So that Migraine Disease, Depression, PTSD, Panic Attacks, SAD and IBS do not get the best of me now, through the holidays and winter season, I have come to the conclusion that I must change my mind-set. I have printed this out and have put this where I can easily see it when I start to feel down: My daily blessings, for when I start to feel down and overwhelmed. I could have it worse and Thank God for now I do not. The best way To stay focused is to not dwell on the past. I have to remind myself when I wake up that is done and over with and there is no rewind button-it cannot be undone. I have to start the new day with a clean slate and a new and positive outlook. And if I encounter road blocks along the way I need to stay focused, take a deep breath, stay calm, cool and collected and not lose my goal and not let this set me off course. I may stumble and fall from time to time, but I cannot let it steer me off course into a different direction and away from my goal. I have come to far and I have done too well to let that happen. So I have to remind myself I am human, I am flawed and those around me are also human and flawed, but I have to love myself and everyone I hold near and dear to my heart or I will set myself up for failure. So I need to each and every day count all my blessings, no matter how sick I feel or how much pain I may be in. And I will continue to show and express my appreciation to those around me. And I will do this all year, not just for the holidays.
I will daily give Thanks and Blessings for:To give thanks to God. Each day I wake up I count it as a blessing and as a gift. A chance to start the day fresh and leave yesterday behind, part of the past, and count the new day as a gift and a fresh start.
To give thanks for having had 2 wonderful parents. To have been raised in a loving, secure home and to feel wanted as a child by both was a blessing. Although they were taken too soon and I miss them dearly, while I had them they were the best teachers I had and gave me the guidance and morals I needed to give me a solid foundation to start off in life. To be hugged each morning and night and to be told by both parents they loved you when some children were not raised that way was indeed a blessing.
To give thanks for my husband when sometimes he can be helpful. He’s still married to me even after 30+ years so I can still count that as a blessing. And to remember that even at times when he doesn’t seem as emotionally supportive it’s because he did not have the loving childhood I had, so I need to give him some slack for that as he was not as blessed as I was in having been raised by loving parents.
To give thanks for the birth of my daughter. Even now at the age of 27 she can amaze me at times when she can do random acts of compassion and her outstanding work ethics. She is indeed a gift from God and a Blessing.
To give thanks that out of my own immediate family (consisting of 2 brothers and 1 sister) I have one brother (along with his wife and some of his children) I can count on during times of need for emotional support. They are a blessing.
To give thanks for having a dear true loved friend of 30 years I can count on no matter what. She has been there for me in the worse of times and at the best of times. Truly a Guardian Angel. She is indeed a true blessing. (and include her new husband)
To give thanks to my other dear friends who were taken away too soon from this earth. God must have needed special messengers is the only way I can comprehend it. But for the short time I had them I can count them as a special blessing.
To give thanks for a close sister-in-law and her husband that live close by who are making plans on having Thanksgiving at their house. That way to allow for my fickle head and constant migraines and to relive me of stress and extra hardship and then if I don’t feel well then I can stay home with no pressure of being made to feel a “perfect” hostess. For this they are a special blessing.
To give thanks for my special furry four legged canine friend Paco who knows just the right time to comfort me when I’m sick. And to his predecessor my yellow lab Willow. She was a true gem and my sweet little angel who crossed over the rainbow bridge all too soon in life. but while I had her she was a true blessing. And my little Paco is indeed a furry canine lovable little Blessing.
To give thanks for my current neurologist and therapist. It’s taken me all these years (20+) to finally find such fine doctors. They are working on me relentlessly and are not giving up on me and I count them as a true blessing. I will not give them up without a fight. To have waited all these years to have them now in my life, yes these two doctors are indeed a blessing.
To give thanks for all my fellow online migraine and ICI sufferers. Without your sites, blogs, articles and feedback I would be totally lost, dazed and more confused than I already am. I bow down to your years of knowledge and your better and well organized sites (I’m so a newbie). My mentors and fellow sufferers, each and every one of you are my inspiration, my hero’s and a blessing.
To give thanks for having shelter, food, clothing and medicine when I know there are so many out there that are without or having to make hard choices. Of that I know how blessed I am.
To be able to reach out to others, to complete strangers, and to be able to give encouraging words and hopefully some words of wisdom, that I have been in and still in the same rocky boat and in the sometimes rocky waters they are now navigating. Hopefully I am able to be of help to those that need it. There have been many, many times there have been many times so many faceless and some with faces that have helped me online in times in need. They have truly been a blessing.
And finally I do have to give thanks that in face of the fact of having these horrible diseases, that in tum I have learned so much. I have learned about myself, human nature, and about others in return. But mostly I have learned to be a better person and I’m a work in progress. But I have learned more about looking out for others. My parents always raised us to do unto others as we would have them do unto us. We were not raised as church goers but we were raised with strict morals. Being ill like this has really brought this fact home like a sledgehammer (even when it feels like there is one beating on my head already). And for this I do have to give thanks.
II choose to be Thankful and to make each day a gift as it is given to me by God and to be Thankful for all he has given me, and count all my blessings I have counted above and more as they come to me each and every day for there are too many to count. It may not be a bed of roses all the time, but I refuse to accept the fact that it’s always a bed of thorns. I will not become bitter, hateful nor resentful. And I believe my Migraine Disease has had a part to play in that, but my belief in God has had the major part to play in it all. I have come to appreciate this disease, yes you herd me, appreciate it. Sure I can do without it, but it has taught me so many valuable lessons I might not have learned on my own. Valuable lessons: to value life more, cherish loved ones more, friendships and relationships more, and to appreciate all that I have and especially my good days when my pain level is at a level 5 or below and those are what I call my good days. Yes, this disease has taught me some very valuable lessons but the most is to treasure life and make the most of it while you can because we don’t know if we or those we love will have a tomorrow. That is why I believe this disease has chosen me-to teach me these valuable lessons and it will continue to teach me some more, that I am sure. So this pupil is ready to learn more.
What do you give Thanks for? Do you let your Disease get the better of you? What do you find are your best coping skills? I have found that mine are Journaling, Meditation, Deep Breathing, Progressive Muscle Relaxation Exercises, Gentle Stretches-especially for the neck, shoulders and upper back. And I cannot forget my therapy sessions and my online blogs and poetry. When I do feel pangs of anger or guilt I get out the notepad or get on the PC and jot it down. Then I will read it until those feelings subside. But I make sure every morning after breakfasts are made and I have my breakfast and my 1 rationed cup of caffeine I write in my journal 5 things I’m grateful for and I focus on that all day and remind myself of that when I get in a funk or when the pain gets severe so I can ride through the storm and not let it get the better of me. It’s taken me a few months to get the hang of this gratitude journal but it has made a world of difference. I have done a complete 360 in my attitude and outlook on everything. I push all the negative and outside and inward critisism away and it helps the pain a little. It’s not a miracle pill by any means but its amazing how a change in your outlook changes your perception of yourself and your disease. So what have you got to lose? Give it a try.
As long as I have this disease lets do some learning………………
In ending I would like to close with this scripture:
1 Peter 4:12-13
Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the suffering of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory be revealed.
DISCLAIMER: THIS SITE IN NO WAY GIVES MEDICAL ADVICE OR DIAGNOSIS. SEE YOUR OWN PHYSICIAN FOR ANY CONCERNS OR QUESTIONS YOU MAY HAVE THAT ARE MEDICAL. THIS SITE IS TO JOURNAL AND BLOG ON MY “OWN” PERSONAL EXPERIENCES AND WHAT WORKS FOR “ME”. THIS DOES NOT INDICATE IN ANY WAY THAT I SUGGEST THAT OTHERS MUST FOLLOW MY THOUGH PROCESS OR MY WAY OF DEALING WITH CHRONIC PAIN. THIS IS WHAT I HAVE FOUND TO WORK FOR “ME” IN THE 25 YEARS I’VE BEEN DEALING WITH THIS CHRONIC CONDITION AND HOW I FOUND A WAY TO COME TO TERMS WITH IT. YOU MAY OR MAY NOT AGREE-THAT IS YOUR CHOICE. BUT I AM STRESSING THIS IS WHAT WORKS FOR “ME” AND I’M ONLY JOURNALING TO INFORM MY PROCESS ALONG THE WAY FOR “MY” BENEFIT AND FOR ANYONE THAT WANTS TO LISTEN. NOT INTENDED TO BE A LECTURE FOR HOW OTHERS SHOULD DEAL WITH CHRONIC ILLNESS OF ANY SORT.