April 10, 2021

Adrenalawareness

It is 6:39 AM and I just spent another sleepless night.  Once I read the forecast for southeastern Manitoba the sleepless night made more sense.  At 4:27 AM CDT Saturday 10 April 2021 a special weather statement was issued for southeatern Manitoba.  A pair of low pressure systems will merge to bring wintery weather back to southern Manitoba on Monday and Tuesday.  One weather system will approach from the west while a second moves over the Great Lakes. The combination will bring snow and much cooler temperatures to southern Manitoba Monday and Tuesday.  Snowfall amounts are particularly uncertain.  At this time, snowfall totals of 5 to 20 cm are possible.

The National Adrenal Diseases Foundation (NADF) is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing information, education, and support to patients diagnosed with adrenal diseases such as Addison’s disease, Cushing’s syndrome, and congenital adrenal hyperplasia. The foundation also provides support and information to family members, medical professionals and caregivers. The foundation connects patients with the 30 NADF affiliated support groups across the nation. Established in 1985, NADF provides quarterly newsletters, educational pamphlets and fact sheets.

National Adrenal Diseases Foundation  (NADF)  P.O. Box 566
Lake Zurich, IL 60047
Telephone: +1-(847) 726-9010
E-mail: nadfmail@nadf.us
Website: https://www.nadf.us

JaniceJudgeandDexterMy dear friend, Janice Judge is the co-ordinator for the South New Jersey Support Group Meeting.  The next meeting is on Friday, April 23rd at 7:00 EST.  Contact Janice to join:  janipt@comcast.net. 

JanJudge

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April 9, 2021

ApriladrenalawareneddGood afternoon to my family and friends.  Sitting at my desk in the den I am watching the rain clouds pass by without shedding a drop.  The sun is trying to peak through the clouds but hopefully rain will win in the end.  Farmers desperately need the rain as well as the firefighters who are fighting the many brush fires that are burning in Manitoba.  

Public health officials have confirmed 179 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba.  Public health officials announced today that 37 new screened or sequenced cases of the variants of concern have been detected in Manitoba.  My husband and I were fortunate and got our vaccinations Wednesday afternoon at the Pat Porter Centre in Steinbach.  A sore arm and fatigue are the only side effects that we have felt so far.  Since I am plagued with fatigue on a daily basis I cannot in all honesty blame the vaccine.  My husband insists that the Moderna vaccine played a huge role in clearing up a bladder infection that had been bothering him for several weeks.  The symptoms of the infection began to clear up the day following his vaccination.  In a news broadcast a few days ago we were informed that the Pop-Up Vaccination centres would run out of vaccine by April 15th.  Our provincial response level is listed as critical.  The province of Manitoba moved to the Critical level (red) on November 12, 2020 and this has remained in effect until now.  The province has decided to maintain this level of Critical response to protect it’s citizens.  The nurse who gave me my vaccination spent some time explaining what to expect from the Moderna vaccine.  I had no idea that having an autoimmune disease could potentially reduce the effectiveness of the vaccine. 

Vaccineinformation

Easter has come and gone and we decided that it was in our best interest not to gather as a family.  It was a bitter disappointment but my husband and I were getting our vaccinations within three days so we decided to forego a gathering.  We had originally planned on celebrating my birthday, our grandson’s birthday (April 5th) and Easter on April 4th.  However, we have now decided to celebrate the three birthdays (our granddaughter – in -law has a birthday on April 25th) on April 25th.  

Two things happened every Easter at my childhood home.  Weather permitting my dad wouldpaska hide our Easter baskets outside.  If winter decided to keep spring at bay he hid the baskets inside.  We would each get a chocolate Easter bunny with an assortment of candy and a gift.  The other “thing” was eating the incredible tasty Paska my mom would bake and decorate with icing and sprinkles.  Coming back to the Easter basket hunt, my dad insisted on keeping up this tradition even after we girls were married.  He would hide the baskets for his seven grandchildren and their spouses, four great grandchildren as well as for his five daughters and their husbands.  The Easter basket hunt would take place on Easter  Sunday afternoon.  

IMG-2430 (2)This past week I decided I had enough of sitting indoors so I made an appointment to have my hair cut and coloured.  The hairdressers at the salon I went to were very careful and obeyed the COVID restrictions.  On the spur of the moment I decided to again try a purple dye in my hair and was very happy with the outcome.  Just because I am 73 doesn’t mean I have to forego purple hair.  

April is Adrenal Awareness month. National Adrenal Disease Awareness.   My dear friend Janice is the co-ordinator for the South New Jersey Support Group Zoom Meeting.  The meeting will take place on Friday, April 23rd at 7:00 PM EST.  Contact Janice to join at janipt@comcast.net. 

Patches and Gaby spent an afternoon at the groomers this past week.  Their “other mom” Fran was coming out to see them.  Fran was their “first mom” but when she got sick and became unable to care for them we were lucky to be chosen as their adoptive parents.  Patches and Gaby have always seemed happy in our home but they certainly remember Fran. 

IMG_2325IMG_2329IMG_2344IMG_2339 

Before I close I would like to wish my readers a belated Happy Easter.  Please take care and keep safe.

To view Easter Card click on the link below:

https://www.jacquielawson.com/ecard/pickup/r0bef0a4d9f6b4375881a285dab16bc2b?source=jl999&utm_medium=pickup&utm_source=share&utm_campaign=receiver

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March 26, 2021

It is almost the end of March.  Our temperatures are still fluctuating too much which plays havoc with my old bones.   All our snow was gone but it snowed overnight.  We need several days of constant rain.  The farmers are worried about a drought this summer.

Because of COVID19 Code Red restrictions, the hairdressers and beauty salons have been unable to open their shops until recently.  I decided I might as well try out different colours and styles while I am still able to do so.  I chose purple mixed with the usual dark brown and really like the end result.  The reason I did not post a view of my face is that my eyes are swollen and  Rosacea has gone on a rampage on my face.  One truly has to wonder how many autoimmune diseases can attack one person.  So far I have Graves’ Disease, Arthritis, Liver Disease, Lichen sclerosus, flareups of Menniere’s Disease, and the list goes on.

As if I do not have enough medical issues I was recently diagnosed with Lichen sclerosus.  It started with a suspicious-looking, painful lump in an unmentionable area of my body.  When it would flare up it would bleed.  I did nothing about this problem for too long.  When I called my gynecologist for an appointment on a Friday afternoon her nurse booked me in on February 22nd which was the following Monday afternoon.  I must mention here that I have an amazing gynecologist by the name of Dr. Lucy Rogozinska.  She is incredibly busy but absolutely worth the wait for appointments.  However, when she feels that a patient’s problem could be serious she will see you within a day or two.   Dr. Rogozinska did a biopsy of the lump and told me that the results would take four to five weeks.  She booked a phone appointment for March 23rd.  Words cannot describe the immense relief I felt when Dr. Rogozinska called to tell me that the biopsy was benign and that I had a treatable condition known as Lichen Sclerosus.

According to the NORD website and the Mayo Clinic website, and I quote, Lichen sclerosus is a chronic inflammatory skin disorder that most commonly affects women before puberty or after menopause. Although rare, it can also be seen in men.  Lichen sclerosus is characterized by skin changes of the external genitalia.  Other parts of the body may also be affected. In fact, this skin condition can affect any skin surface. Some patients with lichen sclerosus do not have any symptoms, whereas others experience intense itching, discomfort and/or erosions/ulcers. Lichen sclerosus typically has a remitting relapsing course that is complicated by permanent scarring of the affected areas. Current research supports that it is caused by a combination of a dysfunction of the immunological system and genetic factors. The understanding of the causes of this disorder is still incomplete. The mainstay of treatment is potent topical steroids in the case of genital involvement in women. Studies have shown that regular use of potent topical steroids in women prevents the problems of scarring and decreases the risk of skin cancer developing in the area of lichen sclerosus.   Because lichen sclerosus is associated with an increased risk of squamous cell carcinoma in women with genital involvement, it is important for those affected to have lifelong screening examinations as well as continued treatment to keep the disorder under control.

Rarely, lichen sclerosus can also affect other areas of the skin such as the breast, wrists, shoulder, neck, back, thigh, and mouth.

The exact cause of lichen sclerosus is not known. Most research indicates it is an autoimmune condition. Autoimmune disorders arise when the body’s natural defenses against “foreign” or invading organisms (e.g., antibodies) begin to attack healthy tissue for unknown reasons. Some cases of lichen sclerosus may be linked to the formation of certain antibodies (e.g. a thyroid protein (thyroglobulin), or certain cells that line the walls of organs).

People with mild lichen sclerosus may have no signs or symptoms. Signs and symptoms usually affect the skin of the genital and anal areas, but may also affect the skin of the upper body, upper arms and breasts. They may include:

Redness

Itching (pruritus), which can be severe

Discomfort or pain

Smooth white patches on your skin

Blotchy, wrinkled patches

Tearing or bleeding

In severe cases, bleeding, blistering or ulcerated sores

See your doctor if you have signs and symptoms common to Lichen sclerosus.  If you’ve already been diagnosed with lichen sclerosus, see your doctor every six to 12 months to be checked for any skin changes or treatment side effects.

For more information on this condition check out the NORD website at Rare Diseases Lichen Sclerosus; the Mayo Clinic website at Mayo Clinic Lichen Sclerosus.

After more searching I found pictures that I was absolutely sure I had lost.  I have decided to add a few of these that I took during our month-long stay in Southern California.  We left Edmonton, Alberta, Canada on December 24th, 1976 and arrived in San Fransico, California in the wee hours of the morning on December 25th, 1976.  Prescott and Natasha got a second wind when they realized that there was no snow on the ground.  They spent their first half-hour in California rolling around on the grass.  We were lucky that our trip happened while Peter’s sister and brother-in-law, Alfrieda and Harold with their three children, Jeff, Lorie and Kevin, lived in Reedley, California.   They picked us up early morning at the airport in San Fransico and took us to their house so we could spend Christmas day to New Year’s day with them.  We had a wonderful time checking out the big trees and picking oranges from Harold and Alfrieda’s rental tree.  Peter enjoyed several games of tennis something he could not do during the winter months in Edmonton.  We spent the remaining three weeks in Palo Alto, Los Angles, Wax Museum, Disneyland.  Half Moon Bay, sightseeing among the coastal mountains etc.

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February 21,2021

Don’t give up – remember Moses was once a basket case, too

This has been an incredibly rough couple of weeks. My blood pressure has decided to go as high as 149/90 to as low as 60/40. When it is low I feel like death warmed over. The fatigue I have been experiencing since the late fall of 2020 is much harder to deal with when my blood pressure too low. Enough complaining.

I have finally decided on what to give our grandson for his 26th birthday coming up on April 5th. My dad left me about 12 Norman Rockwell prints. My grandson decided that he would love to have the sports prints framed and hanging on his wall. Our birthday gift will be four of the sports prints framed and ready to hang.

Manitoba seems to be rather slow in providing COVID19 vaccinations for their citizens. Hopefully, our federal government will eventually get their act together and provide us with a safe vaccine. Sadly it seems that playing politics is more important than taking care of the citizens of Canada.

It is back to bed for me. Thank goodness for Amazon.ca books and the Manitoba online library. I have been reading an average of 5 books a week. Please take good care of yourselves, stay safe and enjoy the following.

I love this picture of my mom and my sister. It was taken at the Mennonite Heritage Village Museum in Steinbach, Manitoba. My mom volunteered many hours at the museum which included being a member of the Ladies Auxillary, spinning in the house/barn during the summer months, and teaching the children that participated in school tours during the winter months. She told stories of her life in Russia as a small girl and taught the children how to make schnetki. (Not sure of the spelling). The school tours were geared to Grade Two and Grade Six students.
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February 9, 2021

Bette Ann Bednarick drew a caricature of the Fat Lady. In my opinion, the caricature resembled the Fat Lady perfectly.

Greetings from a very cold Manitoba.  To begin my post today I will give you some idea about the weather conditions we have been facing since late last week.  Friday, February 5th weather announcement included an extreme cold warning.  It continued on to say that a period of severely cold wind chills continues.  This extreme cold will persist for a few days.   An Arctic ridge of high pressure has allowed for a very cold air mass to settle over southern Saskatchewan and southern Manitoba. Along with winds of 10 to 20 km/h, extreme wind chill values between -40 and -50 are expected over most of southern Manitoba and Saskatchewan once again today.  The bitterly cold air will remain over the Prairies for much of the next week.  Extreme cold puts everyone at risk. ¹Steinbachonline

I had a CT scan at St. Boniface hospital on February 6th. The temperature was -28C with a wind chill factor of -41C. There was a 30 km wind.  Waiting rooms are very different in this time of COVID.  During the wait for my CTS can there were only ever 3 people in the waiting room.  We were placed in different corners of the room.  The chairs we sat in were wiped down as soon as we moved to a different location. 

Now begins the wait for results which is always stressful.  After my last two CT scans the result was not a pleasant one.  Thankfully the doctors realized later that the bad results were a mistake.

It has been a really rough couple of weeks health-wise. I will be seeing an endocrinologist and hope I can convince him to up my thyroid meds. My dilemma reminds me of a blog entry I made in 2002. The entry reads as follows: “On June 11, 2002, the College of Physicians & Surgeons of British Columbia succeeded in temporarily suspending the medical license of Dr. Derry, a Victoria, British Columbia MD who has successfully treated about two thousand thyroid patients. His success was often after specialists had been unable to help these patients. The College did this after removing Dr. Derry’s thyroid prescribing privileges in November 2001 and assuring a Supreme Court judge in December 2001 to investigate Dr. Derry’s thyroid treatment practices. Instead of carrying out their court assurances, they looked through files of Dr. Derry’s patients +with other health conditions and used the non-thyroid-related deaths of two patients as grounds for suspending his license.”

Dr. M. Derry listened to how his patients felt and prescribed thyroid medications accordingly. He did not prescribe by the results of a TSH test.

“The College had thus left Dr. Derry without the ability to prescribe thyroid medication for seven months, and then without the means to earn a living. This interim suspension had been planned to coincide shortly before summer when the College Executive Council members would be taking vacations. All this had happened without a fair investigation into Dr. Derry’s treatment and despite his huge success in treating thyroid patients.”

On June 25, a Supreme Court judge, Mr. Justice Pitfield, stated that self-governing bodies must be more accountable. Unless the College holds an investigation into Dr. Derry’s treatment by September 30, 2002, the suspension of Dr. Derry’s thyroid prescribing privileges and medical license will no longer be valid. This investigation, if it takes place, must be based on clear evidence.

The College will tell you that this hearing is about a doctor whose treatment is “dangerous.” Patients of Dr. Derry will tell you that it’s about a witch-hunt of a successful MD who treats patients the way he was taught in medical school because it works—but which doesn’t fall in line with what pharmaceutical companies push or what sometimes misleading lab results may indicate.”

This excerpt was taken from http://www.bites-medical.org/dderry/.

Sunday was apparently not cold enough. I guess we are being tested to see if we could survive the next ice age. The temperature was -31C with a wind chill factor of -42C. Thankfully the wind died down by Monday afternoon.  Monday morning the temperature was -31 C with a wind chill factor of -44C. My poor dogs have to tolerate this weather for as long as it takes them to take care of business. Several school districts have cancelled classes.  Today it was a balmy -23C with a wind chill factor of -32C.  

In closing I wish you all good health.  Keep warm and keep safe.

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January 6, 2021

Христос Рождається’ Khrystos Rozhdayetsia – Merry Christmas Christ is born.

Wishing all my readers a Very Happy New Year.  Today is Ukrainian Christmas Eve.  Orthodox Christmas Eve is Jan. 6, with Christmas Day following on Jan. 7. The difference in date is down to the Orthodox Church continuing to use the Julian calendar, which predates the Gregorian Calendar used in the West.  The Ukrainian song “Shchedryk” became the basis for the world-famous Christmas carol, “Carol of the Bells”. 

I have discovered a new Swedish author, Arnaldur Indridason. Since we are restricted as to where we can go and what we can do I have read four of his books since New Years Day. One has to do what one can to drive the boredom away. Another Swedish author whose books I quite enjoy is Torquil MacLeod.

After a bad experience with a holistic doctor, I stayed away from them. After being plagued with thyroid issues since the fall I decided to do some research and came across Dr. Sten Ekberg. His explanation of TSH numbers was an eye-opener for me. According to Dr. Ekberg, the optimum TSH numbers range from .05 to 1.8. After much experimenting with doses of Synthroid, my optimum number is .01. However, my family doctor feels this number is a danger to me. Quite frankly I would rather give up a year or two of life in order to feel good for as long as possible. Lying in bed all day and sleeping for 18 hours a day is no way to live. I have included Dr. Ekberg’s lecture on optimum TSH numbers. According to YouTube, this video can be shared so I hope I am not ignoring copyright laws.

I would love to hear from any of my readers who are also experiencing difficulty in achieving a TSH number that is the optimum number they need to function normally.  

As of today, Manitoba has 13 new cases of COVID 19. Another 10 Manitobans have died. Our provincial government is extending the provincial wide state of emergency for another 30 days. Please everyone TAKE CARE and KEEP SAFE.

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December 27, 2020

Christmas was different this year but we made the best of the restrictions.  We had a great video chat with our grandson Benjamin and his partner Danika on Christmas Eve.  They opened their gift during this chat and it was almost like we were with them in person.  Hopefully next year we will again celebrate in person.  Their gift to us was an Amazon gift card and we are busy making our order today.  

On Christmas day we chatted with our daughter Natasha and her family.  Natasha and Mike were exhausted after an incredibly busy week with Natasha’s gift basket business.  Natasha’s dad went into Winnipeg for two days during the week before Christmas to help deliver baskets.  Christmas day we also had a video chat with our son and his wife in Seattle.  No snow for them but they had experienced several days of heavy rainfall just before Christmas.  

Peter and I put up a small Christmas tree with lights at my parents’ headstone on Christmas Eve.  I took several pictures that did not turn out that well.  I will post one of them so you get an idea of what I am talking about.  Private individuals and businesses decorate trees around the hospital each Christmas.  The result is really quite beautiful.  I took several pictures on Christmas Eve.

Christmas Day my husband cooked a wonderful Christmas dinner for the two of us.  We also ate too many New Years Cookies which were amazing especially when combined with a Caramel Macchiato coffee from Starbucks.  Portzelkys (New Year’s Cookies) are a Mennonite tradition in our family.  They are only made at New Years’. According to Wiktionary Portzelkys are a Mennonite dish of raisin fritters — fried, roughly ball-shaped pieces of dough with raisins in them — eaten especially on New Year’s Day.  My mom would roll them in icing sugar to make a wonderful glace.

I have been hunting for new authors.  Helen Pearson, a dear friend has been sharing her favourites with me as have a few other readers of my blog and Facebook page.  Last week I discovered another Swedish author by the name of Helene Tursten.  January should see the release of several new books by some of my favourite authors.  Some of them are Reginald Hill, Ann Cleeves, Minette Walters, Martha Grimes, William Kent Kruger, Elizabeth George, Peter Robinson, J.D.Robb and Louise Penny to name a few.  

Before I close I want to wish all my readers a wonderful and Happy New Year.  May 2021 bring you much joy, good health, many blessings and leave you with many memories to cherish.  

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December 18, 2020

Christmas is only seven days away.  This will be a very different Christmas for our family and for all the other families in Manitoba.  During the month of November, Steinbach, Manitoba with an approximate population of 15,000 people had the highest incidence of COVID infections per capita in Canada.  Code Red restrictions have been extended until January 8th.  Family gatherings are not allowed under these restrictions.

Since my husband and I will be celebrating Christmas on our own I decided to forgo decorating my house and yard.  Hopefully, we will be able to manage a Zoom meet up with our children and grandchildren.  Strange world we live in.  Since I did not decorate this year I decided to share some pictures of decorations done in previous years.

COVID is coming closer to home every day. We received news last night that my husband’s sister who has been living in assisted living accomodation has tested positive for COVID 19. She has underlying health issues and the virus has hit her hard. All we can do is keep her in our thoughts and prayers. Sadly visitors are not allowed. It must be so incredibly lonely for people living in similar situations to have to face this virus without the company of family and friends.

A huge thank you to Jacquie Lawson https://www.jacquielawson.com/ for making her amazing cards available to the general public. The cards are beautiful and a yearly subscription is reasonably priced to make it affordable for most people. My health being what it is these days has really hampered my ability to get letters and cards out this Christmas. Thanks to Jacquie Lawson I was able to send out cards via email with room for a short personal message.

Christmas Greetings from our house to your house.

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December 9, 2020

 

 

December 2nd has become an important date in my life and I spend the day in reflection and in remembrance of all the wonderful and precious memories of my mom.  My mom passed away on December 2, 2006.  It was 10:30 AM and the sun was shining through her bedroom window. I still miss her so much. She was a very special mom. When I was little, she would tell me this lovely story. My dad and mom were married for 11 years and had given up on a family of their own. One morning she noticed that the flag on their mailbox at the top of their driveway was facing up. To her surprise, it was a letter from their social worker in Winnipeg telling them that there was a six-month-old baby girl waiting for them. I was told the story about my adoption as one of my bedtime stories from as far back as I can remember. The story I was told is as follows: The next day my mom and dad went into the city and were taken to this house with a huge room filled with babies in cribs. They spent several hours looking around until they saw me and immediately told the social worker that I was the baby they had to have. Needless to say, the story was somewhat exaggerated since prospective parents were never shown a room full of babies to choose from but I loved that story and made me feel very special while I was growing up.

COVID 19 has hit too close to home.  My cousin, Barbra Kroeker, aged 69 years, passed away peacefully after a brief illness with COVID 19 on Monday,  November 23, 2020, at the Bethesda Regional Health Centre.  Her husband Jerry was also admitted to hospital.  Even though he is still very sick he has recovered enough to be allowed to go home.  In the last three weeks at least 8 people we know have passed away and at least that many if not more are sick with this horrible virus.

It is December 8th and only a few weeks until Christmas. Due to the rapid rise of COVID 19 in our province, Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin and Premier Brian Pallister announced Tuesday that Code Red restrictions will continue into January.  A few restrictions have been altered in an attempt to make the Christmas season less restrictive. The province of Manitoba’s COVID 19 information page states that the restrictions will continue that prohibit the sale of non-essential items in stores — but some items, such as school supplies, will be added to the essential list. Holiday-themed items like Christmas decorations can now be sold. As well, thrift shops will be able to open to sell all items in store under the revised orders. But orders that prohibit visitors at private residences, with only a few exceptions, will remain in place — meaning no gatherings in homes for Christmas beyond members of a household. It will be a very lonely Christmas season for many people. Residents of care homes and hospital inpatients will feel the loss of visitors.

For the first time since our wedding, I have decided not to decorate for Christmas. My health at this time leaves me incredibly fatigued so I will take the easy way out. Thank goodness for online stores. I did however notice tonight while trying to place some orders that online stores have limited amounts of certain items and delivery dates into January.  I guess that can be expected since many people will choose to order online this holiday season. Thank goodness I am almost done with my shopping.

My health has certainly been a worry in the last while. For quite some time now I have complained about the mind-numbing fatigue that I experience every day. This last week a new problem was added to my already ridiculously long list of complaints. At times just the effort of walking from the bedroom to the kitchen brings about shortness of breath. Where this is coming from is beyond my comprehension. I saw a cardiologist and had an EKG on March 5th. The EKG came back within normal limits and the cardiologist informed me that he would recommend me for the surgery I should have had months ago. My chest x-ray also came back within normal limits. Another problem that has come to plague me is huge variations in blood pressure. I have been on blood pressure medications since my children were born. I had pre-eclampsia with both pregnancies and at times would have blood pressure readings as high as 223/110.  Thankfully both my babies and I survived but I have been dealing with high blood pressure ever since. The blood pressure medication I am on is called Clasipril. With this medication, my blood pressure hovers between 120/80 to 139/90. After days of hardly getting out of bed because of the fatigue and extreme attacks of dizziness when I tried to get up, I finally realized I needed to check my blood pressure. To my shock, my blood pressure would drop from 139/90 to 120/80 to 110/80 to 108/60 and 104/60. This variation explains one of the reasons for fatigue, dizziness and nausea. I would like to hear from any of you who have had experiences with fluctuating blood pressure. I firmly believe that these problems are directly related to the decrease in my thyroid medication. Once Code Red is lifted I will have to get in touch with my family doctor. He thinks that my numbers are putting me into a hyperthyroid range and that this could shorten my life. I feel that I would rather shorten my life by a few years but have a decent quality of life now instead of living longer but spending that time fighting fatigue and sleeping. I love to read and I used to read at least 4 – 5 books a week. Now I have to fight to stay awake long enough to read for 30 minutes.

Enough complaining.  You may have noticed that I have included the URL and several posts from the mental health site called My Mental Trampoline.   My daughter is the author of this site and the information she shares comes from her experiences dealing with Bipolar disorder.  I am incredibly proud of her and all her accomplishments.  She has not let this disorder rule her life and has fought through each debilitating episode to become a stronger and wiser woman.

Enough rambling for tonight.  I wish you all a wonderful Christmas season.  Try to make the best of this holiday season while dealing with so many restrictions.  The most important thing is to take care of each other and to keep safe.

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November 9, 2020

 

In Canada, we celebrate Remembrance Day on November 11th.

Good evening readers.  I want to take this opportunity to thank those of you who follow my blog.

On November 5th I had my teleconference appointment with my liver specialist Dr. S. Wong.  I am very fortunate and grateful that he is my doctor.  He went over all the blood work that he had ordered prior to this appointment.  All tests were well within normal limits.  My liver function tests normal.  The only problem is the cirrhosis of the liver and that will never go away.  I watch what I eat and hopefully, this will prolong any more negative changes to my liver.  My cirrhosis of the liver is not due to the abuse of alcohol.  As I have mentioned many times in the past I did not drink alcohol because it gave me horrendous migraine headaches.

I have to admit that these last few months have been very depressing.  A close family member who was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder thirty-three years ago is celebrating a milestone birthday this month.  I decided to devote part of this post to this disorder.  Bipolar Disorder impacts the whole family unit.  At times it can become almost impossible to deal with.  Sadly our family is in the estrangement phase and one never knows whether this will last a month or six months.

The following information comes from https://www.betterhelp.com/.  In the manic phase of Bipolar Disorder, a feeling of being in a “high mood” is often described. While most people like the idea of having increased energy or feeling exhilarated, the feelings associated with bipolar mania can be quite severe. Some symptoms include:

  • Impaired judgment
  • Feeling distracted easily
  • A feeling of being invincible, even in dangerous situations
  • Acts of aggression
  • Engaging in risky behaviour, such as substance abuse or sexual promiscuity
  • Inflated sense of self-esteem
  • Rapid speech, often jumping from one topic to another
  • Racing thoughts and bizarre ideas

When the manic phase of Bipolar disorder has subsided the depressive phase occurs. During this stage, the sufferer may experience extreme sadness or hopelessness. Other symptoms include:

  •  Insomnia
  • Feelings of guilt
  • Weight loss or gain
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Low attention span or difficulty remembering things
  • Poor job or school performance

Being diagnosed with a mood disorder can feel overwhelming.

“At times, being bipolar can be an all-consuming challenge, requiring a lot of stamina and even more courage, so if you’re living with this illness and functioning at all, it’s something to be proud of, not ashamed of. They should issue medals along with the steady stream of medication.”- Carrie Fisher

The COVID 19 numbers continue to rise in our province.  Manitoba has announced more than one thousand new COVID-19 cases in the last three days combined.  Code Red restrictions in Manitoba began today.   Keep well and keep safe.

 

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