Happy Monday y’all!
During the month of September, it is so important to recognize Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. I don’t have to explain to anyone how important it is stand united in supporting each other. I truly feel the more awareness that’s spread about world mental health, the brighter our future will be. Even if you’ve never been depressed, someone close to you have experienced it without you knowing about it. One thing you should know about depression is that it’s not a topic not easily spoken about. I think it is why mental health should be taken so seriously and not ignored. I know when I feel down, I have trouble expressing how I am feeling. There are moments I don’t understand why I am depressed. I have extremely dark moods. I hate those times, and I fight that feeling as much as I can. Is my Fibromyalgia a good reason for all of this? Yes, it can be. That is why I am blessed to be in a group where I have friends who are going through the same thing.
Please note: I am not a physician.
How do you handle depression? Have you ever contemplated suicide? If you need to talk to someone, stop by for a chat. Or even better, please talk to the suicide line. Thank you for taking the time to read my blog today! If you’re enjoying my blogs, why not subscribe to my website? My blogs will go straight to your email. It’s free to sign up! Tell your friends! Tell your friends to tell their friends! Please continue to stay safe purple butterflies!
Till next time! Be well!
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Reference link: https://www.nami.org/get-involved/awareness-events/suicide-prevention-awareness-month
Dear purple butterflies,
Tomorrow will mark the twentieth anniversary of 9/11. I’m going to be honest with all of you. It is so incredibly hard for me to write this blog. However, I felt it needed to be written. Especially during this month because it’s both pain awareness and suicide awareness month. It’s so hard to watch the videos of the historical day. It still feels as though it were only yesterday that my alarm woke me to hear the horrible news. Like the rest of the world, I was glued to my television set for the rest of the day in disbelief. Do you remember where you were? During these past twenty years, I’ve not only met people, but my friends and family will always recall what we were doing that day. While I was student teaching, I chatted with a friend who lived through the Manhattan attacks. She went into such vivid detail, I felt as though I was there, as well. I have family who work in Manhattan and by the grace of God they were not hurt that day. I know others aren’t as lucky as I have been in that regard. My heartfelt prayers go to all the families who are affected from that treacherous day.
I was supposed to work an evening shift at Disney’s MGM Studios (now Disney’s Hollywood Studios) working at Rock N’ Rollercoaster starring Aerosmith. Before 9/11, the Disney theme parks rarely closed for anything. The first person I called was my mother at her school office. She said, “I bet they close the parks.” “Mom,” I replied, “Disney doesn’t close.” Just moments later I would eat my own words. “Epcot center to close,” came flashing on the television screen. I don’t know why but I felt the need to get out of my apartment that day. Looking back, I should have just stayed home. I was in Orlando, Florida where everything was either closed or closing because of the day’s events.
I have always had so much respect for the police, firemen, doctors, and hospital staff. I cannot even fathom what it must’ve been like for them that day. Visiting ground zero is among the many places I want to see in this country before I go abroad. The memorial events for 9/11 will continue just as they’ve done before 2020. If you would choose to, here are some informative articles of which I found along my quest.
On September 11th, 2001, the United States was once again
rocked to its core. We helped each other where the pain was needed. Whether it be physical or emotional pain, we lent our neighbor a helping hand. My other intention for this piece was to remind all of us to not give up hope. I'm already there by the band Lone Star is a heartfelt song that I adore. It’s a song dedicated to the men and women of the U.S. armed forces.
Please keep staying safe out there everyone! Thank you for taking the time to read my blog today! If you’re enjoying my blogs, why not subscribe to my website? My blogs will go straight to your email. It’s free to sign up! Tell your friends! Tell your friends to tell their friends!
Till next time!
Reference for photo: The Tribute in Light, organized by the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, will begin shining at sundown on Saturday.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Happy Monday y’all!
Depression is an awful feeling that is something that can hit any of us at any time. I believe it is one of the worse feelings in the world. However, when I've been depressed, as well I know with other Fibromyalgia and chronic pain suffers, I feel it can be worse for us personally. Please let me explain my reasoning for this. When you are depressed, you feel very low, are in the dark, and possibly suicidal place. Now add the fact you have constant pain all over your body. September is #NationalSuicidePreventionMonth,#WorldSuicidePreventionDay ##PainAwarenessMonth #September2021PainAwarenessMonth, and #NationalPainAwarenessMonth. Depression is a very lonely thing. If you are depressed, I urge you to get help. If you google depression on google, it takes to you depression and it was sent people. 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
I used to get extremely depressed from my pain levels. My depression has been the main cause of it. Around this time of year, it's not unusual for me to see something in a store, or hear a Christmas song they loved, and it takes me back to those days when I was little. I am very fortunate that I have a wonderful support system of my husband and girl best friends. If anyone is dealing with depression, I understand how you feel. I urge you please to seek help or call a friend.
Six years ago, my mother as well as my grandmother passed away. I was so very close to the both of them. This fall, a very dear friend of mine will have been gone two years. He was the "big brother." I never had. He was one of the sweetest, kindest guys you'd ever meet. He was the type of person that made the world better by being in it. Thinking back on my childhood days, there’s not many moments that do not have a memory with him in it. I will always associate the rock band Jon Bon Jovi (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkBwnm7GOfYHsacwUjriC-w)
with him. As a tribute to my "big brother", I’m posting a video of "Livin' on a Prayer". I know that he’s smiling and will always watch over his friends and family. I rely a lot of my faith to get me through all the tough times. I have been known to been known to be very sensitive. Maybe this is a gift from my Fibromyalgia? The song that I've chosen for my friend, works to say farewell to my family too.
Please keep those stories and comments coming!! Let's continue to stay safe purple butterflies! Thank you for taking the time to read my blog today! If you’re enjoying my blogs, why not subscribe to my website? My blogs will go straight to your email. It’s free to sign up! Tell your friends! Tell your friends to tell their friends!
Till next time!
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Dear purple butterflies,
Have you ever wondered about Fibro fogs? Do you know that feeling when you’re so tired you can’t think straight? Maybe you’ve just had a conversation with a friend and moments later you forget parts of the conversation. I know what you might be thinking that I’m forgetting about Alzheimer’s disease. The two symptoms sound similar but trust me I am not confusing one for the other. I know this first hand because I have experience with both. With Fibromyalgia it is called, Fibromyalgia Fog. I am here to testify that fogs are real! This is why I call my website Once Upon A Fog Blog. When I have a fog, it doesn’t mean that I’ve always had a bad day. It just means that my concentration level isn’t where it should be. Is it frustrating? Of course! What is it comparable to for me? The best way I know how to describe this is to give you a visual. I’m a pirate sailing through a thick fog and I don’t know where I’m going and I’ve lost my map. Have you ever driven when it’s pouring down rain? There’s not a place to pull over and of course your windshield wipers are not working? That is how it feels for me to have a fog. I almost expect to hear a lonely, low foghorn somewhere off in the distance and the ringing of a soft bell. I should probably ask my husband to stop making those sounds from the other room.
So, why do I address ya’ll as purple butterflies? This answer is not as involved. A lot of causes use the color purple and butterflies. Fibromyalgia does both as well. Purple serves as a double purpose for me due to the fact that I was close with my grandmother and she was a big supporter in finding a cure for Fibro someday. One of her favorite colors, as well as mine, is purple. I also love butterflies so it’s a win win!
No matter what the day brings, I try to pace myself with what all the chores I have planned for the day. For the most part I hide what’s going on, but Dale can tell if I’m hurting or not feeling well. It may be due to the fact we’ve been together for over seventeen years. He’s let me know, it’s okay for me not to be “okay.” I had been so used to hiding certain things about myself, I forgot I was hiding my pain too. Once I had this conversation with him, I discovered my “girlie side” and the “dragon side.” I must explain that I chose these two to identify with because I have considered myself a darn good hostess, very girlie, and I am the year of the dragon. I have always been a fighter. I’ve proven that more times over than I care to count. The “girlie side” will come out with guests, to decorate, etc. I love to indulge and pamper myself. Who doesn’t love to spoil themselves?
Let me know in the comments how you would describe a Fibro fog. I’d love to hear back from you! Please continue to stay safe purple butterflies! Thank you for taking the time to read my blog today! If you’re enjoying my blogs, why not subscribe to my website? My blogs will go straight to your email. It’s free to sign up! Tell your friends! Tell your friends to tell their friends!
Till next time! Be well!
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Note: I am not a medical professional. My blog is describing what happened to me during my hospitalization for a ruptured appendix. Below is a link that hopefully will answer any questions you may have. Please seek medical advice if you begin to feel ill!
*This is an updated blog of the one I wrote last year. I hope you will enjoy it.*
Happy Monday y’all!
It’s taken me much longer than usual to compose this particular blog for you. For the life of me, I couldn’t understand what was holding me back. It wasn’t because I was still ill, or I didn’t feel like writing. It didn’t occur to me, until this past week exactly what was holding me back. It was the simple fact of not wanting to relive what happened. I reminded myself that my blog isn’t just about me talking to you, it’s a part of my therapy too! I know blogging about my experiences with my ruptured appendix and Fibro can help someone else. If you follow me on any of my social media sites, you may remember that I updated you as much as I could. Here is my full story.
Tuesday night of Thanksgiving week, I started to have horrible stomach cramps, but I stupidly dismissed them. Wednesday, I felt even worse (like the flu) and could hardly move. To make things worse, I started having flare ups and my hands were shaking. I could not hold anything for long. I was also vomiting, but I did not have a fever. I should have gone to the ER that night, but I thought it was a stomach bug and it would pass. I knew I would be more comfortable at home, rather than being in the hospital. Little did I know I would soon be there! I told Dale if I’m still sick Friday, we’re going to the ER. Boy, am I glad I did! I was so not prepared for them to tell me the diagnosis! Of course, my flare ups were happening nonstop during this time. They tested me for COVID to which I had to say good night to Dale. I could have one guest in my room per twenty-four hours, if I was negative for COVID (which I was). For anyone who has stayed in a hospital by themselves, you can understand how scary and uncomfortable it is. All I wanted was to go home. Luckily, I had some understanding doctors and nurses who took excellent care of me. They went out of their way to listen, as well as understand my needs. Even when I broke down and cried out of frustration, they were there for me. Thank God for technology! Being able to stay connected to my friends and family was a life saver. The doctors prescribed a lot of antibiotics because my wbc (white blood cell count) was very high, and they were concerned. I was also given pain medication. It was explained to me, because of my age they were optimistic that I could fight off the infection. My infection was not spreading, so knowing this did make me feel better about my situation. I wish they had taken the appendix out while I was still admitted. I realize now, they were avoiding complications due to the infection. I definitely did not want to have complications during any of my surgeries! I stayed in the hospital until cyber-Monday. I found it incredibly hard to get a good night’s rest. Tuesday, very early in the morning, my doctor woke me by asking me if I’d like to go home! I nearly jumped out of the bed and told her yes! I reminded her I was still sore. She told me that was normal, but if it got any worse to come back. I had a follow up appointment with my physician, where I was told to get another CT scan. My doctor informed me if everything was looking good, they were going to take my appendix out sometime in January! I had a CT scan of my appendix on the 29th.
I am happy to tell you I was feeling so much better for a while! Then February 14th, Valentine’s Day, we had the worst ice/ snowstorm Dallas had seen in years. Guess what happened? I started to have that familiar pain again. I’m convinced my appendix just loved holidays. This time I didn’t mess around. I told Dale about my tummy, and he called 911. The paramedics arrived and off I went to the hospital. Once there, they ran the same tests on me they did last time. They were almost certain it was appendicitis. It was frustrating because I was being told two different stories. Yes, I was having surgery that night. No, I wasn’t going to have surgery until the next morning. As you can imagine, I was slowly going out of my mind. Unlike last time, I was all by myself with no one to keep me company until they took me upstairs. I was in such a hurry to get out of the house I forgot my phone charger, so I had to keep turning my phone off and on. Yet one more thing to add to my frustration list.
Finally, they decided I would be having surgery the next morning. Hallelujah! This was not before they asked me if I would like to go ahead with the procedure. Um, yes! Hello? No, I think I’ll go for round three. I was taken upstairs sometime around midnight. I’ll never forget this night. The storm was so bad that Dallas was having blackouts. I was trying to sleep, even though, I knew I would not get any sleep that night. It was a combination of pain and excitement. This little bugger was finally coming out of me! My surgery was at seven o’clock. I was so ecstatically happy I could have danced down to the OR. My surgeon and his team could not have been nicer. Just like when I went in for my back, I don’t really remember anything past them giving me the “good drugs.”
After my surgery, I was in recovery for a couple of hours. They called Dale to take me home with instructions on the do’s and do not’s during my recovery time. Recovering from an appendicitis surgery with Fibro was very painful. I would have to say on a scale of one to ten, my daily average pain was a seven. Luckily, I had pain medication to help me get through it. Even though I was uncomfortable to say the very least, I was so incredibly relieved it was all over. This year couple of my New Year’s resolutions was to take it one day at a time. The other, was to not stress over non important things. Even though there are times I go through boughs of depression, I’ve never taken life for granted. I am so thankful and blessed that I have survived my situation.
It could have been so much worse if I had waited. Have you ever been in a scary medical situation? How did you handle it? I’d love to know so, please share any experiences you’ve had in the comments down below! Please continue to stay safe purple butterflies! Thank you for taking the time to read my blog today! If you’re enjoying my blogs, why not subscribe to my website? My blogs will go straight to your email. It’s free to sign up! Tell your friends! Tell your friends to tell their friends!
Till next time! Be well!
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Ref article: https://www.healthpages.org/surgical-care/appendectomy/
Dear purple butterflies,
Growing up I was raised around all types of music. I am part of the MTV generation. When I had free time as a kid, I spent it memorizing my favorite songs. On the weekends, I would compete with my friends to see who was the biggest fan of the popular groups. I wouldn't give up those childhood days for anything.
Recently, I began wondering if listening could be music a form of therapy for Fibromyalgia? Music as a pain intervention for Fibromyalgia,“ Neuroimaging of patients with centralized pain uncovers clues about how music, and music response, may provide relief,” caught my attention right away! During pain management research, listening to music can help with a lot of painful situations that are so powerful that it can result in "analgesia" (the inability to feel pain). In 2015, doctors discovered that their patient's pain level was reduced significantly after surgery due to listening to music.
Before his trials of "Music Responses in patients with Fibromyalgia," Dr. Eduardo Garza-Villarreal, MD, Ph.D., along with his associates, focused on MIA in chronic pain and noted that music reduced symptoms of depression and chronic pain. I concur with his findings! If you are like me, you are not familiar with MIA. MIA is an injection of monosodium iodoacetate. It was because of his interest in musical therapy and chronic pain that Dr. Garza- Villarreal decided to start a group trial for Fibromyalgia women. Before he even began work, he was already very knowledgeable about Fibromyalgia.
Twenty women with Fibromyalgia and twenty healthy women (all between their early twenties and seventy years old) participated in the age-matched control group. Each of the ladies contributed a list of songs they thought were easy listening. The patient's test consisted of an fMRI, "functional magnetic resonance imaging used to detect physical changes (as of blood flow) in the brain resulting from increased neuronal activity,"( fMRI -Merriam-Webster dictionary). Afterward, the women reported their pain levels had been as high as a ten and as low as a zero. Dr. Eduardo's team believed that the group of ladies who happen to have Fibromyalgia would reveal a big difference in the "descending pain modulatory system (DPMS) before and after music treatment. 'The DPMS has been described as the system for pain modulation in terms of input in the brain and how the brain perceives pain,' Dr. Garza-Villarreal explained." Along with looking at DPMS, the team examined the Default Mode Network (DMN) test result.
"At baseline, among the 34 brain regions the team selected, they found that connectivity among fibromyalgia patients was increased mainly when compared to healthy individuals. After listening to music, however, connectivity among many regions decreased for the fibromyalgia patients. 'Basically, what we're looking at is a reversion of those circuits into something more normal,' Dr. Garza-Villarreal said. Exposure to music had the opposite effect on healthy individuals; fMRIs revealed an increase in connectivity for them. And, as expected, the pink noise did not have any effect on either fibromyalgia patients or healthy participants." In a nutshell, Dr. Eduardo commented that he suspects music does release the patient from thinking less about their pain. Once again, good doctor, I can attest to this statement! During the final step in this group trial, the doctors observed levels of pain intensity with the music as a critical factor. "Those patients with fibromyalgia reported experiences of pain relief that corresponded by-and-large to reductions in connectivity between regions within both the DPMS and the DMN."
This impressive article left me thirsty for more information about the latest therapy trends for Fibromyalgia in 2020. Dr. Garza- Villareal said that he hopes all his research "will lead to better treatment options for Fibromyalgia. "What plans does the doctor have next? His team is to explore where the analgesia starts and "which aspects of music offer the greatest pain relief." I adored the last quote from Dr. Eduardo, "One of the main things about chronic pain patients is they take a lot of medication,' he told PPM. So if you can do this with music and at least reduce the medication they get, that's a big win for a lot of people."
I have such high hopes for the future of therapy for Fibromyalgia and chronic pain patients. Reducing medicine by half, that would be wonderful! All we do can is pray for solutions and be thankful that we live within a time that science and technology is changing all the time! Do you enjoy listening to music? I’d love to know what type. Thank you for taking the time to read my blog today! If you’re enjoying my blogs, why not subscribe to my website? My blogs will go straight to your email. It’s free to sign up! Tell your friends! Tell your friends to tell their friends!
Till next time!
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About the author:
Rachel Barclift, has been suffering from Fibromyalgia for many years. She went to the doctor, never finding any answers for years. She went to one doctor who told her the pain was all in her head. In 2011, she finally found a doctor that believed her! She was officially diagnosed by her rheumatologist and she was so relieved! She writes blogs in hopes to help others find positivity.