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Mind Over Matter

Sunday, July 10, 2011

I have always known that your mind and body are connected much further than simply telling your body to do things. And that your conscious and sub-conscious minds are often at odds. So goes the saying "mind over matter". If you THINK you can do something, you CAN. If you think you CAN'T... well, its very unlikely you will. This idea has been applied to motivational speeches time after time. And it's true... but today, I'm not referring to motivation. Today, I'm talking about pain induced depression.

If you dwell on any particular ailment you might have, your mind focuses in on it, enhances it. But if you distract yourself, you don't notice the pain as much and oftentimes forget about it completely. I've always had migraines, and I notice the pain less when I'm distracted from thing about it. but sometimes the pain is so severe you just can't distract yourself from it. Sometimes you just can't fathom a day without pain. And then comes depression swooping to to ruin the day.

About month after my accident, I remember laying in the recliner in the living room alone. My friend (whose house it was) was upstairs napping and my boyfriend who had stayed to help me was in the downstairs bedroom sleeping after just getting home(works night shift). I was completely alone, which usually I like. But that day was my rock bottom day. I just lay there and cried. I couldn't get up (hurt too much, and not allowed to anyway, docs orders). I couldn't get to the tv remote. I couldn't get to the laptop. I had absolutely nothing to do but stare up at the ceiling fan. I was in pain, miserable, and lonely. I felt a depression that day that I've never felt before. My boyfriend suggested getting a therapist. But I didn't need one. I just needed the pain to go away. To get my mobility back. And sure enough, with every day that my pain got better, my mind felt better. With every new task I was able to do again, I felt happier.

The whole time, everyone around me continually encouraged me to think happy, after all, none of my injuries were permanent. I WOULD get better. I refused to do this. I just couldn't imagine what it was like without pain anymore. I couldn't because I didn't try.

Now I look back thinking, dang. Why didn't I treat it like a migraine? Distract myself to lessen the pain. Pretend I was happy and ignore the pain until I actually was happy.

'Course I can't to back in time. But I can look to the future. I can practice mind over matter each and every day. I've learned a lot from this experience. I've learned who my true friends are, who would do anything for me. I've learned that I'm a lot stronger than I ever gave myself credit for (and my pain tolerance has jumped up a few levels lol).

And I've learned to REALLY check my blind spot before making a u-turn.
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEE797 7/21/2011 2:21PM

    I liked reading your blog and how you have turned things around. You are strong and I know you can do anything you set your mind too. YOU GO GIRL!

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FRACTALMYTH 7/18/2011 6:57PM

    Yay for getting better and for self-realization :D Another version of "Fake it till you make it', right? Good luck on your continuing journey to health and happiness!

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VALKYRIA- 7/18/2011 2:43PM

    You are such a strong person. Everyone has these moments in life where we are swept off our feet in WTF moments... but you are rebounding marvelously. It is true that to change our bodies, we must first change our minds... attitude really does affect our mental and physical health. I'm glad to see you are back in a good place. emoticon

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BUTRFLY_FREEDOM 7/11/2011 9:30PM

    There isn't anything that a therapist can tell me that I can't look up online or figure out myself. Now granted, I do believe that, that doesn't always work. But in that case, you need something more powerful than simply talking things out. You need medication. Which I am ok with. However, I am not ok with taking medication simply because it's the easier than working on yourself. All other methods would have to be exhausted before I would agree to take any medication. If that day ever came, I would open my arms and say "bring on the prozac, doc!"

But regardless, I was not referring to "depression" as the clinical diagnosis.... more as simply "the act of feeling depressed".

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SMURFYABS 7/11/2011 9:13PM

    Positive thinking really does go a long way. Sometimes it's not enough though and there's nothing wrong with seeking help when needed or just finding someone close to talk with. There's a difference between feeling depressed and having depression. The question is just which one is it? If you feel depressed then sure, put on a happy face or dance to some good music until you feel better, whatever you need to do! Depression itself, often doesn't respond to these simple measures and may require more attention or help. Either way, do what you need to do for yourself, you deserve to feel better. emoticon

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REBABE 7/11/2011 4:11PM

    Great post!!

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MARTY728 7/11/2011 8:49AM

    I am sorry you had to learn this is such a rough way. I am glad that you learn it and shared it with us. I am not a therapist, however I believe a therapist would not and could not do anything more than you did yourself.

I beleive that Mark Twain was correct when he said, "The best way to cheer yourself is to try to cheer someone else up."

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PATTYKLAVER 7/10/2011 7:55PM

    I've been in your situation and never thought to think of it that way. Thanks for sharing with me.

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I created a SparkTeam

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Just wanted to put this out there for those in the Sparkosphere who happen to stop by my blog.

I created a team called "Do it. I dare you!". teams.sparkpeople.com/Idareyou This a motivational team designed to help you on your healthy journey, one dare at a time. I wonder how many times in my life I might have exercised if I had someone to motivate me... to tell me to get off my butt and do something!

This team is for those who need that extra push, want the challenge, or enjoy the surprise of not knowing what your next dare might be.

So stop by, join, and say hello. Do it. I dare you! emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

UNSTOPPABLE_ 7/13/2011 3:54PM

    emoticon

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CAROLYNVIL 7/10/2011 8:17PM

    emoticon

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DEE797 7/10/2011 11:55AM

    Sounds interesting. Will have to check it out.

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ELLIE381 7/10/2011 7:22AM

    Wonderful idea! emoticon

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BUTRFLY_FREEDOM 7/10/2011 12:08AM

    Thanks! And feel free to pass the word along emoticon Glad to have you!

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MKPRINCESS007 7/9/2011 11:51PM

    Hey there...........LOVE THIS CONCEPT! I am heading over to the team to check it out! Thanks so much for sharing!

Karen

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Good News and Bad News

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Good News! I'm moving! Yes, yes, I know it seems like we just did this... but I really didn't move. I was just staying at a friends house while I recuperated from my accident before going back to my home. But this time I'm moving for real!

My fiance and I will be moving into our own place on Aug 3. It's small, but it fits our budget. And the landlord doesn't have a problem with my two dogs (one is a Pit Bull). It's great. I am beyond excited for us to begin our lives together. emoticon

Now for the Bad News. Or maybe just "not so great" news.

The two things my doc told me not to do were 1. put weight on my foot and 2. Fall on it.
Guess who did both yesterday? That's right. This imbecile right here! True, it wasn't exactly on purpose...but it still happened.

See, getting in and out of my sisters apt is a big pain because there are steps. And with me in a wheelchair... well you can see the dilemma. So, I was balancing on one foot while my helper brought the chair down the steps and WHOOPSY! I went down. I didn't technically fall ON my foot per se... but my darn reflexes stuck that foot out to break my fall. It wasn't a lot of weight because it wasn't like someone pushed me.. it was more like losing balance in the middle of a yoga pose. Just sort of put my foot on the ground. And it wasn't a lot of weight because I lifted my foot right away.... which of course made me land on my knee. It didn't hurt my foot (not that I felt) but it did hurt my knee. I've had so many problems with this knee (which the docs told me nothing was wrong with... but they are SO checking it end of the month).

Now, this morning, I'm sore everywhere (these muscles haven't been used for much of anything in two months). My foot hurts, but nothing out of the ordinary. No unusual pain. So, I think I'm good. Plus, the doc did say it would take a fair force to cause problems... so I'm not really worried. But I was sure shaken up yesterday when it happened!

But I think I'm just gonna take this day to rest, spark, and NOT fall again.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEE797 7/17/2011 1:10PM

    WooHoo on your upcoming move! Sorry to hear about your fall. Hopefully no damage was done. emoticon

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BUTRFLY_FREEDOM 7/11/2011 9:39PM

    Yeah, smurfy, I definitely think that's part of it. But I'm not sure if it's all of it... because it's sore to the touch, even my little dog brushes against it and it hurts. It also feels pretty lumpy. I'm not sure, it could be because that is where the scars are... but they weren't deep, so the wound itself couldn't have much scar tissue underneath.... so it makes me wonder if something else went on in there.

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SMURFYABS 7/11/2011 9:15PM

    Ouch! You know the pain you had been having in your knee (prior to falling!) may be due to inactivity. Being unable to use and move those important joints can create a lot of pain and stiffness. Then when you're able to start using them, the joint says "HEY! You want me to WHAT?!!??! You're crazy!" and obviously that hurts too. Be careful!

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KIWINURSE 7/11/2011 2:22AM

    Congrats on the exciting news of your move! Sorry to hear about the mishap with your foot, hoping that all is well.
Christine

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JANK1952 7/10/2011 7:25AM

    emoticonto hear about your mishap and hope that you get rest & relaxed while Sparking today.....things happen so fast when you least expect it.....stay safe and be careful emoticon

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BUTRFLY_FREEDOM 7/9/2011 10:15PM

    I don't think that I did any damage....it really didn't hit that hard.... just have that worry you know. because I would just DIE if they had to do another surgery and put more screws in there. It would be horrible.

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GLORYB2014 7/9/2011 7:12PM

    I hope no more damage was done by the fall Kim, you've really had a bad time of it in the past while!
Thinking of moving to your new place should put a smile on your face, it sounds great!
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emoticonGloria

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JUDY1676 7/9/2011 4:34PM

    Hope you didn't do any damage!
emoticon on the new digs!

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Shiver me Tingles

Monday, July 04, 2011

Although burn is more like it. Since my foot surgery, I've experienced all manner of horrible tingling in my foot. Neuropathy, they call it. I call it my own personal hell... a fire you just can't extinguish.

To say that my foot "tingles" is like saying that a hurricane is "just a little bit of wind".

This tingling isn't constant, but it's there about 90% of the time. Most of that time, it's this annoying "cold fire" if that makes any sense. But occasionally, and completely out of the blue, I feel this surge, almost a pulse, of electricity through my foot. It's painful. And its so strong that sometimes my leg actually jerks in response. And it always targets the sensitive spots... you know the ones I'm talking about... inside of the ankle, nail bed, top of the big toe.

For a week or two, It really started to improve and the tingling began to cease. But lately, it's gotten worse again. And I credit this to the fact that the swelling has gone down considerably, meaning that I'm starting to feel sensations in parts of my foot that previously had been completely numb. So, now the sole of my foot and the bottoms of my toes, after two months of absolutely no feeling what-so-ever is coming back to life lol. There still isn't much skin to skin sensation (me taking my finger and very lightly brushing the surface of my foot), but if I apply a little pressure, I can feel it and I can feel the tingling increase as a result of it.

But as annoying and painful as this is, it's a good sign, I think. It means that I still have hope of regaining feeling on the bottom of my foot. I had begun to fear, it would stay numb forever. If only I could just get rid of all the swelling! I don't know how long it takes for the swelling to go down after surgery to screw your leg back together...but I'm impatient! It needs to hurry up!

Has anyone else dealt with neuropathy due to surgery? How did you manage the insanity of it? Any suggestions?

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BUTRFLY_FREEDOM 7/9/2011 4:29PM

    Sorry Gloria! I know what happened.... I have another personal blog where I started blogging after the accident. And sometimes I copy posts from here to there and vice versa... so I thought I had it here, but the post is really there. Anyway, here is the link http://luckykat9lives.blogspot.com/

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GLORYB2014 7/9/2011 3:58PM

    Kim I didn't see anything to read about your actual accident but from what you describe of the surgery you've had . . . wow, it must have been a bad accident!
I would think the feeling now, even though it's pain, would mean your foot is healing. I'm no doctor, mind you, that's just my opinion.
It sounds like it's been a horrible experience for you, I hope you are healing more now.
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Gloria

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BUTRFLY_FREEDOM 7/6/2011 2:09AM

    @Flutter ... you know, I'm not sure. It's possible that it temp can change it, but I can't say because I don't really feel temp changes in that foot right now. Like, when I'm sleeping it gets pretty cold in the room and the toes on my good foot are freezing but I don't feel any discomfort from my other one (night time is usually pretty good, not a lot of tingling regardless of room temp). Same goes for an ice pack. What would make my other foot hurt from the cold, I can barely feel. And I don't really notice warm either... like in the shower. And honestly this just occured to me.. I hadn't really thought about it before. But I will pay attention and see.

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FLUTTEROFSTARS 7/5/2011 8:50PM

    Yikes! That sounds scary! I've never endured it, so I don't have much advice for you. Hmmm... I wonder - does changing temperature of your feet help? In recent years, I suddenly began experiencing burning/itching of my feet at random times, and I eventually figured it out that it's triggered by cold! It's like my body has forgotten the normal cold signals, and instead is sending pain! So, needless to say, warm fuzzy socks have become my friends...

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BUTRFLY_FREEDOM 7/5/2011 4:17PM

    Thanks! I hope it does too!

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JUDY1676 7/4/2011 9:36PM

    I wish I could help you out but I know nothing about it. I hope the pain and "fire" leave soon!

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Moving Update: I'm all settled in.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

I felt a lot of stress preparing for this move, but it turns out that it was all for nothing! Here are some of the things I worried about and some of the obstacles I had to work around.

Bedroom:

My bedroom setup is very umm....strange. First of all, I have two twin beds, instead of one normal bed. I HAD a nice queen-size bed, but it belonged to my ex and he took it back (he let me use the bed, I let him use the spare car... not exactly an even trade...but whatev). So, as a temp solution, I had pushed two twins together. This left very little walking space, because I also have two dressers (one for clothes and one for gaming supplies emoticon) a desk and a cabinet. I had planned to sleep in my hospital bed and my fiance (who stays with me every weekend) would sleep on the twins (stacked up)... YES, I know this sounds completely redneck, ghetto-fied. But I can't really be picky at this point.

However, I was able to stack up the two twins and my fiance was able to sleep on the hospital bed mattress and one of the twin mattresses. We just had to lift the mattresses he slept on, during the day so we could get around. This saved us from having to put up the hospital bed...which is good...cause there wouldn't have been room to walk...let alone room for my wheelchair.

With his bed up, there is plenty of room to wheel around ... to get to the desk, the tv, the wii.. my meds, the trash can...all the stuff I need.

Bathroom:

The bathroom is tricky. It's tiny and my walker barely fits. The doorway is also small, small enough that my wheelchair won't fit. So what I have to do, is wheel up to the door way, and use the walker to pivot and hop over to the toilet or tub. It's tight, but doable.

Kitchen:

No problems here! Very open big kitchen. I can easily get to the fridge, the deep freezer, stove and sink.


In all, I think it's working good. I have much more independence than I did before, but that's partly because there is no one here to help me (at least not often).

Anyway, time to fix up dinner!

  


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