Thoughts out of the blue

Out of the blue and for no reason at all, I started thinking about a life-altering event I went through. This is not something I dwell on because I have very little control over it and it would be a waste of time to overthink it. It has been more than 20 years since I heard my doctor tell me that I had Multiple Sclerosis. I was still so young, very ignorant of what this meant for my life, and fears of how many challenges I would be forced to endure. Of course, I did hear the words the doctor spoke to me on the day he broke the news to me, but it took me a while to accept what he said to me. I tried my best to fight him and tell him he was wrong, but that was fighting a battle I had no chance of winning. After several months, I chose to accept it, but also to never surrender because I do believe in the power of the mind and that positive thoughts produce positive outcomes.

All those years ago, I was terrified that I would not be able to live a normal life. Nowadays, I wonder what is normal because for me it is constant pain and frustration with a disease without a cure. I feared that I would lose the ability to walk and take care of myself, which would have been extremely hard for me because I am a very independent person and never want to rely on anyone for anything. It has been approximately 20 ½ years, 7,488 days, 179,703 hours, and 10,782,180 minutes (give or take) and I am still here. I am walking and taking care of myself and my husband, and my three cats. There have been many obstacles through the years, but I have always remained determined to not allow this illness to defeat me.

Over all the years, I have learned more than I ever wanted to about Multiple Sclerosis and as crazy as this sounds, it has taught me a lot. I have learned how to discover a strength that I never imagined having. I have learned how being determined can help me to survive the most challenging situations. I now understand how powerful resilience is and the many ways it can help us to persevere, even when we feel like hope is lost. I have learned just how a positive mind can make a HUGE difference in our daily life.

At the beginning of this post, I mentioned that I do not dwell on things I have little control over. I do understand that even though I have little control over Multiple Sclerosis, I can control how much I allow it to bring me down and to feel helpless. I do have control over my mind, and I can tell myself that I am stronger than this unpredictable illness. Most importantly, I can remind myself that I did nothing to cause this illness to continue to plague my life. I will continue to keep the promise I made to my late grandfather shortly after I was diagnosed to continue to fight the battle until I win the war against Multiple Sclerosis.

Unfortunately, we all have something we must live with, and we all have a choice in how we approach things. I am thankful the doctor caught the Multiple Sclerosis early because if he did not, I can only imagine how much worst things would be for me today. I will always have a special place in my heart for my first Neurologist and his Nurse Practitioner because they were an amazing team that never lost hope in me. I am thankful that I have learned to not feel any shame because of what I live with.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope you enjoyed what I have shared today and that in some way, it resonates with you and helps you to understand your strength. I hope you are enjoying your weekend and remaining as safe as possible. I am looking forward to reading your comments and I will respond as quickly as possible. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Irritating Sounds!

Each person has unique qualities that set them apart from everyone else. These qualities are not something negative or to be ashamed of, but they can create challenges for the person to handle. Since I was a young child there have been certain sounds that I found extremely irritating, which I thought made me strange. It is not loud noises, but small noises such as people chewing gum, chips, popcorn, ice, or anything else that crunches. I remember a time being in the car with my mother or anywhere else when people were chewing gum and it caused an intense feeling of pure and utter irritation. Are there any sounds that you find irritating?

There is a rare disorder known as misophonia that affects about 20% of the population. Scientists suggest that one in five people suffer from this disorder to some degree and less than 1% experience extreme symptoms. This disorder can trigger emotional or physiological reactions to sounds. Of course, those that do not suffer from this view the reactions as an unreasonable and illogical response to sounds that can range from anger and annoyance to panic with a need to flee.

Those that live with misophonia have explained they are triggered by oral sounds, such as the noise a person makes when they eat, breathe, or chew anything. Other sounds people have found to be irritating can include the tapping on a keyboard, table, or steering wheel, or the sound of windshield wipers or blinkers. Some have said small repetitive motions are the cause, such as someone fidgeting or wiggling their foot.

Those with misophonia have said they respond to visual stimuli accompanied by sounds and have an intense reaction to repetitive motions. It has been suggested by researchers that those with this disorder have issues with the way their brains filter sounds and one feature of “misophonia sounds” would be their repetitive noises, which exacerbates other auditory processing issues.

Misophonia appears to range from mild to severe. Many have reported various physiologic and emotional responses. Mild responses can cause people to feel anxious, uncomfortable, disgusted, or have the desire to flee the situation. The more severe response may include rage, anger, hatred, panic, fear, and or emotional distress. 

Doctors are unsure what causes this condition but have stated it is not an issue with the person’s ears. They do believe it may be related to the way sounds affect the brain and trigger an automatic response in the body. The onset is not known, but symptoms have been reported to begin between the age of 9 and 13 and last a lifetime. This is more common in girls and comes on quickly and does not appear to be related to any specific event.

A recent breakthrough study discovered that misophonia is a brain-based disorder. Researchers have referred to a disruption in the connectivity in parts of the brain that processes both sound stimulation and the fight/flight response. This is said to involve parts of the brain that code the importance of sound. 

If this is something any of you deal with, I am sorry because I know how incredibly frustrating it can be. There have been times I had to cover my ears to avoid the annoying sounds because it causes me massive amounts of frustration and anger. It was so hard to deal with when I worked in an office setting because many people loved chewing gum and that is one of the most annoying sounds in the world. Thankfully, I am not working in an office setting, so I do not deal with this anymore, but my husband does love chewing ice and tries to say it is soft ice. It is NOT soft ice! If this is something you must live with, how do you handle it without losing your mind?

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope what I have shared is something you do not live with, but if you do, please know you are not alone. I am looking forward to reading your comments and I will respond as quickly as I can. I hope your weekend has started pleasantly and you enjoy these two days! Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

~How to deal with manipulative people~

What does manipulation mean to you? The Webster’s Dictionary shows manipulation to mean a few different things, but for this post, it means, “to control or play upon by artful, unfair, or insidious means, especially to one’s advantage”. To your knowledge, has anyone in your life ever tried to manipulate you? If so, how did this make you feel and how did you handle it?

Unfortunately, manipulative people can be found anywhere. These people can be family, friends, co-workers, or even new people in your life. They are not always easy to detect because they can easily lie and deceive you. Although they are skillful in their deceptive and treacherous behaviors, they are careless and selfish with only their benefits in mind. 

Manipulative people know how to find your weaknesses, use them against you, and convince you to do what will benefit their interests. Some may attempt using positive tactics, such as disingenuous compliments and artificial closeness, but they typically use negative means like silent treatment, criticism, and emotional abuse. 

The feelings felt when being manipulated are unpleasant, to say the least. This can easily leave a person feeling sad, disappointed, hurt, and even betrayed. If you have even been on the receiving end of manipulation, please let this be a lesson and never treat another person in this way.

**Please note, I am not a psychologist, mental health professional, or medical professional in any way, but the following tips are what I discovered through research and I hope they will help you end manipulative people before they can hurt and deceive you**

Remember, NO means NO:

Learn how to say “NO” in a firm, calm, and diplomatic way. There is no need to add anything else to the conversation. When we offer any reason, it can just provide ammo for the person to use to get through your defenses and force you to say “yes”. Initially, the manipulative person may become irritated and persistently try to convince you of something other than what you have already stated. Do not allow their determination or pushy behavior to change your mind. Continue to say “NO” and they will eventually give up. 

Do not apologize automatically:

Manipulative people are skillful at turning the tables to make everything be your fault, even when in your heart you know it was not. These types of people are always the victim. Of course, we are all human and it may seem easier to apologize to keep the peace and end the conversation, but this will just provide them with more control. Stand your ground and know manipulative people will never take responsibility for their actions.

Do not react:

Although it is not easy, the more you defend yourself or explain your reasons, the farther you fall into their web of control. Manipulative people know the way you think and will take advantage of it. They will create drama and chaos and the more emotional you become, the calmer they will feel. They want to make you seem like the crazy one and they are sane. No matter how many accusations and criticisms they throw at you, try to walk away and simply say, “I am sorry you feel that way”.

Establish clear boundaries:

Manipulative people are drawn to and prey on people pleasers because their boundaries are often weaker. Boundaries are important in all relationships as lines are clearly drawn. If there is a manipulative person in your life that continues to cross even one of your boundaries, know when it is time to walk away and not engage further. Define ahead of time what the consequences are when the person continues to disrespect you and your boundaries.

Take time to make decisions:

Often a manipulative person will be forceful and demand an answer right away. Try to never cave into their pressure because it only gives them more control. Take as much time as you need to provide them with an answer.

Keep your distance: 

The best and most challenging thing to do is to cut these manipulative people out of your life because they will try to make you feel guilty. Sometimes ignoring the person is easier because they are unaware of what is going on.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope the information in this post will help you deal with a manipulative person in your life or at least prepare you to handle on if you ever are forced to. Life is not easy, and we always need to do what is best for us because it is our life! If you have dealt with this type of person before, I am interested to read about it and how you handled it or knew it was happening. I will respond to all comments as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Heat, Headaches, and MS Hug

For the past several days I forced myself through my workday and the things that I had to do. Unfortunately, I was unable to do any posts, work on my essay for the writing competition, or read because I have been battling a headache that seemed to be never-ending. Anytime I thought it was improving, I was proven to be incorrect when the massive pounding in my head returned with a vengeance.

Many of you reading this post today and may have visited my site before are already aware that I have Multiple Sclerosis. Anyone new to my site, thank you for taking the time to visit and I hope you will return. I enjoy writing about various topics and hope you will enjoy what I write about as well.

I have lived with Multiple Sclerosis for over 20 years, so basically more than half of my life. Over all these years, I have had numerous challenges, setbacks, disappointments, frustrations which fueled stress, and enough tears to fill the ocean. The one thing I have not experienced is giving up and letting MS control my life.

One of the main reasons why I refuse to give up is I made a promise to my late grandfather shortly after my diagnosis that I would always continue to try to move forward, and I would never surrender to MS. Although he has been gone for almost 9 years, I will continue to keep the promise I made to him. It might help that I am also extremely stubborn and obviously a born fighter, just not the violent type of fighter😊!

During the 20-plus years of living with MS, I have dealt with vision impairments, numbness, various forms of pain, stress from the harshness of symptoms, fears from potential disease progression, changing and deciding the right medications, relapse, neuropathy, doctor’s appointments, dizziness, and much more. Most of my pain does not prevent me from living my life and I just push through it and try my best to ignore it. After all the years of experiencing head pain, I am still unable to tolerate it. Unfortunately, it does not matter how many headaches I have already had in my life or how often I battle with them in any given week, the headache always wins our war.

There once was a time when I had a headache, I could take Advil and lay down with an ice pack for an hour or so and the headache would be gone. I wish I could explain how much I miss those days! Unfortunately, over the past few years, nothing provides me with any relief. Although I had many reservations, I ended up trying everything my doctors recommended, but they were all a complete waste of time and money because they did not help. I have tried combinations of over-the-counter medications, such as Advil, Excedrin, and Sudafed, which have helped more than anything else.

Over the past several days, not only was I dealing with the headache straight from hell but the invasive tight band feeling also known as the “MS Hug” visited me. The only good thing about COVID was social distancing, but I guess the MS Hug did not get the memo. I am just speculating, but I think I am experiencing the tight band feeling because of stress, the insane heat, or a nasty combination of the two.

This outrageous and uncontrollable heat is my enemy because it always causes me to feel awful. Over the weekend, I had to run out to two different stores and when I finally made it back home, I told my husband I am not leaving the house again during the day until at least November. I am pretty sure if the temperatures get any hotter, it will be the death of me. I do understand that this massive heat is being felt all around the world, and I do not think anyone can say global warming is not real anymore.

How are y’all handling the incredibly dangerous heat? One thing that I believe helps is to stay hydrated. I have four different stainless steel insulated water bottles. I fill the bottles about a quarter of the way with water and put them in the freezer. This makes it so I always have ice-cold water handy! I strongly recommend them, especially during the summer months. These stainless-steel insulated water bottles are very affordable on Amazon and there are any colors you can think of😊!

Another thing I recommend during these HOT summer months is if you must leave the house, start your car, and let the A/C run for a few minutes. It is never a good idea to try driving when you are hot because you could get overheated, which can cause you to feel dizzy and faint. The heat can do some terrible things to our bodies and minds, so it is best to do everything we can to stay as cool as possible.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope what I have shared was helpful for you. If you have any other suggestions regarding staying cool with these drastic temperatures, please share. Also, if you have experienced the evil MS hug, is there anything you do that helps? I am looking forward to reading your comments and I will respond as soon as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Just another day in paradise

Despite having lived with Multiple Sclerosis for 20-plus years and understanding it more than I wished, there are still times I get discouraged and frustrated. Of course, I understand that most of the symptoms that make me feel this way will subsite in time, they can be difficult to tolerate. Something worse than normal, and I have been forced to endure for the past several days is the neuropathy in my legs. I should be used to dealing with this because it is not new, but it does not get easier. Lately, it has been painful to walk and even sit down the sensation of tingly, pain, and the “spider dance party” on my legs have been almost unbearable. Considering I have been dealing with this for years, I can almost guarantee the reason for the increased issues is due to heat and stress.

Another issue that is not new but has been returning frequently is dizziness. It used to happen more later at night, but for the past few days it comes on suddenly at random times throughout the day. The only way I learned how to deal with this is to sit down immediately (to avoid falling), never lay my head backward, and or force on a still object. I already know I will get extremely dizzy if I lay my head backward, so I try to never do this. Heck, I also know when I go to the neurologist, they always have me do this, even though I explain what happens. It seems many doctors do not listen to their patients; you know the one that knows more about their body than any medical school can teach?

Many things can make Multiple Sclerosis symptoms flare up and we need to learn how to avoid these issues as much as possible. Summer in the south makes avoiding the heat pretty much impossible. Anytime I must leave my house and get in the car, I make sure to never drive until the air conditioning has been on long enough for it to not be too hot. How do you avoid heat when there are more hot months than cool months?

Stress is also a HUGE factor. Stress can make old symptoms return and create new evil symptoms. I am still learning how to avoid stress, but for me it is impossible. Everyone already knows that stress is a silent killer, but what it can do to Multiple Sclerosis is miserable. I know many of the reasons I have had awful relapses previously were because I was stressed about work, life, medication, money, and many other issues we all face.

Something else I have always had a hard time with is fatigue. It is hard for me to sleep most of the time and even more so during the insanely HOT summer months. I do try getting enough sleep, but it hardly ever happens, which more than likely has something to do with the inability to turn my mind off. Unfortunately, my mind is always racing, and I have not figured out how to stop this. It does not matter what day it is or what time I go to bed, I am awake at the same time every single day. If I am not awake at a certain time, the cats will play their part and force me to wake up. The truth is, I tend to wake up early anyway because of the pain I experience.

Finally, pain is a major burden in my life. I deal with pain in multiple parts of my body 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and with no breaks. The crazy thing is, that I would not feel normal if I did not have pain. Of course, I would love to have one day or even one hour when I was not in pain, but it is not in the cards for me. I try to embrace the pain and just ignore it the best I can. My logic is, why focus my attention on something that is not going to change and use up the energy I do not have I have for something cannot control when many other things need my energy and focus? Great way to think, right?

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope you are having a wonderful and safe long weekend, so far. I would love to read your comments and any advice you have regarding what I have shared today. I promise to respond to all comments as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Gun Violence & Mental Health

Unfortunately, there are so many tragedies happening in the United States, that many people have become desensitized. Sadly, in the five months of 2022, there have already been 213 mass shootings. As a result of the incredibly high number of mass shootings, 17,000 people, and 650 of this number were innocent children had their lives cut short. For an incident to be considered a mass shooting, four or more people are shot, injured, or killed, but these are typically a larger number of people.

On Tuesday, May 24th, a mass shooting took place at an elementary school in Texas. Nineteen innocent children and two adult teachers were killed. Tuesday was marked the deadliest school shooting in Texas history. According to reports from CNN, the gunman performed this heinous act alone. Before the 18-year-old high school dropout went to the elementary school, he shot his grandmother, allegedly texted a 15-year-old girl in Germany about his plans for the elementary school, and then took his grandmother’s truck to head to the school to carry out his deranged plans.

Gun violence is not something new in the United States but has been a problem for decades. In 1987, after a British gunman killed 16 people, the country banned semiautomatic weapons, which was the weapon that was used. After a school shooting in 1996, the country proceeded in the same manner and banned most handguns. At this time and after several bans, the country has one of the lowest gun-related deaths in the developed world.

Australia acted with gun-related violence and deaths after a massacre in 1996. The country prompted a mandatory gun buyback. It has been estimated as many as one million firearms were melted down making them useless and not deadly. The occurrence of mass shootings has decreased from once every 18 months to once every 26 years.

Our Canadian neighbors have also taken action against gun violence. Following a mass shooting 33 years ago in 1989, Canada tightened their gun laws. Other countries such as Germany in 2002, New Zealand in 2019, and Norway last year also tightened their gun laws.

With the levels of gun violence and innocent lives lost in the United States, something needs to change. Too many are caught up in their 2nd amendment right to see the bigger and more critical issues. Everyone wants their right to bear arms upheld, but what about the innocent people who lost their life’s right to a safe life?

I do realize that mental health in the United States is neglected, but something can be done about gun laws. We can hardly watch the news without hearing about shooting somewhere. There are innocent lives lost and families affected daily. Mental health and gun laws need to be narrowed and changed immediately. In the United States, we must worry about children going to school, going to the grocery store, movie theater, or anywhere outside the safety of our homes! Are we going to wait to fight for change until it hits close to home and someone we love is killed by a mentally unstable gunman?

It has taken me several days to be able to put this post out because it is extremely emotional. I could not read through the different news reports about this because it kept bring tears to my eye. I cannot imagine what the families that lost children and loved ones are going through. There is no logical reason for the recent issues that took place in Texas, and most are left to ask, was this man mentally ill? If this 18-year-old had gotten the help needed, would the 21 people killed still be alive? The 18-year-old gun man’s family was in shock he would shoot the grandmother he loved in the face or kill 19 innocent children and 2 teachers. The information I found was based on CNN who spoke to the mother of the disturbed 18-year-old.

Regardless of anyone’s views on what should happen with gun control, we can all probably agree that the mental health of everyone needs to be addressed. Many people feel ashamed of any mental instabilities they may have and will cause them to avoid getting the help needed out of fear of rejection and negative judgments. No one in this world is perfect and sometimes we may need help. Please if you know anyone that is struggling, help them find a professional that can help them get adequate help. I understand how difficult it can be to admit needing help, but the following website offers different types of help https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/find-help.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I know how hard it is to read what I shared, but it is important to know what is going on in the country. Yes, it is depressing and tragic, but there is help. Even if we know someone that is struggling, we can try listening to the person, but when it is more urgent than anything you can do and it is too crucial to wait, you can call 911. Feel free to leave comments and I will respond as soon as I am able to. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

TGIF

Life is not always perfect, and it is impossible to be happy all the time, but we do have the power to make changes when necessary. Complaining about things in life we are unhappy with is NEVER going to change things for the better. Sometimes we need to implement the changes we NEED in our life. The problems we encounter are NOT going to fix themselves and will only get worst. We spend most of our time at work, so if we are miserable in our job, it might be time to start looking for something different where we are not miserable for eight hours a day, five days a week.

Work is not always fun, but it can be fulfilling and semi-enjoyable. I have always enjoyed working with people and find “some” of them interesting. However, more and more I am finding the way people behave and treat others disturbing and offensive. I treat people the way I would want to be treated and try my best to understand their outlook on things and what they might be going through. The way things have been in recent times, I have a new view on this. Unfortunately, so many people are selfish and do not care how their tone, verbiage, and treatment affect others.

Changing jobs is extremely frustrating and challenging. It takes persistence and perseverance. Numerous job search sites are available. The most popular and user-friendly are https://www.linkedin.comhttps://www.indeed.com/https://www.monster.com/, and https://www.glassdoor.com/. I am sure there are many more out there, but I am not familiar with any others. A quick and simple google search can bring up others if you are looking for another job. 

We are only offered one life and there is no way to rewind, pause, repeat, or fast-forward. If there is anything you are not completely happy or content with, it is time for a change. This can be in a job, relationship, where you live, what you do for enjoyment or anything else involved in your life. Of course, change is never easy, but it can be accomplished with strength and determination. 

Relationships whether they are romantic, friendship, colleagues, or family can be complicated. All relationships require strong and open communication. Without being able to be open and honest, a relationship will fail quickly. It is also important to never hide anything from your life partner. When people hide things from the person, they are building a life with, there will only be unnecessary complications. We should not feel like we need to hide anything because we are already being open and honest, so there should not be anything to hide, right?

I am not complaining about my job, but I am unhappy with the way things have been. The training missed many things we needed to know and now everyone is so overwhelmingly busy, that no one has time to help those that are newer. I have always been a perfectionist with my work and hate making mistakes. Therefore, I take a massive number of notes because I want something to reference when I am unsure. There have been several people that I work with currently that are amazing and helpful, but then there are others that talk or email in a demeaning and discouraging way. I think some people forgot what it was like to be new and learn an entirely new industry.

I think part of the reason I have felt so irritable lately is that it is WAY too hot! The heat causes many of my MS symptoms to be aggravated and intensified. It is only May, and the temperature has already been in the high 90s. I do not even want to know how hot it is going to get when it is summer. Living in the south and still waiting to get central air has been troublesome and infuriating. I do enjoy summer, but only when I am at the beach because the ocean breeze counteracts the insane heat. I mean who in their right mind wants to be out when the temperatures are so high? No sane person! 

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope you enjoyed this post, and the information was beneficial. It is finally Friday, and we now have the weekend to look forward to. We can let of the negative feelings the week caused us. There is no point carrying those negative feelings into our weekend when we know anything we were dealing with this week will probably still be waiting for us on Monday. I look forward to reading your comments and will respond as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Tuesday Survival Mode

Tuesday is an indicator we made it through one of the hardest days of the week, Monday. Yesterday was a challenging and frustrating day for me for a few reasons. Work is getting busier, and people are getting more demanding. There are a few people I work with that are helpful and I can communicate with, knowing they respect me because they never talk down to me. Another person I have a lot of respect for the way she views things, however, she does not always respect me when speaking to me I guess everyone handles stress and busy days differently. Regardless of, how people chose to talk to others, I am trying to not let things upset me because, at the end of the day, it is not worth it.

Another reason yesterday became challenging is because the MS hug is back. It has been happening on and off, but when it is in full force, it is awful. The MS hug is the kind of hug no one wants. I am sure it feels different to everyone, but for me it hurts and takes my breath away, making it hard to breathe at times. I have no plans on letting my specialist know because I do not like their ways of healing it. I hate steroids more than most anything else.  Steroids make me miserable and cause my personality to be altered and not for the better.

On a positive note, on June 10th, one month from today, I get to meet my literary role model. I think of James Patterson as an icon with his writing. I view him as one of the best and most memorable authors of our time. His books are creative, engrossing, and captivating. Once I start one of his books, especially in The Women’s Murder Club series, it is nearly impossible to put down. I have thought a lot about what I will say to him during the brief encounter. I have decided to call him Mr. Patterson. He is an elder and deserves the utmost respect. I want to tell him how much I love his writing and how much I respect his abilities, and of course, I would love to know how he does what he does. Unfortunately, I also know my time will be limited.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope your week is going well so far and that it only gets better as the days pass us by. Thankfully, we have survived one day of the week and have four to go, but I think we can handle it. Yes, each day brings us new demands and it takes determination and a strong will to make it. The truth is, this is never easy, but we are all strong enough to handle anything thrown our way. I look forward to your comments and will respond to them as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Defeat Tuesday

The weeks can feel extremely long and strenuous. We typically prepare ourselves for Monday on Sunday evening because we understand they can be very demanding. Honestly, not every Monday is as bad as we think it is going to be and some are worst than we were expecting. Whether it be Monday or any other day of the week, sometimes there is no amount of preparation that can help us be ready for the days ahead of us. No matter what happens, we should never give up and should always try to see the positive in all situations. I believe a positive mindset will keep us healthier and happier rather than being negative.

Yesterday felt like a train wreck and I believe it had a lot to do with getting too little sleep. I knew it was going to be a rough day because if I had to guess, I might have slept for four hours. By the time we ate dinner, finally got my work monitors set up correctly, and cleaned up, it was close to 2:00 AM and I normally get up a little before 7:00 AM. Knowing I would be exhausted, I tried giving myself a few extra minutes of sleep and pushed the alarm back to 7:30. I still felt foggy, irritable, achy, and distracted all day, which made for a long day.

Besides being overly tired and achy all day yesterday, I was dealing with other frustrations. No matter how many times in our life we deal with challenging and frustrating times, it never gets any easier. While life was never meant to be perfect and easy, we must NEVER let go of trying to think positively and NEVER give up. We were all dealt a hand of cards when we were born, and we are forced to keep playing the game of life and not fold. It is so easy to feel like we cannot handle life anymore and give in to those awful negative thoughts. The only thing a negative mind will do is make everything worst.

I am not going to tell y’all that remaining positive during challenging times is easy because that would be a lie. The only thing negativity will do is make you feel empty. The life we were given is a gift and viewing everything as negative makes us take our life for granted, which tends to be selfish. There are so many people every day that lose their life and through NO fault of their own and they would all love another day to enjoy their life.

Thankfully, we have survived Monday and hopefully, every other day of this week will get easier. I understand more than I care to admit how unfair life can be, but through all the unfair things we have endured, we are stronger than we realize. We all have a strength inside that is powerful. When you start thinking you cannot deal with anymore, remember what you have already accomplished in life and hold your head high!

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope what I have shared was beneficial for you and you are feeling better about life the way it currently is. Understanding what we have control over and what we have no control over, is a valuable lesson to learn because it will make things easier. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Invisible Illness

I have written about Multiple Sclerosis many times before and I have talked about it a lot as well, but neither of these can explain what it is like to live with it. Many people have heard Multiple Sclerosis referred to as the “invisible disease” and I supposed for the most part it is invisible. Of course, some people stumble because they struggle their balance, or they may have challenges to walk and are bound to a wheelchair or use a walker. These challenges are obviously visible because the person cannot and should not feel compelled to hide them. However, some try to out of fear of being judged. There was a time that I felt I needed to hide my illness because I know people talk and it is always about things, they know nothing about, but that is not my fault, and it is on them.

Out of all the issues Multiple Sclerosis puts on a person, many that are truly invisible issues to deal with. No one can feel the pain someone feels, which those with Multiple Sclerosis tend to face daily. I have mentioned before that I live in pain every minute of every day but try my best to hide it and not because I am afraid of what people may think. I hide the pain because nothing helps my pain ease. It does not matter if I explain how I feel or even cry about it, the pain will still be there. I am thankful that the pain I feel cannot be felt by those around me because I would not wish that on anyone, and it is not fair for anyone to experience it.

Another issue I deal with that is invisible is the neuropathy. The feeling of spiders crawling around on my legs and feet is only something I endure, and no one can see it. This is something that I feel daily and mostly it increases at night, but still there are times during the day I get experience this. Of course, my husband that is with me all the time can see it because I start getting fidgety and cannot stay still. Not that it helps but I will start rubbing my legs when we are watching TV or having lunch together. I cannot explain why I rub my legs or feet, but I supposed I am trying to make the feeling go away. My husband has even asked me if it helps or why I do it and I cannot explain it to him, I guess it is just a habit.

Stress causing my condition to deteriorate is not something anyone can see. Heck, I cannot even see it immediately, but will understand later what stress does to me. Stress can cause symptoms to worsen and potentially cause a relapse. Anyone that has Multiple Sclerosis or knows someone with it understands how bad a relapse can be and it is something that we all try to avoid. A relapse can be awful, but the actions taken to decrease the length of time one deals with them are typically by using steroids. For anyone that has been on a high dose of IV steroids, you know how terrible that can make you feel. I can admit that the steroids will make the relapse not last as long, I would prefer to not take them.

The only person that knows how exhausted I always feel is me. It is not something anyone can see, but I do see and feel it. I cannot even explain it to anyone because it does not matter how much sleep I get. I will wake up feeling like I have not slept at all and truthfully, I probably did not sleep well through the night. The pain and tingling will wake me or prevent me from falling asleep, but I still try pushing through the day like I have slept eight hours.

COVID introduced a new invisible issue to Multiple Sclerosis. Everyone had to deal with the normal things that came with COVID, but anyone that is on a medication that weakened their immune system had to be even more careful. Even after there were vaccines available, we had to determine how safe they were mixed with their medication. Being under isolation could make people feel even more isolated and nervous for what could happen if they got COVID. I know I was afraid that if I got COVID and being on Gilenya if I would survive. Anytime I left the house, I would wear a mask and be looked at like I was insane, but I do this because I refuse to gamble with my life.

I think COVID has made everyone feel like they are living under house arrest. My mother moved to Texas a few years ago and we did not see each other before she moved because of the fears of COVID. It is not that I do not want to see my mother, but I refuse to get on an airplane until COVID is gone and there are no new variants. I also do not want her getting on an airplane to come to where I live because I do not want her getting COVID or bringing it into my house. It is not easy dealing with this because she is my mother and I know she would get on a plane tomorrow, but it is not safe for either of us.

Considering March is Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month, I thought it would be good to do a post about the invisible side of it. I understand why people would call it the invisible disease because much of it is invisible. Truthfully, I would prefer the balance issues I deal with to be invisible because I feared when I was diagnosed about being in a wheelchair and not that it is a bad thing. After all, it can happen. Although the pain is invisible, anyone that knows me can see how much I hurt.

Thank you for visiting my site today and reading what I have written. I hope this provides some clarification to the issues I deal with that are truly invisible and why I hide some of them. I am not hiding things because I am ashamed, but because it does not help. I do look forward to reading your comments because I know they will be insightful. I will respond to all comments as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa