I’m a woman of many interests and aptitudes, and have experienced a lot of life in quite a few locations over the years.

I’m here to talk about disability, Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, pain, and the tools and methods I use to enjoy a life that includes them. Some of those tools, such as yoga and having dogs, go beyond just techniques for helping with my pain condition, and have become such important parts of my life that I can’t imagine myself without them.

One of the things that hasn’t changed for me since I got injured is that I’m always looking for a creative outlet. Most recently, I taught myself to knit, but as time goes by you will see other aspects of my creativity, both new interests and old friends, as I explore how to connect and communicate with others.

Finally, I’m here for community and want to know more about what that means on the internet. I want a dialogue, a multilogue, not just a monologue.

All I ask is that you try to stay on-topic (unless the off-topic gets really interesting, in which case I’ll give my blessing) and speak with respect to all fellow readers and writers–no matter how incorrect you think they might be. I hope further specific guidelines will not be necessary.Β  I want this to be a safe place to hear and be heard.

Welcome, and Namaste!

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34 responses »

  1. Hi Jessica,
    My name is Scott and you posted on my daughters blog, Scrat, thanks for the encouraging words and I just wanted to ask you if you have tryed hypnotherapy and if you did, did you have any positive results from it? Right now we are starting that and hoping for the best.
    Thanks again we hope the best for you!!

    • HI Scott! I have not tried hypnotherapy, but I am becoming interested in it. I have a tendency to be super-protective of my inner self, which means instead of relaxing I start to get nervous, so I’d be a really hard person to hypnotize. But I just watched a BBC program that showed some incredible results with pain and hypnosis, so the potential for helping is huge! Please let me know how Scrat’s hypnotherapy goes.

      I just made a medications adjustment that is helping enormously, so life is pretty good right now!

  2. Your blog looks very interesting and I want to take a bigger look around. I have never heard of Comples Regional Pain Syndrome. . .Myself, I had a double lung transplant 7 years ago. I am so blessed to have gotten that second chance at life. I am interested in how you are maintaining your spirit and lifestyle.

    God Bless,
    Sandy O

    • Wow, Sandy, what an amazing thing to get a new set of lungs! Thanks so much for stopping by. I do put a lot of energy back into my own health and wellbeing, but I also have to feel like I’m of benefit to others to feel truly myself. It’s been a long journey but I am learning so much.

  3. Hi Jessica. Thanks for visiting my blog and for introducing me to CRPS. Life has handed you a challenge which you seem to be rising to. I wish you all the luck in the world.

  4. Amazing and inspiring. You are indeed courageous – courage and determination are two virtues that can overcome immense odds. May I add a favorite quote of mine β€œIf you can find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere.” So nice to know you are into Yoga and perhaps pranayam too.

    Good wishes coming your way.
    Namaste πŸ™‚

    • Yoga and mindfulness meditations are the most helpful of all the new things I’ve learned since my injury–I’m interested in all the aspects of yoga, not just the hatha yoga, but I’m still not very advanced in my study. I just got a copy of the yoga sutras so I’m looking forward to exploring those (slowly so as not to get too much into my upper chakras where I tend to spend a little too much time as it is =-)

      Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Sorry for the pain you are in. I know nerve pain as I lived with it for a few years and it made me want to die. It still comes back on and off, and when it does i feel the panic. i can’t imagine what you live with daily.
    my pain was a burning in my face ( i think it was actually from a tooth and grinding) you know what the doc did? she gave me a face cream..ha she didn’t even listen long enough for me to tell her it wasn’t my face…it caused my face to turn beat red and sweat, my hands would turn ice cold. It’s better now, like I said has been showing up again lately.
    what’s your pain like?

    • My usual CRPS pain is a dull neverending ache in my right leg with stabby pains in my ankle and burning skin over the outside of my foot and lower leg. Sometimes it spreads from my ankle to my whole body. Lately, I’m having withdrawal pain which is like every joint is full of broken glass and every muscle has a big bruise. Not fun but it will sure be nice to have my breakthrough meds work well again once it’s over with.

      I’ve gotten hot flashes and sweats from Cymbalta (and once I got over the acclimation period for Cymbalta, I now sweat more and more easily all the time). I get this slow wave of beet red sunburny-feeling to my skin that starts at my scalp and works its way down to my toes and then disappears in the same direction. The whole thing takes about 90 minutes and is extremely embarassing as well as uncomfortable, and it only started after I started the Lyrica so I”m pretty sure it’s a Lyrica side effect.

      So I’m wondering if there’s a med you’re on that might be responsible for your sweats. Although I think your tooth is also a likely culprit–with the cold hands and sweats it could definitely be sympathetic nerve pain, maybe even from your neck. Doctors can be so frustrating when they don’t listen to their patients! But if you keep looking, you’ll find one that will listen and that makes all the difference. Do you have panic attacks or anything that triggers your nerve pain flares? It might help to keep a journal about them and see if any patterns show up. My pain is very responsive to my emotions.

      So glad you stopped by, I’ll be following your blog for sure!

      • Hey,

        Wow torture you live with! I do know that it all started three months after I got married. I have a wonderful Hubby, but our first year was rough, it started just before that time of the month at first and lasted through it. then stopped then it got to the point where it was all the time. I know I grind and grit my teeth and i know that when years later when the tooth that i think was the issue was ground down it stopped.
        now it’s coming back again just before that time of tI Ihe month. we have been dealing with a lot of life changing things. moved 4 times in 2,5 years from three Provinces, left the best friends i ever made, disallowed my family in my life permanently, dealing with major stuff in therapy, bought a house…dog got viciously attacked but two big dogs, Hubby was out of work for two years, got new job far away, lived a part for three weeks at a time because of it…now he is home for one week gone for one week…so i wonder if it’s connected to stress..
        you talked that you get burning pain that turns you red too..so that is nerve pain? when it’s bad it’s bad eh?!
        I also went through a whole bunch of medication changes which put me through hell and took me over a year to recover from..i’m off them all now except for my regular anti consultants (i have epilepsy)
        what do you find works best for nerve pain?
        Sorry for rambling on here! thank you so much for the follow and all the info! xo

      • Hey!
        I couldn’t help but notice this comment, I’m sorry to just burst in!

        The first thing I noticed was the cold hands (for those who do NOT have CRPS, that sounds like a circulation problem ((I’ve had that my entire life-hands and feet! Eeek!)) I’m not a doctor though.. But I wanted to throw that out there)

        Otherwise.. The hot flushed feeling in your face (if you have CRPS) … Is most likely due to the CRPS. Same with the cold sweats/hot flashes/ sweats/etc… One minute my whole body will be cherry red,sweating, hotter than the sun. And sometimes, I’ll be cold too? It’s the weirdest feeling!
        There are other times when I will be in a full on flare… And you can physically watch my feet turn cherry red and nasty…10min later..you can literally watch it turn to a purple/blue color! Right before your eyes! That feels like frost bite. (So far,I only noticed that in the winter time. But this Summer will be summer #2 so I’m going to observe more then.)

        I used to take cymbalta when I was diagnosed with Fibro in 2007 after a car accident. I personally had a horrible experience with it. But,it does work wonders on many! I do take Lyrica though. How high of a dose can you take?
        I can only get up to 100-150mg a day,if I’m lucky.. It makes me feel drunk (a weird bad drunk!) if I increase the dose.

        I always tell myself that I’m a 25 yr old going through menopause (( just in terms of the hot flashes though!))
        There are certain tips and tricks I’ve developed over the past 6 months that I’m going to be adding to my blog soon! πŸ™‚

        My #1 thing is either an ace bandage or a compression sock (if it’s in your feet/ankle)
        Another is using cotton balls to desensitize the affected area..then slowly work your way up to a fluffy sock,then to a paper towel… And eventually a towel (not the harsh ones..but the smoother ones)
        But I swear,those cotton balls! Really helped me to get through the desensitization excerises!

        I hope all is well for everyone!
        Heather Lynn

        • Never apologize for commenting, that’s my favorite thing! =-)

          You know, my CRPS skin color changes have always been subtle and have pretty much stopped happening by now. I see this as a downside, since the pain is the same but it’s so much harder to SHOW people, like doctors, that I’m not making it up!

          I take 300mg of Lyrica a day, which is the max my doctor is comfortable with. I worked up to it slowly but I actually tolerate it a lot better than I did the gabapentin, which made me sleep without rolling over and wake up with my circulation cut off.

          I LOVE my knee-high compression toe-socks! I haven’t done a ton of skin desensitizing, although one of my dogs regularly licks my feet and ankle so I figure that’s my desens work. I don’t have enough skin sensitivity to keep me from wearing socks and shoes, but if that ever does get bad enough to interfere with wearing them I’ll go for the cotton balls!

  6. Hi Jessica,

    It is great to find your blog and to see your passion for sharing your knowledge reflected in it. Keep the great work up!

    I would like to thank you for following my blog. I hope the short stories and poetry that I have been showcasing in my blog are not disappointing for you. Thank you again, many blessings and much love to you. πŸ™‚

    Subhan Zein

  7. Hello Jessica,

    I know it is the 13th of January, but I hope it is not too late to wish you a wonderful New Year. May 2013 bring you more happiness, love, health, and success. Many blessings and much love to you. πŸ™‚

    Subhan Zein

    • Of course not too late! I never do anything on time anyway =-) Or you could be 6 weeks early…for the Lunar New Year! =-)

      Either way, I hope you have a wonderful 2013 as well Subhan!!

  8. Hi Jessica, thank you for your blog – glad I found you, I have just started my own blog about CRPS so it would be great if you could have a look and see what you think. I hope today is a good one for you and thanks for your blog πŸ™‚

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