About Positively Alyssa

I was diagnosed 18 years ago, when I was only 19 years old, with Relapsing Remitting Multiple Sclerosis. I had gone to my eye doctor because I had lost vision in my left eye. Prior to my appointment, I had prepared myself to have the doctor confirm that I would be blind in my left eye and that was all. Never in a million years did I expect to hear the doctor tell me that after consulting with his colleagues, that I need to go for an MRI that day because they were thinking that with my symptoms that I had MS. Just a couple hours later I went to get the life altering MRI. I remember that phone call like it was yesterday. My eye doctor called me from his home at 9:30 at night to confirm what they suspected, I in fact had MS. He immediately referred me to a specialist he knew and I was able to get in to see him that same week. Luckily, after a round of steroids, my vision came back in my eye just leaving me with leg pain that would continue to be part of my life. Through the years I have tried numerous different medications that are meant to slow the progression of the disease down. I was never good at the injections and it wasn't because of the needle, it was because the medication burned like fire going in. Still after all these years I still go through my battles of denial, anger, frustration and sadness. However, I have always said that I would NEVER allow MS to control my life but I would control the disease. For the most part, I have been pretty successful with that. I mean we all have our bad days but it doesn't make the situation any better. With this blog I am hoping that with my experiences, endless amounts of research and a powerful fight i me that I can not only help others going through this but that I can learn from others as well. Living with the ups and downs of MS can be challenging but the power of the mind can beat anything that is thrown our way!

Somewhere between lonely

lonelinessThere are times during our lifetime we may feel extremely lonely because we think that no one really understands what we are fighting against. There might be some situations that we just do not want to talk about anything because it is too painful to relive. Has there ever been a time when you were in a room full of other people, but yet you still felt so lonely? I often wonder if it is normal to feel lonely when I am actually not really alone. It even sounds silly when I read what I just wrote, but it is the way I feel sometimes, especially lately. I think there are times that I get so lost in my own thoughts, which honestly are normally unhealthy stress points, but I do not have a desire to talk at all because it is way too frustrating. In fact during those lost moments, I just want to sit in complete silence as I try to wrap my mind around all the turmoil of life! Whether it was supposed to be or not, life is a challenge that just keeps going without giving us a break to recuperate from what we have already dealt with.

I do believe that sometimes life can become SO overwhelmingly stressful and it feels likeoverwhelmed there is just no way out of those moments. Why is it the great and delightful moments in life go by so incredibly fast, but the difficult times seem to drag on FOREVER!? I remember my wedding day that was almost 7 years ago, it was one of the happiest days of my life and it went by in the blink of an eye. Then the day the doctor told me I had MS, which was 18 years ago seemed to have lasted forever! I can still see and feel myself in the room with my old doctor and listening to him say, “Alyssa, you have Multiple Sclerosis”, but all the words after that are a blur. It seems as though the bad times in our lifetime taint our views on life in general and it just leaves a permanent scar that never truly heals.

Do you ever want to become a recluse, just to escape all the craziness of the world we live in? Living in solitude can become depressing and therefore is not healthy at all! On aristotle1the flip side of that, living in a world that has so much negativity is not healthy either! It is a catch 22 with how to proceed. I have tried to convince myself that one smile can go along way and if everyone could just adopt that concept there would be a lot more happiness surrounding all of us. Even though I might be feeling a little down right now, I do still believe smiles go so much further than anyone realizes.

Of course right now I am drowning in my thoughts about what the MRI results are going to be. Then I have a moment of clarity and know that there is absolutely nothing at all I can do to change what my results will tell me on Thursday. So why in the world am I unable to let these negative thoughts go? I think that is the million dollar question that might never be answered!

Y’all know me by now and know that I pride myself on thinking more on the positive051aa4b37f544a9783141575bb01c1dd61b51b-wm.jpg side of things. This is just a phase of negativity that will clear up as it always does. Things could be worse than they are, but my poor mind has been SO overwhelmed with stress. It honestly feels like I have been engulfed in way too many decisions and changes that need to be made that it is hard to breath sometimes. I try to handle one moment at a time, but then more thoughts pop up in my mind making it go into a tail spin!

Thank you for reading my random thoughts of the day or I guess I should say of my weekend. I am terribly sorry for all the negative thoughts, but I will say writing my feelings out helps so much! Tomorrow is another day and things will hopefully be much brighter. The countdown is on for when I get to hear my MRI results, good or bad I will handle them with grace and dignity. I will not go into the appointment with all my negative thoughts, but I will be calm and ready for anything. I hope y’all enjoy the rest of what is left of the weekend! As always, please remember that no matter what I might be going through, I am always sending y’all LOTS of love❤ and comfort!

My signature heart

❤Always, Alyssa❤

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Brain MRI Day

good afternoonGood afternoon y’all! I hope your weekend is starting off wonderfully! Last night I was able to have my much-needed and dreaded brain MRI. Even though over my 18 years with Multiple Sclerosis I have had SO many MRI’s, I was still extremely nervous! However, if I am being 100% honest I am WAY more nervous about getting the results next week! The waiting period will be brutal because my mind will go in a million different directions and most of those directions lead to the negative thoughts. I am trying to be logical, which is not always easy for me because I know there is no amount of stress or worrying that will change what these results are going to show and all that worrying will just add stress to my life leading to even more PAIN!  

With all the MRI’s I have had in my 18 years with Multiple Sclerosis, this one was just of the brain. It was not long at all and the two MRI techs were absolutely amazing. One of them was the same tech I have had several times before, so it was not scary at all. It was pretty funny because Radiologythe one I have seen many time previously said to me, “Alyssa, do you have any questions before we get started?” Before I was even able to speak he said, “You know I can not tell you anything because this needs to be read by the Radiologist and I just do not have that type of knowledge. Now you also already know you can go online in a few days and read the full report.” I do tend to always ask at the end of the test if they saw anything like lesions. I hate waiting to see the doctor and I know the techs can see the images and probably have a somewhat educated guess on what they are looking at. My goodness they are so stubborn about sharing any news with me which I kind of think that is just mean, just kidding! He did make one funny remark by saying he was happy to announce that I do still have a brain!

For some reason today I am in so much pain, but I am doing my best to just rest. I do tend to use my Saturday’s as a day of rest and anything I think needs to be done waits until Intraoperative-MRI_Joyce_690x380pxlSunday. More than likely the reason for my pain is due to stressing about the MRI and also the argument I had with my mother on the way to the MRI. Isn’t it funny how when you are stressed about something all it takes is one comment to make the calm barriers fall down hard? The smallest of disagreements can turn into a disaster! I am not proud of this, but I am very strong in my nature and can have a hot temper when provoked. Anything I am really passionate about causes me to protect and defend it to the fullest. I will say things I mean, but it will come out in a very hostile manner. I do also believe that anything that happened yesterday is in the past and can not be changed, so all you can do is move on with life and hopefully be less hostile, but we will see about that!

Thank you for visiting my site today and I hope y’all have a great and restful weekend! IHappy-Weekend.-Do-what-makes-you-smile-and-be-happy will do my best to stay calm and definitely not continue thinking about “what” the results are going to tell me on Thursday. I think the only thing I can do between now and Thursday is keep my mind busy by thinking about only the positives aspects of life! Even though those positives can be hard to find because of all the negative in life are still there! Please remember that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love ❤and comfort!

My signature heart

❤Always, Alyssa❤

Pick-Me-Up Thursday

good afternoonGood afternoon y’all! I am so sorry that my pick-me-up Thursday is coming out late, but I have not been feeling all that great. I have been dealing not only with the pain, but these terrible dizzy spells! I am so glad tomorrow is Friday because a weekend is needed. I hope you have had a pleasant week and I do hope you find great meaning to this quote!9eb48ca181f470907d1fd0080e004c7d
Personally, I do think all the struggles we may encounter only make us stronger and give us the ability to handle anything that might come our way! I hope the rest of your week goes well, it is only one more day and I really hope you are feeling as good as you possibly can. Please remember that I am always sending you LOTS of love❤ and comfort!

My signature heart

❤Always, Alyssa❤

What are the struggles & benefits of living with a chronic illness?

Struggles and benefitsThe struggles of living with any chronic illness are numerous and endless. So many chronic illnesses come with various issues that might be difficult to treat, which can and does lead to SO much frustration. Through many visits to several different doctors, we are caught up in SO much medical debt, because the United States does not offer free healthcare like ALL other developed countries offer! For instance, I am required to see my MS Specialist to try slowing the progression of my illness down, but have to see another specialist to treat the pain issues! It does not make any sense to me because the pain is a direct result of the MS, so why it is my MS specialist can not treat the pain as well? Oh that’s right, because there is an opioid epidemic so anything related to pain needs to be monitored by a painchronic-pain-chain-diagram specialist who only sees me for 3-5 minutes every 2 months! Do you really think the pain doctor actually specialized in pain or they just could not hack it with being a real doctor? That might sound a little cruel as I am sure this “pain specialist” passed medical school, but seriously there are no medical schools out there that really specialize in pain!

Another struggle those of us that are living with a chronic illness faces is dealing with the dreaded insurance companies! We all know these insurance companies only see $$ dollar signs when they see our information come through! They know our medications cost a small fortune, so therefore we pad their paychecks with the many medications we are required to take. I know that my Gilenya alone without assistance would cost around $1500 a month and that is with insurance! Who can afford that on the wages we make? That’s right NO ONE can and quotes-to-inspire-people-with-chronic-illness-RM-alt-722x406therefore our conditions would worsen drastically over time! Do the insurance companies care? NOT AT ALL! I do believe that the insurance companies and government work together so they can be very well off in life without any regard for human life! Now with the talk among the government, some of us many worry that we will lose our expensive insurance in the near future. I do sincerely hope that I am wrong about this though, but that is honestly what I think is on the agenda!

Some of us may worry about the struggles of working a full-time job, as many of us probably can not afford to work part-time hours! Even if we are able to work a schedule with reduced hours this can not only be a financial burden, but also causes nonsenseYou-Dont-Look-Sick-722x406 judgments from co-workers! The comments that are made can be extremely frustrating and offensive, but we are doing all we can in life! I know that all of us would prefer to be able to tolerate full-time work, but when we are not able to we are doing the best we can and should not be looked down on! As you can probably tell I have heard the comments made about working ONLY 6 hour days, but I am pushing myself to do this!

Another struggle some of us may face is fun times with parking! Some of us may have handicap parking, which should be making our lives easier! However, some may look perfectly normal to the naked eye. We may suffer from something know as an “Invisible Illness”, which of course we feel but NO ONE sees our struggles! They may make butterflies-cant-see-their-wingsignorant comments about someone who looks completely normal parking in a handicap parking space. Rude comments have been made towards me and it did hurt my feeling terribly! But it has now been a few years since I was given the handicap parking, so I have had many experiences that I want to forget ever happened. Now days I do not allow negative comments to get to me as much and just feel sorry for the people making the ignorant comments and even worse for their children to grow up in that horrible environment because they may end up just as ignorant!

Fatigue and migraines are somethings I know many of us deal with almost daily! Both of these can be relatively difficult, but we handle them the best we can! Now I do not get migraines daily, but I get them enough to understand how hard they are to cope with.Background concept wordcloud illustration of fatigue Fatigue on the other hand I struggle with daily! I normally begin feeling much fatigue around 1:00 every day which is why I get into work earlier. For some reason, I feel much better earlier in the day and worse as the day progresses. It does not matter what time I wake up, always around 1:00 I feel like I need a nap!

OH WOW I almost forgot, I did say there were benefits to living with a chronic illness! The benefits are often very difficult to find, but they are there somewhere deep down. When living with an illness has NO cure it can make us more sympathetic, empathetic, and compassionate to what others might be dealing with at any moment in life. It may falling down is how we groweven give us the opportunity to meet others that understand our struggles and also offer support to others living with something similar! It may take work, but we are able to build strong networks with many others that can be very beneficial to all that is involved. Through the blogging community, I have been able to build powerful and valuable connections with SO many very incredible people who I have come to care so much for! I am truly thankful for all of my blogging friends and feel we might not have met if it were not for the chronic illness!

I sincerely appreciate you visiting my site today and always encourage your comments as they are fantastic! I hope y’all have a lovely day and you are feeling the best you can! Please remember that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love❤ and comfort!

My signature heart

❤Always, Alyssa❤

Motivational Monday!

Monday to shineGood morning y’all! I hope you had a very lovely weekend and I hope you are starting your week  off feeling great! I am sorry I was absent over the weekend, but I was battling with a lot of pain, nasty migraines and even one slight fall! I am hopeful this week will start off much better than my weekend was. With that said, I think we all need a motivating quote to start our week off on the right foot. I hope you find this quote as encouraging and motivating as I do and look forward to reading your fabulous comments!be thankful for hard times, they made you

Thank you for stopping by my site on this beautiful Monday morning. I hope you have a wonderful day and I wish you nothing but comfort and pain-free days ahead. Please always remember that I am sending you LOTS of love❤ and comfort!

My signature heart

❤Always, Alyssa❤

As Friday comes to an end!

happy friday have a great weekend

We finally made it through the week! Now it is time to just let go of what was during the week and enjoy what is ahead for the weekend!

Considering I am pretty exhausted, I just wanted to share some positive vibes with y’all with hopes it starts your weekend off with some joy! Always remember to take care of yourself as YOU❤ are very important!

I hope y’all have a restful and lovely weekend! Please always remember that I am always sending y’all LOTS of❤ love and comfort!

My signature heart

❤Always, Alyssa❤

Very Special Man!

PoppyWhen I was younger there was always ONE voice that could make ANY situation better with just a few simple words. There was that ONE person who I held so dear to my heart❤ that could find the positive side in anything and everything in life. I had that ONE person that made everything better with his wise and very loving words. I admired this man more than words could ever even begin to describe because he knew ONLY love❤ and showed it with all he did in his life. My beloved Grandfather, who I actually called ❤Poppy, was literally the most amazing, admirable and loving people in this entire world! He touched the lives of so many with his kind and loving heart! 

Way back 18 years ago when I was first diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis terrified and extremely sad, I called my Poppy in tears.  He calmly listened through my tears and offered his never-ending support, love❤ and great advice. The words he spoke has stuck with me through the years as he said, “Alyssa, you are strong and can handle anything this illness may inflict on you. But always remember no matter what struggles you may endure, someone else is always going through something worse, so stay strong.” I know just how true his statement is because even when things feel really bad, they could definitely be far worse. At this time I did share with him my fears that I could lose my ability to walk and be wheelchair bound and at the young age I was that was frightening. But he told me to never put thought in something negative until I am actually faced with it and that was wonderful advice.

My sweet Poppy passed away September 9, 2013, but I still remember all the words ofpoppys grave encouragement he shared with me through the years. In the times I am in a terrible amount of pain or feel a massive amount of stress, I hear his voice in my mind with all of his healing powers.

For some reason these past few weeks have been very difficult for me. My pain levels have been elevated drastically and the stress weighing on my mind has been at a HIGH! Some of this stress is the upcoming MRI that I found out today needs additional information from the MSAA. I have sent several emails to the person that was helping me, with NO response yet. But staying logical, I will try again tomorrow as this MRI has already been scheduled! I guess it is possible that some of the stress is I am over thinking EVERY aspect of life and have a difficult time letting go! I am very passionate about many things in life and do not accept “It is what it is and there is nothing we can do!” If I keep remembering my Poppy’s words, if we all stand strong, there is always something that can be done! I guess this is where I got my notion to NEVER GIVE UP!

I think it is very clear that my Poppy was my role model in life and I will always strive to be as much like him as I possibly can! There will never be another man like him, but I My Poppyguess that is what makes him so special. You know that being diagnosed with a chronic illness is tragic and life altering, but losing him was twice as hard on me. I know it has almost been 5 years, but it feels like yesterday when I got the call from my Uncle to tell me Poppy had passed away. I honestly felt as though my world came to a complete halt! If I had just one wish, which I know most people would think I would wish the MS away, but I would wish I could have just one more day with my Poppy. I would rather live with the struggles of Multiple Sclerosis for the rest of my life, if I could just have him here with us again. I would love to be in the car with him listening to him sing “Seven Spanish Angels” by Willie Nelson & Ray Charleshttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x8A9Y1Dq_cQ as those were the best and most memorable days for me. 

Thank you for stopping by my site today and reading this extremely emotional post. I must say this was the hardest post I have written and could not make it through without many tears. I truly wish that my Poppy would not only be proud of this post, but also of all the others that I have written. Always remember to cherish those you love❤ and make sure they know how you feel because unfortunately there is a time they are meant to move onto the next level and be in Heaven. I hope you have a nice and relaxing evening. Please always remember I am sending you LOTS of love❤ and comfort.

My signature heart

❤Always, Alyssa❤