Monthly Archives: June 2012

Moments of Peace Part 8

FRIDAY FRIDAY FRIDAY!!  YEAH BABY!

Struggling to get back into the swing of things and yet do it a different way–in a more self-caring and healthy manner.  Posting my Moments of Peace does help.  Here we go!

06/08/12 My view at LAX. I had just dropped off Corey at the airport and I was sad. Feeling the breeze and the sunlight as the palm trees blew helped.

06/08/12 My view at LAX. What no planes? Pretty cool huh? You never know what you’re gonna see wherever you are. That’s the best part.

**Last Friday, after I dropped off Corey at LAX I found myself doing some retail therapy and managed to have some luck finding clothes which is amazing!  And that evening I found myself at The Getty Center.  For those of you who don’t know what that is, it’s this really beautiful place with art museums and gardens and what I love about it is all the nature, the quiet and the idea that I can walk around there and not need to go into any building and just enjoy the scenery.  On a really clear day you can see the spread of the LA area for miles and sometimes the ocean really sparkles off in the distance.  I love it!  I haven’t been able to go for awhile because I have such a hard time in the sun with my lupus (and my MS) and they are usually only open during the day.  If theyf were open at night I’d be there much much more.  Here a few Moments of Peace from that experience:

06/08/12 My view on the tram on the way to The Getty Center as day turns to night.

06/08/12 My view facing The Getty after just arriving as day turns to night.

06/08/12 My view at The Getty as day turns to night.

06/08/12 My view from The Getty as day turns to night.  Quite a cloudy night.

06/08/12 Hey! That’s me at The Getty!

06/08/12 My view of the gardens at The Getty Center as day turns to night.

06/08/12 I loved these flowers at The Getty!

06/08/12 My view from The Getty as night arrives. Very low clouds.

06/08/12 My view from The Getty as night arrives. The best part about this is seeing that almost solid line of lights going diagonally across the picture, knowing that’s the freeway traffic and being sooooo happy I’m not in it.

06/08/12 My view at The Getty in the same place as when I started but at night. So neat.

**And now onto the rest of the week:

06/09/12 My view in West LA as evening arrives.

06/09/12 My view in West LA as evening arrives.

06/09/12 My view in West LA as night arrives.

06/10/12 My view in West LA as day turns to night.

06/10/12 My view in Westchester, CA as day turns to night.

06/11/12 My view from the sun deck as night arrives. It was a very clear night. Those lights far off in the distance are Hollywood, I believe.

06/11/12 My view from the sun deck as night arrives. I love twinkling city lights!

06/12/12 My view at LAX as night arrives. I was there to pick up Corey and grabbed this before hurrying across the street in time for the light.

06/13/12 My view from the sun deck as day turns to night. That white ball above the glow is the sun. I love when I can get views like this.

06/13/12 My view from the sun deck as day turns to night. Another view that I am in awe of.

06/14/12 My view in West LA as day turns to night. There were some pinks in there.

It always feels good to post these and share them!  I hope you liked them.  Do you have any Moments of Peace you’d like to share?  I’d love to see them!!!

HAVE AN AWESOME AND PEACEFUL WEEKEND ALL!

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It’s An ’80s Kind of Day Part 9

Yay!  Time for some ’80s Flashback Fun!  Gonna go short this week and post 2 that I’ve thought of…So let’s see:

 

1. Hello By: Lionel Richie

Oh Lionel…can we say stalker??????  Funny, when I was a young gal I didn’t realize how creepy he is in this as an acting teacher (what the?) and thought it was such a heartfelt sincere song.  He truly loved this blind gal.  How sweet.  Except…if you keep watching you’ll see he gets a little too into it and becomes quite the stalker.  Scary!  And what is with him starting to sing during their acting in the class?  Rude!  And is she the most artistic soul ever or what?  Acting, flute playing, sculptur(ist?), dancer, …And how is it that she can’t hear him singing right to her and at her?  WORST PART: When he calls her, pauses and then sings “HELLO” to her, continues singing and then hangs up.  Too much!  But then we find out she’s been kinda stalking him too with her sculpture of him???  WHAT’S HAPPENING??

 

2. Straight Up By: Paula Abdul

Who knew that Janet Jackson’s choreographer would become a singing sensation herself?!  Such a catchy song.  I think it was to the point.  Are you gonna love me forever or am I caught in a hit and run?  So now we’re in a car crash?  Actually, as a pre-teen I thought this was a pretty darn cool song and it helped me have a voice with these boys who were just trouble.  Wow, look at that tapping.  She’s quite the dancer.  No doubt about it.  And when you heard it over and over and over you really couldn’t get it out of your head even if you wanted to.  Kinda cool black and white design to the whole thing.  She did seem kinda tough at the time.  “Oh Oh Oh”…  Can’t help it.  I’m still beboppin’ to this song.

 

And there ya have it!  Hope you got a chance to get a little ’80s break today and had some fun!!

 

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Well We Did It!

Cleo Kitty and I made it through 4 days without Corey!

On Friday afternoon, I dropped off Corey at LAX so he could fly back to be with his family for his nephew’s graduation.  It was a very bittersweet experience for me not to go and be a part of it.  I didn’t want to see him go because I kinda like having him around (you know–kinda) and yet I was so happy for him that he could go and participate in a family event and that Cleo and I were well enough to deal with life without him for a bit.

With Cleo Kitty’s cancer diagnosis in December 2011 and my dealing with lupus and multiple sclerosis, there is just no knowing what the right decision is for anything and if/when things could go horribly wrong.  I have grown used to Corey being around and to his help in our little family unit.  To have that part of us leave was scary.  What if something went wrong?  What if I came down with a flare up?  What if Cleo suddenly got really sick?  Then what?

Well we’d deal.  We’d get through it somehow.  It may feel like I’ve been alone these past 4 days but the truth is, Cleo Kitty and I take very good care of each other and I have a very important support system out here in LA who can help me if something comes up.  We’d take it one moment at a time.

And then the idea of me not going because I was making a healthy decision not to push myself too far on what was going to be a whirlwind trip was so very hard for me.  It brought back my grieving about having MS and lupus.  It reminded me that I have limitations and there are some things I just can’t do…at least right now.  I really struggled with that.  Sure I could’ve gone…and risked feeling absolutely awful during and afterwards but I didn’t like that idea at all.  I miss my family.  I love my family.  I hate not being able to see my family more.  I can’t stand that we’re on opposite coasts…BUT I want to feel at least okay when I see them.  I don’t want to feel even more tired because I was so stubborn that I just had to go.  Yuck.

So you know what?  Cleo and I got through.  Seems like Corey did too.  He’s on the flight home to us right now as I write this.  I was able to take some time for me and to even relax.  I don’t think I would’ve been relaxing on the trip.  And I can almost bet I feel better physically now than I would’ve had I pushed myself not to miss anything and to go…to act like I can live life the way I think a “normal” person lives…as if I know.

I’ve learned yet again that it is OK to make decisions that are healthy for me and to take care of me.  I am the one who has to live the closest to me.  I deserve to feel better.  And you know what?  Cleo and I are doing pretty darn okay.

And we’ll be doing even better when we have Corey back in our lives tonight.  We kinda like him.  You know…KINDA.

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PAUSE…AGAIN

I’m so frustrated! I feel crappy again today!

I want to feel better enough to be able to do more. It is so hard to have plans and keep them! I had plans today and yet again I had to pull out of them. I’m soooo tired of doing that.

I wish multiple sclerosis and lupus would go away and leave me alone!

I’m relieved to say that I don’t fight and push through things just to be able to DO them as much as I used to.

It might be healthier for me to wait and rest it out BUT it just means I have to

PAUSE…AGAIN…

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It’s An ’80s Kind of Day Part 8

And I’m back with more fun ’80s memories!!!!  I find this time of week to be the most fun for me.  Yay ’80s!

1. Stand By: R.E.M.

Oh this is a fun one!  Middle School dances come to mind.  I had to make sure to get this dance right.  I had no idea that there might be meaning to this song.  I just thought we had to stand and be-bop around and for some reason it was really easy to mess up one of the moves.  This was their first hit right?  Funny to think that this is their song since so many of their songs after this one were so much deeper.  OK watching this for the first time in forever I realize there are different groups of 4 people dancing.  What the??  I had no idea.  Shows you how observant I was.  Ha!

 

2. Jump (For My Love) By: Pointer Sisters

And the memories keep on comin’ today.  This song will probably forever be stuck in my head because we had to jump rope in elementary school Phys. Ed. class and the teacher was BIG BIG BIG into this song and she would BLAST it in the gym.  She thought it was just a perfect song to get us jumping–and she was really weird.  Holy moly she pushed jumping rope AND THIS SONG on us!  I may have to see a hypnotherapist if I ever want to forget this song.  Seriously.  Watching this I just gotta love the “sexy” looks these ladies think they’re giving the camera.  OK these ladies are cracking me up with their jigs.  I think the middle singer sister is gonna pull her dress all the way up for goodness sakes.

 

3. Summer of ’69 By: Bryan Adams

Gotta love Bryan Adams!  I know my sister did.  My first memory of this song is that I was really young when I first heard this song and I was able to do the math and figure out he couldn’t be having this memory of the Summer of ’69 because he wasn’t old enough–looking it up now, turns out he would’ve been 10.  I sure thought I was smart.  You know watching this makes me think it’s best for him not to act so I think it was a good idea to just keep singing.  He sure was a trouble maker back then huh?  I’m sure he’d like to think so.  Kinda reminds me of the bad boys in my life back in the day…And what is with the end scene?  THE “girl” picks the lamest jerk EVER to be with??

 

4. Mercedes Boy By: Pebbles

I know.  WHO?  She had maybe 2 hits and for a very brief time.  Don’t mind the first part of this video with the other voices introducing it.  It’s the only one I could find.  And the old memories just keep on coming for me today with this song.  I was a part of a group of gals in a 5th Grade Lip Sync.  I mean, I was cool.  And this was the song we sang.  We were so rad.  I think 5th Grade was my favorite year in school.  OK so from these images we see a woman stalker and a guy who likes to dance on his own in front of a camera and outside against a wall of a building BUT we never see them in the same shot until right at the end…Convincing…Sure…Hilarious!  The camera has to give her tons of head room just to fit her big hair!

 

5. Addicted To Love By: Robert Palmer

The first time I ever saw him sing I was like, “What the heck is with this guy?  He thinks he’s so cool and yet he’s wearing a business suit when he sings and the ladies in the background are SO BORING”…BUT he sure did make a style signature for himself and I admit, this song is one of the most catchy songs EVER!  Watching him now I’m struck by how much he has no personality on the stage.  Wow.  Somebody get that guy moving!  Oh and of course those pretty ladies are part of his band and actually really playing their instruments.  Riiiiight.  Ha!  Don’t think I even realized there was a woman playing drums in the background.  Poor thing.  She hardly got any face time.

 

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Motivation: PHYSICAL THERAPY!

I had my last scheduled Physical Therapy Appointment today for this round. Not sure when I’ll be back. Guess it depends on when my body tells me it needs it and it all works out.

You know what’s so cool? I did it! I went for 3 months. I exercised and I did the exercises CORRECTLY for the first time in a long time. I let go of all judgements of my body and was able to learn all kinds of exercises that really help. I think I gained a little more self-esteem from doing it too!

I give my Physical Therapist a lot of credit for my progress and willingness to exercise more. She was direct and to the point which is what I needed and somehow she was able to deliver the message to me in such a compassionate and patient way that I was willing to commit even more. I have had numerous doctors tell me in the past to walk walk walk. That is the best thing I can do. I gotta move my body. It’s so important. She is the person I heard the clearest.

I had a lot of fear about whether I should really walk every day. Sometimes my legs have felt tired and I have felt like I really shouldn’t move them much just to give them a break. She was the person who finally got the message through to me at the right place and time and it FINALLY clicked that it was ok to take the risk and to walk. I didn’t have to walk far. I didn’t have to walk long or fast. I just needed to do my best to get moving somehow and the ideal place to start is to walk at least a little every day. Just commit to that.

Well it’s been almost 6 weeks and I have been walking every day. I started with 5 minutes and told myself that was good enough. I needed to be able to build up stamina. If I took on that 30 minutes right away I was gonna be in trouble within a few days and not make it. My body would’ve been screaming to shut down. I just know it. I’m now up to 10 minutes. I wish it was more but there have been days when I have felt pretty darn crappy with fatigue, weakness, stiffness and pain that the last thing I wanted to do was walk…BUT I DID WALK…

AND IT HELPED!!!!!!!

How do I do it? One step at a time. If I have to go backwards there’s always a chance for me to go forwards again.

STEP BY STEP. That’s all it takes. And my legs are thanking me for it along with my mind. I need the mental break. I need to get the toxins out. I need to MOVE.

So today as I was leaving my last PT Appointment I took the time to thank my Physical Therapist (I will name her “E”) for her help, her time, her patience, focus, humor, direct communication, open communication and her compassion and said that she inspired me to keep going. It was quite a touching moment and I wanted to make sure she understood how much she helped me get over myself and just TRY it. Her eyes teared up, she gave me a hug and thanked me and she said that that was one of the nicest compliments she’s ever received and that it meant so much to hear it.

And then to send me off she told me to just “Keep On Keepin’ On” and to not give up. EVER.

The Medical Field needs more people like her.

Thank you “E”.

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Focus: REST!

Hi!  I’m back from my Rest-cation!  Hope you all had a good and restful week too!

I am so glad I took the time to rest last week.  Why is that so hard?  I mean, really.  Rest.  After trying to practice it even more these days, the word still seems unfamiliar to me–almost foreign.

I have been known to share with others that I feel “Rest is Productive”.  Do I really believe it?  Yeah, I guess somewhere in a little nook of my brain I’m starting to accept that.  Why?  Because after 2 years of being forced to do more of this strange concept called “Rest” (not to mention the other 8 years of supposedly “resting” my body with an MS diagnosis) I have found that I actually feel better when I do so.  Before my lupus diagnosis 2 years ago, I found that rest was only something I did because I had to and because it “kept me going” like the Energizer Bunny.  I don’t really know that it helped that much to be honest with you.  My head wasn’t in it.  That’s for sure.  Now I find that it actually helps me function better and get on with my day.

BUT I still only really REST when I have been kicked back on my butt.  So there I was last week on my Rest-cation thinking I’m totally getting this Rest thing down.  I mean, if you asked me before Thursday, I was SO RESTING.  Right?  Well, sort of but not fully committed to it.  Then on Thursday after I felt I had rested at home enough and wanted to get out and do things that might be restful for my mind, my body decided it really needed more REST–it was feeling AWFUL with terrible fatigue and pretty weak–and I had to LITERALLY get on my butt on the couch with my feet up and REST.  I mean, really.  Hadn’t I already been doing that?  I guess not as much as I should’ve been.

So I did just that.  I RESTED.  I didn’t have much choice.  I didn’t want to feel any worse.  I learned a valuable lesson too.  That lesson included an actual realization that even RESTING can cause symptoms in my body and that it isn’t all MY FAULT.  I didn’t do ANYTHING to make me feel worse.  It JUST HAPPENED.

That is huge.  Pretty much everyone I’ve talked to about my health has told me before that none of this is my fault and I have no real control over whether I feel better or worse and that sometimes these things really are RANDOM.  Go figure.  RANDOM.  I have 2 diseases.  They are going to act up whether I want them to or not.

I CAN ONLY DO WHAT I CAN TO MAKE SURE I DON’T EXACERBATE THEM FURTHER.

I CAN CHOOSE TO REST.

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