Saturday, November 3, 2012


It's been a while since my last post. For a lot of reasons. Too many to I'll give you three. 
1. I've been really out of it due to pain and crazy meds.
2. Life has been busy.
3. I lost my password AND my username.

.........I'm baaaaaccckkk!!


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Bonus Blessing

How do you love and accept a person that someone else chose to be a part of your family? I probably can’t answer that for you but I can tell you how I did it.

As a mother we consider what choices our children will make. Their career? Their mate? Will they have children and how many? We wonder how these decisions will affect their life? After all, what we want is for our children to be healthy and happy.

My eldest son, Zayne, chose a family member for us. Her name is Irish and she was officially added to our family July 18, 2009. After their dating period and three years of marriage, what I can tell you about her is not so different from my first impression.

Don’t misunderstand me, the first impression of Irish was not bad. I just didn’t know her. But I made a point to get to know her. We talked, shopped, swam together, had lunch, discussed books and movies and played lots of board games with our family. We made time for each other. And now we have a relationship that is beyond what I imagined possible.

Over time I saw a young woman much more mature that I had thought. She was responsible beyond her age. She was at first a bit shy and introverted but soon, after time spent with this very loud and boisterous family, she was forced to reveal her survival instincts. Zayne chose this wonderful family member. And I must say he did very well.

 Over time what God revealed about Irish is that she is a kind hearted woman with an overwhelming knowledge and love for the outdoors. She loves animals with a passion. She has a desire to excel in what she chooses to do. She cares for me like, I feel, a daughter cares for her mother. She fits our family so well (now that she has learned true sarcasm). She knows our routines (like doing dishes as soon as we have eaten). She offers her time (like driving me to doctor’s appointments). We both love Contemporary Christian music. :) She loves her friends and family, no matter what. She’s thrifty, unless she’s buying for those she loves. She's just wonderful. She's a rare person, beautiful on the inside and on the outside.

She’s exactly what I would have wanted if I had given birth to her on March 14, 1990. That is the birthdate that she shares with her parents.

As for me, I send Irish “Happy Birthday” flowers every July 18th because that’s the day she joined our family as our daughter.

Thank you God for every blessing. Thank you God for Irish. We love you sweetheart!!

Count your blessings!
Love and prayers to all,


Wednesday, February 29, 2012


There is an old story preachers tell about a man trapped on the top of his house during a flood or hurricane or tsunami (insert your own natural disaster). The water is swiftly rising. As this man sits on his roof, fearful of being swept away by the current, he cries out to God, “God please deliver me.”
A few moments later, a farmer friend arrives with his boat. “Hey, friend, want a ride to safety?” he asks. “No,” replies the man on top of his house. “God is going to deliver me.”
An hour later, the water is up to the gutters. A voluntary rescue person comes by on his yellow raft. “Hey, let’s get you off of there—and on to safety,” he yells. But the man on top of his house refuses to go. “God is going to deliver me.”
Another hour passes and now the water is halfway up the roof. Roof Man is now on top of his chimney, nervously looking down at certain death and destruction. Fortunately, a Red Cross volunteer swings by in a canoe and offers to ride Roof Man to safety. But Roof Man refuses. “No, God is going to deliver me.”
A couple of hours pass by and the water sweeps over the top of Roof Man’s house. He is carried away by the current and drowns. When he gets to Heaven, he meets Jesus and says, “I thought you were going to deliver me.”
Jesus looks down at Roof Man and says, “I sent a boat, an inflatable raft, and a canoe—but you refused each one.”

  “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8
These days people need help. They are worried and stressed out. We face trials daily. But how do we respond? To note just a few everyday trials; finances, loss of home, bankruptcy, rebellious teen, co-workers, marital problems, unemployment or a sick child. No matter what issue we face, they have to be resolved. Through reading Facebook comments and talking with friends, when it comes to troubles I’ve noticed a few patterns:

1.       Keep it to yourself so people don’t know your business. Don’t ask for prayer at all. Shut out family and friends because you don’t want to tell everyone your problems, you think they don’t care or you don’t want to worry them.
2.       Ask for prayers and information that will help but get aggravated when people ask questions. Avoid people who have suggestions that may lead to answers. Respond to the prayer warriors as if they are taking up too much of your time. Or just don’t respond to them at all.
3.       Ask for prayers and information that will help and feel overjoyed that people respond with kindness. Express gratitude when people use their time to contact you with information or suggestions. Stay contacted to your prayer warriors. Keep them updated so they can be specific with their prayers. Let them know their concern is cherished.
Not everyone wants to tell the world their problems and I understand that. Some issues are very personal and should be kept private. If this is the case, please seek a family member, friend or clergy that you can speak with. You will amazed at how much better you will feel knowing you have a prayer warrior and someone you can talk to who can help and understands.

“But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord;..”
James 1:7

Don’t ask for prayer and then ignore your prayer warriors. Don’t carry a burden alone when people will pray for you. Don’t say you’ll pray unless you are going to do it. Prayer is powerful.
“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances,
for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Love and prayers to all,

Sunday, February 26, 2012


Just a day or so ago I received a comment from a friend that I think of often. His comment reminded me of words that I wrote on my FB “NOTES” tab a while back. My original thoughts were inspired by a lady, Ms. Vallie James, which my friend and I both had the pleasure to meet on a missionary trip. I’m ashamed to admit that my first impression of her was negative. What I mistook for bossiness was actually enthusiasm. Arrogance was an over flowing cup of appreciation. Our group strolled into the International Seamen’s House and before introductions were officially made we were sorting hangers for donated clothes. “Give me a minute to catch my breath”, I thought.

Soon I realized how incredibly wrong I was. Never have I met a person so enthusiastic about her salvation. An attribute I coveted. We also learned that Ms. Vallie was an incredible painter. She sold her art and donated the proceeds to her earthly love, the Seamen’s House. One of her paintings hangs over my bed. I am reminded of her love and service every day.
Our group learned so many things from Ms. Vallie that week and over the years that we returned to the Seamen’s House to give of our time. Of course during those trips we were touched, blessed and received so much more than we gave.
When you deal with chronic pain daily you have time to read (if that’s something you enjoy – which I do). Recently I finished a book with over 800 pages and the cover was beautiful. Currently I am reading a mystery novel. The dust jacket is sleek and shiny black. The title is of gold letters that seem to pop right off the cover. It’s written by a well-known author and I have read almost all of his books. But honestly, I’m a bit disappointed in this book. This tells me that just because most of his books are good, everyone can have a bad day or in this case a bad novel?  It also goes to prove that just because the outside of an item, or the facade of a person, appears radiant and beautiful, the inside can be a total mess. Why do we so often buy a book based on the appearance of the stylish picture perfect dust-jacket? Only later to get home and realize the book’s content does not touch or inspire us.
Have you ever met a person whose “dust-jacket” appeared faded and tattered but later you discovered their content refreshed your body and encouraged your soul? That’s exactly what happened with Ms. Vallie. Soon I looked right through her outer appearance and saw nothing but humility and love.
Life teaches us so much and there are so many lessons to learn if only we will open our minds to comprehend. This sweet little lady from Georgia helped to change my initial opinion of people. Now I look with my heart rather than my eyes.
No matter if my hair shows gray, my weight is not ideal or my clothes are not the latest fashion, I am so thankful that HE looks beyond my “dust-jacket” and knows that I love Him. My prayers for my FB friends and myself is that we read a "book" today whose dust-jacket looks less than desirable. Perhaps we will be touched, inspired or encouraged by its content.
“The Lord does not look at the things man looks at.
Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
I Samuel 16:7
Love and prayers to all,


Monday, February 20, 2012

The Path

When I pulled into the drive I put the Yukon in park and sat looking at the leaves, thinking how beautiful our drive is in the fall.
Thanks to rural Alabama we have to cross the street to retrieve our mail. I stood there beside the box scanning through the pile of bills and junk mail and just as I was about to close the lid I noticed a trail that headed into the wooded area located behind our box.
I’ve noticed the trail before but this day the colors were not just shades of green so the opening didn’t blend into the forest. This day there was one path with many colors, almost inviting me to enter. I wondered where it led. What was hidden behind the trees? So I did what any inquisitive person would do; I Googled it. Google Maps is extremely cool!!
As expected, the map showed the main road, my drive and our property that lay hidden down our gravel drive with the canopy of branches and leaves, courtesy of our Creator. Across from our drive were the specs representing the two mailboxes, ours and one abandoned box.  Beside the boxes, more obvious than I expected, was the trail leading into the forest to what looked like two small ponds. Small areas around the ponds were cleared of trees and shrubs. The bird’s eye view the map offered looked beautiful.
I had slowed down that day long enough to see the path. When you have chronic pain disorders you have no choice but to slow down. Slowing down means you notice things that you most likely wouldn’t see under other circumstances. You appreciate things that are typically taken for granted.
For some reason I couldn’t get the path out of my thoughts. I recalled throughout my life the numerous paths that I had taken. The proverbial forks-in-the-road. Some paths have led me to lovely places in my life. On the other hand, even though the entry way looked inviting, some turns led me down pathways that were rocky and scary. Ultimately, once down the path I realized the last fork in the road I had made a wrong turn.
Amazingly what I found at the end of the path were forgiveness, love, understanding, and grace. A wrong turn doesn’t mean your journey is over. It means you need to assess your location and decide what path you need to take that will lead you to your final destination. You stay your course. Even if you come upon rocky terrain, you press forward to the prize.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make your paths straight. 
Proverbs 3:5-6

Love and prayers to all,

Monday, February 6, 2012


I’m sure you’ve heard someone say that God will not put more on a person than they can bear. Well, I’ve also heard an added line, “Wow! He must really trust me.”
First of all, God will not put more on a person than they can bear...........ALONE!
Secondly, from a close perspective, I know that trials are wrapped in many blessings.  I promise you, blessings are there, if only we can see them through the tears we shed while splashing around in our pity pool. Trust me, I’ve had a few pity-parties myself.
The early years of my illnesses (fibromyalgia, anxiety and back & neck pain) my cries were few. Add a few years and another illness or two and I had cries hard enough to smear my mascara. Then of late, add a few more illnesses, days in bed because I’m too sore to move and nights awake with a heating pad and meds for the extreme pain, now I have a full blown pity party with invitations sent and RSVP’s from Tippy and Mom.
No matter if people are faced with trials that are short lived or with a load that is carried for an extended period of time, people react in a very similar way, with questions.
We want answers right away. We say prayers and believe that God should immediately run to our aid. We are so eager for answers we believe we shouldn’t have to wait on God.
We are a society that believes in instant gratification. No thought to consequences. We do not like to be inconvenienced. We have dinner out on a Saturday night and get aggravated if we have to wait. We complain if we get delayed in traffic, have to wait at the doctor’s office or pharmacy or if we choose the slow lane at the grocery store. We get irritated if we have to wait in line at the bank or annoyed that the line is slow at our favorite coffee house. On the other hand, people have waited all night outside the electronics store to buy the latest video games, we pay to wait in lines at amusement parks or we may stand for two hours at a concert. But we can’t wait on God. Our priorities are as clear as swamp water.
Who are we to think we shouldn't have to suffer a few inconveniences? ...........“Inconveniences,” you might think. Compared to Christ’s suffering on the cross any load we bear is a minor inconvenience.
A burden is a blessing, a lesson to be learned, a light that is illuminated as brightly as we allow. Imagine God gives you a precious stone that shines as brightly as a star on the darkest of nights. He simply asks you to hold the stone. You notice that the stone is getting heavier and heavier over time. You can see that the light begins to fade as the stone grows heavy. You don’t want the beautiful light to fade. You grow restless trying to carry the load. You’re ashamed and you become fearful. What do you do?
Simple.......You go to Jesus. He said, “Come to me, ALL who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”   Matthew 11:28
Leave your cares, burdens, every sin....... at the cross.
Love and prayers to all,

Friday, December 2, 2011

“Let me know if I can do anything.”

Before my health began this rapid decline I worked as a payroll and benefits coordinator. I had close contact with the employees and took pride in my job and the relationships that I had built. There is one thing that always amused me; when people were working, they wanted to be at home. When people had an extended time off for medical issues, vacation, etc., they got tired of being at home and wanted to return to work. Are we ever satisfied?
So many times I heard people say they would love to retire, or wish they had enough money to not work, they would love to have the time to do the things they wanted to do.
But what if you had that time, at home, to do all the things you love to do, but were physically unable to do those things? How would you enjoy “early retirement”?
Life happens. Things we can’t control. So many times I have been asked how I manage to hold it all together when I have to deal with so much. There are times when I fall to pieces, but for the most part I keep my eyes on what matters. I try to keep things in perspective. And I have a person who has inspired me. She was an example of how we should react when faced with trials and hardships.
A few years back, when I was still working, one of our employees’ wife was in an automobile accident. In an instant her life changed. Her entire family was changed. Due to spinal injuries she lost use of her body from the waist down. She lost her job, her income, her independence. She lost so many things that you and I take for granted. She was told she would never walk. Never work. Never drive.
She faced obstacles. Her home was not handicap accessible. Her husband works second shift and she needed someone each night to come help her get into bed. She had rehab and physical therapy. But she fought back, kept her head high and trusted in God’s plan for her life. She inspired me then and she still inspires me to this day.
Through her positive attitude, strength she has drawn from God and hard work, she has gained some of her independence. She is now able to drive a van that has been adapted to her specific needs. That van was not cheap. The payment has placed a financial burden on her family. Still she has stayed positive. One of my earthly heros.
When a person faces tough times, rather it be loss of job, sickness or accidents such as this one, we all say these words, “Let me know if I can do anything.”
Daily I face many obstacles. But I have everything I need. And I certainly have not faced anything like what Barbara has faced. Every day she crosses my mind. It is so painful when I walk, sit or stand. But I tell myself, Barbara would love to walk, even if it caused her pain.
Because I have not needed anything that would put a financial hardship on my family, I don’t ask my family or friends for anything. Many of you have said, “Let me know if I can do anything.” Well, I come to you now, asking, letting you know, this is what you can do for me.
Because Barbara has given me so much encouragement and is a daily reminder to me that God will not put more on me than I can bear, I come to you all today and ask you to help Barbara. She needs to pay-off this van debt. Give up a Latte, one dinner out, those new shoes or just include her on your Christmas gift list. She is accepting donations to pay-off the van. No donation is too small. As I would approach the Throne of Grace, this is how I am approaching you all, I pray for great things to be done.
The address is: Barbara Henderson ~ P.O. 182, Pell City, AL 35125
This is the last note she sent to me:
God is so good honey. I have to give him all the praise. Keep your head up and cherish every moment and don’t forget to give God His Glory. Keep in touch and remember you feel so much better when you smile. ; )
Love you and praying for you, Barbara
Is she amazing, or what!?!?!
We are all so blessed. Even though it is our duty to GIVE every day, this time of year is called The Season of Giving. Please look deep within your heart and give to this person who praises God’s name even in the greatest of storms.
Love and prayers to all,

Monday, November 21, 2011

What A Difference A Day Makes

If your days are anything like mine you start off with high expectations. I admit, I’m the queen of post it’s and the master of high hopes. But when you deal with chronic pain illnesses you have no idea what the next day holds. For that matter, you have no idea what the next hour holds.
I remember a few Sundays back. I was really looking forward to going to the morning worship service. Which means that my husband, Tippy, for sure can go because he doesn’t have to babysit me. He sings in the choir and I absolutely despise it when he has to sacrifice what he loves doing because I need someone with me during those times when things are really bad.
And by “things” I mean, the feeling of pain so deep (in my feet and legs) my bones feel broken, my feet are burning, the sheets hurt if I roll over in the bed. I certainly can’t get up and walk on these “broken bones”. At the same time I have frequent jolts of lightning in the veins of my feet and now up into the calf area of my legs. We can actually watch the veins pulsate and then sometimes turn a bluish color similar to an everyday bruise. Not to mention, I stay so nauseous I rarely drive or go anywhere alone.
As most of you know, several months back, my Primary Care Physician diagnosed me with having Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy. Although he (and I) was certain, he sent me to see a specialist at UAB. I walked in knowing my PCP was right, but had this shred of hope that he was wrong. I was hoping to hear the symptoms were from my back surgery, gone wrong, and it could be fixed.
The specialist confirmed the leg diagnoses, known now as Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (a chronic progressive disease characterized by severe pain, swelling and changes in the skin). I asked bluntly, will this get worse? Will it spread? He shook his head yes to both questions. And then, palms down, he brought his hands up to his waist and said, “most likely, to here.”
He kept spurting out so many words and names of conditions I finally asked him to write them down. I walked in with a heavy load and when I left I felt that load would squash me at any moment.

The combination of my illnesses and disorders are GIANT factors working against me.
·        Malfunction of the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) which effects the involuntary actions such as heart rate, digestion, salivation, perspiration, urination, diameter of pupils, breathing and most of the body’s internal organs. The ANS also controls the Sympathetic Nervous System (CRPS).
·        Dysautonomia ~ disease of the ANS most likely caused from having an autoimmune disorder. Symptoms can dissolve over time or continue over the entire course of my lifetime.  Per research the prognosis is not generally good for someone who also has an issue with the body’s nervous system. Symptoms include: (that I am experiencing) lightheadedness, weakness, blackouts or fainting, palpitations, shortness of breath, loss of or excessive sweating, nausea, abdominal pain, constipation, bladder dysfunction, fatigue, sleep disorders, migraines, facial pain, dizziness, changes in heart rate, clamminess, anxiety, flushing, feeling cold all over, cognitive impairment, high BP, noise and light sensitivity, muscle aches, weight loss or gain.
·        Fibromyalgia ~ diagnosed over 10 years ago. Symptoms mimic so many other health conditions it is often hard to diagnoses or find other underlying medical issues.
·        Complex Regional Pain Syndrome ~ a chronic pain condition.  The key symptom of CRPS is continuous, intense pain, which gets worse rather than better over time. CRPS most often affects one of the arms, legs, hands, or feet.  Often the pain spreads to include the entire arm or leg. (In my case, both feet/legs). Typical features include dramatic changes in the color and temperature of the skin over the affected limb or body part, accompanied by intense burning pain, skin sensitivity, sweating, and swelling.
·      Spinal Canal Degeneration and Discs Degeneration ~ The specialist said it is his belief that my spinal issues have exacerbated the CRPS. Therapy for the degeneration issues did not work in the past. Two surgeries later I am still having back pain and problems. He stated that although my spinal column is degenerating, surgeries will likely make the CRPS worse.
·      Immunoglobulin G Deficiency Disorder ~ Treated monthly with IV immunoglobulin treatments @ Brookwood Hospital. IgG are the antibodies that fight viruses, bacteria and antitoxins. This health disorder is another factor in my fight to stay healthy and pain free.
·       Trigeminal Neuralgia ~ is a nerve disorder that causes very painful stabbing or electric shock-like pain in parts of the face. The pain comes from the Trigeminal Nerve which carries pain, feeling and other sensations from the brain to the skin of the face. These episodes can last a few minutes or become constant. Because of the intensity of the pain associated with TN, this disorder is also known as the Suicide Disease. Thankfully, it has been more than a year since I have had an episode.
???? Have I forgotten anything? I know, this is enough, but it seems I always overlook something.
I came out of the specialists’ office with confirmation and additional information. New and upsetting. My heart was so heavy last Friday when I left UAB. My Mom asked me on the ride home if I was OK? She knew I was awfully quiet. Although my heart felt as if it had stopped beating, my mind was racing. I was thinking. Wondering. Wishing. Praying. Questioning.
I cried Friday evening until my head ached. Until I could cry no more…….until the next day began and so did the tears. I felt the winds had ceased and my sails were hanging, useless.
The only thing that was still the same, that I was still certain of, was that I am a child of the King. A masterpiece. His design. Made as I am for a reason. He will use me as He sees fit. All I have to do is trust Him and believe.
We all should do the same. Trust and believe. Have faith when we don't understand. Your outpouring of love and support has been overwhelming. I am so thankful to you all. To everyone. Prayer has the power to change what we see as impossible. With God all things are possible. So for that reason, I have not lost hope.
Love and prayers to you all,

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Yes, I'll Take Those Ugly Shoes In A Size 8 1/2

Some might say I’m not the average woman. Above or below, your call, either way, doesn’t really matter to me. Reasons ~ Unlike most women, not even during that “time” of the month, I don’t care for chocolate. Really! Shopping happens for reasons of totally necessity. I don’t even have a charge card, unless you count my ChevronTexaco. Crazy, huh!?! Once upon a time, I got my greatest highs by pulling weeds from my flowers garden or creating a small landscape project at our home. Ridiculous! I know. What can I say? The small things in life make me extremely happy.
But today I MUST set out on a quest to find shoes. This is no biggie for the average person, especially women who shop till they drop and come home to show off their sassy new heels or totally cool boots. But I have a dilemma. I have to find shoes that, preferably, I can’t feel touch my toes, sole or the top of my feet. Not too much to ask for, right!
My bilateral foot condition, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, causes constant pain in all areas of my feet, and at times knees and upper legs. The simple brush of a sheet or bath towel can cause terrible pain. The swelling prevents me from seeking a shoe with that “perfect” fit. My tootsies need room to swell and the shoes can’t wobble, because I once had a tendency to stand on the side of my foot. That has stopped! But still, I don’t want to fall back into old habits.  A few moments of incorrect posture can turn into the feeling of a broken ankle. Crazy, I know. The sole must have excellent padding because at times when the RSD is in high gear it feels as if I am walking over glass. No kidding. I walk lightly, which is hard to do lately seeing how all of these steroids are making my booty get bigger. So lucky me that puts even more pressure on my feet and therefor that bed of glass I must sometimes walk over seems to be sharper and sharper.
A typical shoe purchase would have few requirements; black, stylish pump that’s comfortable. Done! Bam!
But noooooooooo, I have a list of absolute musts! The shoes must stimulate circulation, align feet, ankles, knees and hips, create or restore optimal foot motion and posture, restore balance and allow my feet to move forward with as little lateral (side to side) motion as possible, extra depth, double or triple depth shoe with high toe box, firm heel counter and a rocker sole. NO PROBLEM! Bet!?!?!
My thinking for now is a pair of Crocs because the “toe area” is wide and I need that feature for certain. Keep in mind I cannot stand to feel anything touch my toes. L
I want stylish shoes, of course. But what are the chances I’ll return home today with shoes that fit the entire bill? So let me just warn you, my shoes will probably suck. If you see me walking around in an ugly pair of orthotics, go ahead and laugh. I’ll laugh right along with you. Sometimes that’s just all you can do, go with the flow.
I’ll head out this morning for what feels like a treasure hunt. Only thing is, I doubt I’ll find a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow or at the shoe store.
To always find a bright side to my weekly or daily dilemma, I am extremely thankful for two feet that carry me where I need to go. It’s a painful journey, but a blessed one, nonetheless.
Thanks again for your time.
Love and prayers to all,

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD)
Reflex Sympathetic Disorder, RSD or CRSD for short, is a chronic progressive neurological condition that affects skin, muscles, joints, and bones. The syndrome develops in an injured limb, such as a broken ankle or foot bone. The injury itself may be major or minor.  In some cases, no specific precipitating event can be identified.  The usual pattern of spread is up the same extremity and then may continue to spread on the same side of the body or to the opposite extremity. RSD has been known to spread to a distant site.
The “injured” area develops into various degrees of burning pain, excessive sweating, swelling, and sensitivity to touch.  The skin appears to be very thin and there will be a different appearance in the specific area, such as being red, swollen and warm to the touch.  There should be a loss of function in the area of injury, such as less range of motion, limping, etc.  Some RSD cases involve nerve injury and some do not.   The condition varies in how disabling is it.  To many, it is substantially disabling and to others it is minimally so.
Other names or similar foot conditions:
CRSD Complex regional pain syndrome
Burning pain
Excessive sweating in injury area
Change in coloration of the injured area
Swelling and extreme sensitivity to touch
Signs to look for:
Overgrown and grooved nails
Swollen and stiff joints
Muscle weakness and atrophy
Change in coloration of the injured area
Swelling and extreme sensitivity to touch
Possible Causes:
Appears to involve an interaction of the sensory, motor, and autonomic nervous systems, and the immune system.
It is thought that brain and spinal cord (central nervous system) control over these various processes is somehow changed as a result of the injury.
The information has been compiled from sources available to the general public and referenced below.  Text:,

Thursday, September 22, 2011

We'd Grab Ours Back

As many of you already know, December 2010, I was diagnosed with Immunoglobulin G Deficiency.
November 29, 2011 I had cervical fusion and shortly thereafter came down with pneumonia. After being admitted to St. Vincent’s Hospital in Birmingham, AL (for years I have had repeated infections and was prescribed antibiotics and steroids) the ER physician went over my medical history and believed me to have IgG deficiency. Viola! He was indeed correct and I was later referred to a Hematologist for additional testing and a plan for treatment.
So my Mother and I make our monthly trek to Brookwood Hospital. She’s driving and I’m in the passenger seat. It never fails, every trip I think the same thing, “Something’s wrong here.” I’m supposed to be driving her to the doctor not the other way around. I feel old and beat down. Should I? I’m only 43!?!
Intravenous immune globulin (IVIG) is made of antibodies that have been extracted from blood donations from 3,000-10,000 healthy donors. IVIG is used to treat many autoimmune disorders, idiopathic diseases (disease of unknown cause), and infections. By providing antibodies to patients who have weakened immune systems, IGIV can help reduce the risk of infection.
Prior to my two bottles of Immunoglobulin G I receive IV Benadryl and IV steroids. Super, more pounds!! This go around I also received Phenergan because I have been having terrible nausea and dizziness along with headaches. So, lucky me I was given a pass to sleep through this 5 hour treatment. Yeah!!! Much better than the alternative; sitting in a recliner squirming for the entire time because that nagging stabbing pain in my lower back prevents me from being comfortable for more than 10 minutes at a time.  
As with every medication or foreign matter that’s put into our body we have to get acclimated. At least I have to. So this wonder treatment is not so wonderful for the next day or so. After every treatment there is the standard follow-up of Benadryl and Ibuprofin twice a day for two to three days. So, thanks to the steroids, I’m hyper dwarf for the first day and, thanks to the Benadryl, I’m sleepy dwarf after that.
Let me be perfectly honest, it sucks! But, then again, on the walk back to “my chair” I pass small rooms with cancer patients taking chemo treatments via port/shunt. Their hair is thin or gone. Their skin is pale and their eyes are sunken. They look tired and spent.
So, I could complain about my monthly treatment OR I can be extremely thankful I get to pass those tiny private rooms and plop my fanny in the big room with the six or so other folks like me who are interrupted with what is compared to be a minor inconvenience.
Someone told me recently, if we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back. ………all I can say to that is, AMEN!
Thanks for your time!
Love and prayers to all,
This is how I feel!! 

Friday, September 16, 2011

A Mother's Love

Everything in life is a result of a decision. For me, I have decided that I will not have a negative attitude regarding the current state of my health. My choice is to remain positive so I will not drag down those around me, those people who love and care for me. It’s not fair to them or me to be sad or depressed. This choice surprises people and seems to downplay to others the severity of my issues and the pain associated with the conditions. But what’s the point of having a negative perspective on the situation? I know that I am being cared for and a gloomy approach to the situation will not change things.
To say I never have moment of sadness would be untrue but those times are seldom and short-lived.
I was reminded in a sermon at church that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Tears streamed down my face throughout the words delivered by our pastor. I had recently been wondering why I seemed to be falling apart if my God is perfect and I was made in His likeness. I am far from perfect. My body and health have failed me but I know that God designed me and I am a treasured possession.
God takes care of the birds in the sky. So why should I worry? His love encourages us to care for His creations. Even the smallest birds that fly are cared for. How many red “nectar” feeders have you seen hanging in yards or on back decks? Many if you live in the south.
People say they witness, in early spring, hummingbirds returning to same spot where a nectar feeder hung the year before. It’s as if the bird is looking for that same feeder. Birds have the ability to “hone in” on a location and return to the same area the next year. This method is not completely understood, say bird experts. John James Audubon, American bird painter and ornithologist, wondered if it was true that the same birds returned each year to his farm in New York. To prove his theory Audubon tied a silk thread to a young phoebe’s leg one summer morning. Come spring the same bird returned and nested in the place it was hatched the year before.
Yearly my mother prepares her feeders and plants flowers to attract hummingbirds that return to drink from her many feeders and flowers scattered on our back deck. Through her patience and loyalty these birds are taken care of during their yearly period of migration. God takes care of the birds through a variety of means, one being my wonderful Mother who is faithful to create a sanctuary for her yearly guests.
Just as God cares for the birds in the air and He cares for me, my Mother cares for the birds and cares for me as well. I have no worries regarding my care. I have my Father and my Mother looking after me.
"Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?”  ~ Matthew 6:26
 Thanks for your time.
Love and prayers to all,

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Beach Believer

Let me go ahead and be up front with you now, if you don’t agree with the teachings of Jesus Christ you may not like this particular blog.
I can say honestly that throughout my sicknesses I have not questioned God "why". I have wondered many times what He wants me to learn through my sufferings. Discipline. Trust. Patience. Courage. Perhaps to strengthen me. Constantly I am reminded of this question because my pain never stops. Healing is possible. But if healing is not His plan then I must acknowledge that my pain may be a tool that will touch others. Possibly, through the words of this blog, people will feel more compassionate or have a deeper appreciation for things that they take for granted. Or have a desire to be grateful for their good health or possibly if they are an unbeliever they will be brought to Jesus Christ.
I still believe that God can heal me. But I have to accept what is happening in the here and now otherwise I could possibly fall into depression or lose hope. No matter what, I must trust God’s purposes in the midst of suffering.
"I consider that the present sufferings are not worth
comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us." ~ Romans 8:18

The combination of my illnesses have a broad range of symptoms but have one common marker, pain. But God always provides. I have things that some people do not have; Unbelievable support from my family, a doctor who understands and who has been very good to me, prayers from my family, friends, my home church and from what I’ve been told and to my surprise, many other churches have my name on their prayer list.
Even those times when I look away for just a moment and allow myself to feel a bit sad about my circumstances there is always that still small voice that reminds me no matter what my situation is, God will provide.
I recently spent several days “relaxing” at the beach. It was a wonderful trip and a reminder to me that God is with me everywhere I go. Even though I can take a trip away from home my illnesses go with me. As I sat on the beach, my back aching, my feet burning and feeling one sharp pain after another, I compared my bag-of-symptoms to the load-of-sin that some folks carry with them where ever they go.  I can’t run away from my pain but sins can be lifted with a simple earnest prayer asking forgiveness.
Looking at the beautiful white sand and the vastness of the ocean I was reminded just how awesome a God I serve. How wonderful He has been to me and how I am in awe of His marvelous works.
Psalm 139 David speaks of God’s handiwork. He says in verse 17, “How precious to me are your thoughts God.” And goes on to say, “If I could count them, it would be more than the grains of sand.”
If I could rid myself of this load of pain and sickness with one prayer I would. So why would a person carry a load of sin if prayer would remove the burden, lift their spirit and renew their soul?
“If we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and
cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”  ~ 1 John 1:9
Thank you for your time, your love and your prayers. I pray that God will “open to you the windows of heaven and pour out so many blessings that you will not have room for it.”
Love and prayers to all,