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Posts Tagged ‘Health’

Did I tell you all that I lost fifteen percent of my body weight last semester within three months?  Did I forget about that?  No…  No, I briefly mentioned losing weight, but I didn’t mention how much.  Twenty two pounds.  That’s how much.

You know, when I tell people about this, it doesn’t matter how negative my tone is or how upset I look–they congratulate me.  When I explain that it was stress and Ehlers Danlos Syndrome related, they still congratulate me.  When I say that I have never felt more weak and more tired in my life, that I’m blacking out more and not able to finish what I need to for uni, they keep on congratulating me.

There’s a major problem when health is pushed aside in favour of lost weight.  My weight has become more important and worthy than my own wellness, and it sickens me that shape is valued over substance.  I’m chronically ill with EDS, most likely POTS (I’m getting tested this summer), and now mono for the past two months.  I just can’t get well, and I’m dropping weight again, even though I’m already right at the line of having an underweight BMI.  And yet, I’ve never been told more in the past few months just how good I look.

I feel like I’m dying.  I need to be sleeping over twelve hours per day.  I am dizzy.  Tired.  Weak.  In pain.  Scared.  And I’m told that I look beautiful.  It doesn’t make any sense at all.

I guess that all I’m trying to say is that, you can compliment my looks all you please, but if I tell you that I am unhappy about losing weight because I’m slowly succumbing to some terrible diseases, please don’t tell me that my looks are more important.  I would gain back all of that weight and be pudgy again if it meant that I felt well.  I’d gain even more to feel like I wasn’t some elderly folk inside of a twenty year-old’s body.

Sorry.

I’ve spent a lot of the past month spiralling into another depression from health.  It’s caused me to re-evaluate a lot of my life, change future plans, and start doing some things for me.  I’m tired and upset and causing permanent damage to my body, so I’m taking a year off after I graduate from uni so that I can get an internship and then travel before starting grad school.  I’ve dropped tumblr recently since I think that an hiatus will help me focus more on my health and course work.  I’ve stopped trying in some of my classes. I haven’t turned in online French homework in a month, and I don’t even care any more.  I’ll have to find some time this week to finish it amongst all of the other things, but I just…  I don’t fucking care.  There’s so much else in my life right now.

This is so rambly.  Es tut mir Leid.

Last time that I spoke with you all, I was writing about my grandma.  I still think about her so much, but things get better with time.  They always do, emotionally speaking.  And I mentioned a few things about losing and gaining people.  December…  Well, I got a boy-friend.  Which sounds like I caught a Pokemon or something, but I assure you that’s not quite the case.  Our story will probably be better saved for another time, but at least I’ve finally mentioned it (only four and an half months later, tralalala).

No really.  This has just about been the shittiest post I think I’ve ever made on this blog.  But call it free-writing.  Train of thought.  Just some things that I need to get out.  I listened to Miho Fukuhara’s “Let It Out” one too many times this morning; blame that.

Anyway, this summer, I plan on getting better.  Lots of rest, working three days per week until I feel a little more human, seeing doctors to get diagnosis and help, going to Florida to visit family.  That sort of stuff.  I’m looking forward to the end of the semester so incredibly much.  Sleep.  It’s all I need and all I want.  Just sleep.

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More and more articles are coming out about the 2012 presidential elections, most of which are chalk-full of Sarah Palin interviews about a possible presidential run.  Aside from the fact that she’s now a Fox News analyst and has a reality show that are taking up significant amounts of time, I’m not sure if she would be able to win the primaries because of her rather strong views.  So, I’m not really sure if she’ll get the nod from the GOP to begin with because they may realise that, though you need to be highly conservative to first win the nomination, becoming more moderate afterwards may be a difficulty.  But you know what I want to see for the Republican nominations?  Mitt Romney or TRON PAUL!

Oh, I’m sorry.  That’s Ron Paul.

And you know what?  I’d be pretty happy seeing that kind of race against Obama (who, let’s not kid ourselves, will most likely get the Democratic nomination).

You may question why I’d like to see that race, so let’s just put down the basics on each of these guys:

Obama: Well, come on, he’s signed a ton of great legislation into effect during his time thus far, and I’m not even talking about the health bill which is literally the only reason that I can now get insurance once I’m off of my parent’s policy (because of pre-existing conditions, may I add).  He’s signed in bills to help recreate jobs in environmental sectors that not only help our economy but also help install more efficient forms of energy across the country.  He’s boosted scientific research, shut down Gitmo, and cut taxes for small businesses.  All of which I’m fond.

(T)Ron Paul:  I know that the odds are small that the will even run because of his age, and they’re even smaller that he would get the Republican nod even though he is what a true Republican is, but I still have hope as a Libertarian!  One of the cool new things he’s working on is creating a bill that makes it illegal for Federal employees to hide behind their immunity if they’ve totally fucked things up (so, basically holding people accountable).  He also strongly believes that what we do to other countries can often piss them off and cause more problems, which is a strong thing to admit, and he’s up for putting America first when it comes to our military rather than just stretching our troops across the globe.  Plus, ending subsidies for oil companies sounds like a good plan.  It may not work, but even the idea is a start.

Mitt Romney: I’ll fully admit that he’s not one of my very favourites, but out of the major Republicans up for the nomination, he’s one of my faves.  I like his position on the second amendment.  He’s in favour but also supports a waiting time and limit on assault weapons.  There’s a difference between owning a hunting rifle and an AK-47, and he understands this.  I also appreciate that, though he’s pro-life, he is also in favour of allowing states to decide legislation for themselves.  I also like that he supports diplomacy with Iraq and Afghanistan rather than a purely military approach.

None of these candidates are perfect.  Obama can be a bit closed-minded to conservatives, Ron Paul’s education plans are a little frightening, and Mitt Romney has a bit of a problem with separating church and state.  But you know what?  If I’m going to be reasonable with who may get to be nominated, then I’m going to be reasonable with picking these three guys as my favourites.

So, tell me what you think.  Who would you like to see in the 2012 race?  Who do you not want to see?  Tell me why; I’d love to hear it!

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A while back, I mentioned my switch from moisturiser to natural oils for my face, along with dumping the habit of drying out my skin from soap, and now that it’s been about three or four weeks, I figured that it was time to tell you about some progress.

Truth to be told, my acne only went down only while I was at home.  Once I got back up to school, it started back up again (though not as severly as last year) because of the differences in water between Saint Charles and Kirksville.  This is a bit of a bummer since I spend most of my time at school, but if things continue how they have been with there still being acne but not in as great of quantities, then I guess I’ll take it.

Some positive things, though: my skin is slightly less oily (not completely, but I’m a little better off), it no longer feels like it’s been completely dried from my showers, and my hands are less dried out.  That one seemed odd to me, because it took at least a week or two to put the pieces together.  But, as I see it, now that I’m using less soap, my hands are no longer being dried out.  It’s gotten to the point where, for the first time in nearly four years, I no longer have to put hand lotion on every day.  Awesome and money saving.

Another thing that I was not expecting was that my eye condition has improved.  I have a chronic eye condition that causes a lot of, let’s call it ‘gunk’, to build up in my eyes, causing my vision to get blurry and there to be itching and redness and teary eyes.  No fun, really.  Well, I’ve noticed just as much ‘gunk’ being produced (maybe even more), but what has been really remarkable is that the pain and itchiness is gone–completely.  It’s made me wonder if my eyes could have been negatively reacting to my moisturiser for the past five years.

I’m still experimenting with washing my face in hot water and using oil rather than my old soap/moisturiser formula, so I definitely do not have the full affects of the regiment yet.  But, as I learn more about using natural oils and healthier/environmentally safer body products, I will let you know (I suppose that I should mention that I make my own body spray from water and essential oils, and it smells wonderful and is completely one of a kind).

Adios!

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Pescetarianism

I’m happier saying ‘yes’ to the occasional piece of fish or sushi than sitting around, staring at an empty plate, while others eat.  There’s no point in making someone who has cooked a fish dinner feel bad because I can’t eat it, when in all reality, it’s quite the healthy and delicious food.  This doesn’t mean I’m going to be shoving a fish steak onto my plate with every meal, and it most certainly doesn’t mean that I will be chowing down on fried cat fish with my family.  But if it means having a spoonful of fish because of a sushi tray or eating fish three times because I’m visiting my dad who has caught his own fish, then I am perfectly fine with that.  After all, I have absolutely no moral qualms with eating animals.  My qualms only lie in health, as usual.

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Seriously, the amount of spam I get is absolutely ridiculous.  Thank everything that WordPress lets me weed through the comments rather than automatically post everything.  I’d off myself otherwise.

Meanwhile…  It’s a bad joint day, which means that I’m still in bed watching Doctor Who, reading Wikipedia articles, and installing an old version of Oregon Trail onto my laptop.  Somehow, the hours keep slipping by faster and faster until I’m left here with barely a meal eaten and wondering what happened to my morning.  I slept in late until nine, but I still had some morning, didn’t I?  What on Earth happened to it?

I’ve been waiting around for a thunderstorm to roll on by, but it’s done just that: rolled on by without stopping.  Instead, the sun has poked back out from the angry clouds to greet me, but I don’t want that.  I really need some rain, even if it will make my knees buckle all the worse and force me to wear wrist braces yet again.  It’s days like these when it becomes more apparent that my body is falling to ruin.  I may be exercising and feeling so strong, but it can crumble in a split second.

But it does give me some more time to just sit and relax, even if there is some pain involved.  I’ve been watching old episodes of Doctor Who, which really makes me further enjoy the series.  There’s this thing that bugs me with most shows–the characters just don’t die.  Now, I’m not talking about The Doctor, because he’s immortal or whatever, but other characters.  In most shows, the good guy always has to go back and somehow save the other characters to make everything a happy ending.  It means that the main characters nearly get killed, but then everything magically works together.  Well, I don’t like that.  Call me a pessimist, but life isn’t like that.  People die.  People stuff up.  People don’t always live to see the world fall back into place.  It’s for this reason that I’ve come to appreciate Doctor Who as more than just an entertaining series.  Not every character lives.  People sacrifice themselves, repent, get punished.  They don’t just stand there and wait to have everything saved, and I enjoy seeing this realism.  Sure, I don’t enjoy death, but it’s comforting in a way to not have to watch The Doctor and Rose run all around trying to save everyone.  People are more independent in this show, I think.  And it shows when they make their decisions to allow death.  But the loss of life in the episodes shows realism, which is what really matters.

I am a realist after all.  Pessimism and optimism have never quite worked out for me.

But I thought I’d ramble about that for you, because it really is something that I enjoy about the show.  That rational, level-headedness that comes with not trying to appease the world but merely keep it stable.

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…Midway through April, actually, and yet I have not posted more than, what, one thing?  Ridiculous.  Yeah, yeah.  Ridiculous; I’ll fill you in.

Humans v Zombies continued on last week, and I spent an afternoon reading in the quad, watching a mission take place.  A gaggle of humans stalked by and then a horde of zombies, with me on a blanket sitting in between.  For more than an hour, I watched the ensuing battle, which was highly entertaining.  I’d show you the photos that I took, but my internet access at university is so poor that it will have to wait until I am back at home in three weeks.

(Note, I ended up getting a different picture to work:)

I’ve been spending the past weeks more and more outdoors reading or spending time with friends.  We’ve gone out on blankets to hang out, do homework, and even have a picnic.  It’s wonderful to not have to wear a coat and even better to wear only a t-shirt, which the weather has permitted over the past two weeks.  I’ve been able to be more active with this weather, too, which is nice since I now have a new goal for getting in shape.  I’m usually all about health and just making sure that my body is healthy, but now I want to shape it up so that I can join belly dancing next semester.  Granted, I could join as I am now, but I think I’d be more comfortable and have an easier time if I worked on getting a trimmer middle over the summer.  So I’m going to try swimming every morning, get back into running a few miles each day, and I’ll now try some preliminary dancing to tone up.  Belly dancing, here I come!

It seems funny to me that these pictures were only taken around a week ago, yet the entire campus has blossomed since then.  It’s absolutely gorgeous.

Three weeks until summer, though…  What an odd realisation.  Over my extended break, I plan to go to Florida to visit my dad, maybe get a volunteer job on Main Street (if they should ever need the extra help; they can call me at a moment’s notice, I think), sew at least two dresses and a skirt, and paint at least four paintings.  I promised my friend Heather that I would enter a painting into the Missouri Hall Art Gallery next year, so if I make that over the summer, it will free my time up over the semester to work on it.  I’m thinking of painting a scene from the quad or somewhere on Truman’s campus, and it will be big.  Bigger than any other painting that I’ve yet done (I’m thinking one of those canvases that’s nearly three feet tall).  I’m also painting pictures for both my current room mate Jess for her room next year and my friend Abby for her room next year.  It shouldn’t be so odd that I’m looking forward to making these paintings so much, but I am.  That’s why I became an art minor, I guess.

Speaking of art, I finalised my schedule for next semester, and it’s a beast.  I have statistics, intermediate German, British literature from Romantic to Modern, a six hour long drawing 1 course, and a 400-level Intro to Clinical Psychology class.  The last one is rather intimidating.  It isn’t just a difficult class but a class meant for older psych majors, so I may be kicking myself next semester.  But, maybe it will teach me good work ethic, and it will put me ahead.  I just wish that I could have gotten into social psychology like I had originally planned for, but upon entering in the code during registration, I accidentally put in the code for psychopharmacology, which in no way interests me or goes toward what I will be doing with a psychology degree.  By the time I could try and fix my mistake, it was too late–the class was full.  So, I ended up finding this 400-level gem that fit into my schedule.  We’ll see how it turns out.

Meanwhile, what an awesome group of friends I have: they helped me create a Quidditch team for my university’s Quidditch match last week.  It was a great time with six teams vying for the top spot.  Now, we aren’t the sportiest bunch, so we definitely had more losses than wins, but it was incredibly fun.  The hosts of the events even gave out legit Harry Potter snacks (fudge flies, chocolate frogs, Berty Bots beans, pumpkin juice, butter beer, et cetera).  What an awesome time.  Here are some pictures that my internet finally allowed me to upload:

Our team name was Albus and the Dumbledores, and we even made legit tie-dye shirts for the event.

We played with beach balls, a volley ball, and these tall hoops.  It was actually quite challenging.  The snitch ended up being a track runner with a sock hanging out of his shorts that you had to pull out.  I was seeker, and it was definitely hard work; I was feeling muscles the next day that I didn’t even know I had.  Ouch!

And, of course, we ran with brooms in between our legs, which was more fun than challenging.  Awkwardness, after all, can be one of the best things ever to laugh at.

That’s about it for now.  Hopefully this filled you in a little about what has been going on in my life.  Thank God for spring and summer holidays!  Hope you’re all doing well.

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I’m a strong believer in the saying, “Fake confidence because eventually it will become reality.”  Last semester, I posted it on the door to my dorm for my house to see, and I still get occasional comments about it from people, especially a young woman in my house who took the phrase to heart.  Late at night, when we’ve finished watching films in the living room and we’re slowly leaving to go to bed, she’ll mention that she enjoys the encouraging phrases.  And I’ll mention that I enjoy them as well; it’s why I put them up.

Today, rather than posting my usual “Stay warm, kids!” or “Have a great week!”, I posted another encouraging dogma that I had forgotten about until recently.  On the door reads, “Sit and walk with good posture–you will feel more confident.”

Oh, how true this statement is.

Two days ago, I was reading through my Guide to Relaxation book that I brought back up to school from home for the yoga guide and stumbled upon a section on correct breathing and posture.  Suddenly, I could remember the little middle school me looking at the entry and taking to heart that I should have better posture.  I remembered sitting up as straight as I possibly could in my eighth grade history class for an entire day and doing the same that evening while on the computer and feeling so sure of myself.  I had great posture during that time, and I’ve occasionally wondered why I had forgotten about it.  So, when I read the posture entry, I set a new goal for myself (to go along with my million of other goals for the next three years).  I started sitting straighter while at the computer to start.  Then, I started sitting straighter in my classes today and standing to my full height before setting off to walk somewhere, making sure that I wasn’t slumping while I stepped around.  And, let me tell you, I feel more confident.  Sure, I’m dressed nicely and am feeling pretty good to start with, but others have noticed in just the span of a day.  People who have never spoken to me saw me today and said “hi” or asked how I was doing; and none of them seemed at all surprised when I said that I was doing quite well.  It was what they expected.

So, here’s my little goal for you: start working on your posture.  If the increase in confidence doesn’t draw your attention, remember that it increases breathing which in turn helps concentration (I’ve never concentrated so well in my experimental psych class as I did today), it strengthens core muscles (tight abs, yo), and it can help prevent back pain.  Those should be some great reasons to start sitting or standing or walking a little better, methinks.

– – –

I do have a lot of goals for myself, though.  None are all that strict, but they are life rules/goals.  They’re things I want to incorporate into my own life in order to live better, and they are not flitty things, either.  They’re very solid and long lasting, which also equates to taking longer to develop.  Like habits, they can take years to set, but once they are there, hopefully they’re there for life.

My first goals started about two years ago with finding myself, which I’ve done a pretty damned good job of.  I’ve found a lot of who I am and a lot of who I want to be which allows me to move on to the next step.

My next step was to start changing some physically.  For starters, I chopped off all of my hair and donated it a year and a half ago, which allowed me to really think about what I wanted.  Of course, it was obvious that I wanted my long hair back, but I was able to start new with growing it out.  I also found what my personal styles were and have been slowly changing what I where and how I dress in order to more readily reflect that.  I also worked a lot on health with becoming a vegetarian, though I’m by no means finished with my eating habits.  I’m still interested in filtering out a lot of the sugars, salts, fats, and non-real things that I eat.  And I’ve also aided health with more stretching and yoga, though it’s still a work in progress.  Really, all of those are works in progress.

My other big goals lie in personality and speech.  I’m often annoyed with myself and the way that I carry on talking forever when half of what I say is meaningless, so I’ve started to work on Meaningful Speech.  There was a section about it in my spirituality text book, and I was incredibly intrigued.  The entry speaks about becoming more aware of your thoughts and then translating that into words.  Or, you could look at it as becoming more aware of what you’re saying and seeing if your mind is even playing a part in this process.  For me, I often just say things to say things.  Like, I’ll make too many comments while watching a movie or just say phrases and jokes that we’d be just fine without hearing.  So, I’ve started working on that.  By no means have I shown any improvement, but I have been catching myself more often.  I spoke to my spirituality teacher about that today, and we agreed that it was a step in the right direction.  Who knows, maybe in a year or two, I’ll be saying things that are more short, precise, to the point, and meaningful.  We’ll see how that works.

– – –

As we all know, mental health intrigues the fuck out of me.  It’s why I’m a psychology major, after all, and I’ve found that I like applying my skills a little early.  So, I meandered onto Yahoo Answers today and started giving advice and counselling to those with mental issues, and I found myself enjoying the different pieces of advice that I could give.  It helped me realise that I’ve learned quite a bit and can already do some things to make a difference.  Sure, most of my posts said that I was a student and recommended going to a psychiatrist/counsellor/psychologist, but I was able to give a whole lot of recommendations and advice that astounded me.  A year ago, I couldn’t have told anyone nearly this much.  Now, things are a little different.  I can’t wait to see what it’s like in another year, or heavens-to-Betsy, in three years.

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The next section has been deleted.  Sorry.

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