house, the cold weather hit my forehead from my eye brows to the middle of my forehead. It feels like a brain freeze. It's been hurting for almost two hours.

Boy am I complaining!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

I've Lost A Friend

Sunday morning the sadness and pain in Michelle's life took over in a deep depression that I hope I never know. I met Michelle on-line in a Facebook Fibromyalgia support site. The loss is unique to me and many others on the site. It is the first time I've lost a friend that I've known only through her words. We communicated daily concerning our Fibromyalgia health. Our symptoms, whether our pain had increased or we were having a better day. The medications we took, what worked for us and what didn't. We discovered the names of medications in the United States had different names in other countries. We laughed at the different sayings from other countries. We talked about our families, our blessings and our worries. We all talked about how we were coming to the end of a month and money was tight. We talked about everything and sometimes silly nothings. Like today, we are learning how to make hearts.

Michelle and her family will be in my heart. Michelle's pain has eased. Her family will miss her dearly as will I and my Fibromyalgia sisters.

Monday, May 3, 2010

We had a baseball weekend. Took our grandson, Josh to Pendleton for a baseball tournament. We loaded up our small RV which we refer to as "the little house" on Friday and started our two hour drive at 6:30 am on Saturday. We were at the ball field most of the day. The wind was blowing hard and cold. I was able to keep my body warm. However, by the time we returned to the RV my left upper leg was hurting and had little strength. I'm sure I tensed the leg while shifting on the bleachers. When I woke up this morning it was fine.

We got home Sunday afternoon feeling exhausted and I took a two hour nap. Then slept ten hours over night. This afternoon I slept an hour and a half. Trying very hard not to be frustrated with the diseases of Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue. I've been given these diseases for a reason so need to buck up and go with the flow.

I lost an online friend yesterday. Her name is Michelle and we met on a Facebook Fibromyalgia site. We chatted daily with many others. Because I'm on this site at least once a day, you get to know each other. My heart is broken. Her medical condition caused depression. Sometimes it is difficult to get yourself out of the depression. I will miss her input to our medical discussions and her sense of humor.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Patrick is 14

Our grandson, Patrick is now 14 years old. His birthday was yesterday, April 28th. It seemed like yesterday that he was born. As it does with his Mother, our daughter, Heather. She will be 35 years old on May 8th.

We had birthday ice cream last night in between birthday telephone calls. Friday there will be a birthday BBQ with friends and family.

I had my follow-up doctor appointment this afternoon and tests show that I've healed from my bladder/kidney infection. I'm pleased as Dwain and I are to take Patrick's younger brother, Joshua to Pendleton, Oregon (two hour drive) for the weekend to play in a baseball tournament. Heather, her husband Matt and Patrick will be helping with the funeral of their Pastor's son this weekend.

Patrick and Joshua's birth Dad and his parents will be at the tournament. I'm not looking forward to seeing their Dad. He makes me tense. My Fibromyalgia symptoms increase with tension. I will work to stay calm ... It's to everyone's advantage.

It is cold today. It has snowed off and on, but does not stick. Typical spring weather. I hope it warms up for the weekend!

A Month?????

WOW!!!!!! It's been a month. My intent the end of April was to get back to daily posts. Ha Ha!

We commuted 7 hours to LaCenter, Washington. A few days after arriving, I came down with a flu virus that Dwain had prior to leaving Wallowa. It was uncomfortable but I was able to be up. Then I started feeling like I had a bladder infection. Both the bug and the bladder infection had similar symptoms so I waited for a couple of days. Eventually I went to a pharmacist and inquired about OTC medication for the bladder infection in hopes it would take care of the infection. In a couple of days the left side of my abdomen hurt. It then traveled to the left side of my back. I assumed my kidneys were now involved. On Monday I started with a fever. I hurt enough I was going to ask Dwain to take me to an ER, then didn't. I thought if I could wait until we returned to Wallowa and my see my own doctor on Wednesday.

Wednesday we drove to Wallowa and I got an appointment on Thursday. I was diagnosed with a bladder and kidney infection, which was no surprise. What did surprise me was the doctor's comment that I was borderline for being admitted to the hospital. He gave me a prescription and sent me home. The medication and all the water and cranberry juice I had been was drinking (I thought I was going to drown for two weeks) helped. Within a day my fever was gone. I see the doctor again today for a follow-up appointment. I am feeling better. Of course the virus and infections affected my Fibromyalgia. My pain level increased and my energy level decreased. It will take awhile to get back to what "normal" is now.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

To Many "Speed Bumps"

I've missed being here. To many "speed bumps" this last month. My blog took the way-side. I hope to be here daily as it helps to discuss my day in writing.

We left Yuma, Arizona and traveled to Wallowa, Oregon. Wallowa is located in the NE corner of the state of Oregon. Like Yuma, Wallowa has a desert landscape. Best of all, our two grandsons live here. We will be here for a week before traveling to LaCenter, Washington to spend time with our 17 1/2 month old granddaughter, Lyla.

It snowed off and on today, but didn't stick. Expecting wet weather for several more days. I miss the sun of Yuma, but the sun will be permanent in Wallowa soon. My Fibromyalgia feels better on cooler days, so not in a hurry for high temps to arrive.

I didn't take a nap today and now in late afternoon, I'm regretting the decision. I do have dinner ready for the oven. Not much preparation...just the way I like it. :D

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

"Give Yourself a Fresh Start"

A Moment for You, Woman's World

"....that's all behind you now.
Regrets only weigh us down,
so why take them with you?
Instead, let hope lift you up
as you step forward...."

You get the diagnosis. Fibromyalgia. What's that? You do search after search, reading everything you can. This disease has taken over your body and your life. Who are you? You feel like a different person. Has someone invaded your body and taken over? How do you handle yourself? It is hard to remember who you were. The pain, fatigue and cognitive issues control you.

From this point on you are learning who you have become. How you fit your former life into your new life. The diagnosis "is behind you now." If you dwell on the negative issues of your new life, you are headed for depression. Yes, it happens, but you must continue to move dwelling! "Regrets only weight you down."

"Let hope build you up as you step forward....

Sunday, February 21, 2010

What A View

We are 20 miles north of Yuma, Arizona, behind the Yuma Proving Grounds, which is an Army base. We are on BLM land, boondocking. The photo above is what I see from my window. In fact, I took the photo from inside my house. The Chocolate Mountains are darker than the usual Arizona Mountains. I enjoy the light contrast against the dark and when the sun rises in the morning, they are beautiful. It took me some time to see the beauty of a volcanic desert. Looking out each windows gives me a different view. These views are to my southwest.

Sometimes we look out our windows and get lucky to see critters that live in the desert. Most are too small and you don't see them because they blend with the natural color of the desert. A few days ago, I looked out my large picture window in the back and saw coyotes. I took photos through the window. Because they were on the move, I couldn't focus fast to get a clear picture. There were four traveling together. You could tell their personalities even though we saw them for less than five minutes. There was a leader who moved quickly, no stopping. Then the want-to-be leader who stayed on the Leader's tail. There was the pokey puppy who sniffed everything while moving quickly but was aways back from the leaders. And then there was the old guy who sat on the hill and scratch 'til the last possible minute before moving on. There are many mesas and valleys between us and the Chocolate Mountains, so the coyotes disappear quickly.

I haven't had a chance to walk in the desert. A camper in the area reported seeing a Diamondback Rattlesnake so it has been warm enough for them to come out. Makes me nervous, but Dwain made me a walking stick and told me to use it on my walks. I had planned to go this morning but the wind is blowing 20 to 40 mph and has a nip to it. So will put off my walk 'til tomorrow. I enjoy looking for rocks and there are a zillion here, so never board. In the past we have seen different birds, jack rabbits, and lizards. There are not many but the desert flowers are starting to bloom.

My only concern, besides snakes, is that there are many hills, mesas and valleys. That equates to alot of up and down walking. My Fibromyalgia doesn't like up and down walking and uneven surfaces. All of which will be on my walk. I go slow and try to watch where I'm stepping. I take a small backpack with a snack and several bottles of water. This leaves my arms free of weight except my walking stick. I look back to pin point our RV or another one I recognize for reference so I don't lose my way. I wear something bright so to be found easier and I take my telephone.

Can't walk long, but enjoy the quiet and beauty of the desert.