Song of the Week: “Lost in My Mind” by The Head and the Heart

This is by far one of my favorite songs. I felt a strong connection to it after hearing just the first line. However, my favorite verse in this song is one of my favorite verses from all songs:

Mama once told me
You’re already home where you feel loved
I am lost in my mind
I get lost in my mind

This song kick-started my love for The Head and the Heart and all of their other amazing songs–some of which I’m sure I will share at a later time.

I listen to this song when I’m feeling overwhelmed, sad and lost. But the beautiful thing about this song, is that I also listen to it when I’m feeling content, happy and blissful. There aren’t many songs for me that can capture my heart and mind at both ends of their emotional spectrum.

This song has created for me inspiration in many areas of my life. I more literally get lost in my mind when this song comes on.

Give it a listen. It won’t disappoint.

Thoughtful Things To Do For People With Migraines 

Sometimes we all need a little help

Migranieagain.com recently shared a post that I couldn’t not share with all of you on my own blog. While I found myself relating to it’s content so easily, it’s more geared toward the loved ones of people who suffer from migraines.

As someone with chronic headaches and migraines, even when I know I need help, I still hate asking for it. It’s very common among spoonies to feel like we are a burden on our loved ones: needing to be taken care of, having to cancel plans with them last minute, occasionally letting our frustration out on them.

It is often hard to ask for someone’s well wishes and good intentions. And I know that many people in my life, even when they try their best to help, still feel helpless. It’s not that we don’t appreciate the help, but often there isn’t much another person can do to help.

This post shows how people can help migraine sufferers in their life suffer a little less, live a little more, and feel cared for even when it’s too hard to ask for the extra bit of care.

(You should go through and read the entire thing, but I will just list a few that really stood out to me)

  • Ask “what would be fun for you?” -Often, certain events like concerts, going to smokey bars, and hiking cause migraines to pop up. Try suggesting activities like yoga, crafting, or seeing a movie instead.
  • Say “no problem” when plans get cancelled: -It’s an awful feeling to have to cancel last minute on a close friend or family member due to a migraine. Try to remember how upsetting it is for the person with migraine (uh, hello FOMO). The guilt is strong. Even if you are frustrated or upset, just saying “no problem” even when a person has to cancel plans on nights like birthdays or holidays shows immense compassion and kindness.
  • Make a migraine care package-So many things are helpful when trying to get rid of a headache. Earplugs, blankets, water, lavender, etc. Why not package them all up for someone for easy access!
  • Make a donation to Migraine Research in their name-Migraine disorder needs much more attention. So many people suffer from migraines and it needs the research and awareness it deserves to prevent the next generation from suffering as well.
  • Drop them a note-Whether it’s an email, handwritten card, or scribble on a post-it-note, getting words of encouragement and good thoughts is so powerful in helping a person continue to fight their daily battle.

(**The post I referenced throughout my own post comes from migraineagain.com )

Ain’t No Rest For The Headaches

  
Woke up with a terrible headache–the kind I was experiencing a couple of months ago–the tight, pulsing pressure I spend the day silently wishing away 🤕 

I try to not to think of these days as signs of weakness, but as opportunities for showing my strength and practicing my pain fighting techniques. (Even though it’s hard to keep that mindset steady throughout the day)
In times of struggle, I hope that you all try to do the same 💕

Song Of The Week: “I Want It All” by Cam

I want it all
Don’t want no rocking-chair regrets
I got that fire and it’s burning in my chest
Gonna keep on living ’til I hear the last call
And I, I, I want it all

While she isn’t super well-known yet, she’s got such a great voice and songs worthy of performing your own personal concert in your car driving home from work (…guilty).

This song came into my mind as a good song to post on New Years Day because the first day of the year is when most people feel at their peak levels of ambitious, inspired and brave. We adopt a “go getter” attitude and tell ourselves that this year we actually can have it all if we put forth enough effort.

There will always be the nay-sayers who tell you that you’re being overambitious or that you’re just lying to yourself. Well ya know what? Who needs those people?

This song emits the feeling of empowerment. She sings about promising to herself to have no regrets when she’s older and looking back on her life. She’s not going to listen to any people’s doubts or rumors. She’s moving on with her life full steam ahead, and no one will be able to slow her down.

I love the attitude portrayed in this song and it’s an attitude I’m going to adopt as my own this year. It’s an attitude I think everyone should adopt this upcoming new year. I challenge you to keep on living until you hear the last call.I urge you to drown out the doubts and negativity of your peers. You have to accept that sometimes you will lose, but I encourage you to never let your inner fire die down despite that fact.

If you’re gonna go for something, better make it everything.

 

Headaches Always Steal The Spotlight 

There are many tough truths that spoonies have to accept after dealing with a chronic condition throughout their life. Even when you accept these truths though, they still can be hard to swallow.

One truth that I’ve recently learned to start accepting is that headaches and migraines present themselves whenever they want. Headaches don’t care if you’re at work, a social outing, in class, at a concert, or just hanging at home with family or friends. Headaches don’t care if it’s an anniversary, your birthday, a holiday, or just what you had anticipated to be a relaxing Saturday evening.
How do I know? Experience and the knowledge that headaches have taken over the control room.

This year on Christmas Eve, I got a migraine. Whoopee, right?

This led to a few hours of frustration (but that was already higher than usual due to other health problems) and tears. Yeah, I would admit that I didn’t hold up as well as I would’ve liked to.

My migraine controlled my emotions and mentality for a few hours that day. I thought, angrily for a while, “Seriously? Christmas Eve?” Had to spend a few hours napping, away from my family. I felt isolated in so many ways. Felt like this only would happen to me. “Just my luck.” Felt like I wasn’t able to turn my thoughts from negative to positive ones. Felt defeated and like I had zero control over my life at the moment.

After moping, napping, crying and laughing at my situation,I mentally reminded myself that if this is how bad I have it on Christmas Eve, than I am the honestly one of the lucky ones. I thought how there are so many other people out there who have incredibly worse situations than my own and who are dealing with things beyond my comprehension. I thought about the many people who don’t have a roof over their head, who are enduring illnesses that keep them on bed rest and worse, and people who don’t have family to share their Christmas with.

These thoughts not only humbled me, but gave me the physical and mental strength to get up and move on with the night.While I know I sound dramatic, at the time it didn’t seem possible to get myself out from under the covers.

Even though the head pain was still there, (not as bad as it had started out as, but still there) I was still able to turn my night around and ended up having a wonderful time with my family that consisted of laughs, smiles, and tons of delicious homemade snicker doodles (made from scratch by yours truly.)

The truth is: headaches, chronic pain, or any chronic disorder, etc. will remain in control of your body, probably more than a majority of the time. You, however, can be in control of your mentality and good spirit. Learn to take control and turn your “woe is me” moments into “glad to be me” moments.

It’s advice that I need to learn to take more often, myself.

 

 

The Most Typical of Mondays

Yesterday was a test of my patience, perseverance, and temper. What started out as a classic “Monday Mishap” escalated into a “Monday Mayhem.”

I experienced those typical “ugh” moments that everyone faces pretty often-losing your wallet (temporarily, thankfully), dumb drivers on the road, timing mishaps and office troubles–but there was one segment of my day that just really set me over the edge.

While I’ve been making some progress with my headaches and narcolepsy situation, I’ve only seemed to take numerous steps backward in my journey with food allergies.

After ending up in the ER two weekends in a row, I’ve been eating really “safe” foods because it’s nerve-wracking to eat when you aren’t 100% sure what your food allergies are. So yeah, the anxiety is continually on the rise. So I did what any normal person would do (after a year…whoops.) I made a follow-up appointment with an allergist–optimistic that the doctor would be able to ease some of my anxiety, answer some of my questions, and bring even a tiny bit of peace to my mind. Yet, I got just the opposite.

I’ve seen my fair share of doctors and I’ve seen a few who I didn’t exactly see eye to eye with regarding treatment plans. However, I’ve never seen a doctor who made me feel so belittled, frustrated and generally pissed off before. He looked at me like I had ten heads when I asked him questions and told him things other doctors have told me. For reference, I’m very new to the food allergy world. It’s not like I’ve had a peanut allergy my entire life and know how to manage it–no I recently developed a seafood allergy–which he thinks is not even possible (what?) He spewed his BS at me, shook his head like I had told him I got my information from “The Onion” rather than from accredited doctors, and sent me on my way to get a blood test for only crab and salmon (to my knowledge, there is other seafood out there, but what do I know right?) Times like these I wish I had been ballsy enough to tell him his word meant nothing to me and walked out, but I politely left the office and went to go get stuck by another needle. (although the guy who took my blood was awesome, so super grateful for that. I’ve never had such a painless experience getting blood drawn. props to him.)

I understand that there are times when people have bad experiences with doctor visits. However, for spoonies such as myself who see doctors more often than they see most of their friends, it’s extremely frustrating. It wasn’t so much that I was sad, I was just genuinely pissed off at this guy. It was a waste of my time–and spoonies also know how valuable time spent in a doctors office is when we’re trying to find answers.

I sat in my car afterward cursing the doctor wishing I had told himself to stick his handshake where the sun don’t shine, until my dad kind of set my mind right. He made me realize that there’s really nothing to cry about. I’m allowed to be pissed off, but I have to be able roll with the punches. I have to be able to take the annoyances and learn from them. I have to try to find even the tiniest positive thing from the experience and move on to what’s next.

We’ll all have days that make us want to break things and scream to the skies yelling “Why me? What did I do in a past life to deserve this shit?” But at the end of the day, we can’t change what just happened. We have no control over what and how much gets thrown in our path. We do, however, have control over how we handle those days. We can throw in the towel and walk away cursing under our breaths. We can rage until someone fixes their wrongdoings brought upon us. Or, we can take a deep breath, calm ourselves down, figure out the next step and move forward. We can gather our patience, grab a hold our temper, and persevere on.

It’s not the destruction that’s tearing you down that will define who you are or where you go in this life. It’s how well you step over the rubble and walk through the fire.

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Song Of The Week: “Babel” -Mumford & Sons

Challenge: try to listen to this song without feeling empowered and inspired. Spoiler alert-it’s pretty damn hard.

Mumford & Sons are such a powerful musical group, yet they also know how to gently reach into your thoughts and feelings, some of which you may not have known you even had. Their band and their songs are no where near new, but every time I listen to one of their songs, I hear something different I hadn’t heard before.

To me, this song is about overcoming all odds and standing proud in your achievements. It is filled with such uplifting yet humbling sounds and lyrics. It’s a song that can make you feel like “hell yeah, I got this. Look out for me world, I’m coming for ya.” But can also make you feel like “wow, there’s so much around me to be grateful for, and even if I can’t do it all, I can give it my all.” (some may not follow this thinking, and that’s ok because I’m purely rambling.)

Give it a listen when you’re feeling a bit discouraged. It’ll help you feel like despite all your current circumstances, you’ll be able to shed yourself of any expectations or premeditated judgment that may have been cast upon you. It makes me feel like no matter what people may say or suggest about myself, that I am capable of proving them wrong–or right.

 

 

Give Into The Vulnerability

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I feel like people really underestimate the effect of giving into vulnerability. Without it, you would never get over that hump of feeling scared, which then would prohibit you from being able to know what courage feels like.

People who open up about their health, financial, emotional, or any personal issues are giving into the inevitable (in most cases) feeling of being vulnerable about it. It’s scary to share your story with everyone, especially when you know a lot of people just won’t care to listen. The key is to forget about those people and focus on the people who will really benefit from you sharing your story with them.

I gave into my vulnerability by starting this blog, my health Instagram account, and sharing both with friends, family, and strangers. However, I’m so glad I did. I have been given a window into other people’s lives, a lot of whom are dealing with so much more than I, and who are still a beam of light in a world so often draped in darkness.

I’ve been inspired by their courage to continue to fight, myself. When you give into your vulnerability, you will see you are capable of so much you never even imagined.

Just today, I had a follower on Instagram tell me that she loves how positive I am and that it helps her continue to fight past her chronic pain. Such a little comment means so much. It shows me that because I let myself be vulnerable, I’ve been able to help others, which only pushes me to be more courageous.

No Journey Without Winding Roads

What would kind of journey would it be if there were only straight paths? Sometimes we don’t expect the sharp curves and get thrown off balance. That’s a little how I feel right now.

As I posted earlier today, I’m on a progressive track to finding some answers for my headaches. Yet, it seems as one good thing comes along, life throws yet another curve ball my way.

The past two weekends I’ve ended up in the ER. The first time was due to a completely careless and negligent restaurant that cross contaminated my food with fish (I have a severe seafood allergy) which sent me to the ER. They didn’t take my allergy serious enough, even though every allergy stated by a patron at a restaurant should be taken very seriously. Since then, I’ve been paranoid and very anxious while eating. The adderall side effect of heightened anxiety doesn’t help that.

This past weekend, though, I ended up in the ER with what was either another allergic reaction or a severe panic attack. However, I didn’t risk taking chances to find out which it was and used my epipen (well rather I made my boyfriend do it for me, which I’m sure was even more nerve wracking than  it would’ve been had I done it myself.) Spent most of the night in the ER getting poked, prodded, and full of anxiety.

However, I look on to the next step which includes: seeking an allergist to really clarify the severity and sensitivity of my allergy, finding ways to deal with my anxiety, and trekking on down the winding road that is my journey.

These past two weekends defeated me, but it is only temporary. We will be get hit by life’s curve balls and it’ll feel like we won’t be able to get back up to the plate again. However, we have to get back up to the plate ready to swing. These single temporary defeats are not our final defeat. We have to continue on prepared for the next bend in the road, knowing that there is something much greater waiting for us at the end of it.