Cayenne Pepper Lemonade

Cayenne Pepper Lemonade

This cayenne pepper lemonade is great for migraines and it’s delicious too! 

It’s the perfect blend of tangy, sweet and spicy.

The active ingredient in cayenne peppers, capsaicin, is believed to bring headache relief by depleting Substance P, a neurotransmitter that helps send pain signals. Although some are still skeptical, a number of studies have tested the claim, and most have found evidence to support it. One prominent study on capsaicin for pain relief was published back in 1998 in the Clinical Journal of Pain. Their review of 33 previous studies found that capsaicin worked better than a placebo for cluster headaches.

Dr. Mercola 

Lemons help balance acidity and detoxify the body. Hydrating can also help reduce head pain. Cayenne is a natural blood thinner. This can reduce the intensity of the headache but consuming too much of the lemonade could have adverse effects if you’re on medications such as blood thinners. 

If you’re concerned about potential reactions, consult your doctor or pharmacist. 

Cayenne Pepper Lemonade

Ingredients 

  • 1/8 – 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
  • 4 ounces honey
  • 12 ounces hot water
  • 8 ounces fresh lemon juice
  • Ice cubes and lemon slices for serving

Directions

In a heatproof 1-quart pitcher, combine the honey, cayenne pepper and hot water. Start with less pepper and add more depending on your tastes. Don’t stand directly over the pitcher. The cayenne will make your eyes water. Stir until the honey is dissolved. Stir in the lemon juice. I love pulp so I don’t strain the juice but make sure you don’t miss any seeds! Let cool for at least 10 minutes or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Pour into ice-filled glasses and garnish with lemon slices. All ingredients can be adjusted to personal taste. It’s a versatile recipe. Try experimenting by adding mint or blueberries to the mix! It’s also great frozen! Chill it then blend it with some ice and enjoy. 

Cayenne also boosts metabolism! Stay sexy Spoonies! 

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Recovering: A Rant

Recovering: A Rant

I am now recovering from my oral surgery. I want to inform readers that this blog has evolved into something like a diary. I do try to add helpful posts about spoonie dating and natural pain relievers and anti-inflammatories as well but not as often as I’d like. 

I am writing tonight to remind people that they can’t just read one post and think they know what’s best for me. There are ups and downs in everyone’s lives, especially those with chronic illness. 

It’s not all in my head. 

It’s not because I’m missing something spiritually. 

My pain doesn’t give you the right to judge me and it doesn’t make me a bad person. 

I can’t pray the pain away. It doesn’t work like that.  

The devil is not causing my pain. 

I am human and I use this blog to vent sometimes because I know others here are going through similar things but maybe I shouldn’t reveal so much here. Perhaps it’s become too personal because people seem to think they know what’s best for me. 

I have improved quite a bit. I am maintaining well but everyone has bad days. When you have to take two steps back, sometimes it can be depressing. Pain can be depressing, isolating and overwhelming. Especially when it isn’t taken seriously. 

If you knew me, you’d see that I have taken a lot more forward steps than backwards steps. I’ve done a shitload of research and clinical trials. If I just listened to my doctors, I’d be bedridden. I took my health into my own hands and I’m glad I did. 

I am positive. I am happy. That doesn’t mean I’m not in pain and it doesn’t get to me sometimes. 

I am a fighter. I always will be so if you feel the need to pass judgment, you can fuck off. You’re not better than me because you’re not in constant pain. 

The pain is not a choice. It’s not in my head. Well, except for the migraines and headaches. 😉

Some helpful posts you can look forward to reading soon-

  • Cayenne pepper lemonade for migraine relief 
  • Apps that help maintain chronic illness and stress
  • Heath benefits of sex

Sorry for the rant. Stay sexy spoonies. 

The Battle

The Battle

It has been about three weeks since my last post so I figured I at least owe you an update. 

It’s after 3am. I just opened my first Heineken. Did some stretching and a little yoga while listening to Dharampal. My head hurts and I should be working on my paper about the Indian uprising but I am tired of being on the computer. So, what do I do? I migrate to the couch with my dog and my Wonder Woman snuggie because I feel like I need to write. So now, I’m just on a tiny computer. 

  
Fibromyalgia turns everything into a battle. The pain, nausea and fatigue turn everything into a chore. When I first got the diagnosis, I was relieved because I thought I would be able to form a successful treatment plan. I haven’t. I’ve improved. I think. I could just be coping better. I really don’t know. I do feel better now that I am treating it naturally and no longer taking Lyrica or Gabapentin but I don’t feel like I’ve made much more progress than that. 

My hormones are more under control and that helps too but even that isn’t resolved. 

I’ll be having oral surgery next week and I am really hoping that it’ll relieve some of this head pain. Otherwise, I’m going to have to break down and go to a neurologist but I know they’re just going to want an MRI. I can’t afford fibromyalgia or whatever else might be plaguing me. 

Sometimes, I feel good about the progress I’ve made and other times I feel completely hopeless about my health. Usually, both in the same day. Living with fibromyalgia really is like being on a roller coaster. One minute I’m up and feeling good, positive and happy. The next minute, I’m crying in pain and feeling useless. 

On top of that, it’s sent me on this path of self discovery and all that (I really wanted to call it bullshit). I’ve been atheist most of my life so this new need for spiritual belonging just makes me feel more lost than ever. I know I’m not Christian. I identify a lot with Pagean and Buddhist beliefs. I meditate and I’m drawn to certain crystals. I love my chakra stones but I still don’t know exactly where I fit in. I’ve always thought Hinduism was fascinating but deciphering between all the deities gets confusing and I eat beef. Something else I feel guilty about. I try to buy eggs from happy chickens and organic grass fed meats but I’m still consuming something that was alive. I feel guilty when I accidentally step on a snail so how can I continue to eat bacon? 

I don’t feel compelled to follow any religion wholeheartedly. 

I spent most of my younger years trying to just block out all the negativity. I ignored all the world’s issues as well as my own. Compassion was painful. It still is but I’ve decided I can’t hide anymore. It doesn’t work anyway. 

 
Sounds easy enough… but what exactly is the divine power?

“Be the change you want to see in the world.” 

-Gandhi

Well, that’s a lot of fucking pressure! Especially, when it doesn’t seem like most other people are trying to do the same. Acknowledging the world’s pain and trying to do my part to change it is challenging to say the least. 

I don’t know what to do or believe and my head hurts. 

  

When you don’t know what else to do, stay sexy Spoonies! 

Oh, these are not my images. I was lazy and they were already on my phone because I liked them. I will credit Google. 😋

UPDATE: I Took a religion test and so I just thought I’d share with you my results (this photo is mine, of course). 

  

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!

My Grandpa and Me

My Grandpa and Me

  
My grandpa passed away a few years ago. He was certainly one of a kind! I will cherish the memories I have of him forever. Some of my best memories happened at his house…. swimming in trash cans, playing with baby ducks and monkeys, exploring his office, and the house was always full of happy friends, relatives and delicious homemade dishes and desserts. He and my grannie helped make my childhood seem so magical. 

  

After my fibromyalgia diagnosis, I learned that my grandpa and I had more in common than I realized. He also had fibromyalgia and low blood oxygen. I have digestion issues like he did… Our health issues are so much alike, I feel like learning about what he silently endured is like looking into my future. 

Despite all the pain he was in, he always smiled. He always goofed around. He insisted chocolate syrup was medicine and never said no to entertaining my cousins and I. He took us to Mexico for shopping and even riding in the car was a blast with him. He loved each of us unconditionally and I don’t remember ever being scolded by him. I don’t know how he kept the pain from making him irritable! 

  

This was written for the local paper after his passing. 

It was Dec. 7, 1971, and Woodrow “Woodie” Peables Jr. was running through the snow-covered streets of Abilene. Back at his house, his wife Alicia was about to have their first child.

Woodie was running the 21 blocks to his parent’s house to borrow a car.

Raised in a very conservative family in Brownsville, Alicia knew very little about the process of having a baby. She was surprised when her water broke.

“Such things were just never discussed by my family,” Alicia said.

Her husband came home from work to find Alicia mopping the floor instead of getting ready to go to the hospital.

But Woodie knew what it meant and that’s when he started running.

When he reached his folks’ house, Woodie began pounding on the door.

“What’s the matter, son?” asked his father, Woodrow Peables Sr.

“I need to borrow a car. Alicia’s in labor” Woodie said.

“The car’s in your driveway, son, with the keys in it,” said the elder Peables.

That had been the plan. For the past week, Woodrow Sr. or one of Woodie’s brothers had left a car in his driveway for just such an event.

In later years, Woodie would claim he didn’t see the white car because of all of the snow.

“He just went into full panic mode,” said his daughter, Chyrstal.

Woodie and his father piled into another car and went to pick up Alicia. On the way to the hospital, that car got stuck in the snow and they had to go back and get the white car. But all ended well and their daughter, Tonya, was born in the hospital. She was the first of three daughters and one son born to Alicia and Woodie.

There wasn’t all of that fuss when Woodrow Perry Peables Jr. entered this world on July 24, 1937. He was born on the kitchen table of his parents’ apartment over a garage in Abilene.

Woodie was one of four sons born to Lois and Woodrow Peables Sr. She was a cook and Woodrow Sr. was a baker doing mechanic’s work on the side. Eventually, Woodie’s father opened his own garage.

Woodie joined the military after high school, but soon was discharged to care for his ailing parents and help run the garage.

“He was ‘busting’ tires,” Chrystal said. “Back then, they didn’t have all of the tools they have now for fixing flats or putting on new tires. It all had to be done by hand.”

After a few years, Woodie moved to Houston and a job as a truck driver. There, he married Wanda and they had two daughters, Nona and Joy.

But the marriage only lasted a few years and Woodie was soon single again.

He started dating Alicia’s roommate. One night, Woodie came to their apartment to ask if Alicia would go out with a friend of his. He never got around to asking.

Then 17, Alicia was working at a Houston hospital. “I didn’t date,” she said. “I liked to sit at home and watch TV and listen to records.”

When Woodie got home that night, his friend wanted to know what Alicia had said about the double date.

Woodie announced, “I’m going to marry that girl and live with her forever.”

“From day one he never let me alone,” Alicia said.

Woodie asked her to marry him and kept asking for six days until she said yes.

“He was persistent,” Alicia said. “I told him I didn’t love him, but he said he had enough love for both of us.

“He said, ‘I’ll grow on you.’ And he did,” she said. “We were married 38 years.”

They moved to Abilene in 1970.

“He was always working,” Alicia said. “He built houses, he wrecked houses, carpenter, mechanic … ”

“He salvaged houses for the wood or whatever he could get out of them,” Chrystal said.

Alicia found out the guy down the street paid his workers a penny a nail to remove them from the lumber. She started pulling nails for Woodie — only he never paid her.

When Tonya came along, Alicia’s nail-pulling days ended.

Like any road traveled, Alicia and Woodie’s marriage was not without the occasional bump or rough spot, Alicia recalled. But they always made it through.

Woodie constantly wrote Alicia love letters. “He was very romantic,” she said. “He was always bringing me flowers and candy.”

The family moved to Victoria, where Woodie worked for Brown & Root and Union Carbide. An accident at work left Woodie disabled. They moved to the Valley so Alicia could be closer to her family. It was to have tragic consequences.

In 1987, Chrystal, then 13, revealed that she had been molested for several years and then raped.

When Woodie went looking for help for his family to deal with this, there was none to be had locally. The system seemed to be geared to help perpetrators instead of victims.

Woodie decided to do something about it.

“It was his way of …,” Chrystal said and then paused, her eyes brimmimg with tears. “Since he couldn’t help me, because it went on so long, he wanted to help other people. He felt it would help give me the strength to go on.”

Alicia said the first step was to get help for their family. A crime doesn’t just affect one person. It has an effect on the entire household. Woodie found therapy for everyone and they discovered the process of healing.

“We found out what each of us were going to feel each step of the way,” Alicia said. “And the support we needed to give her.”

It became a blueprint for how they would help other families deal with the aftermath of any crime.

“We met in restaurants or the hallways of the Courthouse — wherever he found people who needed help,” Alicia said. “We would meet in parks. Flying back from meetings in Austin, we would meet people on the plane.”

They helped people apply to state agenies for help covering medical, funeral or any other expenses that victims suffered as a result of crime.

“We would get them the forms and then make sure they were filled out correctly — that they dotted every ‘I’ and crossed every ‘t,’ ” Alicia said.

“He told me to take typing classes,” Chrystal said with a smile. “I didn’t realize I would be turned into a secretary — unpaid, of course.”

Woodie used part of the family’s only income, his disability checks, to pay his expenses.

It first became People Against Violent Crime, and then Cameron County Victims Assistance after the county began funding their work. Their efforts resulted in millions of dollars of aid for Valley crime victims.

“Looking back, he was always a strict and hard man,” Chrystal said. “Especially after he started the crime victims, because he knew what was out there.”

Alicia said their phone would ring at all hours of the day or night with calls for assistance. Some would come from law enforcement officials telling them about a family in need.

Woodie’s health began to fail even more. It was problems with his heart,

“They started telling him he only had six months to live back in 1979,” Chrystal said. “He outlived three or four of his doctors.”

Woodie kept his romantic nature, even when he became very ill. Every evening at 10 p.m., Alicia would stop whatever she was doing and get a goodnight kiss from Woodie. Then he would take his medicine and go to bed.

Woodie knew when he was going to die. He had Chrystal call her sisters and her uncles so he could tell them all goodbye.

“He said he forgave them for anything they might have ever done and said he hoped they would forgive him, too,” Chrystal said. “He asked permission to die, to let him go.”

“Then he went to sleep with a smile on his face,” Alicia said.

But things didn’t go according to Woodie’s plan.

“Boy, was he mad when he woke up the next morning,” Chrystal said. “He looked around and said ‘What the hell am I still doing here?’”

Woodie was so mad he didn’t get out of bed that day. He certainly didn’t want to have to go through saying goodbye again.

“He always wanted to help, to give,” Alicia said.

Chrystal said it wasn’t surprising that his heart finally gave out. “He gave too much of it away,” she said.

 
My sweet grannie has helped me cope with my cluster headaches and fibromyalgia (since he had both also) through stories of my grandpa’s strength and selflessness. He never let his illness run his life. He never gave in even when the pain was excruciating. I think it made him want to help more people. The number of lives he touched is certainly inspiring.

He taught me to surround myself with joy and to love life more than I hate my pain. Most importantly, he taught me to never give up. I miss him dearly… 

Fibro Bullies

Fibro Bullies

Someone brought a community page on Facebook that bullies people with fibromyalgia to my attention. 

I was beyond upset. I was hurt. 

I reported the page for bullying but my sister brought up the question of free speech. She made a very valid point but it didn’t make me feel better. The conversation went something like this: 

Sister- “Everyone has the right to express their opinions regardless of popularity. This issue is very controversial right now. We may be stupid, ignorant, fat, lazy Americans. But we are free to be that or whatever we choose. I would suggest that in the future you hide this from your view. Something I like to tell people that don’t appreciate my humor and/or opinions is, ‘if you find me offensive, then don’t fucking find me.’ I love you sister and will back you no matter what, but that is my point of view on it.”

Me- “I understand what you’re saying and thank you for supporting me. People are entitled to their opinions but this guy is just spreading hate. That’s exactly what it says on the cover photo, ‘We hate you’ To me, that’s going a little far.”

Sister- “In this overly politically correct society, we need to encourage others to express themselves and our best defense against hate and prejudice is education. Let’s use these opportunities to enlighten people to these issues that effect us. I just can’t stand how everyone is offended by everything now days. 

Maybe you can share some documented research to that person’s page. ‘Be the change you want to see in the world.'”

Me- “Others have already tried educating and reasoning. Whoever runs that page is just rude about it. I know you’re right about free speech and all that. I do feel a little like a hypocrite but I don’t feel bad for reporting the page. I wasn’t offended when I saw it. I was sad. It hurt my feelings. I know that sounds childish but people with fibromyalgia go through enough without this jerk citing outdated studies and crap. It’s one thing to have an opinion but why purposely try to make people feel bad? Many people have fibro way worse than I do. It can be debilitating and depressing. 

I am trying to be the change I want to see in the world and I know I reacted poorly here. I reported the page without even thinking about it.”

I still feel conflicted. That’s why I’m writing about the experience. 

This page goes beyond having an opinion. Would a page bullying cancer survivors or victims of assault be allowed to stay up? I didn’t scour Facebook to find out. Honestly, the whole thing makes me sick to my stomach and I wish it had never been brought to my attention. 

Women with fibromyalgia have a 10-fold increased risk for suicide according to Danish researchers. Read the article, here. Aren’t we going through enough? Can’t we just be left alone? 

I find myself wondering about the creator of the page. Did they have a bad experience with someone with fibromyalgia? Were they misdiagnosed with it? I just don’t understand what could instill such hate. 

What is so wrong with only respecting the opinions of others as long as they aren’t stifling anyone else’s existence? 

I see no reason to tear one another down. We should be lifting each other up. 

“There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.”

John Holmes

I will not be sharing the Facebook page. I believe they are already getting more attention than they deserve. I want to know what you think. How would you have reacted? 

Stay strong and stay sexy spoonies!

Cover Image from Tumblr. 

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!

Happy Awareness Day

Happy Awareness Day

When I was first diagnosed, I was depressed, distraught and in excruciating pain. I had no idea what fibromyalgia was or how much it would change my life. 

I have always had a history of getting sick when I was depressed. I felt so useless at one time in my life, I completely stopped caring about myself and caring for myself. I ate poorly and infrequently. I was drinking a lot of alcohol. Too much. I knew it was too much. My immune system got so low, I got shingles. After trying to remain so numb for so long, I’d never felt such pain. I still have scars around my torso and it was just the beginning of people telling me “You’re too young for that!” Hearing that is like being stabbed in the heart. I know I’m too young to feel this way. That doesn’t change anything. 

The alcoholics in my life left me with a distorted view of what a functional human being should be. I won’t go into the details of my childhood or how I spiraled out of control or how I almost died. It’s all too much. Maybe, I’m just not ready. Maybe, I’ll write a book one day. Maybe, it’s not that important anymore. All I will say is that my childhood, my life, has been magical. Very much like a fairy tale with good and evil. I have always battled depression and social anxiety, like I was just born that way. 

I was actually really happy and healthy when I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I was in the best shape of my life. I’d learned a lot about myself and found someone wonderful to share my life with. I was eating healthier and working out. I’d lost 80 pounds. Half of which I’m pretty sure I lost through lifestyle changes but the other 40 pounds should probably be attributed to intestinal issues. I was diagnosed with IBS but that doesn’t complete the puzzle. I am quite certain I also suffer from gastroparesis but without insurance, doctors don’t want to waste  time on me. I can’t afford all the tests and honestly, I should see a neurologist for all of this head pain I can’t control and worry about not being able to eat later. At least I’m skinny! 😉 I’ve never been able to say that before. I know being healthy is much more important and I’m going to try and address these issues as soon as possible. 

Anyway, I’d been in a couple car wrecks and injured my back working out. I just couldn’t get better. I spent months in bed before finally going to the doctor. So, came the fibromyalgia diagnosis and the long hard road to where I am at now. I’ve had to make a lot of changes in my life to cope with the fibromyalgia, the brain fog, the pain. I still can’t work full time but I am back in school, I do yoga, I write. The most important discovery that I have made is learning that I am an empath, a highly sensitive person. I feel the emotions of others. They manifest through me. I self medicated to escape these feelings. Now, I’ve learned to embrace them. I have a desire to understand them. It helps be connect with people better and help them. 

Fibromyalgia sucks. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone but it’s helped me discover who I am, who I want to be. I am learning to embrace who I am instead of running from myself. 

I am the face of fibromyalgia! 

Stay sexy spoonies! 

Google said the image is from this board on Pinterest.