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Monday, August 31, 2015

One Year Ago

I’m finding it hard to believe (on one hand) that a year has passed since my dad died.  A year ago Saturday.  I always feel his presence around me but I did particularly  this weekend and then remembered that date.  I still miss him so much.  Thinking of him gives me such comfort.  And I sure needed it this weekend.

We had this huge windstorm on Saturday and by noon the power had gone off.  It flickered on and off six times before it died.  Since I don’t go anywhere, I had no clue to the extent of the damage.  I did watch as this tree outside my window bowed completely horizontally at one point.  Freaked me out.  A friend of mine was over and she left about 2 because we had no idea how much worse it might get.  She lives about 30 minutes from me and I told her to call when she got home.  After close to three hours, I figured she had forgotten.  I had no phone either, except for my cell and I didn’t want to drain the battery just in case.  It’s not a smart phone.  She finally called and told me it took her all that time to get home.  Trees were everywhere, lights were out, stores were closed.  Because of the draught, the water doesn’t soak up as well and the oil on the streets makes driving dangerous.  I was hearing sirens of all kind non-stop for hours.  I gathered candles and my one flashlight (which I just bought batteries for a month ago, thank heaven) and got everything arranged “just in case”. 

Between my bad eyes and the darkness, reading wasn’t an option and the battery on my laptop drained pretty fast.  I had no service anyway, so there wasn’t much to do.  I had snack type food, but everything else needed to be cooked, which wasn’t an option.  Plus, I didn’t want to open the freezer even once if I could help it.  It can keep things frozen for 24 hours usually.  I went to bed, woke up a few times and saw that the power wasn’t back on.  By morning, I phoned a friend whose power was on and she checked online for me.  It read that power might not be restored until Tuesday or Wednesday!  So I called my brother, who had no clue about the outages.  Over 150,000 of us, but he lives 50 minutes from me and was fine.  So he was going to come get me and an hour later, my power came back up.  First thing I did was check the freezer.  The only thing that melted were my blueberries and ice cream, both of which could re-freeze safely.

I am lucky and grateful, because over 20,000 in my area are still without power.  They have to move the trees before they can fix the lines.  There is someone I need to call but her phone isn’t working yet so I’m guessing it’s the power.  We are so dependent on so many things out our control it’s beyond frightening.  And my UTI hasn’t left yet.  And the pain has been bad, the weather’s not helping.

I was able to listen to my bilateral music a bit before the batteries drained, so that was good.  But the pain was not happy.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

New Eyes

My relationship with pain has changed over the past six weeks or so.  It started with that session I had with Divanna, my healer and acupuncturist.  That was the one when she coached me into saying (“with love” was my addition) “With love, I give back the pain that was given to me (with love) for this incarnation”.  When I repeat those words, along with “I am loved, there is no fear” which I got from listening to  Eben Alexander on YouTube and from reading his books “Proof of Heaven” and “Map of Heaven”.  Whew.

Also, I have been listening to Bilateral Stimulation music from David Grand and my new favorite, Jorge Henderson Collazo (on YouTube and I purchased five because it’s cheap and easier to access) with headphones.  The headphones are necessary to get the full effect of the bilateral stimulation.  It’s much like eye movement therapy, which helps people who have had a trauma or a chronic condition; really helps for those with PTS and so forth.  I highly recommend it.

Is the pain still there?  Yes, it is.  Do I still have times when it feels like agony?  Yes, of course.  But when I go into “I am loved” mode, it becomes tolerable.  And I have a lot of challenges coming up so I’ll need the support.  I am having cataract surgery on September 28 and so far, have no way to get there because it’s early in the morning and my regular help can’t do it then.  And I have to go back early the next morning so they can check it.  The procedure itself is at the doctor’s office and only 15 minutes (but a total of three hours for prep, etc.) and no general anesthesia.  But the doctor saw the list of my meds and doesn’t want to give me ANYTHING because he needs me to be awake.  I haven’t told him all this stuff doesn’t make me sleepy but I think I’ll just toke up before I go.  He said there was no pain so I’m not really worried about it.  And I’ll find a ride.

See, these are the things that challenge my relationship with pain.  Six weeks ago, I’d have been worrying about all this and getting all stressed out right up until the surgery, which is a month away yet.  Now, I use the bilateral technique along with the words I say (and I don’t just repeat them over and over without meaning; I wait until it really sinks in and until I feel my body let it is and relax.  I would like to take the music with me but I don’t have anything except the IPad.  It’s not even on it and I don’t know how to get it on it.  I just go to YouTube with the iPad.  What I bought is on my laptop.  Not sure if I can access there Wi-Fi while I’m there.  But I’d love to listen to it while they are doing the surgery.

So I’ll keep practicing the relaxation and looking for the right person to take me (I’ll call the supervisor next week and let her know I’m needing someone else for that date if I don’t hear back from the people I’m checking with) and I’m sure it will be fine.  The stupid eye drops (three different ones, all with different directions over a four week period) would normally send me over the moon too.  Very confusing and I’ll have one less eye to read the directions during that time.    But in the end, I’ll go back to the optometrist and get a new prescription and I’ll be able to read again!!!  I miss it like crazy!!!  New eyes, both literally and figuratively

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Pain Meditation

I posted a new binaural pain meditation piece that I’ve been listening to (on the right).  If you go to YouTube you can find many different binaural beats; some for meditation, sleep and this one is for pain.  It really does help if you give it a chance.  Use headphones, get in a comfortable position and just listen to it when you have a chance to be quiet for at least 30 minutes or so.  Humming with it also helps.  And I’ve been repeating my new mantra: You are loved, there is nothing to fear” and, my new favorite “With love, I give back all the pain that was given to me, with love.”   Something shifts inside when I say those words and it's like the air going out of a balloon in terms of pain relief..

I had a hard day today.  A busy week.  I saw my pain doc on Tuesday, FORCED myself to go shopping with my help on Wednesday (as I haven’t done that in MONTHS) and today, saw my healer.   So I’m in a lot of pain today, even though seen the healer usually helps.  I’m listening to my pain meditation while I write this.  Not the way you should do it but sometimes, having it on while I do something else takes my mind off it enough so that I’m not “trying” to force it, you know?  I listen to the one on lucid dreaming at night, though I don’t want to fall asleep with it on because it’s You Tube, and an ad may jump out at me in the middle of a REM cycle (LOL).

My visit with the pain doc went okay; a new doc was there.  There is always someone new that has a bunch of questions for me.  This doc was kind, sensitive and listened well to what I had to say about NF,  pain and all I do to manage it.

I’m keeping this short, as the pain is bad.  Just wanted to check in!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Hornets vs Bees

About six weeks ago, I wrote that the Decorah eagle camera came down in a storm.  Two weeks later, the nest came down.  Last week, Bob Anderson, the guy who makes all the Decorah eagle stuff possible (through Raptor Resource Project….his passion was actually Peregrine Falcons) passed away suddenly.  I wept.  Between that and the killing of Cecil the lion, I’m about to nix the news from my daily list things.  It makes the pain worse anyway.

So my new approach to aiding in the reduction of pain hasn’t been working the last few days.  I really think the emotional roller coaster is contributing to it.  That and I had gotten so comfortable with the meditation I lulled myself into believing I had somehow overcome the pain altogether.  Not.
So I start to practice again, along with icing my legs.

My newest challenge is a bunch of black hornets that are annoying my hummingbirds, not to mention me.  I made a DIY hornet catcher out of a plastic water bottle; just cut two holes (flaps pushed inward so they get in but not out) and filled with sugar water.  I catch a bunch, but there are always more.  And then I thought about Cecil and how upset I was and ask myself, am I that different than Walter Palmer, the trophy killing , idiot?   It’s easy to laugh at that but really, killing is killing, right?  Of course, these guys are hardly majestic.  See?   I did it again.  Justifiable homicide.  They are pests, they sting, they scare away the hummingbirds.   Bees I leave be.  I eat honey and they are dwindling in number.  They are essential to the environment.  But hornets?  I’ll have to look that up.

Maybe that’s why the pain is so bad.  Guilt.  Craziness.

A repeat song

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