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Thursday, May 12, 2016

Daily Little Accomplishments


This is a sponsored post for Self Care Catalysts.  I have been compensated through the Chronic Illness Bloggers network.  All opinions remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company.

Do you ever have those days where every little thing you try to do seems almost impossible?  Those days when it's hard just to even crawl out of bed?  I know that with Fibromyalgia, I sure do!  Sometimes, it seems as if it's an effort even to eat.

When a person is in a fibro flare, even the smallest ordinary daily task can feel as if it's almost impossible to accomplish.  What many don't realize though, is that all of those little, ordinary tasks that we do, are in fact accomplishments that deserve to be celebrated.  

For some reason, it seems to be human nature to be hard on ourselves.  Those of us suffering from Fibromyalgia and other like illnesses, tend to be even harder on ourselves than healthy people are.  We feel guilty about those things that we don't accomplish in a day, when in all honesty, we should be celebrating those tasks that we do accomplish.


Most people these days, have a dishwasher.  I'm not lucky enough to have that privilege.  I can tell you that standing to do dishes, is one of the hardest tasks for me to do.  It causes an enormous amount of pain in my back, shoulders, and arms.  The only way I can accomplish doing them, is to do them in sections.  I'm usually able to manage washing the silverware and cups, then I have to sit and rest for 15-20 minutes.  I then head back to the kitchen, and wash as much as I can before the pain becomes too much, then I sit and rest again for another 15-20 minutes.  I repeat this process, until all of the dishes are done.  I used to beat myself up that it'd take me a couple of hours to complete a task, that would take a normal person 10 or 15 minutes total to do.  I've learned though, that instead of beating myself up over the amount of time it takes me to do the dishes, to instead congratulate myself and celebrate the fact that at least I did get the dishes done!  


I joke around with my friends and family all of the time, asking them if I should do my hair and make up for the day, or if I should just go around looking homeless.  Let me tell ya, folks ...most a lot of days, I go around looking homeless lol.  Between the muscular pain of fibro on top of osteoarthritis throughout my body, doing my hair is one heck of a chore!  The struggle is real. The arthritis is so bad in the joints where my arms hook onto my shoulders, that I really have a limited range of motion.  On the rare days that I actually muster up the energy to straighten or curl my hair, I definitely look at that as an accomplishment.  I feel proud of myself when I look into the mirror.  At first, I'd just be all grumpy and say to myself "Why are you proud that you did your hair?" I mean, most people do their hair every single day whether they're leaving their house or not.  Well, I had to stop and realize that I'm not like most people.  I have several debilitating illnesses.  The fact that I did my hair, truly is something that I should be proud of.  I shouldn't cheat myself out of the joy of my accomplishment.  Instead, I should be celebrating it because it truly is an accomplishment!


The next time that you're completely exhausted, and/or in pain, and you manage to even get out of the bed that day, recognize the amount of effort it took.  If you actually get out of your pj's and into real clothes, celebrate your accomplishment!  The little things that you do, truly are accomplishments and deserve a medal.  Absolutely nothing that you do, is too little to be proud of and celebrate.  If you're having a bad day and being too hard on yourself, go to Self Care Catalysts and read their website or design your own self-care program!  Embrace who you are, make the most of it, and celebrate every accomplishment you do no matter how small it may seem to someone else! Know that I am proud of you, and I'm handing you a blue ribbon because in my book, you're a first place winner!




Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Another Quick Easy Recipe - Pork Fried Rice

So for the past two Tuesdays, I've been in a pain and fatigue flare and have gone to a couple of my quick, easy recipes.  I shared last Tuesday's with you, so figured I'd share tonight's as well!  Tonight, I made pork fried rice.


Pork Fried Rice

3 cups uncooked instant rice
1 bag of frozen peas/carrots mix, thawed
1 package pork stew meat (or about 4 large pork chops that you cut up)
1 medium onion, chopped
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 Tbls sesame oil
2 eggs

Cook the rice and set aside.  Put your oil (recipe calls for sesame oil but I usually use olive oil instead as a personal preferance) in a large wok-type skillet and heat it up.  Add your meat and season it however you like.  I use garlic, Morton's Season-All, and black pepper.  Stir fry the meat over medium-high heat until done.  Push the meat to the side.  Bust the eggs into the skillet and quickly scramble them, then push aside. Add your vegetables, and stir fry until hot, then push them to the side.  Add your rice, and fry it.  Mix everything together, then add the soy sauce and mix it up well, frying until everything is good & hot.

That's it!  it's super quick & easy  ....and most of all, it's delicious!!  It makes a LOT and there's always left overs that reheat very well.  My family eats off of this for a few days!  Also if you prefer chicken, just substitue the pork with cut up chicken breast.  Sometimes I do pork, and sometimes I do chicken.  

If you try this recipe out, please come back and leave me a comment letting me know what you think of it!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Pasta Salad

Living with a chronic illness, we all have those days where we just don't feel like cooking.  I'm sure all of you can say that you've had days where you've skipped eating, due to pain and fatigue.  I can remember many times in the past, where I've sat here hungry, but would rather just starve to death & die than to get up and go cook food to eat haha.  If you're anything like me, you're always looking for new recipes that are quick & easy!  Here's a recipe of mine that's quick, easy, and will last you a couple of days.  -I just made it again today!



Pasta Salad

Cook one box of Rainbow pasta, el dente and place it in a large bowl.  Dump in one bag of mini-pepperoni, or if you can't find them cut about 1/2 of a large package of regular sized pepperoni into 1/4's and add them to the bowl.  Chop up a little fresh broccoli and cauliflower and add it. Add around 1/4 bag of thin carrot sticks. Put in about 1/2 jar of sliced green olives.  Add a small container of grape tomatoes.  Dump in a bag of co-jack cheese cubes.  Add 1 bottle of Italian Dressing, and mix it all up then refrigerate it for a few hours until it's good and cold, then serve!  

Tonight, mine is missing the carrots because I had a fibro-fog moment at the grocery store and forgot to get them.  It's also missing the tomatoes because my daughter doesn't like them and asked me to leave them out.  Sometimes if I have them on hand, I'll also add some mild banana pepper rings to it.

Minus the cooking time for the pasta, the rest only takes about 10 minutes to put together so it makes a quick, easy dish that you can eat on for a few days!  Not only is it easy for me to make, but it's a family favorite in my house!  

I hope that this is helpful to some of you, and that you enjoy it as much as we do!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

I'm Proud To Be A Spoonie

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& Put One Foot InFront Of The Other.
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Because That's
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Saturday, February 20, 2016

Adolescent Fibromyalgia Research Study Enrolling Today

Thank you for being a reader of The Fibro Frog. I am writing to share some information about a clinical research study that may be of interest to you. Research studies contribute greatly to the overall progress in understanding and treating diseases and The Fibro Frog supports that mission.


Adolescent Fibromyalgia Research Study Enrolling Today

Does your child suffer from widespread, unexplained body pain that impacts their daily routine?

If so, local research study doctors are studying an investigational medication to see if it can help manage symptoms associated with juvenile fibromyalgia in adolescents.

If your child is between 13 and 17 years of age, and has juvenile fibromyalgia or is experiencing unexplained aching, stiffness, fatigue, or trouble sleeping, he or she may be eligible to participate in a clinical research study.

  • No-cost investigational study drug
  • No-cost study-related care from a local physician

Visit www.FibroStudy.info anytime, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
   




Sincerely,

Amy Mullholand


Founder of The Fibro Frog

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

A Catch 22


One of the most frustrating things about living with Fibromyalgia, is all of the catch-22's that come along with it.  My current dilemma is one that I know all of you with fibro, have faced as well.  When you're in a pain and fatigue flare, you seriously cannot do much of anything.  House work is out.  When housework is out, you end up with everything piling up into a whole ton of work.  Like, a pile of laundry:


and a sink full of dishes:


When we start coming out of a flare, we have so much work to do, to try and catch up.  But ....when we do that work, we end up pushing ourselves to get it all done, and then we find ourselves right back into flare mode again.  

It's such a never-ending process that is beyond frustrating.  This is where I've found myself for the past month.  My flare the past week has been horrible.  Fatigue like I haven't felt in some time.  Pain that even occurs while trying to sleep. Causing me to toss and turn the entire night as laying in one spot longer then about 20 minutes causes pressure point pain.  Hips scream in pain.  Arms, shoulders and neck screams in pain.

Once the flare ends, I'll be stuck picking up the slack that I can't control during this flare.  So I'm sure, I'll be right back in another flare within a day or two of this one ending.  I know every single one of you with fibro can relate.  I'm venting for all of us with this post!  I'm hoping to come up with some tips and ideas to make our lives easier and hopefully break this catch-22 cycle we're all stuck in!



Saturday, February 6, 2016

The Joy Of Cooking

Before fibromyalgia and all of my spinal and arthritis conditions, I loved to cook!  I never loved the clean-up afterwards, but cooking brought me such joy.  So much joy, that I even used to own a little "eatery".  I call it an "eatery" because it was inside of a mall, not a real restaurant.

As all of my conditions have worsened over the years, it's become so hard for me to really cook.  The pain is excruciating.  Some days, it brings me to tears to stand long enough to even fry an egg.  Therefore, I don't do a lot of real cooking anymore.  This truly makes me sad.  As I'm sure most of you know, fibro steals so much of our happiness.  Even the small things that people take for granted, such as cooking, are taken away.

I am SO proud, because I cooked a meal tonight.  A good meal.  I zested lemons, and chopped potatoes, and prepared 2 whole chickens.  I made lemon-pepper chicken, chunked potatoes, baby carrots, and fresh grean beans.  I had real, alive, eating, breathing people over for supper!  My daughter and her boyfriend, my son and his fiance, and a 12 year old boy who's parents are good friends of the family was hanging out with me today.  


In the middle of making this delicious meal, I was in so much pain I was fighting back tears.  Part way through the preperations I wildly wonderded what in the heck I'd been thinking, to undertake this task!  When the timer went off, I had to have my son take it out of the oven, and there's no way I could've ever carried the platter to the table so my daughter graciously did that task for me.

I hate to say it, but I was in so much pain that I wasn't even hungry.  Still, I forced myself to eat a little and indulge in the victory over fibro tonight.  I may still be sitting here hurting so badly that a handful of vicodin sounds like an amazing dessert  ....but I did it!  I beat fibro today!  I did something that I used to love to do, and I enjoyed it with my family!

**Disclaimer -the "vicodin" reference was thrown in to try to be funny, as I don't take any narcotics for my fibro at all.  I've refused them since diagnosis because I know that fibro is something I'm going to have to live with for the rest of my life and I don't want to become addicted to narcs.  I also realize that once I take one kind for so long, they'll stop working and there's only so many drugs out there.  I don't want to be in my 60's or 70's and in double the pain I'm in now, with nothing left to take because my body has built up a tolerance to all of the pain killers out there.  Some days (like tonight for instance haha) I wonder if the time has come to start taking something for pain, but alas I just pop a diclofenac 2x a day, grin, and bear it.  :)