Sunday, February 11, 2024

Shining Authentically

I'm going to get real honest in this post. I have felt a desire to do this for a while now because I really dislike the inauthenticity that makes up most of social media these days. I think we all know deep down that a majority of what we see is just for the camera, but it still makes us compare ourselves to what we are viewing. Just last week, I started to clean up accounts that I view and follow on Instagram and Facebook. I want to see people being their real selves! 

Today, I had a tarot reading from an online friend and was amazed to see how much it lined up with my current desire to be real with my friends & family. (She nailed the last two readings she has done for me as well!) 

What to focus on this year: Queen of Wands.
This is the year to stop caring about what people think of you. Truly confident in who you are. Don’t hide your enthusiasm or your true self, for fear of what people think. Learn to be comfortable with yourself. Become open to the possibilities that people might love you for exactly who you are. Shine authentically and without apology.

In addition, my natal horoscope had this to say tonight, "You will have to do something that you don’t normally do or that you’ve never done before. Do it—even if you struggle."

So, here we go ... I have ALWAYS been uncomfortable with who I am and have constantly worried about what others think of me ... but I hope things change this year. I want to finally just be me without worry for what others think. If people don't like the "real" me, then that's fine. I can live with that. 

I saw this on Instagram last month and it also spoke to me.
While things on my social media may look all peaches and cream, they are not. I have a LOT of medical conditions that have a big impact on my day-to-day functioning and mood. Some of you may know that I deal with these issues, but most people probably don't have a clue. I'm going to list them in the order of how long I've been dealing with each diagnosis. A ** indicates that I am taking medication or vitamins/supplements to help. (You should see the pile 'o pills I take morning and night! 😆)
  1. Hypothyroidism **
  2. Insulin resistance (I am not considered diabetic) **
  3. High cholesterol **
  4. Depression **
  5. Anemia **
  6. GERD (heartburn, reflux) **
  7. Food sensitivities which end up as rashes, hives, upset stomach (I do limit the suspected foods that give me issues even though skin testing & bloodwork for food allergies show ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!)
  8. Irritable bowel 
  9. Asthma
  10. Restless leg **
  11. Menopause - hot flashes, insomnia, night sweats, etc. **
  12. Chronic back & neck pain - I don't take anything for this, but see next note
  13. Possible fibromyalgia - the medicine that helps my back pain is often used for fibromyalgia, but I can't take it as it doesn't make me feel good during the day
  14. ADHD **
  15. Anxiety - I have had this most of my adult life, but didn't term it as anxiety
  16. Trigger finger - this just started a few weeks ago in a finger that I injured in a fall about 6 years ago!
Some days are good, some days are not and many are in between. I am lucky to have medical insurance to help pay for my care and medication. I have family who understands my feelings and moods and are patient with me on my bad days. I am very grateful that I am not dealing with cancer or some illness that has me in and out of the hospital. HOWEVER, that doesn't take away from the fact that this is my "battle" day in and day out and I often want it all to just go away so that I can feel "normal."

So, please know that, if you are dealing with chronic medical issues, I SEE YOU and I am here for you if you ever need an understanding ear, or need to vent/let off steam or whatever! I am happy to help you fight your battle 💕. 

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Struggling through

Since I last posted, I've had stuff that I've wanted to share here but I honestly couldn't find the motivation to sit down and put a post together. 

Then I saw this graphic today and realized that there hasn't been much sunshine lately. There are so many things that I do like about the darkest months of winter, but I do need some sunshine now and then! Hopefully, I'll get some motivation back as the weather warms up in the coming months and the sun remembers to pop out and visit us a bit more!

My biggest struggle right now is working through a huge list of healthy habits that I need to get back to and make time for. I can honestly admit that I waste time each day that could be put towards establishing these habits. My plan is to work through this list one habit at a time and not try to do them all at once. Hopefully, by the end of the year, I'll be in a better place than I am now.

I was hoping to be exercising a bit by now as well, but that hasn't happened. I really want to just start lifting weights again as I can tell I've lost strength since I left Planet Fitness a year ago. I'm working through that now. I also know I need to get in some cardio for my heart health, too. But my main thought about all of this is "bleh ... don't wanna do it" ... just being honest.

So, sorry this isn't a very upbeat post ... but it is what is on my mind lately. I have a lot of "should do's" on my mind that are fighting with my energy and motivation levels. I guess we'll see who wins in the coming weeks LOL!

Tuesday, January 9, 2024

Planning, Organization and Procrastination

Hello again!

I love to plan, organize and write lists, but I am also a big procrastinator! I am spending these first two weeks of January working through a big to-do list of a bunch of tasks that I just never got around to last year. I have been writing up my crochet plans & goals and I also have plans for a healthier me by the end of 2024. I will be done with this planning stage by the end of the week and will then start working towards achieving the goals I have set for myself.

Many people with ADHD have "executive dysfunction" and so have problems with

  • organization
  • time management
  • chronic forgetfulness
  • procrastination
(What is "executive dysfunction?" ... read this article for more information.)

Keeping lists reminds me of the things I need to focus on and not forget. I am lucky that writing lists and using daily planners and/or yearly calendars has been my main coping method for over 40 years so that only procrastination remains one of my issues. Now that I am home full-time, it is even easier to procrastinate and not use my time wisely. So, to make sure that I keep up with everything, I use MULTIPLE methods which include
  • my Google calendar on my phone - for notifications
  • a daily planner - for detailed to-do lists
  • a wall calendar - for appointments, etc.
  • my email inbox - for reminders when I'm not near my planner
I see my wall calendar as soon as I walk into the kitchen each morning. This is good for me so that I can quickly note anything that is happening that day. I also write down appointments & meetings for Jim, in red ink, so that they stand out for both of us. 

My inexpensive daily planner, with large areas for each day, allows me to note what I need to do that day (house cleaning, phone calls to make, errands to run, things to buy, etc). I finally found the perfect daily planner this year! It has monthly tabs so that I can quickly jot down future items. I love the Priorities section so that I can narrow down my focuses for the week.

I put LOTS of notification reminders in my Google calendar so that I don't forget important things. I mostly use it for financial updates, so it notifies me when Jim gets paid or when big bills, like the mortgage, are being auto-debited. It is also handy when I use it to remind me of coupons or subscriptions that are expiring. I will set reminders several weeks in advance of those dates.

Finally, if I'm away from home, I'll send myself email reminders to transfer to my calendar and/or planner when I get home. I also keep important emails in my inbox until I've dealt with that issue. Sometimes, the procrastination hits hard and emails remain visible for months LOL!

Now to deal with the topic of procrastination. I have never understood why I do this, but I have always attributed it to a flaw in my personality and have felt a ton of guilt about not attending to something right away. Understand that NOONE else was worrying about the fact that it seemed to take forever for me to "do something!" But my head was full of very negative thoughts about myself for not getting stuff done in a timely manner. 

I have realized that I usually procrastinate when I feel overwhelmed (like I have too many tasks that need attending to) or when a task seems boring/trivial. I've always been "ok" with house cleaning. It's definitely not my favorite thing, and many people are way more fastidious than I am. Now, I've never had a "dirty" home, but I do have sort of a "it's good enough" attitude about it. It's just that when it comes to house cleaning, there is always something else that seems more fun to do with my time. However, once we had kids, keeping a clean house was more important, for safety and hygienic reasons. So, I decided to assign certain tasks for each day of the week. Doing it this way means I usually only spend an hour or so daily keeping up the house and this makes me VERY happy! 

If you know of anyone with ADHD that struggles with any of the issues mentioned above, please be kind and work with them to find a method or two that will help them with these concerns. I promise you that they know WHAT they are (not) doing, but probably do not understand the WHYs of the situation. I hope I can help others by sharing what I have learned about myself!

Thursday, January 4, 2024

Another new year!

I've decided to start posting on my blog again because I often find myself wanting to share something that I just don't feel is appropriate for social media. As a matter of fact, I'm really not liking social media much anymore and will probably only keep it for the ease of quick posts to keep up with my long-distance family. The funny thing is that I am sitting here trying to decide what to post about and there are a bazillion ideas running through my head ... welcome to my new world of ADHD - LOL! I finally decided to share a brief intro to topics I'll be focusing on this year here on my blog.


Finally figuring out that I have ADHD has been a tremendous weight off of my shoulders. I now understand myself so much better! I should have known I had it because both of my children have it and I'm pretty sure my dad has it, but females are underdiagnosed for ADHD. This graphic from an Instagram post really gave me pause as I identify with so many of them. However, I do not have #1 at all as I'm never late!

I am now taking Adderall and it has helped me so much! This time last year I was miserable, but my wonderful FNP listened to me and agreed to try medication. I still have "symptoms" of ADHD, especially procrastinating, but I'm now able to focus more and get through my to-do list in my daily planner and NO MORE AFTERNOON NAPS!! I also have anxiety, am empathic/sensitive & introverted ... I'll share more about that as well in future posts. 

I quit working when we had our first child, so learning how to budget our money, invest in a 401K and stretch a dollar became a bit of a game for me. We hardly ever pay full price for anything. My parents never seemed to worry about money. They pretty much bought whatever they wanted and budgeting or saving money or shopping sales just wasn't a thing in my household. I later learned that they used their credit cards for everything and pretty much carried a balance on them for most of their married life. So, I had to teach myself what to do and I am pretty proud of what Jim and I have achieved thus far in our life together!

In future posts, I'll share some good things that I have learned in almost 34 years of marriage. I also want to dive into a discussion on friendships. I really struggle with maintaining friendships. Oh, I have people in my life that I call friends and that I would do anything for and I know they would do anything for me if I needed their help. I truly value these people. But since my mom died in 2019, I haven't had anybody that I can call during the day just to chat or vent or whatever. I am lucky to be at home now, but my friends work and they have other things going on in their lives. So poor Jim has to listen to me now LOL! More on this topic coming up ...

For the last 15 years or so, I've been trying to stay as healthy as I can so that I can age well. I have insulin resistance (pre-diabetes that WILL become diabetes some day), hypothyroidism, depression & anxiety, IBS and possibly fibromyalgia. I also deal with lots of food issues/sensitivities. I take medication for several of these issues. Eating is a chore for me - more on that soon. I was doing pretty well exercising regularly until Covid hit early 2020. I can't believe it's already 4 years and I haven't gotten back into a good routine. I did go back to Planet Fitness in 2022, but then I had gallbladder surgery that December and couldn't exercise for 2 months, so I fell off the bandwagon again. 

I did FINALLY, after like 10 years of trying, figure out how to eat WITHOUT exercising to lose weight. I lost around 17lbs in 2023 and I have about 10 more to go in 2024. So, my focus for this year is to get back to lifting weights, walking more, and finetuning my food choices for overall better health.

I'm sure that there will be other topics that I'll talk about as well, so who knows what you'll find posted next! I do not have a schedule set for posting, but I do plan to write about something each week. There is a button in the left sidebar where you can subscribe to my posts, if you wish. I look forward to sharing more about myself this year and I hope that you feel free to leave a comment, if you feel led, so that we can learn more about each other in 2024!