Fall and Winter 2016

Helloooo! I know it’s been a while since my last post. Since then, I’ve stopped going to acupuncture. What I thought was a stiff neck turned out to be two bulging cervical discs. For treatment, I opted for physical therapy and followed that up with a nerve block injection in November. It worked for a couple of months, but I’m back to cracking my neck on the regular. Hubby cringes every time. 😣😞 😁

While I’d love to say I’ve been out enjoying life, pain-free, that is not the case. Since I last posted, I’ve been experiencing a lot more bad days than good. Since I haven’t been feeling my best, I felt that my negative energy would come across in the blog. I didn’t want that to happen so I waited to get in better state mentally.  However, that never happened. So, I figured I’d press forward. That’s life! Time keeps moving, just as it should.

Just to catch you up to date, during the fall and winter seasons, my Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) symptoms tried to ruin my life. The joint pain was unbearable. My wrists and ankles felt as if they were going to snap right off. Feeling neglected, my Fibromyalgia said, “Hey don’t forget about me! Here take this!” Searing pain all over. I couldn’t stand the feeling of clothes on my skin, let alone the being touched by humans. That pain was ridiculous!

Thanks to the cold weather that blew in, my Raynaud’s had my hands sore and my fingers puffy. As on key, they then became very patriotic, changing from hues of  white, blue, and red. My fingertips felt like ice. They throbbed, burned, and if that weren’t enough, they pruned up, creating a creased appearance which felt and appeared as if they had tens of paper cuts on each. Soooo much fun! 😒 In addition to the pain, I’ve been experiencing extreme fatigue and nausea. I know that the low temperatures we experienced this past winter assisted in increasing my joint pain and my number of Raynaud’s flares. However, I could not/cannot pin point what’s causing my fibromyalgia flares.

During this time, I noticed a small bump on my forearm. As the months passed, the bump grew. There was no pain, but it was becoming firmer. As I went to my various doctor appointments, I would casually ask about my bump. I was asked if it hurt. It didn’t. There was no change in color. It was ultimately glossed over as a ganglion cyst. Because I didn’t dedicate an appointment for it, it wasn’t thoroughly tested. Listen, if you have as many doctors and appointments as I have on the regular, for as many serious conditions that I have, the last thing you’d want to do is make another appointment for something that wasn’t causing you any discomfort. At that time, the worst thing I could say about the bump was that is wasn’t pretty. 😗😉

The bump continued to grow. I continued to neglect it. One day, I hit it on a door jamb. Yes, I’m clumsy… THANKS MOM!😂😍 It hurt like hell! I bruise easy so, as expected, a reddish purplish contusion formed on and around the bump. After a couple of days, the discoloration and pain were gone.  However, the bump started growing wider and firmer. Approximately a month later, the bump became discolored and painful again. In the beginning of February, I decided to see an Orthopaedic surgeon to discuss having it removed. The surgeon took an X-ray and told me that because the bump was on my forearm he didn’t believe it was a ganglion cyst  because ganglion cyst usually form on a joint. He told me that the bump could be a benign cyst. He then instructed me to have an MRI of my forearm. A day or so after the MRI was done, my primary physician called me asking what is going on with my arm and to say that she didn’t like what the MRI report suggested. I communicate with my primary care physician often, either via email or telephone. She is usually calm and reserved. In the past four years (approximately 40 appointments) of me seeing her there’s only been a couple of times I’ve heard her sound this concerned, 1) when I had a kidney infection, 2) when I was diagnosed with the pericardial effusion, and  3) when I was diagnosed with gastroparesis.  She told me that the MRI report stated that the bump was a possible sarcoma and that she wanted me to contact her after I had spoken to the surgeon. The following day I received a call from the surgeon’s nurse informing me that due to its location, the surgeon recommended I go to a plastic surgeon to have the bump removed. I thought the suggestion was odd so I contacted my primary doc and we both thought it would be better to follow-up with an oncologist…

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Have Fun. Eat up.

​I am entering the second phase of my life. I’m 42 years old and considering my future. During this process I have been in constant battle with my thoughts… wishes versus realities. Consider purchasing a home for you and your spouse (your children are grown). What type of home popped into your head? Now consider your health. Has your wants been replaced by your needs? If so, this is what I’m experiencing. Choosing vacation destinations, events, shoes, clothes, etc are not as easy as it used to be. Before getting sick, I never gave these topics much thought. I’m going here. I’m going to do this. I’m wearing this. That was that! Fast forward to today… How long is the flight? Will there be a lot of walking? Stairs? Elevator? Sun shelter? These questions help me to plan and prepare accordingly.  To combat the heavy anxiety going out brings, this past weekend I decided to through caution to the wind and fly by the seat of my pants.

This past Saturday, my cousin and I decided to go checkout this seafood restaurant in Sea Isle City. As we were driving down the Parkway we noticed how crowded the northbound lanes were. Determined to get our seafood fix, we ignored all of the warnings and signs. So what the weather forecast called for Tropical Storm effects. Who cares that very little people, including us, were driving toward the storm, while carloads  were fleeing from that direction?!?  Surely not we foodies… 😂😂😂 

The closer we got to Sea Isle the more windy it got. We get to the restaurant only to find that the staff were “caught” in traffic and the town was under “evacuation.”  The cook was there and offered us directions off the island, bypassing the traffic on the Parkway. We made it back to our area and settled on this: 

It was good, but no buttery lobster roll. A couple of  hours later the restaurant posted pics of the staff playing with gigantic lobster claws. 

Sunday and Monday were family fun days filled with love, laughter and food!!! Family barbecue on Sunday and fishing on Monday… 

 This past weekend turned  out to be one of the best weekends of this summer!!  I didn’t let my anxiety get the better of me and everything turned out great!

Treat Yourself Tuesdays

The purpose of Treat Yourself Tuesdays is to challenge you to do something good for yourself… something that makes you smile. After all, we are in control of our own happiness. So whether it’s taking a walk, working out, meditation, facial, manicure,  pedicure, etc take a moment for yourself. BUT WAIT!!!… there is a catch. You can’t spend more than $10.00! If you’re willing to take this challenge please respond via comment or pic.