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 forward...no 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.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

My Friend Judy

My friend Judy came for a visit today. We haven't had more than 5, 10 minute visits at a time. So this was fun to catch up. Judy is ten years older than I am. So does that mean that Judy thinks younger or I think older? We meet on a level playing field. We made a "play date" in two weeks. We will go to the Farmers' Market, have lunch, then we will shop 'til we drop!

We had rain and alot of wind yesterday and through the night. Arizona needs the rain. We could have done without the wind.

My Fibromyalgia feels better today. I was able to work on the taxes for a couple of hours..until Dwain decided to work on his harmonicas...I had to be done. To much extra sensory noise. By afternoon through the evening noises (including nice music) become louder and shriller. Lights do the same thing..the brightness is intense. The list of Fibromyalgia symptoms is as long as your arm.

I have enjoyed the Olympics. The athletes' work ethic to be selected for the Olympic team and then their performance at the Games are inspiring. Not that I'm going to go straight out and learn to ice skate or ski. How about Curling?

Friday, February 19, 2010

On Thursday we spent most of the day in Yuma running errands. What a tiring day. I did laundry, while Dwain went to the hardware store across the street. I thought my arms were going to fall off taking the clothes from the washer then folding it. The muscle exhaustion was intense. I hope next week, I think to have Dwain help me.

We got home at 7 pm so didn't hang the clothes until this morning. Amazes me how fast they dry here. Did a few household chores then BAM! My body was done. I knew I had done too much yesterday. Tried to push a little further to complete my project and nausea kicked in. I immediately sat in my recliner. Nothing will seat me faster than a sick stomach. :D After missing my nap for two days, I was ready. Just as I fell asleep, Dwain came into the house and that was the end of my nap (he is not quiet). I have been a slug all afternoon.

These events are a pattern with Fibromyalgia patients. If you over due your activity, you are bound to crash the next day. When this is your pattern prior to Fibromyalgia permanently in your life, you are in double danger. It is so hard to break the habit. There is a fine line between exercising enough to help your Fibromyalgia pain and too much exercise. All you can do is rest to feel better.

I hope a flare is not in the cards and I wish for a better day tomorrow, Saturday.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I need help

Does anyone using Blogspot have trouble with your "published blog" looking different than your "saved blog?"

A good example is my "Friends and Neighbors" blog from yesterday. The photos were the same size (medium) and my type was distributed evenly. When I checked the preview prior to publishing, it looked great.

The end result is one photo is large. The type moved around and several paragraphs are cramed together rather than a space between.

Any suggestions or help would be appreciated.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Day of Frustration

Two years ago I received my Social Security Disability. Starting this January, Medicare kicked in, providing me with medical insurance. I also signed up for Med Advantage through Blue Shield/Blue Cross.

On Friday I received a phone call from my Chiropractic office telling me that Medicare is not paying their billings. I couldn't call Medicare until today. I spent time reviewing my Medicare Book off and on all day, trying to understand it so I could speak intelligently. The more I tried the less I understood. About 11 am I felt like I was going into an anxiety attack. My friend, Judy, who I met two years ago, (she is from Gresham) came by for a visit. She saved me at the best possible time. We had a nice visit. I then fixed lunch and took an hour nap. Finally, at 4 pm I called. The first gentlemen I spoke to, tried quoting the book. I got the impression that he was new. He finally forwarded me to a billing specialist. He was equally as enthusiastic, but was able to answer my questions.

It looks like my Chiropractors' office was billing the wrong Blue Cross office. I called the office and gave the correct information. I do remember the secretary copying my insurance cards. Who knows, hope it all works out as I do not want the bill. :(

I wish I could function as not to cause anxiety. I know it is part of my Fibromyalgia, but I really dislike how it makes me feel. I feel weak, not in control of myself, and scared. When the anxiety subsides, I feel like I've accomplished something big, even when it is not much. And I'm tired. When I return to Wallowa County in the spring, I plan to talk to my doctor about how to help control the anxiety. I don't want to take another pill. My son, Seth, thinks I can talk myself down from the anxiety. This is what I do now and it is increasingly getting worse. The attacks are coming more often. What to do, what to do ......

Monday, February 15, 2010

Friends and Neighbors

One of the things I enjoy about full-time Rv'g is getting to meet our friends and neighbors, whether they are of the furry variety or those on two feet. Here are a few photos I've taken ...

I believe this colorful bird is a House Finch. My books show that male House Finches have red markings rather than orange. I have not found a bird that looks like this guy. He lives in Quartzsite, Arizona.

This little guy is only 4" in length..he has breakfast at a feeder on the back of our RV. He eats off and on during the day but spends more time here in the morning. He is a Broad-Tailed Hummingbird.

I find it very relaxing to hear the birds in song, to watch them in a tree or shrub, hoping from limb to limb. The Hummingbird and their quickness of flight is amazing.

We have a small lizard living in a rolled up carpet we keep under our RV. He is approximately 3" long and gray. He runs so fast on his little tiny legs. Lizards do not relax me!

There are donkeys living in the desert too!

There is a photo posted in the Welcome Center of a Cougar that was spotted not from where we are parked. Dwain got a photo of a Great Horned Owl a couple days ago.

We have reconnected with a couple from Gresham, Oregon (near Portland) that we met two years ago. It has been nice to have visits with them.

We are living in the desert just north of Yuma, Arizona. The weather has been perfect for me until yesterday when it reached 85. My Fibromyalgia rebels in the heat. Today it was 84. I do ok until after lunch when the temperature starts rising. It doesn't cool off 'til about 9 pm. So sleeping hasn't been a problem.

It is quiet where we are parked, with the Chocolate Mountains directly behind us. That has also helped with relaxing.

Sunday, February 14, 2010


I'm thinking of making visual changes to my blog and I would appreciate your comments.

Would you like to see a rotation of quotes in my Something to Think About? I like this quote as it states that we need each other for support and that is so true with Fibromyalgia.

I am considering changing my Iris picture. Should I rotate a nature picture or something more personal?

Will You Be My Valentine?

We've had a relaxful Valentine's Day. Completed a few household chores. After lunch we went to what they call the "Pit" at Senator's Wash. There were approximately 25 musicians who played and sang for two hours, much to the delight of their audience. They were over the age of 70. :D I tried to encourage Dwain to participate but he wasn't ready. I expect next week he will play. Felt good to sit in the sun and enjoy the music.

By the time we came home I was light-headed so tried to relax in my recliner. Can't figure out the reason for the light-head. The temp was approximately 78, but there was a nice wind blowing. It was not uncomfortable. I had a bottle of water and YES I drank it. As I write, it is 7:45 pm and I'm still light-headed. Guess I can chalk it up to Fibromyalgia.

I have so enjoyed the Facebook Fibromyalgia site. The ladies and gentlemen have become a family. It's like having our own neighborhood. Lots of uplifting Valentine wishes today. I would encourage my followers to look into the Facebook site. The participants are a tremendous support to each other. There is also a discussion board that is well-used.

We are watching the Olympics. What an amazing experience for the athletes.

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Kindness is a flower always in season
I found this decorative plaque while in one of my favorite shopping stores, Mad Marys in Joseph, Oregon. I placed in our living room, which is where we spend most of our time while inside. Sometimes we, meaning everyone, forget to show kindness to our spouse. It is easy to snap or respond in an unkind manner. Our tone of voice does not always show kindness. Sometimes it is nice to have the reminder...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Not Much Going on Today

Don't have much to write today..I'm a little brain dead tonight. :(

Worked on taxes for most of the morning. After lunch, took an hour nap. Dwain had gone for a walk in the desert with his camera so it was nice and quiet. When I woke I had trouble with being light-headed. I sat in my recliner and read for about a half hour before starting dinner. Dwain returned with several beautiful photos, including a few with a great horned owl.

After dinner checked Facebook and now watching American Idol.

Pain in my back, neck and head continue to be my stand-out problems today along with Fibro Fog. Sharp cramps in my upper right leg as usual.

Tomorrow we are planning to go to Yuma Market. This involves alot of walking. Thankful there are places to rest. We will also pick up drinking water and propane.

Having trouble concentrating on writing so will close for the night.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Tuff Fibromyalgia Day

Today has been a tuff Fibromyalgia day. We drove into Yuma to pick up prescriptions and do laundry. We stopped at the Christian Service Center and registered. This enables us to receive our mail and registers us for emergencies. The road we travel from our parking spot in the desert to the highway is rutted from the recent rain and rough. Dwain drove slow but it was still jarring. Half way to town I needed pain medication. I haven't used one for a long time. It really knocked me for a loop. I've never felt like that after taking the medication. I'm sure it was from being tense that I could feel the relaxation.

We accomplished our errands, had lunch and returned home. Dwain helped me hang the laundry then I laid down. After 15 minutes, Seth called. It was wonderful to hear his voice. All's well in Chicago. They were expecting another snow storm. Dwain BBQ'd dinner.

I'm now sitting in my recliner. I have my warming throw on the back of the recliner. I've bunched it under my neck. My back and neck are receiving the warmth. I should turn it up as it is not relaxing my muscles as fast as I would like. Instead I think I will go to bed.

As I was about to save and publish this post, Dwain turned off the generator so I'm closing out this post Tuesday afternoon. :D

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Attitude is Everything

"Your attitude will take you up or take you down. So the question is, what are you thinking?"

Casey Treat

If you have Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, you know that your attitude is important. If you take the stance of poor me, you hurt more and you are depressed. You don't want your IBS to rear its ugly head either. Who wants to go there? Not I.

If you do not have a chronic disease and take the attitude of poor me you still get depressed.

Your attitude is everything. It's ok to have a pity party periodically, but don't go there daily or you will be in a pickle.

Watching the Superbowl and it's a great game so far.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

What Happened?

Inside every sick person is a well person wondering what the hell happened. Anonymous

I think I posted this statement before. I ran acrossed it again and thought about it often today. I think Fibromyalgia sufferers do consider why did the good Lord pass this nasty disease to me? I've thought about God wouldn't give you anything you could not handle.

I feel I understand and am handling my Fibromyalgia.

I know that when my body says it can't continue, that I must at least sit but best to lay down. My body needs to rest.

If I continue to push myself, a flare is a given.

I know that I can't have more than one glass of wine or my pain increases the next day.

I know I can only walk or exercise for a short time or my pain increases or a flare takes over.

My IBS is under control unless stress is in my life. Anxiety...I'm still working on.

I'm doing well on my prescription medication. I was fortunate to have a doctor who put me on a good regimen.

I know that if I take my medications before 9 am I do fine. But if I take them after, my whole day is off. I hurt more.

I feel I'm under control, except if a flare arrives. I get a flare when I've overdone and pushed my body to do things that are now difficult. It's hard to remember you can't participate in life as you did before Fibromyalgia.

So I wonder "what the hell happened" EVERY day.

Friday, February 5, 2010

To Be Loved

Tw Love and be Loved is to feel the Sun on Both Sides
Author Unknown
February is the "love" month. Valentine's Day, chocolates and flowers.
Do you know why you love others....really love them?
What are the qualities they possess that bring you to them?
Do you know why others love you?
Do you know what qualities you possess that bring them to you?
We should take the time to think about the answers to these questions. We often fall in love then take for granted the relationship. If you love and are loved, you can feel the sun on both sides.

Blogspot won't let me place my own spacing. I hope you can read this ok

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Movin' On Down The Road

Had a leisurely breakfast this morning then prepared the RV for travel. We moved south, about an hour down the road, to another BLM long term visitor's area (LTVA). The area is called Senator's Wash and is located behind the Army's Yuma Proving Grounds. It is dry camping but there are many amenities. Water, dump station, garbage, drinking water, propane, thrift shop, library, mail, and a gentlemen sells solar panels. We have access to the Army base to see a movie. The base also provides emergency medical care with ambulance. We can see for miles and look at the Chocolate Mountain Range. So quiet here.

As we were pulling into the LTVA we saw a couple we met two years ago, Harold and Judy.They were out for a walk. It was nice to see them. We found an available parking area next to the one we had two years ago. There are many more folks here than two years ago. We are only two RV's away from Harold and Judy. The area is very rocky. I could feel my body tense from the rugged roads. BLM grades them each year, but with the extra traffic, they are torn up.

After setting up the RV, we had lunch and I took a nap for an hour. Judy poked her head in to say hello for a minute. They were expecting company so could not stay long. We will have a good visit on Saturday.

Fixed chicken for dinner. It was good. Have been doing computer work this evening. Dwain has been playing his harmonica and I need to get away from it soon. The high pitched tones in the evening are shrill. One of the symptoms of Fibromyalgia is light and sound sensitivities. I have the most trouble with sounds in the afternoon and evenings. Seems to be when I'm more tired. The light bothers me anytime of day.

Tomorrow we will go to Yuma and do a little grocery shopping. Dwain wants to go to Home Depot and get the oil changed in the truck. We will probably have lunch at The Golden Corral, which is a buffet.

My Fibromyalgia has been doing ok today. Had a little trouble with the drive and the rough road, otherwise symptoms have been contained. :D

Time to do the evening dishes and get to bed.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Catching Up With Friends

On Tuesday we drove to Mesa, Arizona to visit with our former neighbors from Knappa. This is nearly a three hour drive. Two of the three rest areas were closed. We didn't stop to stretch so we were both a little stiff-legged by the time we arrived. Gary is struggling with congestive heart failure, diabetes and kidney problems. He is now on dialysis three times a week and will continue for the rest of his life. We had a great visit and were able to meet two of their friends. It was another three hour drive back to Quartzsite.

Wednesday we did a few chores before heading for Parker, Arizona. This was a 30 minute drive. We had lunch with our friend, Betty. We met Betty when she spent a summer in the same RV park in Wallowa. We hadn't seen her for three years, but we talk periodically on the phone. Betty suggested we eat at Paradise Cafe in Parker. The cafe was decorated in happy colors but not over done. We all enjoyed our lunch. But the best was conversation with Betty. After catching up for three hours, Betty headed back to Needles, California where she is staying this winter and we stopped for a few groceries. We plan to do big shopping on Friday but needed milk, etc.

When we returned home we did chores towards getting ready to move the RV to Senator's Wash tomorrow, which is 20 miles north of Yuma. It's about an hour drive south from Quartzsite. By the time we got back to Quartzsite this afternoon, I was exhausted. My body felt like it weighed 300 lbs. I sat for a bit then got dinner into the oven, but couldn't do more. I read while dinner cooked.

Our visits with friends is uplifting. Certainly worried about Gary's health, but such a joy to see our good friends.

Monday, February 1, 2010


Life is about to get so much better...

When things get rough, it can feel like they'll never get easier.
Like difficulties are here to stay forever.
But hard times never last.
How could they, when people like you are working so hard to leave them behind?
Remember, good times always return - especially with hope to hurry them along.

I copied this from "A Moment For You" in an older Women's World magazine.

We can support one another and have a good time in the process. We need not suffer alone with today's technology and local support groups. We communicate through blogs, Internet sites, email, telephone. If we were our Grandmothers, we might have suffered alone. Time has been good to our generation.

We have hope that there will be a cure for Fibromyalgia. In the meantime, let's take care of each other.