If aches and pains keep you up at night, please read this..

For the last four weeks, I have been sharing my pride and joy at being able to keep three small goals; taking all of my vitamins every morning, drinking 68oz of water each day and working out three times a week. I have been feeling so good about sticking to these resolutions, but there was one area in my life that was becoming increasingly unmanageable: pain at night.

I’ve had a pinched nerve in my elbow for a few years and depending on how I sleep it can hurt pretty bad, but lately the pain has been off the scale.  It wasn’t the traditional pain I was used to either, it was a deep aching from my shoulder to my finger tips..and sometimes in BOTH arms!

I told my husband last week-end that I was actually at a point where I didn’t want to got to bed anymore because I knew what was in store for me. I have an appointment scheduled with the doctor, but it isn’t for two weeks. I was starting to feel despondent.

So I hit the internet..and then it hit me.

The only thing that had drastically changed over the last few weeks was the water I was drinking..not just the amount, but at what time I consumed the most. You see I hate being inconvenienced by having to run to public bathrooms, so I did the bulk of my guzzling in the afternoon and especially in the evening when I was at home.  Long story short, not only was I having to get up at night to use the restroom, but I truly believe that my electrolytes were completely out of balance by the time I hit the sack.

So I decided to try something new; I would drink all of my water before 6pm (most of it before 3pm) and then have a small glass of gatorade with dinner for a quick infusion of electrolytes.

Guess what? I slept like a baby.

Could it really be that simple? Only time will tell.  I’m certainly no doctor but I am curious to see how the rest of this week unfolds.

 

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photocredit:Reference.com

Time heals all “wounds..”

I remember talking to my mother on the phone shortly after our first child was born. I was in complete disbelief about how agonizing the birthing process had been. “I will NEVER, EVER do this again” I announced quite matter-of-factly. .and then of course went on to have three more kids.

It’s amazing how time can diminish the memory of pain..

…which is the only way to explain the fact that my husband and I chose to assemble another 5,498 piece, IKEA, 8 drawer dresser. 😖

ick

 

Sitting is the new sugar.

trim

I am almost finished..almost finished painting our living room and dining room. I never realized getting this job done would require such mental fortitude thanks to miles and miles (and miles) of trim…ugh.

Since Christmas I have painted 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, the kitchen, TV room and now the  living room and dining room. It feels great to see so much fresh color.

You know what else feels great..my rear end!!

As some of you know, I have struggled with sciatica for years.  Over the last year or so,  it has become a 24/7 issue that never goes away..like a constant tooth or headache. It can even wake me up at night and lead to hours of tossing and turning.

But guess what? I have had NO PAIN in weeks..none..it’s incredible. The only thing that has been different in my life has been this painting job and the fact that I have pretty much not had the opportunity to sit down either because I’m too busy or because the furniture was all piled in the center of the room and there was no place to sit anyway. They say that sitting too long is as bad as eating too much sugar-and you know what?  I’m starting to believe it.

Could the climbing up and down the ladder also have helped?- maybe

What about the stretching with the brush?-maybe

I guess I’ll find out now that this painting job is almost done. One thing’s for sure, I’m not going to be sitting around waiting to find out.

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.photocredit:Home Depot

The colors of life.

I just finished repainting my daughter’s bedroom. It was so strange to see how different the color I was applying looked in areas where the original, old color was still visible. The violet made this neutral, warm tone almost look yellow…in fact I kept checking the can to make sure I had opened up the right one. It didn’t stop looking gross-browny- yellow to me until I had all the walls completely and totally covered in new paint. (Yes, this is the same color in both pictures below)

This really made me think about life & context..how our past can “color” how we view today. I know people who have every right to be pissed off and miserable for the rest of their days they have experienced such sadness, disappointment and hurt ..and yet they are able to live in the moment and plan for the future without having the past discolor their new hopes and dreams. How do they do that?

No doubt there are different philosophies on how to handle painful memories, and I am no expert in this area, but I come from the camp that encourages people to find a fresh color and start brand new. In my own life I have had to give up on some real hurts, and I KNOW I am much better for it. Let’s be honest, some transgressions will never be resolved or fixed or even apologized for, so the only option is to let go. Now this doesn’t mean that a “scratch” now and then won’t reveal what’s underneath. A painful past never really goes away..but it also doesn’t have to dominate our  present living “space.”

And make no mistake..as I found out when I was painting..all it takes is one little corner of old color to visually throw the new one off…so when you make the decision to forgive and forget and forge ahead..don’t make the mistake of hanging on to even one little grudge or one little area of loathing.  Apply a heavy coat of fresh grace and gratitude from corner to corner and watch how complete coverage can transform the color of your life.

forgive

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photocredit:IPOST | Christian Post 

Food for Life

So this is more of a recommendation than a recipe.

Since we moved up to Charlotte in late August, I have been eating very differently than I’m used to..more restaurants, more meat, more delicious stuff that’s just not healthy. We’ve been busy, living in a small apt, I’ve been lazy, uninspired, and hey.. having someone else cook is awesome! Last week, when we got back from our trip to St. Louis, we went straight from the airport to the Cheesecake Factory.  Flying is a big issue for me, so I tend to celebrate when it’s all over.

And celebrate we did…

CheesecakeFactory006

I had fried macaroni balls and some cheesy, saucy, creamy delicious pasta creation as an entrée…bread loaded with butter- (lots of it), a Long Island iced tea to swirl it all down and obviously cheesecake for dessert..I mean DUH!

Style: "CCF-WhiteSet"

That night I awoke at around 3am with the worst upper belly pain ever. A first I thought I just ate too much, the next morning I thought it was the flu..three days later I made an appt at the doctor. I think it may be my gall bladder.  Is all of this related to my crappy eating?  I’m not sure..but I do know I feel much better already after about  three days of eating fat free.

There are three potent motivators in life: pleasure, money and pain. This pain, and the fear of it “hitting” again, has made eating right an easy task.

With pain avoidance in mind, I finally bought steel cut oats. My daughter has been on me for years to eat a bowl every day like she does. Oatmeal fills you up, lowers your cholesterol,  and is one of the most healthy things you can eat in the morning. Now I’m not a huge oatmeal gal..frankly, I’m not a huge breakfast gal either, but oh, how I want to feel good  again…  The past few days have been a lesson for me about the cumulative effect of eating like you’re on an extended vacation.

It’s time to get real here.

oatmeal1Anyway, I followed the directions on the box to make a large amount of oatmeal that can be kept in the fridge for a week. Every morning, you just scoop out a cup full, microwave and eat..how easy is that?

To make the oatmeal you simply boil the right amount of water, add the oats, cook for a minute, cool off and then store overnight in the fridge. The next morning you cook the oats for about 10 minutes and that’s it! You have oats ready to be eaten on the spot and/or stored for the rest of the week.

oatmeal2I am making these changes to my diet because I want my body to work as designed. Honestly, I’ve been shocked at how impressively lousy I’ve been feeling the past week-  and like tumbling dominoes,  it has affected everything. I can’t be up all night in pain and sluggish the next day. I figure if I’m able to stick to a healthier general framework for my diet, I can make the occasional trip to “the factory” and not fall off a cliff. I just need to make sure that 90% of what I’m putting into my mouth makes me feel good…not lousy.

 

 

 Photo credits: jacksonville.comwww.abeforum.com