Evolution

Evolution

I am back! It’s been a while since I was active on this blog. I decided to take a break because sexyachymoody was evolving into something that I never intended. 

Now, I understand that, it’s just life. Only the lucky ones get a chance to evolve. Life is all about adapting to change. The ones who can’t adapt don’t survive so my sexyachymoody was just doing what I do best, surviving. 

So much has happened in my life since my last contribution. My family has experienced much loss and hardship. The changes that took place in 2016 have changed the world forever. Knowing that people, governments and societies all over the world experienced heartbreak in 2016 is a tragically unifying feeling. 

L.R. Knost

For me, the year started off well. I got married and finally finished my Bachelor’s degree! Unfortunately, I was also attacked by a vicious dog and lost my father. Pain and stress have me in a very different place physically and emotionally compared to the previous year. At first, I saw this as a set back but considering all the tragedy in 2016, I think I am in a healthy place. 


I am depressed. My pain has been off the scale. I’m worried about my future and concerned for my family. 

And that’s okay. I am no dwelling on my circumstances but I can not rush through the processing.  I miss my dad so much. He would tell me it’s okay, reassuring me and motivating me at the same time. 


He was my safety net and guiding light. Learning to life without him has been painful and scary. 

Featured Image quote by Charles Bukowski

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Not Your Average Detox

Not Your Average Detox

Part Three

 I just realized I didn’t weigh before I started this process but this is a detox not a weight loss cleanse. It has certainly gotten things moving, if you know what I mean. I’ve been trying to eat at least three apples a day in addition to other fruits and vegetables. More fermented foods too. I love sourkraut! 

So, this detox seems to be great for my IBS-C. Plus, I do feel like be shed a couple of pounds, at least. 

 
I had some fantastic results from the DIY wrap too! I left it on for about two hours and it took off two inches from my waist an an inch from my thighs. I’ll measure again after 72 hours and see if it lasted or improved. 


Recipes-

Spicy Tumeric Ginger Detox Drink

 
The original recipe can be found here.

I loved this tea so much because it really made me feel great and it smelled amazing! I want to make it at least once a month. 

Ingredients:

  • 6-inch piece of fresh Ginger
  • 1 teaspoon Turmeric
  • 2 Cinnamon sticks- I used 2 tablespoons of ground cinnamon because it’s what I had at home but next time I will get cinnamon sticks. 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground Cayenne
  • Raw Honey and Lemon added for personal taste. 

Directions:

Peel ginger and slice thinly. Use the side of the knife to smash the ginger (exposing more surface area).

Add ginger slices to a saucepan with 6 cups of water and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the cinnamon sticks, turmeric, and cayenne. Simmer for another 10 minutes.

Strain into a mug and Stir in a spoonful of honey and squeeze of lemon.

I drank one pot a day for three days and I’d just leave it simmering on the stove all day because it smelled so wonderful. I left a lid on it so it wouldn’t evaporate. This is going to be my favorite way to warm up this winter! 

Green Tea Body Wrap

 
The original recipe can be found here

Ingredients:

  • Ace bandage (or some type of fabric that can absorb water and be wrapped around the body. I used towels).
  • Plastic wrap
  • 2 cups of water
  • 3 Green tea bags 
  • 1/4 cup sea salt
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil  
  • 1 cup of drinking water

Directions:

Bring 2 cups water to boil with most of the salt and tea bags.

Drink the cup of water before wrapping

Let the water boil for 2 minutes then allow it to cool. 

 While the water is boiling, combine the remaining salt (about 2 tbsp) with the coconut oil and massage into the area(s) you plan to wrap.

Unroll the ace bandage and soak it in the salt water tea until it soaks up the liquid. 

Tightly wrap oiled areas. Make sure the water is not too hot but still warm! 

Lock in the heat and moisture by wrapping the bandaged areas with plastic wrap.

I doubled the recipe so I could to my waist and thunder thighs. I stayed wrapped for about two hours. 

My measurements after the wrap- 

Waist 2 inches smaller! After 72 hours, I shrank another inch!

Thighs were one inch smaller and there was no change after 72 hours. 


Invigorating Citrus Detox Bath

 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 2 cups Epsom salt
  • 1 orange, sliced
  • A couple drops of peppermint essential oil and a drop of orange oil
  • 1 cup of drinking water

Directions:

Drink the cup of water. 

Add all ingredients to a hot fresh bath. Swirl the water to help the salt and soda dissolve and enjoy. 

I like to rub the orange slices on my skin. It is very invigorating and really seems to curb the fatigue in my upper body. Sometimes a bath can be exhausting and leave me feeling drained but not with the oranges! I started adding peppermint oil because it smells fantastic and soothes my head. 

Hydration is key! Especially when detoxing. I always bring a cold bottle of water with me and try to finish it before I get out of the bath. 

Yoga or a massage during detox to move toxins through the body to encourage the release of lymphatic fluids. Always drink water before doing any kind of detox. If your body is dehydrated, it won’t be able to move the toxins out of the body. Think of it like an internal rinse. 

Stay sexy Spoonies and happy detoxing!

Featured image courtesy of Pinterest from popwisdom.joaomognon.com

Not Your Average Detox

Not Your Average Detox

Part Two

I don’t know how he does it. I’m not even sure he knows he’s doing it or how much I need it but my fiancé always knows when I need a break. I probably get cranky! 😉 

Anyway, I could have worked but he talked me into going to the beach. I hadn’t been to the island in years. It was the best decision I’ve made all week! It was cool and windy. Parts of the beach were al little crowded but nothing like it would have been in the middle of the summer. We parked and walked out to one of the rock jetties. The salty wind in my face and the crashing waves were like therapy. I felt like I was being rejuvenated as I stood there. I could have stayed there all day. 

After lunch, we decided to take the ferry back to the mainland.  Never before have I ever seen so many dolphins! It was such a neat experience. It was the first time I’d ever seen more dolphins than crabs at the beach. Don’t get me wrong, crabs are cute and interesting to watch but I felt privileged to see so many dolphins! 

By the time the ferry reached land and we had to get back in the car to prepare for departure, I felt so replenished. Even kinda lucky! I really appreciated the day and all of its events. I was especially thankful for my thoughtful fiancé. 

You’re probably wondering what all this has to do with my detox but this was exactly what I needed as I was sheading all this unnecessary crap. I felt like the ocean washed away all the baggage, worry and anxiety sitting in front of a screen saddled me with. Social media was making my world too big. I would worry about all of the homeless pets that had been abused or were in danger of euthanasia. I was overwhelmed by all the reposted news stories concerning child abuse and the plethora of children with cancer. I didn’t realize how much it’d all been weighing me down. 

But, when I left social media behind and ventured out into my own backyard, I saw dolphins, pelicans, sailed across the bay and enjoyed a beautiful day with my fiancé. I realized that I could be happier and more productive with less. I could experience life more by sharing less. I can make a difference in my own neighborhood by picking up a little trash or helping a neighbor instead of reposting to raise awareness. Awareness campaigns are great but just because people are aware doesn’t mean anything is actually being done to improve the situation. I know I can’t change the world but I can change someone’s world. Helping one person or animal makes a difference in their life and that’s what matters. Social media, like most other things, is fine in moderation. It always comes down to finding balance. 

Obviously, this is turning into a three parter but I am not teasing you. I will share my recipes in part three. The social media portion of my detox has been more powerful than I realized. I’m not second guessing myself or wondering where I fit in. I am just enjoying life. So many things that seemed to matter so much just don’t anymore. My first thought when I see something spectacular isn’t “Oh, I need to post this!” anymore. It’s more like, “Don’t look away! Enjoy this. Take it all in. Relish in this experience and the people you are sharing it with. Capture this memory in your mind forever instead of interrupting the moment with a flash and a post”. 

I recently upgraded to a new iPhone. I backed up all of my pictures, apps, contacts, everything. No one wants to lose important pictures or contacts. Unfortunately, I did. I used an app to create photo collages. It was like a scrapbook of my life over the last five years. It has always made the transfer but this time it didn’t. It’s all gone. Five years worth of memories, gone! I emailed the app developer and they were just as puzzled. Nothing could be done to recover what I’d lost. 

Sure, I’ll still capture some moments on camera and I love looking at the photos I’ve printed and hung around the apartment. Those memories make me smile but I didn’t get any pictures of the dolphins either and thinking of them makes me smile too. Photos don’t capture the companionship I felt sharing that experience with my fiancé. Photos don’t capture the wind, the salt water or the sunshine. All of those things are captured in my mind. That’s better than a photograph. 

Actually living life seems to be quite a bit more fulfilling than trying to prove to others that I am living and enjoying life. 

Stay sexy and stay tuned for part three and all the recipes, Spoonies! I promise they’re on the way! 

My First Blogiversary

My First Blogiversary

celebrate-1164102-638x365

It’s my first blogiversary! I didn’t even know it until I logged into Facebook and it showed me my memories from today.

I feel like I’ve come a long way in the past year. Learning to cope with chronic illness can really change a person. I have ups and downs daily but I am grateful for all the wonderful people in my life that have helped me along the way!

Honestly, it’s like being on a roller coaster constantly. I’m nauseated, disoriented, achy and the emotional highs and lows are often unexpected and always exhausting. But, amusement rides are fun, right?! This journey has certainly been amusing, at the least…

thanks-1306904

Over 200 followers and several blogging awards! Thank you all! I hope this blog will continue to grow and help others as much as it has helped me.

joy-1430953-640x480I don’t hate my chronic illness anymore and I wouldn’t change my life for a millions of dollars. I never thought I could be so happy… Especially after the diagnoses kept piling up but I have found strength. I have found friendship. I have found spirituality. I have found WordPress!

Stay sexy Spoonies and keep blogging!

TBT: Before Fibromyalgia

TBT: Before Fibromyalgia

I stumbled upon that picture of my cat from four years ago. Her indoor kitty life has been rather uneventful but my life has been turned upside down between then and now. 

  
About a year after this sweet little kitten came into my life, I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I was already in the process of trying to improve my life. Time to grow up, I thought. So in my early 20s, I quit partying all the time and started doing yoga and eating healthy. I shed 80 pounds (half I believe due to gastroperesis, half due to hard work and self discipline). I was running a couple of miles at least a few times a week. I was so happy, healthy and in love. 

I am happy, healthy and just as much in love now but learning to be positive despite chronic illness has been a challenge. There are still days that I don’t feel happy and healthy at all. I’ve changed so much, friends from just four years ago wouldn’t recognize me based on looks or personality. 

I was an angry youth. Well, sad. Anger keeps you from crying and I pushed people away so I wouldn’t be vulnerable. I was downright mean. I thought I was protecting myself but really, I just caused a lot of pain. Pain for myself as well as the people around me. The world seemed like such a harsh and cruel place. I didn’t know yet that I was an HSP so I smothered my feelings any way I could but nothing could truly soothe my heartache. 

  
I read Atheist Yoga. That’s where I started to evolve into the person I am today. I didn’t expect yoga would lead to meditation. Now, I would consider myself spiritual after identifying as an atheist most of my life. 

The first year after my fibromyalgia diagnosis was pretty rough. I’d been in a couple car accidents. I believe that plus the piiriformis syndrome are what triggered the fibromyalgia. I didn’t even know what fibromyalgia was and I thought that Cymbalta commercial was stupid. “Depression hurts, Cymbalta can help.” So, I felt like I deserved it for being a bitch. You really can’t help thinking thoughts like that, at least at first, when you can’t get out of bed and you don’t understand why you’re in such excruciating pain. 

Such pain changes the way you think. It’s inevitable. I don’t think that’s such a bad thing. I’m more compassionate and understanding towards people. I hated posts like this when I was first diagnosed. I was so bitter. But now, I actually like who I am. I was trying to better myself before I became chronically ill but my spiritual side was dead. I felt abandoned by the Christian God. I felt let down by society. So, in my pain, I did not turn to God for comfort. It just kinda crept up on me and I slowly and unknowingly accepted it. 

  

Meditation has been the most helpful tool for pretty much everything in my life. I’m less angry and anxious. I feel connected to the universe, whatever that means. I feel like I have purpose. I feel like I can handle whatever life throws at me. I don’t feel the need to self sabotage, self destruct. Bad days are just days. 

  
I don’t hate my anxiety and my fears or my chronic illnesses. They are as much a part of me as my better qualities. It’s all part of what makes me special. It gives me a unique perspective and purpose. This is my life now and I love my life. I haven’t just changed. I’ve evolved. 

Hormone Hell

Hormone Hell

This will probably be more of a rant than anything. I feel like I should also warn you that this post is full of more information than you wanted to know. Probably lost a few readers there but….

Ovarian Folicle
Ovarian Folicle
I am in so much pain. I feel like I’m the only one in my life that’s not used to all the pain and fatigue, the sleeplessness, night sweats, bad dreams. I just want to cry and cry but when I cry, other things hurt. I guess that’s just one of the benefits of an invisible illness.

My fiancé notices the cognitive issues like when I can’t navigate the grocery store or I can barely cook dinner because I can’t remember what to do next. Then, it’s burnt but he is sweet. At least I can be thankful for that.

I have not been in this much pain in quite a while. Since I found a good combination supplements and medications, the pain has been manageable, most days.  Now my hormones are screwing everything up, making everything worse. I’m lucky I’m not working but I’m still starting to get behind in my math class. If I am able to concentrate, its not long before my head starts to hurt. It has taken me all day to get this post put together. I shouldn’t even be working on this. Its a waste of time compared to studying but writing is so much more therapeutic. All I want to do is sleep and I can hardly keep up with the house work.

Studying has been a real challenge, lately.
Studying has been a real challenge, lately.
The month started off fantastically. I was ready to start losing the weight the birth control pills caused me to gain and I’d lost over 5 pounds the first week. I was eating healthy and exercising everyday despite the increase of headaches. I don’t know what kind of headaches they are but they don’t respond to any medication or treatments. Sleep is the only escape. I only started taking birth control to help regulate my hormones. I believe I have PCOS but I was just diagnosed with PMDD. It’s probably both. I have debilitating cramps every month that shut my world down. My cycles have not always been regular but they never cease to wreck my life for a week, when they do come. As if the dysmenorrhea wasn’t enough, I’m dealing with the embarrassing hirsutism too. I don’t understand why doctors insist on trying to treat these individual symptoms instead of doing more hormone testing and looking at the big picture.

I’ve finally got the fibromyalgia (somewhat) under control and I still can’t function half the time because my hormones are all screwed up. I bleed twice as long as I should and the imbalance is making my fibro flare half the month! My hips are on fire! My spine feels like it was ripped out and used to beat the dirt out of a thousand old rugs, then hastily glued back in. All I want to do is sleep. For the last week my daily routine only consists of doing the absolute minimum then crying myself back to sleep. Then I get up to make dinner.

Sleep is the only thing I have the energy for.
Sleep is the only thing I have the energy for.
My hormones are screwing with my IBS too. That’s not unusual but the shittier I feel, the less I care about what I eat so that just makes everything even worse.

See, I told you this wouldn’t be much more than a rant. It looks like it’s turning into a pretty long one too. Is is so much to want to be healthy? I just want to be healthy enough to function. I have things I’m trying to accomplish here. I need to finish school but I haven’t been able to study. My head has been bothering me a lot lately. I think that’s the birth control too. You’re not supposed to take them if you suffer from migraines. So, what am I supposed to do?

The pain is depressing. How can I dream of being a librarian if I struggle so much just to get through one semester of school? How can I ever get fit if I am too lethargic and sore to exercise? I don’t know how I will ever reach my goals with so many internal obstacles. I don’t have the energy to demand the doctors listen to me. My own body has already robbed me of my youth. Now its trying to smother my hopes and dreams too. I hate how negative I sound but that’s what the never-ending pain does. Its hard to stay faithful and push through. I am lucky to have such a good support system. My heart goes out to those that don’t. It is times like this, I am glad I am so stubborn. I will get through school even if I have to hire someone to read my text books to me. Having a clear plan and a goal in sight helps me stay focused even when my pain is high. Nothing good worth having ever came easy. That’s how the saying goes, right?

The Pills from Hell
The Pills from Hell
I’m not refilling the prescription again. It has been three months and they’re only making things worse. There’s got to be a better option. Anybody want to buy some ovaries? I’ll throw in my uterus for free! 😉 One treatment for PCOS (the doctors won’t admit I have it but they’re willing to treat me for it) is an IUD. This type of birth control is typically reserved for women with children but, I was told there are exceptions for women in my condition. Unfortunately, there are lots of dangerous side effects like ectopic pregnancy. I’m going to have to go back to the doctor. I need my yearly woman’s exam anyway. I hate those things. The doctor always looks at me funny when I tell her it’s painful. My cervix is high and back so they have to use the long skinny tool. They never listen and shove that short, fat thing up there with no success. Just pain. No one ever listens.

Are you ever ashamed or embarrassed about the actions or behavior you displayed when you were upset or in pain? I ate some lunch and took some meds so I am not in so much pain now. I am proof reading this post thinking, “Damn, girl! Chill out. You’re just PMSing right now but you’re gonna get this shit worked out too. You’ll live in a lighthouse one day with your wonderful husband, a myriad of rescued pets and you’ll be a librarian. You’ll get there.” Okay, thanks self. Everyone reading this thinks I’m insane now. 😉

Life with chronic illness is such a roller coaster and I feel like my hormones have thrown my coaster off the tracks!  If anyone out there is suffering from hormone issues, I’d love to hear your story. Thank you for letting me rant. I feel like such a drama queen. Stay sexy, Spoonies!

Spoonie Dating

Spoonie Dating

I know how scary it can be to put yourself out there but we can’t let our chronic illnesses, anxiety or whatever else keep us from living life to the absolute fullest. You deserve to have someone in your life that really cares for you and wants to see you happy.

I’ve been compiling a list of spoonie friendly dating sites and I’ve discovered a few friend making sites as well. I am lucky enough to have an amazing partner but I could always use more friends!

Spoonie Dating Tips-

Most of these will probably sound cliche but they’re important, none the less.

  • Let’s start with the biggest cliche and just get it out of the way. Be yourself. Yep, I said it. I know. I wanted to place emphasis here because sometimes, with chronic illness, we feel like we don’t even know ourselves. I know I’m not the same person I was before I was struck with all my lovely ailments. So, it’s important not to hide your disabilities and your anxieties. You are wonderful. If your date can’t handle it, you want to find out as soon as possible.
  • Get used to rejection. It’s nothing personal, really. Some people just aren’t willing to take the time to get to know you. They might just be looking for a booty call. If that’s all you’re looking for, great! But, if you want more, don’t settle for someone who isn’t willing to put in the quality time.
  • If they want to spend time with you, they’ll find a way! No matter how busy either of you are and despite any limitations, if you meet someone genuinely interested in you, they will do all they can to find a way to spend time with you.
  • You are worthy! Remember that and don’t settle for an abusive relationship just because you are lonely. There is someone out there waiting to treat you like the Queen (or King) you truly are.
  • Leave the past behind you. It’s hard, maybe impossible to build a healthy relationship if you are always carrying around old baggage or worrying that your new partner is going to cheat on you, leave you or tell you you’re not good enough. You are more than good enough. Never forget that. Dwelling on the past won’t help your future.
  • Relax. First date, blind date, reconnected on Facebook after 20 years, whatever, just RELAX. Have a good time. Don’t worry about getting asked on a second date or the goodnight kiss. Play your heart out at mini golf, cry during the movie. If your date sees you having a genuinely good time, they’ll relax too and everyone will have more fun even if you don’t connect on a romantic level.
  • Trust yourself. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t feel bad for canceling or going home early. You are not obligated to do anything. Who cares if you seem a little rude? You have to take care of yourself first.
  • Be honest. Be upfront about your condition and your illnesses. You don’t have to pull out your medical records or tell your whole life story on the first date but ensure you aren’t pushing your boundaries too far. If you need your cane, take it. You are still rocking that dress!
  • A relationship is not like a home improvement project. You have to accept the person for who they are and the way they are and they must show you the same respect. You can’t paint over their flaws and polish their rough edges. You must embrace them because that’s what makes them a unique individual. Too unique for you? Be courteous and let them go. There is someone more fitting for you out there.
  • Compromise. You may have to make compromises to make the relationship work but never compromise your values. Compromise on dinner not your stance on abortion or whatever.

I know you know all this but the dating world can be intimidating at first. It’s important to stay true to yourself if you want to find someone you can be truly happy with.

Spoonie Dating Sites-

  • Dating 4 Disabled “Dating For Disabled is an online dating service for people with disabilities. We are a community where disabled singles can find love & friendship. Dating4Disabled is the number one disabled dating site, and registration is one hundred percent free!”
  • Disabled PassionsA 100% FREE online dating & social networking community specifically for singles with a disability. Meeting new people can sometimes be more difficult when you are dealing with a disability. Whether you are interested in dating, making new friends, or more, Disabled Passions is here for you. Use the Disability Groups option to find others dealing with Arthritis, Cancer, Cerebral Palsy, Depression, Diabetes Type 1, Diabetes Type 2, Mobility Issues, Muscular Dystrophy, Spinal Cord Injury or any of a number of other issues. Sign up now to enjoy free chat, message boards and email.
  • Soulful Encounters “SoulfulEncounters.com works with various disabled people and organizations to connect those who are physically and medically disabled and provide support, friendship, and a love filled social networking community. This is your opportunity for a brighter and richer life. Join SoulfulEncounters.com now – it’s free.”
  • Christian Disabled Dating “Being Disabled Doesn’t Mean You Have to Give up on Love. Create Your FREE Profile Today and Start Meeting Other Disabled Christian Singles in Your Local Area.”
  • Disability Match “Find genuine fun and intimacy with disabled singles. Specialist created this site to help people like you meet single adult men and women who share your disability, condition or life challenge within a friendly vibrant disabled community.”
  • Disability Dating “Disabiltydating.com is a free disabled dating site aimed at playing disabled cupid to people with disabilities who are seeking fun, friendship, love, romance and dating online. We aim to enable love, dating, friendship and romance by matchmaking in a safe, fun, online dating environment.”
  • Meet Disabled Singles “We’ve quickly become the most popular matchmaking agency when it comes to helping handicapable people. Spend a couple of minutes and let us be your cupid that helps you find new friends, lasting love or possibly even marriage. We can’t guarantee that you’ll find your bride, but we can guarantee that you’ll have your chance to get in touch with people looking to improve their life by finding love. Our members are united and ready to show you that your love life doesn’t have to suffer because of your disability. Create your account today for free, build your profile and start chatting with other members instantly.”
  • No Longer Lonely “We are a welcoming community that understands the trials and pitfalls of managing a mental illness. Find friends or seek romantic relationships knowing that everyone on this site has some form of mental illness.”

Friend Making Sites-

  • Girlfriend Social “Girlfriend Social is website that connects women with new female friendships. This website is for Ladies only, who just like you, are looking to make platonic women friendships. Inside women can make new friends with fabulous ladies in a safe and friendly environment.”
  • Make Friends Online “Whether you’re looking for a free great online dating agency or a place to hang out and chat with a few friends, you’ll find everything you need at MakeFriendsOnline. Millions of people from around the world are looking to meet other singles on dating websites. It’s never been easier to meet other singles on your terms, when you want and with who you want. MakeFriendsOnline.com has over 1,5 mln register members and is one of the largest online dating sites.”
  • Not 4 Dating “Not4Dating.com is a totally new way to expand your social network. We’re here to help you meet platonic friends online and then connect in real life.”
  • Disabled United “A great way to interact with other like minded people, share your views, information, advice and interests.”

Put your-sexy-selves out there, Spoonies! Have fun and stay safe!

Encouraging Thunder

Encouraging Thunder

I was recently nominated for the Encouraging Thunder blogging award for my honesty. I started this blog to raise awareness and help women like me feel sexy. Having a chronic illness can darken your outlook if you’re not careful. I started this blog to combat that, to bring people together and create a community of strong women.

It’s been almost a year since I started this blog and I believe I have done that and more. This blog has evolved into more than I could have hoped for. I am grateful for the support I’ve received, friends I’ve made and all that I’ve learned. I’ve tried to facilitate understanding and educate the loved ones of those with chronic illness but when life gets in the way and I don’t have the spoons to research comfy lingerie or organic sex toys, my followers (you guys!) provided endless support and encouragement. For that, I am incredibly grateful.

All I can do now, is continue to bring you quality information and hope that this blog is as uplifting to you as it has been for me.

I would like to thank meANXIETYme for the nomination and thank everyone who reads, shares and comments on my posts. I greatly appreciate all your support. I was hesitant to start this blog because I am not a sexologist, therapist or expert of any kind. I wasn’t sure if I would have the spoons to keep up or if anyone would care about what I had to say. I’ve cried through writing many of the update posts and at first, the vulnerability sent my anxiety through the roof but now, I see how understanding and supportive people can be. Do I dare say that this blog has actually restored my faith in humanity? It certainly has shown me how kind the world can be. So, I graciously accept this nomination. Here is a little more info about this particular award.

Encouraging Thunder is originated from one of nature’s true powers, a crack of thunder from the sky. From the ancient Greek God myth, the most powerful god Zeus uses thunder to banish his enemy. Encouraging Thunder is a symbol that only god can judge us…
Thunder creates a powerful addition to the blog as an awesome blog award. Raymond, encouraginglife.co founder, was bestowed upon a thunder medallion by the great nature so he can create a powerful spell Encouraging Thunder to grant powerful protection to other bloggers. It’s a special spell that only bloggers who has true purpose in their life can master it.

http://encouraginglife.co/about/encouraging-life-blog-awards/

Award Rules

What you can do with Encouraging Thunder award?

  • Post it on your blog
  • Grant other bloggers with the award

What you can’t do with Encouraging Thunder award?

  • Abuse or misuse the logo
  • Claim that it’s your own handmade logo

What you should do after receiving Encouraging Thunder award:

  • Enjoy the award
  • At least gives thanks via comments and likes and or mentioning the blog who give the award.
  • Mention your purpose in blogging

This award does not require a certain number of nominations but there are a couple of bloggers that I feel really deserve it.

Nominations

Well, turns out there are more than a couple…. I just enjoy these blogs so much and after reading about this award, I feel like they really do deserve it, for their honesty, courage and generosity. And talent! Can’t forget that! 😉

Gentle Kindness

FibroFeels

Chaos, Cats and Chronic Pain

Tristyn’s Health Blog

aBodyofHope

Anna Bayes

Hubert’s Best

Thank you! Happy blogging! Stay sexy Spoonies!


This Rose Might Fade But It’ll Never Wither

This Rose Might Fade But It’ll Never Wither

My first tattoo turns ten this year. It is faded, surrounded by scars and stretch marks. My body has been through a lot since I was branded with this rose. This rose has weathered a marriage, heartbreak, divorce and more heartbreak, graduation, disappointment, car wrecks, chronic illness, new beginnings and a whole lot more. I’m not the person I thought I’d be and I’m not where I’d hoped to be in life but, who really is? Life happens. You get carried away. You drift away from your goals and the life you think you want. Before you know it, you are somewhere you never thought you’d be. Sometimes it’s scary. Sometimes it’s exciting. Sometimes it’s both. I know I wouldn’t trade my life or my rose for anything.
Ten years ago, my parents and fiancé, now ex-husband, escorted me to the tattoo parlor. I’d always wanted a tattoo. I remembered going with my mother to the tattoo shop when I was a kid. I was with her when she got her rose and now she was with me while I got mine. Odd for some families but my parents have always been really cool. They’re laid back, open and understanding. I’ve always been spoiled too. I honestly don’t recall them ever telling me no but I wasn’t a demanding or unreasonable child. I am a bit of a brat though and I have them to thank for that.
I was still in high school when I got the tattoo. It was just after my birthday so it was a bit chilly outside. I wore tight jeans instead of something practical like sweat pants. In those days, I wouldn’t be caught dead without makeup and I was always in jeans. The parlor was packed. Lots of the teenagers I went to school with liked to hang out up there after school. I brought the picture that I wanted to use and before I knew it, the artist had made a template and I was unzipping my pants. I sat in the chair and leaned back. I felt like everyone was watching and they were. Cleaning the area and getting the placement just right took longer than the actual tattoo. They gave me some soap and ointment. Then, sixty bucks later, I was out the door. Pants still unzipped and now stuffed with paper towels. I was surprised to be such a mess after such a tiny tattoo. After that, we were off to dinner. I remember being so excited about what life would bring! I had no idea so much could happen in ten years!
Since my mother has a similar tattoo in the same location and it was her first tattoo too, I wanted to know what her life was like when she got the tattoo and how she felt about it when she first started noticing it fade.

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This is a recent photo of her tattoo. This rose is about thirty years old. Both of our roses are near the inside of our left hip bones.

So this is exactly how our conversation went:
Me: I know you aren’t feeling well so no rush but I wanted to ask you about your rose tattoo. I’m writing about mine because it turns ten this year. So, I wanted you to tell me about what was going in on your life when you got yours.
Mom: Hi baby, I got mine in the late 80’s before you were born. I was working at Slick Willie’s. That’s where I met your dad. I think the color is ok. It faded some. The problem with mine is my belly covers it up! Haha! 😉
Me: I thought I was there when you got it. Who did we go to the tattoo shop with when I was little then? Cousin Lisa?
Mom: No that was another parlor. We went over there with Lisa. I got mine by Granny’s house.

I wasn’t with her when she got her tattoo. Apparently, we were with my cousin and it probably wasn’t her first tattoo. I was pretty young so I don’t remember much about it. Still, I’ll never forget walking through the beads and seeing all the artwork on the wall. I was mesmerized by all the tigers, butterflies and calligraphy.
Most things lose their magic as you grow older. Most people would probably agree but my mother has never stopped and I think that’s what’s helped me continue to appreciate all the wonder in the world. My rose and I have been through a lot but we will never wither!