Power on

It takes an amazing amount of energy and work to get through the day. Speaking for myself, I know that it takes a lot to get out of bed, shower, work, clean, spend time with my girls, and then try not to collapse into bed too soon. Somewhere in there I have to find time to eat and write. It takes a lot to be me.

And I do it with a chronic illness.

Having a chronic illness makes everything you do seem like you are doing it with a large animal strapped to your back, holding you down on a good day and on a bad day, it is trying to drag you the opposite direction. You walk through what feels like jello, it takes an hour or two to wake up with your body hurting so much, and you fight to hold thoughts in your head through the brain fog. If you take medicine for this you are also judged, weighed, and told how it is just a crutch to make you feel better.

All this for me is made harder in that I am socially awkward. Being an introvert makes it socially draining on me to be around other people. Just talking and interacting with people takes a toll. I take my issue a step further by helping others and providing advise to those who ask. I stop and listen to see what is needed and just to let others talk. I take extra time to ask people about their day and to see what I can do for them.

Why do I do this despite the fact I deal with so much from my illness?

Because we have to be better and overcome our issues. Everyone has them. We all have things holding us back. Be it physical, mental, emotional, or otherwise, we have issues that cause us to not be the best we can be. Our problems are not the issue. It is our attitude. Sitting down and throwing a pity party will not fix things. Getting up, giving it a 100% even in the times we know that we might not win. Just because we don’t like it doesn’t change the fact that we have the power to change our viewpoint on it.

I know what I have been through in both this last year personally and over the past five years with my illness. I have seen the hardships it has caused and the problems to come. I have seen where it has gotten the best of me. However, I do see where I did not let it hold me back. I have seen the problems I have overcome by continuing on my path even when it got hard. I made the decisions that needed to be made and followed through on them. Just because life has gotten tougher does not mean you give up.

I have learned in the hardest ways that I am not perfect. It has not stopped me from trying. Some days are going to be rough and get the better of you. It will happen. You have to decide what to do with the days that does not happen.

What do you do when you have a good day?

Keep powering on and #hugaplushie my friends

Trial by pain.

I will be at Texas Furry Fiesta on March 30th 2019 at 4:30 in the Bryan-Beeman Room. I will be giving my Stuffed Therapy panel. I look forward to meeting everyone there!

Pain is an incredible teacher. We learn so much from pain. We learn not to touch a hot pot when we burn our hand when we are young. When we skin our knees while skating, we learn the need for knee pads. We learn to be careful and cautious with other people when our heart is shattered by broken promises. But what do people with chronic pain learn, people who spend each day living and breathing pain of some sort? What about those with mental health issues who have the mental pain and anguish that plagues them day in and day out? This has been a struggle of mine to comprehend for the past several years. While I do not have an affirmative answer, I believe I at least have a few insights from my own personal experience and those around me.

I see those with a chronic illness and I see how their lives either are changed or how they stand out of the crowd. I see them to be the first ones to help those who have fallen physically or mentally. They are the first ones to offer a surgical mask they have in their purse to someone so they don’t get sick. They are the first to offer up a seat on a bus to someone who is struggling. They seem to be constantly aware of those around them who need help and are the first in line to offer it. Having been that person and spoken to others, this common theme arises. We understand that we have been in that situation and no one helped us. Instead of perpetuating the problem by ignoring it, we try our best to stand and make a difference. Some of the most kind and caring people are those who suffer the most.

It astounds me that more people do not do this. I struggle with not being able to help more people. I speak personally, but it is hard for me not to want to hold the door open for someone. I realize that not everyone thinks the same way I do. However, I see chronic illness sufferers be hyper sensitive about their surroundings. I believe it is part of our survival techniques in a way to keep going.

We can see this theme in metal health as well. We can look at suicides and celebrities and often Robin Williams will come up and there is still a feeling of shock. This man who suffered from some of the worse depression worked so hard to make other people feel better and to help them laugh. There are countless stories of him going above and beyond with the troops stationed around the world to bring them joy in the darkest places. Why is it that people who are suffering the most seem to be the happiest? How and why do they make others believe it so much?

From the research I have done, and from personal experience, people who suffer are trying to bring normalcy and happiness in others to improve their own environment. Sometimes when I am having a hard day, I start doing smaller acts of kindness to improve the everyday people in my life. I find myself and others giving more and more in an effort to show others how the world can be better. More often then not it falls on deaf ears, but we attempt to instill the change on the world we wish to see. We try and reap the rewards of doing a good deed and showing, mostly to ourselves, that the world is a good place.

While sometimes it is rewarding, it is always draining. Here lies a trap that I would caution those who do this. Energy can be taken or given. It cannot be destroyed, only changed (according to the first law of thermodynamics and Einstein). By giving our mental energy to others in an effort to improve our own moods, we losing what little we have left to sustain ourselves. We take our time to inject positivity in the world to show others that it can be a better place and show that people need help. We need to realize that we are using up what energy, mental and physical, that we have. We burn out faster and that leads to a terrible end result. This pitfall is one that can be avoided. A lesson that we need to take care of yourself before helping others.

I have learned this lesson in many hard ways. The pain that has come in my own life has been indescribable, both mentally and physically. I have learned and relearned this lesson many times. By fighting for those around me, I am not maintaining what my own body needs. After so much pain, I feel that I can use this lesson to help others. I know this can be seen as ironic as I am doing the same action I am advising against. While that can be true, I believe I am in a better place to share this lesson. Learn from my own and many other’s mistakes, do not force a change in other people in an attempt to improve your surroundings. You need to save some energy for yourself, taking time for yourself to heal and improve is needed.

Start with taking care of yourself and let that change and joy make the difference in the world.

#hugaplushie my friends

 

Coming soon, to a blog near you.

Warning!!! Big Changes Incoming!!!

This is an update post as I have a few cool announcements to make.

1. I have now been published a 14th time on TheMighty.com. My Special People post was accepted and once it is published, I will post a link here. I will also be updating all my published works on the appropriate page so you may see and share them easily.

2. I will be back on the road with my live Panel on Stuffed Therapy! I will be at a show in March, details to come soon, and I will be looking at adding a second panel that will be added to the rotation. If you have never been to one, it is an amazing experience where I share personal experience with proven techniques to help everyone. We laugh, we cry, and we care for one another. I will be adding a page with more info soon.

3. Updated contact information page! I have a separate email address now for Stuffed Therapy! The email is mystuffedtherapy@gmail.com! Shoot me a message there to say hey or get in contact with me to look at me coming out to do an event!

4. Last, but certainly not the least, the My Stuffed Little Therapy video blogs are coming back!! I know a few of you have been asking me about them and after careful thought, I will be bring them back! It will be ever other week from my normal posts here. I will once again partnering with 1upds.com and their incredible studio to be able to be live once again!

I hope you are all as excited as I am with these updates! Please leave a message here, email me, or just share the message!

Thank you and love you all!

#hugapony everyone!

Special Abilities of Special People

Having a chronic illness is almost like having a few cool super powers. I have mentioned this before with past writings that our illness has made us almost hyper aware and sensitive to many sights, sounds, and smells. These abilities come at a cost of our illness but they are something that I hold on to as something that makes me special.

1. Hyper hearing – I have noticed that those of us with a chronic or mental illnesses can hear so much better than our healthy counterparts. We can walk around in the dark and hear our foot falls and know where we are in the room. We can pick up a pill bottle, shake, and know our medications by the sounds it makes. We can hear the pain in peoples voices that they are trying to hid. We can hear the stress, anxiety, and even sometimes someone lying to us. This comes at a cost of being hurt by loud noises, yelling, and other panic inducing sounds.

2. Super sight/awareness – We pick up on the little details. The person fidgeting in pain in the corner of the room. When someone being uncomfortable around so many people. The look in someone’s eyes as they fail to meet anyone’s gaze. We can feel the room and know the mood immediately. We pick up on the smallest changes in someone’s routine and are extremely observant to those we care about. The weakness to this is we often focus so much on other people we do not focus on ourselves as much. We also can be sensitive to light and awkward situations can cause physical pain.

3. Intelligence/wisdom – This one is a bit different. I know that brain fog can be our weakness but when we have a good day, our brains fire off like a super computer. We know we have to take advantage in those precious few hours of being able to think so we tend to work through all of the different areas of our lives. On the other side, when we cannot think or even move from the bed, we tend to stay quiet. This gives us time to think and mull over what is going on. By taking, or some cases forcing, time to slow down, we are able to thoroughly think through each situation. Besides the brain fog as being a weakness, you are also sometimes observed as “Not being sick” because you are too smart or have your life together. What they don’t realize is that we know we will forget things and we have a million reminders, post it notes, and other various systems in place to help us not forget things.

If you noticed, I put a weakness with each super ability. Just like all super heroes, we have our unique weaknesses. Those kryptonite are areas we should be aware of and knowing is half the battle.

These are just three different areas where we are super! I know there are others and please feel free to share those with me, I would love to read about them. I believe more knowledge is power in this regard and we need all the encouragement in world some days to make it through.

Now go and be super and remember, you are special just the way you are.

#hugaplushie everyone

A Perspective on Life

I have come to realize that every person, every being on this earth has a unique perspective. Everyone’s view point will never perfectly match another’s. Looking in the world of politics this is very evident. We see huge clashes of personalities and perspectives that make it all appear that we are all so different. We see each other with rose coloured glasses, each with a special prescription all our own.

We can see the cashier at the grocery store. This lazy bum who looks like they are just here until they get off. They have such an attitude and just seem to want to go home. They hate being here and never want to help me. I pulled out a coupon and I think they rolled their eyes at me. They are probably just waiting to get off to go smoke drugs. Better double check and make sure they didn’t steal my money.

Or.

They seem to be working the steady hours dealing horrid people and still manage to find a smile. I say “Thank You” and I see their faces light up at someone looking at them like they are human and not a robot. I see a mom of 2 working this and 2 other jobs to make ends meet. I see the college student who is just trying to pass finals. I see the older lady trying to supplement retirement.

Perspective.

We have the gas station attendee who smells weird. He gives me a creepy vibe every time he looks at me. God, why can’t he just learn English like the rest of us? I bet he is here illegally. Why is he here? I just want to fill my car up in peace.

Or.

He gives me a smile every time I walk in the door. He works hard, all year round, even on holidays when everyone else is closed and I forgot I needed milk. He calls me by my first name which he has remembered since the first time I met him. He got here by chance and is making the most of the American dream.

Perspective.

You hear the screams of why you am not making America great again. Still others block because we don’t agree. How can you not vote for or against people? How dare you not vote because you don’t agree with either side!  How can you not see the breaking of tradition? Why are you mad at this group and not mine? Have you not seen what the other side is doing? How dare you have an opinion that differs from mine? You must be a fascist. You must be a Republican. You must be a Democrat. What, you are neither? Then you not agreeing lost us this vote.

Or.

You see the over politicized. You see the people who are making money making rules for other people to follow. You see the grandstanding for the image. You see people who differ from your own views and want to know why. Not to change their mind, but to open yours. You stop looking at the labels and start looking at the people. You see real people with real opinions about real lives. Everyone has a viewpoint and voice, regardless of background. You see people agreeing to disagree and still able to hug each other afterward. You see compromise.

Perspective.

I feel that if we could start viewing the world through each other’s eyes it would change a few opinions. Elders remembering what it was like to be young and stupid. Teens remembering that the elders were teens once also. People standing in each other’s shoes just for a minute and seeing what life is like through my rose coloured glasses, knowing they would never fully understand but at least trying. Would we see  a difference?

Would you try?

Perspective. It’s the damnedest thing.

#hugapony my friends

Labor Day quicky.

I apologize for missing the date yesterday. I had something planned but it did not get done in time. I would like to wish everyone a wonderful labor day.

In light of all this day brings, I would ask each one of you to treat everyone with an extra special respect. Thank each cashier you see today. If you are shopping the sales, thank each person you interact with. Hold the door open for the person behind you. Be kind. Be calm. Be curious. Some of us do not get labor day off.

Be the joy you want to find in the world and the joy will find you back.

#hugapony everyone

SPECIAL POST!

I am so excited to share with you all a new milestone. It is the most views in a single day ever in the history of the blog!! Over 200!! I am so excited about this and I have to say thank you to all the people in Germany who made this possible. You all are fantastic and wonderful people (PS send me food!) As a thank you I making this post in German as well in celebration! Also, be sure to check out the Patreon button on the right side and if you can help support me that would be amazing! Writing is not a full-time gig for me and any support would go a long way!

Thank you and I love you all!

Ich bin so aufgeregt, mit euch allen einen neuen Meilenstein zu teilen. Es sind die meisten Aufrufe an einem einzigen Tag in der Geschichte des Blogs !! Über 200!! Ich bin so aufgeregt und danke an alle Menschen in Deutschland, die das möglich gemacht haben. Ihr alle seid fantastische und wundervolle Leute (PS schickt mir Essen!) Als Dankeschön mache ich diesen Blog auch auf Deutsch in Feier! Schaut euch auch den Patreon-Button auf der rechten Seite an und wenn ihr mir helfen könnt, wäre das großartig! Schreiben ist kein Vollzeitjob für mich und jegliche Unterstützung würde einen langen Weg zurücklegen!

Danke und ich liebe euch alle!

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Take me home, Country roads.

Music is such a powerful healer. The sounds and vibrations can help break up stress and tension. Feeling the the beat can raise or lower your heart rate. It provides positive feelings and an escape. For someone with chronic illness, this can be such a welcome escape.

When I am going through a fibromyalgia flare or when anxiety starts to pump adrenaline through my body, I have a method of calming down. I use a sensory deprivation where I go to a dark room, put a nice heavy blanket on, hug a plushie, and I listen to music.

My personal favorite is the Lord of the Rings soundtrack (Fellowship of the Ring, Track 17 The Breaking of the Fellowship). I hear the notes and get lost in the music. It gives the soul something to attach on to and it pulls the body with it. By closing off the rest of your senses, with darkness and being alone, you get swept up in the sounds. It is amazingly peaceful.

In difficult times, music has a way of helping us find a way through. I have known quite a few people going through a bad break-up and listening to their couple’s song over and over. I distinctly remember living in a 22-foot pop-up camper with my family (6 people and a dog for 6 months) in a trailer park. The trailer site next to us had a husband and wife who fought like cats and dogs. Being a trailer park, and VERY thin walls, everyone in a 5 mile radius heard everything, much to our regret. The husband who leave each night slamming the door and the wife would play I Will Always Love You by Dolly Parton, sung by Whitney Houston while drinking wine.

Every night.

As a teenager, this was not a fun event each night. However, I realized that this was a coping method and was a way for her to calm down. The next morning they would come out of the trailer, smiles and hugs until the next evening. Now this is a very unhealthy situation and was horrible for them (and all of us around them). It has shown me that music can help in a very difficult situations and lead you through them.

I am currently facing a huge hurdle in my health. I am having my Tramadol removed from my medication. My doctor is no longer allowed to prescribe it to me. He was very chagrin while telling me. He was upset. Due to the “Opioid Crisis” I am found to be no longer fit to take it. After almost 6 years of being on it with little/to no side effects, a much higher quality of life, and one of the backbones of my pain management, I am being told there is no reason to have it. My chronic pain and illness disagrees.

Strenuously.

I have have to agree with it. I am having to go through a new cycle of pain management. I am having to adapt to life with severe pain once again on a daily basis. So in order to do this, I have been bringing out music once again. My new favorite is Country Roads by John Denver. I have listen to the track 20 hours in the last month alone, though not all at once. Most times it is only about ten minutes. And finding ten minutes to allow my body to relax and get a break from feeling is sometimes all I can get.

I will take it.

#hugaplushie my friends.

PS 

I have seen my readers in Germany SKYROCKET! I wanted to call upon all you out there and thank you with all that I have. Hugs and love to you all! I will being doing a special post for you all! PROST! ZUM WOLH!

Patreon 2.0

I am currently looking into Patreon for the blog. I have tried it in the past and it didn’t work out. I had scraped the project but never deleted it. Patreon has done a few updates for writers and I have once again opened up my page. Here is a sneak preview for you special viewers.

Stuffed Therapy Patreon.

https://www.patreon.com/preview/2e993e217a55458793a580a69a509dbc