Tag Archives: migraines

I won’t be deterred!

3 Jan

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Not to bore you with repetition, but I have struggled with chronic migraines of late, and it’s amazing how stupidly debilitating they can be. I changed my medicines after my doctor’s appointment in December, and once I started on an OTC (available from Amazon) called Migra-Eeze on Christmas Eve I’ve been doing much better. I’ve only had two days that I’ve needed to take my prescription medicine, and three or four where I needed to do “the cure” (my doctor’s favorite remedy, 4 aspirin and a regular Coke). All but one of those days worked pretty well. Today is that day.

It hasn’t been a bad day. The migraine has been what I’d call mid-level. I was able to modify what was supposed to be an intense cardio interval workout to at least get a workout done, if not at the level I’d planned. Something’s better than nothing! Having had so many good days makes me realize how bad things were in October, November and December. Wow.

What my main “resolution” (I don’t like that word – let’s say goal instead) boils down to for 2013 is that I won’t be deterred. According to my two doctors (neurologist and gynecologist), odds are I’m going to be dealing with migraines until I’m past complete menopause. Since the average age of menopause is 52, that’s five years. And I am not having five years that are a repeat of the last one, that is guaranteed. Obviously a good bit of that is finding the right medicines, supplements, diet (ie I no longer drink any caffeine except when I need the Coke), and exercise. I’m avoiding things like MSG as much as I can; I’ve never had a noticeable reaction to it, but then again, I’ve never had migraines until last February, either, so I’m not taking anything for granted.

But I won’t let these headaches stop me. If I have a bad day, I’ll deal with it and get back to life the next day. If I have a small headache in the background, I’m not going to spend my day in fear that it’s going to turn into a monster; I’m going to do all I can when I can. If that means I modify my daily to-do list, so be it. That’s better than scrapping it! If staring at the computer is hard, I’ll do the never-ending on-paper editing. Or vice versa. If lifting weights or doing a hard interval cardio workout makes a headache worse, I’ll walk. Even with a bad headache I can at least Tweet, right?

In short, I will not be deterred in 2013. Come what may, I’m taking God’s promise that His mercies are new every morning and living one day at a time. On headache days I’ll live one hour at a time. But always with the sure knowledge that I get a fresh start tomorrow. There’s not much better than that!

Happy New Year – and good riddance to 2012!

30 Dec

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I won’t bore you with another recap of 2012 – let’s just say that I am overjoyed to close the door on the year and have a fresh start. Of course, that must come with a brief caveat, which is that there were a lot of great things in 2012 (writing, publishing, travel, Uganda, my daughter’s engagement, among others) and I am grateful for all those things, and see God’s faithfulness in them. But physically it was awful. It was the terrible, awful, no good, very bad year. But now it’s almost over – the end is in sight! Whoopeeeeee!

So what does 2013 hold? At least, as far as depends on me? For my writing/publishing goals, you can check out my writing blog here. There’s a lot more to life than writing, and the writing goals also dictate certain things about my life — you know, the interconnected, circle of life, uh-oh I’d better get a schedule kind of thing. So here goes. I’m going out on a limb and putting my hopes, dreams and goals for 2013 out on the internet for all to see. Nothing like a little pressure to keep you on track!

First and foremost, I want/need to get some control of my body back. I’ve come up with a schedule for my days that should allow me to get to the gym 4-6 days a week, even if I end up with a migraine that day (80% or more of my migraines start in the afternoon, so a morning workout should work most of the time). I’ve always been strong, even when I’ve been less than ideally fit, but I’ve lost a lot of strength along with fitness this year, and I want to reverse that. I’ve actually been working on this already, but I’m going to keep going in 2013, and not let any setbacks do more than be a blip on the radar.

Secondly is eating. I eat healthfully… Except when I don’t. I love potatoes. I crave potatoes in all the salty, fried, delicious forms. I know where the best french fries in town are (Coquette), and where the best french fries in towns I don’t even live in are!  And when I’m feeling physically weak, I eat way too much sugar without realizing it – my body is saying “give me energy!” and so I reach for the red hots. So… Back to the free day concept. Free days work really well for me; I did it for years in the past. So I’m going back to that, which keeps me from feeling deprived, but also keeps my body fueled properly and healthfully.

I am also using My Fitness Pal, an iPhone app and online free site, to track calories and exercise. When you’re 47, your body just doesn’t respond to these things like it did at 35, so this keeps me on track. Since my daughter is on it too, we’re “friends” and can see each other’s workouts and how we did with each day’s eating. It’s easy to use, free, and motivational, and helps keep me on track.

Next, as I’ve said on my writing blog, I’ve decided to trick my brain by treating my writing and publishing like a “real” job. Meaning a job I’d go to somewhere outside of my home, and so have to organize my life around it. I have made 2 different schedules which should accommodate everything I want to get done during the week and still allow for some flexibility and for the gym. I’ve moved my drafting table from the sunroom to my office and set it up like a desk. I’m going to make a sign for my door, and I’m letting my calls go to voicemail. After having homeschooled and been self-employed for so long, I need, and my family needs, to see physical barriers and delineations of “home” and “work”. So far, everyone’s on board. I don’t start until the 2nd, though, so we’ll see how it goes!

While it doesn’t seem like a big deal, I’m going to go to the grocery only once or twice a week. Currently I go almost every day. Seriously. Somehow, with only three of us most of the time, I’ve let any sort of planning go by the wayside, and we have 2 groceries within a mile of the house, plus Costco, so it hasn’t seemed like a big deal. But I’m sure I spend more money, and even a quick trip is a half hour by the time I drive, park, shop, load, and unload. And I have the added benefit now of my son working at Harris Teeter, so if we need something, he can get it after work!

Mostly that’s it. Anything else would just be an expansion of these themes, and I know I’ll have to tweak things at first. I am leaving for Uganda on February 15, so I have a built-in “six week trial” to see how it’s all going. Plus, that’s long enough to build some habits that I can jump right back into once I’m home.

How about you? Resolutions? Goals? Let me know – we’ll try to keep each other on track!