Monday, February 11, 2008

Pain Management, Meditation and Yoga

I'm all signed up at Kaiser now and have my first appointment later this month. I am kind of apprehensive about it, doctors have not been my friend. However, many of the interactions my friends have had with Kasier have been positive, so I am crossing my fingers.

On their site, they have a section for pain management. I went through the questions and am now busy forming all these logs they want. It's funny, when I have had logs in the past, doctors said I was "overly consumed" to the issue. They have two videos, one on deep breathing and one on progressive relaxation. I figure I'll do those as much as I can.

I grabbed several online meditations that have videos or audio components. I figure that way I can say - see I'm doing "real" ones and not ones I just made up, though I'll undoubtedly keep doing the ones I have been doing for years anyway.

I listed like 10 yoga postures and 10 stretching postures too. One cool thing on the Kaiser site was that they have a bunch of videos demonstrating stretching poses. That's a pretty helpful little feature.

Anyway, just thought I would ramble...

Monday, January 14, 2008

Friends and Poetry

I was taking a course on time management (of all things) and it made me remember I hadn't read poetry in a long time. This is a thing I loved to do, along with writing poetry. My favorite poems to write (with the exception of cheesy love poems for my SO) were poems inspired by works of art. What amused me the most about that was the one people didn't like was based on the idea of someone losing their sight. I am visually impaired, legally blind, and have very little sight left, so I found that highly amusing. When I wrote the poem, I had previously had an instance of going blind and was visually impaired. People said I had "no idea" of what blind and visually impaired people must be going through. Whatever... So, I have started a section to link to other people's poetry that I like and I am definitely open to people sending in ones they like.

I also had a response from a potential new friend to whom I wrote back. We'll see how it goes. I really liked some of the things she had to say on her profile. My own is not as good as hers. She has clearly put some time and love into it.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

I am amazed....

Ok, I was thinking about how to find people I would actually want to be friends with. Does that make me sound snotty? I don't mean it that way, I just feel that since we have no idea how much time we have in the world, we should try to spend it on things and people that are important. Determing what is important to someone, that is the kicker. I am amazed at some of the blogs I see, or profiles on websites, or MySpace setups...People obviously spend a lot of time and love on some of these. I find it really hard to do that, I find it hard to even type this. Often when I am in situations with people (in real life) I find myself changing to meet their expectations or needs. This takes a great toll on me and I don't really wind up connecting in the way I would want to connect. It becomes all about them. People are important, don't get me wrong. And it's not that it feels insincere on my part either, because I am totally sincere. It's as if I come fully present with my needs, and hopes, and aspirations, with my past and present, that it won't be important. That since it may not fulfill the need of the person that I am interacting with that it, that I, may be irrelevant or ignored. So I twist and turn myself into somebody else. Sometimes it is big twists and sometimes little. I think, though, that I need to stop this. I am not saying I will never help anyone, or meet someone's needs. I am saying that my needs will also need to be present and accounted for. Right now, my need is for people in my life, who like Amy, seem to be accepting me with all my flaws, and who want to work with me on things I feel are important, like radical feminism. I am happy for those people to be online people. In fact, I think I would rather prefer that at this point while I work on asserting my own needs and feelings and even preferences. In real life, I have a significant other who I have been with for 10 years. He doesn't totally understand me, he doesn't agree with me on lots of things, even things that are important to me, but he is always by my side supporting me and trying to help me with whatever I am doing. That really rocks, I must say. So the point of this is, I am going to try to actually be me and to contact people that interest me and to try to form some connections, especially with women, especially with women who aren't white, that are legitimate, honest and real. Connections in which she is who she is and I am who I am, and it's okay with both of us.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

New Year's Resolutions

I have been thinking a lot about my life and how to proceed with it. I know different people respond to pain differently, but I have reached the limits of my endurance. This year my insurance may be changing to a program that may help resolve some of the physical issues behind the pain but then again...maybe not. It has been a long haul and I am frankly exhausted! I am no slouch at pain management techniques, I have been using various ones with various levels of success for years and years, but with this new level of physical problems, it is like a wall I can not climb.

So, with that in mind, and with the fact that all my self-improvement attempts for the last 3 years have completely and utterly failed (3 years ago is when the new pain level began), I am going to give it another shot. I have a tendency to try to do too much, so this year I am going to go small.

1. Friends. I have completely isolated myself from everyone. In some cases this is a good thing. It is unrealistic to think that I can go places every week so I want to develop 5 online friendships. Each person will be emailed once a week. I am going to do something totally different for me and pick people I want to be in touch with, that do not enormously stress me out! I want to start fresh with these friendships, with the exception of one person with whom some of these things have previously been discussed - Hi, Amy! So, 1 identified, 4 to go...

2. Money. My significant other has gotten into a significant level of debt trying to help out while I have gone through the physical decline. Yes, I now get disability, but I didn't for several years and I have also had some physical problems in the past for which he has assumed financial responsibility. I have also made some bad financial decisions, some of them well-intentioned, like bailing other people out of financial jams or donating to organizations or trying to fund my own non-profit ventures. He has now wound up assuming a lot of these problems as well. Not a believer in bankruptcy, I've got to come up with some way of helping him out of debt. After that, the car needs to be replaced, and then we would like to live in a place we can stand. After that, we shouldn't have any other financial needs we can't handle. I thought I could look for things online he could do, like survey sites or paid-to-read e-mail. I'm open for suggestions here....

3. Pain. This is the major obstacle. If I can get the pain under control, then I could do crazy things like clean the house or even leave the house on my own reliably. I could read Braille (the pain in my hands interferes with this right now). I could exercise more (which I love). Hey, maybe I could even go back to work (which would be really really really great!). I'm going to try to more regularly attend the pain management group in my area, aka at least once a month, and look for some pain management groups online that might be helpful. I am going to up the physical therapy exercises I do at home as well as trying to lose some weight (I got big after I got in pain). If this insurance change works out I'll be at the doctor's a lot, which is fine and will hopefully get more information, medications, procedures, etc. to deal with the situation. If it doesn't, I will have to look for these myself. This is probably the thing I will write about least and work on most!

4. Online activism. Typically I like to do a blend of online and in-person activism but these days online would be the best choice until my physical situation is under control. I have to be strong enough to be able to do the online ones to. I'd love comments about what people care about and I'll post the sites I'm active on too...