Yeah I had heard that we’d be able to see the Solar Eclipse on the west coast but I didn’t think too much about it.  Then Sunday morning it occurred to me that it sure would be cool to see it at the beach.  I brought it up to Corey later that morning and he said, “Well let’s go”.  I don’t think either of us expected that I would actually agree to do it…and then that I would ACTUALLY do it.

I LOVE THE BEACH.  I LOVE THE OCEAN.  It is my place to breathe.  It is my spiritual anchor.  It is where I find most peace and calm and feel most present.  I HAVE BEEN AFRAID TO GO TO THE BEACH since I was diagnosed with lupus almost 2 years ago due to all of the sun exposure.  Not to mention that I also have the fear of getting too hot from the sun and my multiple sclerosis acting up.  I have got to really figure out how I can get myself there more this year because I actually gave in (after some hemming and hawing) and let myself go!  I mean for goodness sakes!  It is only 4 miles away from where I live and I am in Santa Monica, CA ALL THE TIME for doctor appointments.  Why not just take a detour and even drive through there and see the ocean on my way through?

Anyway, I had a wonderful time!  It was hard to see the actual Eclipse happening for most of it but it was so refreshing to be one with the ocean again.  To stand in it and be a part of nature was so fulfilling for me.  I just had to share some pictures with you:

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. The glow from the sun was extra strong and so defined. The sun was more defined in this picture than in most I’ve taken.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. I turned away from the sun to see this palm tree and lamp post in the perfect artsy position for a picture as if they were posing. Thought it came out kinda neat.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. I am in my element.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. Love this action shot of me doing my newest ocean dance move?

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. Oh yeah. Look at that wave crashing. The waves were kinda crazy too.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. Yes, I really did stand in the ocean. It was pretty chilly at first but it did get warmer the more I was in it.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. Corey with his sexy blowing hair posing with the sun.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. There I am trying to be deep and pose with the sun. No sexy flowing hair for me. 

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. I sure was proud of myself for catching the lifeguard helicopter in the shot. Simple pleasures…sometimes.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. And then we went back in time and saw this beautiful ship.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. The sun was getting creative and producing these geometric shapes for us. Even the rays are in perfect places.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. Can’t believe how perfectly aligned the ship, the paraglider thingie and the seagull are with each other and then with the sun in the background.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. The light started getting pretty dramatic.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. One of my favorite things to see in nature is the sunlight reflecting on the ocean.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. Behind me were these pretty white fluffy wispy clouds against a VERY blue sky. And of course the palm trees are awesome too.  Wonderful.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Santa Monica, CA. This line of palm trees caught my eye. I had to catch the view. And as you can see, there’s a light misty fog hanging in the air. Couldn’t see the mountains at all this time and the pier got lost too.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Westchester, CA. Alas, we had somewhere we had to be so we had to leave the beach and it was here that we saw a better view of what was actually happening during the Eclipse.

05/20/12 Solar Eclipse in Westchester, CA. I had decided to try to grab one more picture on the spot and it turned out to be the best one in the whole series of the actual Eclipse itself. You can see the Eclipse happening in what appears to be a smile of light just above the building almost to the center. It was really cool!


So as you can see I did it and I had a great time!!!!!!  Neither the lupus or MS bothered me at all while I was at the beach in the sun and I think it was because I was in the moment and I wasn’t worrying about it.  Usually I can feel the sun bothering my symptoms right away.  The symptoms didn’t show up until the next day when my body said it was time to live in a cave of darkness for the day (kicking and screaming might I add) and it really did help!

Thank you to the Solar Eclipse for giving me the motivation I needed to get out and get to the beach where I mentally feel my best!!!!!  I desperately needed to do that for my own sanity and today I can admit that it really was worth it.

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Motivation: Baking For the Soul

Yesterday I had really had it.  Enough already!  I yanked myself together and I forced myself to get out and take a walk.  That helped a lot.  Then I threw in some laundry so I could feel useful and get myself moving and having clean clothes is always nice.  And I just couldn’t shake this complete and utter need to bake.  I was a bit concerned that I would be pushing it physically but mentally my mind was ready to explode.  I needed to do something with my hands.  I find that when I create with my hands it helps my mind immensely.  My soul was ACHING TO BAKE.

So I did.  I baked yellow cupcakes with vanilla creme filling.  Cupcakes are kinda hard for me to bake usually because of the extra hand, wrist and arm movements they take to scoop the batter in the little cups but I wanted them so I made them.  Good ole Ms. Betty Crocker and I got together and made them actually.  We had a rockin’ time!  And you know what?  They weren’t as hard for me to make as they used to be.  Sometimes I gotta just try and do it.  I’m glad I did.

Here they are. They are ripe and ready to get bakin’.

There they are. My little cupcakes are growing up!–Yeah ok the oven window could use a good cleaning. Hey, at least that means it gets used every once in awhile right?

They’re all grown up! Looks like the creme didn’t explode out of the center so that’s a big ole PHEW!

And now they’re all pretty and ready to go. The plate is from my Nana’s old set. I like to use it for special occasions.

Beware of the Corey-Zilla!!!! He kept threatening to lick them all and I couldn’t get him away from the kitchen. Sure there’s a steak dinner waiting but these are CUPCAKES!

Turns out these were pretty darn yummy!  And because I baked yesterday I’m feeling better today mentally.  And a lot of the time when I’m feeling better mentally I feel better physically.  So today is a much much better day overall!

Now I’m just trying not to eat the rest of the cupcakes that are sitting in the kitchen calling to me…

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Motivation: GRATITUDE

This morning I am grateful.  It’s such a relief to feel grateful.  It would be so nice to feel it all the time.

I’m grateful to be able to get up and face the day.  I’m grateful for so much love in my life from my husband, my kitty, my family, my friends, a huge support system, people in general and with life.  I’m grateful to have a roof over my head, an awesome car, for food to eat, water to drink, air to breathe–that I CAN breathe.  Then there’s my health: the progress of recovery, to take it one day at a time, really awesome proactive doctors, to be able to walk, to see, to move, to even function at all.  I have an abundance to be grateful for.  The list is endless.

What started this new round of gratitude?  I believe it was asking for more help yesterday.

Being on Long Term Disability has required an enormous mental surrender.  I have had to let go of what I thought I needed to have to survive: a job, a consistent paycheck, at least 40 hours of knowing exactly what I’m doing in a week.  It has been almost two years without that routine and somehow it’s all worked out.  Somehow Corey, Cleo Kitty and I have been taken care of.

BUT it takes A LOT of work.  I not only have to spend 24 hours a day 7 days a week taking care of me with self care but there is a mega amount of medical business to attend to too such as: medical insurance red tape, my plethora of doctors, a long list of medications and regimens, and dealing with Social Security Long Term Disability along with the Private Long Term Disability that is provided as part of the Benefits from my old employer.

YES I am truly grateful to have any access to Long Term Disability and to be taken care of AT ALL.  HOWEVER it is SO DIFFICULT to even admit I am disabled, to then ADMIT I can’t work right now, and then ASK FOR HELP, for financial assistance so that I can be a contributing member of society.  And not only is it hard for me to surrender to that need for help, but then they can make it SO HARD to even get the help I need.  This is NOT an easy process.


With that idea in mind it was so REFRESHING to call the Director of Benefits (yes, I have her direct contact number) of my old employer and let her know about the messy situation I’m involved in between both Long Term Disability Entities.  Not only did she LISTEN but she AGREED with me that that sounds like a mess and she seemed genuinely surprised this was happening.  I ASKED HER TO HELP ME and you know what?  She’s going to try to find out what’s going on and to do just that, help me.  She was nice and she was sincere.  She backed me up all the way.  It doesn’t mean she’s going to be able to change anything but it is just that much more empowering to feel her support and for that I am grateful.


What a wonderful word.  What a inspiring idea.

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So I woke up this morning and I was like, “Hey! I can do this!”. My head was clearer and I felt more positive. I was definitely more relaxed and at ease. My body was even like, “You know, I might be able to do this too.” We agreed we’d try to work together to have a better day.

What changed? Well, yes, after my Blog post from yesterday I received so much neato love to hold me up and I knew my peeps (all of you included) were with me. I also kept letting me have challenging feelings (so hard–darn feelings) like the sadness, turmoil, grief, anger and all the stuff that goes with that and it helped. I also talked about it with some loveys I trust and that helped too.

Can you tell I’m feeling a bit better? I’m using my own words from the Nahleen Dictionary of Language (where all things that come out as words are official words) like neato and loveys. You know. Of course they’re words.

ANYWAY, I also tend to go off on silly tangents when I’m feeling a bit better…

SO YEAH. Back to the subject at hand:


I CANNOT stress it enough. COOLER WEATHER is the answer for relief with my multiple sclerosis and lupus. Seriously. It’s not the answer to the world’s problems and it doesn’t stop me from having my bad times or getting stressed out, but I can function so much better. There is hope. I think I’m gonna make it. In fact, I know I’m gonna make it.

Now Los Angeles, CA folk are probably going to think I’m crazy for saying it’s been oh so much warmer the past few days. What can get frustrating for my health is that I have something called heat fatigue. It is a major MS symptom of mine and it sucks. It takes NOTHING for me to overheat. In fact, this COOLER WEATHER I’m talking about now might not feel like it to me at any moment but right now it does. My MS decides when it’s hot. People could be wearing parkas and I could still be hot. I’ve now learned a lot of that has to do with the sun for me too. When it comes to the lupus part of my body, I’m very very sensitive to the sun and what happens is that the sun makes me hot and makes me extra sensitive and feels double hot acting as a conductor and then the MS says, “I DON’T LIKE THAT! I’M GOING TO ACT UP!” and then MS symptoms like fatigue, pain, tingling, weakness, even more brain fog, and you name it start revving up and I’m in trouble. And then what happens is that I don’t even know it’s happening sometimes because life is happening and I’m in the middle of feeling all of it and I’m like, “What’s wrong? What happened? Why can’t I do more? Why am I so tired? How can I fix this?”. It’s really hard to identify but once I do, it hits me in the head again, “Oh yeah. Here we go again.”. Gotta be careful. Gotta be in the dark a bit more. Gotta get away from the sun (sad…I like the sun sometimes) and gotta get me some water and AC.

AC is my best friend and has been known to make our apartment like a freezer but more on that in another Blog. My husband Corey might even be invited to write his own Blog about how he feels in the crazy AC during the sunny summer season. I think he’s had icicles hanging from his ears at times because it’s been so cold and yet sometimes it’s still not cool enough for me.

So today I’m gonna enjoy the COOLER WEATHER while it lasts outside and while it lasts inside of me. It usually means I have more motivation and I can do more. I feel like a different person. The weight of the heat is not lingering heavily on me or inside of me. There is some relief.

And so to sign off:


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Motivation: PURPLE HAIR!

I’m frustrated. I’m getting caught up in long term disability red tape that is driving me crazy! This included a call to my lawyer’s office with a plea for HELP regarding money. Money always gets me stressed out. Today has also included other really fun things like paying other bills, pulling medical paperwork together, doing my Physical Therapy exercises, and trying to take care of me. Pretty soon I’ll be headed to a Physical Therapy Appointment. And this is what my daily life looks like most of the time. A few changes here and there to the schedule but it is a constant flow of medical stuff (I’d like to call many other times) that all leads back to me having multiple sclerosis and lupus and it wears me out.

So what’s my motivation to get through today? PURPLE HAIR! Yep. I have it. I gotta have something to keep me going when I look in the mirror. Otherwise, I see someone (me) who I’m frustrated with who has two chronic illnesses and is not doing what she wants to be doing for her career. But I tell ya, just one glance at myself and I get a smile on my face. It’s so cool.

So why PURPLE HAIR? Why not? I’ve loved the color PURPLE since I was ten. My love affair with PURPLE has gone on most of my life and it helps me feel better. And I’ve wanted to have PURPLE HAIR probably since I was a teenager and IT IS ABOUT TIME! Sure I’ve had magenta streaks in my dark blonde hair but they are not PURPLE! I’ll admit it. I didn’t have the guts to have PURPLE HAIR for a long time. Then I found out I’d have to re-PURPLE my hair frequently and that it was quite a mess to clean up and I didn’t want to bother. And when I had magenta streaks they washed out due to all the red dyes and I’d be stuck with boring dark blonde hair. Boooooo.

And it all changed about 2 months ago when I was looking at myself in the mirror and I just knew I needed PURPLE HAIR. This was it. I was gonna do it! The first attempt didn’t come out right at all. It was a nice coppery color but it was NOT PURPLE. The second attempt was really neato and it included lavender streaks throughout my hair with the base color like a chocolate brown. Yeah, I’d have to re-PURPLE my hair every week or so because it would wash out but who cares? IT’S PURPLE HAIR! And then the third attempt wasn’t intended to be an even different color PURPLE and it is so awesome. I had gone to four different beauty supply stores to look for the brand of PURPLE hair dye I had been using and I couldn’t find it anywhere. However, in an interesting turn of events one of the stores was selling a different brand PURPLE HAIR dye they said might work.

Well did it ever! My hair now has dark PURPLE streaks (sometimes an indigo blue in different lighting) and is a darkish color where the chocolatey brown was (not sure of exact color because there is a violet hue to it but it’s definitely not brown right now). And as Corey (my husband) says, it GLOWS!


I’m having fun. All it took was some color and some hair. That’s it. NOW I FINALLY HAVE MY PURPLE HAIR! Can you tell I’m excited?

I’ve found that in order to get up in the morning I need different types of motivations. PURPLE HAIR is one of my favorite motivations. What is your motivation? What is your PURPLE HAIR???

Categories: Motivation, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

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