Life is Happening: That Occasional Health Update

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As my activeness in the blogging community continues to become more sporadic, it might be an ideal time for one of those “real life” update posts that you see on here occasionally. I understand that these posts can feel monotonous so I will do my best to favor brevity. But the reality is life is happening, and it is affecting this blogging passion of mine.

I want to reinforce the fact that I share these posts in the hope of

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establishing something positive. It is to help each of you understand why I disappear at times & remind you that I still care just as much if not more. It is also for the private messages and emails that I receive from those who also struggle. Chronic illness is demanding, exhausting and isolating. But it does not define me or any of you, nor does it mean we are unhappy. I am very happy.

Symptoms are challenging though, affecting my pain levels and mental health. It is a constant struggle of balance that I never seem to fully master. I must accept matters for what they are in order to save peace of mind. Instead of continually pushing myself to fix something I cannot fix, I need to learn how to approach it and live better with it. Sometimes, like today, that means talking about it.

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What is happening in terms of health: Currently I am up against increased levels of pain that seems to be more intense in my joints, with muscle spasms affecting my hands and feet. I am living off of ibuprofen (but may soon have to allow myself something more as the doctors claim this is not enough and bad for the liver) and ice/heat combos with Epsom salt baths. As many of you know, I have a walker that I utilize at times and suffered multiple falls last year. Only 2 so far in 2018 with minimal injury I am proud to report! Woot, woot! #goals

The Valium is reducing the vertigo at times, but episodes of cluster headaches and blurred vision have hindered my ability to read and write as I normally would. I find myself seeking silence and darkness to prevent the onset of vomiting (tmi?) that will normally follow when my migraines set in.

There are also some newer symptoms such as increased brain fog and difficulty remembering basic words that are occurring. I would be lying if I said these moments did not scare me. I spent several minutes last week trying to remember what a bathtub was called! Ugh! I mean what the serious hell lol? I am also typing backwords and mixing letters, which makes replying and writing posts a long process of proofing and correcting. And well, there is the other stuff that I cannot bring myself to share on the blog just yet. But I will be seeing a new specialist in April and am looking forward to a fresh perspective. A specific diagnosis has been kicked around several times with the brain lesion and symptoms, but I am not ready to take that route ๐Ÿ˜‰

Where I am at in life: A good place! Sure, I am tired and still have days I want to be

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angry, but I think those are necessary. I have made and been through a lot of changes, and grieving is a healthy process. I am accepting things though and that is crucial. I am backed by an amazing support group inside of my home and out. I have a lot of factors now in place to assist me with the different aspects of my life that are not the same as they used to be. And I am finding each day to be a reminder of all that I still have instead of what I no longer have. I am developing a new respect and comfort for this ever-changing body. I have learned an incredible amount and hope to continue to do so. I look at people in a new light and am reminded our struggles while visible or not exist and should never be judged by another. In the end, I feel I am better for all of this. And I would not change that for the world โค

What this means in terms of blogging: Ah, this is the hard part because I love & respect this community, but I must continue to slow down. I am falling weeks behind on visits and find myself less vocal. I have altered my schedule and reduced posts. And may continue to do so. I will be making changes in how I approach blogging (which I will announce as they happen) and my time. Many will understand and some will not. But I want to keep BVT and continue to be here, and in order to do so, I have to adapt and prioritize health.

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The really important part: I cannot thank each of you enough for not only understanding and reaching out, but for reading these posts and wanting to know. For reminding me that it is ok to change and talk about it. The messages, letters and comments constantly pick me up when I feel like I might slip. Through it all I remain happy and you are all a part of that.

_Be strong, be fearless, be beautiful. And believe that anything is possible when you have the right people there to support you._ _Misty Copeland

Be Well,

Danielle โค

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75 thoughts on “Life is Happening: That Occasional Health Update

  1. Thanks for the update Danielle it’s always good to read your news. When I was going through a prolonged episode of labyrinthitis I was being so scared when I couldn’t remember everyday words or stopping mid sentence because my brain couldn’t carry on. Take it easy and just blog when you’re able, we’ll be here for you anytime. Xx

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  2. I hate that you’re going through such a tough time. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ But like I always say: Take care of you, and we’ll all be here ready to welcome you back when you can pop in for a few. xx

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  3. God bless you, Danielle, and take care.

    Here’s an encouraging quote from Rasselas, a book by the 18th century writer Samuel Johnson: “Great works are performed not by strength, but perseverance: yonder palace was raised by single stones, yet you see its height and spaciousness.”

    ๐Ÿ™‚

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  4. It always amazes me how you are able to keep so positive when you have so many horrible symptoms to deal with. You always face things with dignity and humour where I’m sure I would wallow in misery instead! I think you are pretty darn inspiring and I so much hope that April will bring a change in fortunes. If anyone deserves a break from this kind of illness, it is certainly you. *hugs*

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    1. Thank you my dear friend! Please do not be fooled. I manage to cry and wallow enough behind closed doors when needed. I think emotional outbursts are necessary. As much as we try, it is not all rainbows. But I am fortunate enough to see now how much more I have to be thankful for and that carries a lot of weight ๐Ÿ˜Š Returning hugs and hoping you have an amazing week!

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  5. I’m sorry to read this but pleased that you are managing to be in a good place. It’s good that you bother to keep your readers updated as some of us don’t like asking as it’s personal.๐Ÿ˜€

    Blogging will still be there and I’m a firm believer in blogging not only when you can but when you want too so don’t sweat it as you have to come first.

    As you say, most will understand and some won’t. Honestly, if they don’t screw them and it’s there issue, not yours. For the rest of us we will continue to support you and your blog (yes, there’s a distinction between the two as a blog isn’t a person, some people need to realise) and we’ll be here regardless of how often you post or visit our blogs cos that’s what friends, even blogging friends do.๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿ“š

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  6. God that little one looks so sad.. I want to pick him up and cuddle him. Just like you (minus the picking up part then). Much love to you Danielle and thank you for the update… I admire your efforts to keep on blogging, I’m not sure I would to be honest. I sometimes already feel like giving up this time-consuming hobby :-). I know the friends I have and can keep outside of blogging and I’m sure you know them too by now ;-). Take care lovely!

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    1. Thank you Inge ๐Ÿ’— and yes, I do know such friends. I certainly count you among them. I would be lying if I said I did not consider stopping at times. It would provide some relief, but I enjoy it too much to give it up right now. I feel this is what I do for me and need to hang on to that. Have a wonderful week lovely!

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  7. Love you!! โคโค I know sharing that wasn’t easy…been there ๐Ÿ˜Š But like you told me, it does help others struggling with chronic illness not to feel so alone. It is utter hell even on a good day being positive helps. Although crying does too at times. We all need people around us to offer love and support, and you know that you come first. We’ll always be around. I’ll always just be an email or message away ๐Ÿ’žโค๐Ÿ’ž Hugs!

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    1. Love you Stephanie! ๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ˜™ I know you totally get it! Sometimes a good cry is the absolutely necessary. I am so fortunate to have found such a wonderful group of friends and supporters here in the community. And that offer goes both ways! Hugs โค

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      1. Agreed! Sometimes all you can do is cry! It’s cleansing for the soul! Oh, yes! Me too…I never imagined making friends when I started my blog last May! It was definitely meant to be since I was at a very low point at that time. Thank you! Hugs and much love! โค

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          1. Oh, lol! Well, I’m plan on reading Geekerella for my fairy tale retelling (I’m doing that for the previous Popsugar prompt prompt). It’s a YA retelling of Cinderella that has sci-fi and cos play in it…normally not my thing at all, but so many other bloggers have recommended to me as being really sweet and cute. Besides that, I’ve not read that many fairy tale retellings except one’s that you probably already have: Stardust, Peter Pan, The Princess Bride, Ella Enchanted etc (and I’m not sure that they count?) Although I did read and thoroughly enjoyed the Five Hundred Kingdoms series by Mercedes Lackey several years ago: The Fairy Godmother is the 1st in a series of 6, and a retelling of Cinderellas. Mystery as in suspense/thriller? Or Agatha Christie type? Suspense, I would recommend The Woman in the Window. I just read it this month, and it was excellent if you like slow burning suspense and unreliable narrators. The Fourth Monkey was excellent-it was great as an audio book! The Weight of Lies and Final Girls were faves of 2017. Not sure if you’ve read anything by Karin Slaughter, but she is my favorite author, so I would recommend anything except she has 2 series, so you have to be careful and make sure not to grab a book in the middle of one. I’d probably suggest The Good Daughter, my all-time fave from 2017 (well tied with Celeste Ng’s Little Fires!). Let me know if you need more! โค

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                  1. Lol! I used to only be a mood reader until I started my blog ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜Š. But I cannot speak highly enough of Celeste Ng or her books. Little Fires Everywhere is on my syllabus this semester in my Contemporary lit class, but I’ve taught her Everything I Never Told You for the past 4 yrs. Both excellent if you haven’t read either.

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                  2. Lol, one day! I don’t have any motivation to write a review I planned to post on Fri for a book being published 2/6. Just one of those weeks were my brain doesn’t want to function 100%. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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  8. I am sorry you have to go through this, and I am impressed that you remain so positive. I have dealt with my own chronic pain and multiple surgeries. I know it is not the same but I feel I have a slight view into what you may be going through, all I can say is try to stay strong and to do things when you can don’t hurt yourself pushing too hard.

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  9. I’m sorry that you’re struggling with pain and brain fog so much at the moment – I can really empathise, it’s horrible. You’re right that it is a grieving process coming to terms with symptoms and diagnoses and finding acceptance of new normals. Your strength and positivity always comes through, even when I know you must be struggling. Sending love your way, and know I’m here if you ever want a chat. xx

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  10. Hey there! Don’t worry about blogging- we’ll all still be here! Take care of you and I hope you feel better soon. I know it’s not always as easy as that, but still… a few years back I had vertigo episodes and they would often lead to throwing up, which would them sometimes lead to a rapid heart rhythym. So that part I can relate to a little bit. Luckily that hasn’t happened lately (knocks on wood) but literally the only solution was to try to sleep in a dark room and wait for it to pass. So I feel for ya .

    Anyway just know we’re here and you got friends pulling for you. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    1. Thank you so much Greg! I am glad the episodes seem to have subsided for you. My pain is one thing, but the vertigo is the worst because it literally debilates you (as you know). Luckily the Valium is still helping some and my big comfy bed ๐Ÿ˜Š I appreciate how supportive you have been. Especially when you have you own hurdles! Means everything to me.

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  11. I’m so sorry to hear that you’re going through so much crap. I wish I could do more than just send you a virtual hug. I’ve only been blogging for mere weeks, have no idea what I’m doing, and already you’ve gone above and beyond more than any other person to make me feel heard and welcome. I’m just beginning to get an inkling of how much work book blogging actually is, and I can’t believe you’ve been doing all of that, struggling with chronic illness and pain, and STILL you managed to find time to pay my new nothing little blog a visit. I’ll be here to read your posts whenever you have time to write them, whether that’s once a week or once a month. I’m sure I’m not the only one. Take care of yourself!

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    1. Oh Cathleen! Thank you so much for your kindness. I cannot believe you have only been doing this for weeks! I thought the opposite ๐Ÿค—โค I am looking forward to getting to know you more. If you every have questions feel free to message or email me!

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  12. Thank you for the update, Danielle. I am glad that you haven’t been falling as much, that sounds positive. My younger son has a chronic illness and I pray each day that a better maintenance programme will be found for him although I am grateful for what we currently have. We manage most of the time as you do, with more difficult patches in between. Modern medicine makes progress every day so there is lots of hope for you and for my Michael.

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    1. Yes! I do hope Michael has been well. I can only imagine. But you are right, there are daily advancements in meds and treatments daily ๐Ÿ’— much to look forward to and have hope in. I am practicing more self acceptance at the moment. I spent too long in denial – xx

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  13. I’m so sorry hear you’re going through such a hard time!! Those symptoms sound so difficult, but I’m glad you’re finding positivity despite all of it! Thanks so much for sharing your struggles with us, I hope having this place to talk about it helps! โค โค

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  14. I’m sorry you’re going through a hard time! Your maintaining a positive attitude as much as you can is awesome. I’m glad you continue to take time to care for yourself and not feel guilty.

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  15. Oh Dani- Lots of love to you and hugs… and life is super sucky but I love how you’re staying positive throughout it all- a true role model! Wish there was anything at all I could do to help… even if it was bringing you cups of tea! ๐Ÿ™‚ Take care of you โค and I among many will always be here, thinking of you!

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  16. โค

    For a while I was living off ibuprofen as well due to migraines that would not go away. Hope the doctor can find something more effective and easier on your liver. I worried about that too but also worried that I wouldn't be able to make it without the ibuprofen. Chronic Pain sucks but I am glad you have support!

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    1. I take seizure meds as well due to the lesion. They haf me on triptans but my blood pressure kept shooting up. But I have muscular and generalized pain I am also trying to treat and it is not working. I am just afraid of being stuck on narcotics forever. I already hate that I take benzos so regularly. So I am being stubborn. I continue to eat ibuprofen and use alternate treat such as ice, Epsom and acupuncture when I can. Thank you so much ๐Ÿ’•

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  17. If I had the power to take away all your pain and suffering and bear it all for myself, I would have gladly done it. I’m glad to hear that you’ll be taking it easy in regards to blogging and that you’ll use all the energy you have to be as positive as you can be, even if the occasional anger/sadness is much needed. Take care of yourself, Danielle!!! โค

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