Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Weathering the Storm

This blog is called "Myalgia Mommies" to be as inclusive as possible for all mothers living with some form of chronic pain. The more mommies I meet and the older I get, I am beginning to believe that most of us are "Myalgia Mommies".

I decided to start this on-line community because I have a Masters in Public Health from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, so I am a pretend doctor and keep up on all the reading anyway. Also, I have suffered migraines since I was 5 and was diagnosed (after over 2 years of tests and visiting NIH to determine mystery illness) with a very severe case of Fibromyalgia in 2001. In the decade that I was dealing with my chronic pain, waiting for a good drug to be invented, I never found an on-line community that was positive support and included the challenges of parenting. 


I love Chronic Babe, but she gets massages and makes martinis. I have kids and chaperone dances, drive all over, plan lessons, play dates, sleepovers, etc. Mom stuff and cool no kids stuff is very different. 

This post is about the huge storm Sandy, hitting the East Coast today. 


I am mostly a Twitter person and am calling it Tea Tuesday! 

Mommies who have kids home from school, make some tea, get some craft projects and have a great day. I can't go outside today unless I am wearing about ten layers of clothes. For some reason I flare when I get cold, and it is 40 degrees outside. So, I'm building a fire, making tea and blogging. Later we will bake some cookies, sing some songs, maybe do a puzzle...

The latest meeting of the Fibromyalgia research group said that daily 30 minutes of exercise helps, but the best kind for me and others with various rheumatoid  problems is a warm pool and water exercise or swimming. See previous post, my baby is in a cast so no pool for us!

I don't know how some of you Myalgia Mommies live in cold places. Feel free to leave tips in the comments section. My aunt is a Myalgia Mommie and lives Up North. Her myalgia is a fused disk in her lower back that can't be operated on. The funny thing about my Aunt is that if the temp gets above 70, she gets really upset. She can't handle the heat. I love her to pieces, but if I go below 65 my whole body hurts. We rarely see each other, but we talk on the phone. We both have Scotties. 



I hope you all have power to read this blog and weathered the storm. We only recently moved back to the mainland from the USVI (great warm place, gets several hurricanes each year!) so I am familiar with hurricanes. My myalgia has a hard limit that I can't lift over 10 pounds or my back will go out. I've always relied on the kindness of friends or yelling at hubby to put up our storm shutters. 


If you and your kids are fine, please go check on an elderly or disabled neighbor. 


Also, if you would like daily silly tips from me, you can follow me on Twitter at IslandAnnaLand. 


Stay Warm and Dry!


Cheers, 

ALJ

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Mommie Blogger FAIL and Insight!

If you see me in real life my baby is wearing leg warmers. It is not me having a childhood flashback. She is in a cast.


It's a long story but most things involving parenting are. Mommies have a different road. My poor baby just woke up. She cant stay asleep for her naps because of the cast.

We were at the hospital on October 13, with a 13 month old baby and I was sending emails about a 2013 calendar as a fundraising project.

I had to call in a refill on a "break thru" drug and it said refill untill "7/13" so I called the parmacist thinking it was 14/Ocotober/14. Im so tired, I am time traveling.

I wanted to post that on facebook but my husband said it just sounded weird and I should go to bed.

That pretty much is how I feel about blogging about being a Mom who suffers from some form of Chronic Pain. The more I grow up, research, make deeper connections to other women, the more I realize that most of us have some major issue in life that is chronic pain.

My really deep thought for the day is that I met a woman who has a husband who is being tested to determine what his chronic pain is being caused by. They have 3 teenage girls. That's heavy lifting. So I met a myalgia mommie by proxy because she is reading all the tests with her husband and probably understands more medical terms.

My other deep thought is that all the research from every disease keeps coming back to one thing: healthy sleep patterns.

My blogging time is when my baby girl is taking her mid morning nap and my house is not a biohazard. That can be a narrow window. We live dangerous lives. Also, need more sleep.

I feel like I did one good deed today. I reminded the myalgia mommy I met to check her husband for vitamin D levels. Often just a piece of the puzzle but they don't check it in men. My amazing island Doctor taught me that.

If you read this, and have had a child in a cast, please feel free to post tips for keeping her entertained and cleanish!

Thanks.
Anna-Lisa

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

World Mental Health Day

Today, October 10th, is World Mental Health Day. The World Health Organization has identified Depression as the focus for this year. Globally, depression is the second greatest burden of disease affecting 350 million people worldwide.

For a Myalgia Mommie depression is a little black dog that is always nipping at our heels. I have found that we have an amazing weapon against it: our children.

True clinical depression takes clinical intervention and is so overwhelming that when an individual is in the throws of the disease, even our darling children can't reach through. This post is about "Mental Wellness," a crucial part of life that we do everyday and that keeps us going as Myalgia Mommies.

Most of the activities of finding a daily moment of beauty, engaging in an activity that gives us joy and finding pleasure in simple acts, we have adopted as a way of life. Studies have shown, and health professionals call this, mental wellness.

Recent research into my myalgia, "fibromyalgia," has shown that medication alone will not diminish symptoms and a holistic approach including these lifestyle changes is needed to address symptoms.

My darling baby is waking up. She is my daily joy and the reason this blog has so few posts.

I hope all you Myalgia Mommies have a chance to sit down with a cup of tea today, smile to yourself, congratulate yourself for mindful self-care, and bask in the beauty that you are. My tea party will be me and my baby, and we will toast you.

If it is possible to gain strength and support knowing that you are part of a greater web of women quietly trying to live with grace through a similar circumstance, then this blog has served it's purpose.

Please share a picture or short description of your cup of tea.

Hopefully today we will put up some pumpkin lights and have a photo worthy of sharing.

XO
ALJ