family, knitting, living

Posts tagged “MS

Waiting for the leaves to turn

I am waiting for the changes.  Some I wait for impatiently, some I dread, some have to happen, some can’t.  Changes are part of life.  The only end to change in one’s life is the end of one’s life.  I know this, but it doesn’t make some changes any easier.

We’ve spent all summer working on the new house…talk about a change!  The house is incredible and I cannot wait to move in, but I have to wait another week I think.  There are still a handful of things that need to happen and I don’t want to rush in where we are living in an uncomfortable situation.  It’s funny,  I am dying to move in, but I am nervous and worried at the same time.

My sisters are all having major changes happening in their lives.  I am standing on the sidelines waiting to see who needs to be picked up.  My stomach turns and churns watching and waiting for the last shoe to drop in all of these situations.  I know that at least two of the sisters will come out stronger on the other end, but I can’t stand to see them hurt, but the other sis…I’m not so sure about.

My girls have changed schools.  We put them in the local Waldorf school after three years of public school for the oldest and one for the youngest.  This was a very hard change to make.  We fell in love with  the school more than a year ago and have been planning this change for that long, but we still had tears from the oldest for the first couple of days.  It’s funny, she knows that this is where they belong, but she is still homesick for the other school.  They have both started to settle in and seem to really be blossoming.  They are wonderful girls (yes, I am biased, but this is true).  They are creative, curious, polite, full of wonder, adventurous, willing to try, and  good hearted….all of these things seem to help them fall right in with the other children and I look at their classmates and am amazed to find such confident, grounded little beings.  This has been a great change even with the challenges.

Speaking of changes, there are some I need to make (or I should say, Henry and I need to make).  On the health from the two of us are woefully unprepared to get older.  We need to clean up our diets and start exercising.  And I need to find a way to learn to let go of stress or at least not react so strongly to it.  The summer’s stress has caused me a hard summer and at least one minor exacerbation.  I need to get healthy physically, mentally and  emotionally to lull my MonSter back to sleep.  Once we finally get moved, the changes will be coming on that front.

Now I know most of you bother with my blog more for pictures and knitting than for the dribble above, so ask me how I meet all of these changes…  Well, I continue to knit.  As Elizabeth Zimmerman says, “Knit on with confidence and hope, through all crises.”  I have not exactly produced a ton, but I have managed to continue to knit a little here and there throughout all of this junk and have a few things to show for the effort.  I made a baby jacket for a friend fo a friend and I knitted a big headed monkey for Mycah’s birthday.  I also started a vest for me for winter.  The only downside to the vest is that I have to borrow it back from the shop as Carolyn gave me the yarn to knit it for the shop sample!


MS Awareness Week

Yes….it’s that time of year again.  I find it hard to believe it has been a year since my last similar post. Little did I know then that I was on the verge of a relapse.  Little did I know it would effect me and my family so much.  I have recovered from the relapse with little evidence of it other than the stark reality that I really do have MS and it REALLY can disrupt our lives.  I am so fortunate that I have made such a great recovery…..many are not as fortunate.  I am so lucky that we have health insurance…many do not.  I am so lucky that I have a husband who sands with me and even carries me when I need him to.  I have my girls who love me and are so gentle with a sick mommy.  I have parents, step-parents,sisters, grandparents, and more cousins than I can shake a stick at who support me.  I have friends who have become family who support me.  I am soooo lucky…but many are not.

For those who aren’t as lucky…I am going to walk in the MS Walk at Edwin Warner Park.

I have another reason for walking… two girls.  I never want them to have to hear “you have MS.”  I never want your kids to hear it.  I would be quite satisfied if no person ever had to hear those words again.

Support my walk…help me beat the MonSter down!!!

4th Annual MS Awareness Week
March 2 – 8, 2009

MS Awareness Week leads into the annual Public Policy Conference in Washington D.C.  The goals of this week are to acknowledge people who are a part of the movement, to invite new people to the movement and to encourage everyone to take action.  The Mid South Chapter has many programs and events planned for the week.  Check out the Programs and Services page for more information on these events.

What a good day!

I am proud to say that I met with the trainer at the YMCA today.  I signed up for a program called First Steps.  It is free to new members.  It’s one of those where they discus your goals, get you going and then you check in every other week or so for some tweaking.  It’s not a full blown personal trainer thing, but it is definitely a first step, a good step, for me.  I’ve spent the last four years mad at my body, disgusted with it’s major flaw that has given rise to weight gain, fatigue and various stupid little miseries that I don’t care to name.  I have allowed MS to define me and make me hate my body.  I was once healthy and very strong. I could out work Henry.  We worked sun-up to sun-down remodeling and organizing the farm.  Lately, I feel lucky if I make through the end of the day.  Well, I’m done.  MS…..BITE ME.

Anyway, sorry that little rant.  So, I met with the nicest guy at the Y.  He put me through the paces, but was very sweet and encouraging.  He made me a little card so that I can track stuff and said “good girl”  when I finished things or needed a little boost!  I felt like I really accomplished something.  I worked out for about 45 minutes doing both cardio and weight training.  I committed to doing this three times a week.  I have to do this two more times this week and meet back with him on Monday.  Plus, I am going to continue to swim with Wendy on Tuesdays and Thursdays.    I am very hopeful and excited about this.  I think tomorrow I will get Wendy to take my measurements so I can write them down and have another way to track my progress instead of just using a scale.

Another great thing happened today.  I finally got my butcher block.  I ordered it about a month ago.  When I got home from the Y Henry was putting the legs on.  The thing weighs 168 pounds.  We had quite a time getting it upright!   It is perfect.  I couldn’t be happier.  Mycah went to Target with me to get stools.  We got those saddle style stools because they have a pretty small footprint.  I was hoping that having a palce for the girls to be in the kitchen would encourage them to be in there while I am cooking and/or help with the cooking.  Well, it worked…at least for the first night.  Grey and Mycah pulled the stems off the spinach, helped measure the brown rice for cooking and watched me prep the chicken for baking.  (no, i did not put raw chicken on my new butcher’s block)  They were so thrilled with the stools and the block that they asked to eat dinner at it.  We did and had a great time.

My last little thrill just occurred.  I got an email saying that my wheel should be here Wednesday!!!!!!!!! Yes!  I was hoping it would get her before Lori and her family come up this weekend.  This is going to be fun.

My First Handpsun

I am posting pictures for posterity…not because this damn yarn is any good!  Well, it is not terrible and does seem like it will work as yarn…just not what I envisioned. The reason it is two colors is that I was trying two different types of wool.  The brown is Shetland and the white is Blue Faced Leicester.  The BIG wound ball of brown is not my hand-spun, it is Eco-wool by Cascade.  Is that not the coolest thing ever!  It is not dyed, the sheep was that color and there is almost 500 yards there.  It retails for 16.50.  This is a great value and it feels pretty good due to the minimal processing.  The yarn is for Henry’s sweater.  I have been through three yarns and probably the same number of needles, but I finally have gauge and a fabric that we both like. 

I’m a little scattered right now.  The rough draft for Henry’s thesis is due the 15th and I am chief editor.  Ughhhh.  I am having he hardest time focusing on it because I don’t want to do it.  I just want to knit and bury my head in the sand!  Oh well, I’ll get it done. 

By the way….I have now been to the Y to swim 8 times in 2.5 weeks.  I am trying desperately to turn over a healthy new leaf.  I feel like I need to be in the best physical shape I can be in.  I don’t want the next relapse to send me into a tailspin again.  Dr. M says that the healthierI am, the better able my body can cope with the MonSter.  I’m taking him at his word….time for me to get my head out of my butt and take care of myself. 



OK everybody,

I owe a post on the TN…since I whined about it in the first place.  After a round of stupid-high-dose steroids, I am on my way to recovery.  I can actually drink something cold and bubbly without dying and the wind is now only causing the intense burning/itching, but no “pain.”  My butt is still dragging, but I can actually work and feed the kids without crumpling into a heap.  I really think I have another week of recovery and I will be back ship-shape!  Thank all of you for the well wishes.  It really helped knowing that people cared how I felt both physically and emotionally.  I love you all!


Guilt is a funny thing.  It’s one of those feelings that has it’s place.  It keeps us in line.  It motivates us to follow through when we promise something, to not do something that we know we will regret, to tell the truth.  Unfortunately, it also causes me to work when I’m sick, to feel bad if I can’t get off the couch and to generally beat my self up for not being perfect.  Hubby just explained to me that I am making myself miserable and he does not want the girls learning my bad habits.  Whoa…talk about a “come to Jesus moment.” 

I’m in the middle of the worse exacerbation I have had.  No, I haven’t lost the use of my legs, arms or eyes.  I have excruciating pain reverberating up and down one side of my head.  Apparently it is trigeminal neuralgia. It’s not pretty people.  The only way I’m not writhing in (intermintent, but seems pretty frequent) pain is by taking a load of drugs…then I’m stupid.  I can’t wash my hair, bend over, eat anything hot, cold or bubbly.  The girls can only kiss me on one side of my face and unfortunately they know it.  I feel so guilty for not cooking and cleaning and most of all not working.  I had to call in.  It makes me sick.  I have just given my notice and want everything to be perfect before I leave and I can’t stand to hold the phone to work.  Guilt, guilt, guilt.  I feel like I have a big fat looser sign on my forehead. 

Well…that was a big long whine.  On to better news.  I finished the shawl for Grey’s school.  They had a silent auction.  I raised $11,000.  I’m not sure how much the shawl fetched.  I know it was over 60 or so.  Here it is modeled my my friend Anne at Crazy Girl Yarn Shop in Coralville.


MS Awareness Week Round Up

So, I’ve had six comments with six people named.  I know another 4 plus my MS group of about 20….so with just a week’s worth of asking and only six people commenting, we’ve found 30.  So, what was the point?  I think the point was that we all stood still for a minute and thought about it.  I think awareness is the first step.  The next would be activism.  That is one I plan to work on.   I have walked in a 50 mile walk to DC and raised a good deal of money doing it, volunteered for the MS Jack and Back in TN and donated to various other riders or walkers through the last couple of years.  I’m going to figure out how to do more during this next year…but in the meantime:  Shelia, I’m on Rebif and would be more than happy to talk to you about it.  Also, I got to know some great people in the MS community back in Nashville and I would love to hook you up.  Anyone else out there struggling personally or know someone struggling with dealing with the MonSter….email me.  I will be happy to lend an ear, maybe that’s what I can do to help right now.

It is National MS Awareness Week

March 10-17 is National MS Awareness Week.  The call from the National MS Society is …what will you do?  I read another girl’s blog and what she said was freaking genius….”I will have MS.”  Hehehehe…me too!

Seriously, I am copying a blurb from the Society’s website and asking that anyone who knows someone with MS…leave me a comment.  I find it amazing how many people know someone with MS when they think about it.  MS is generally pretty quiet.  It’s the “oh, but you look so good” disease, but think about it.  Do you know someone?  I know 4 in my family or extended family….and another 20 or so form my Nashville group.  My dad meets people all the time.  I think this is one of those seemingly silent diseases and I just want to know…..

Here’s the skinny on MS (and I do mean the skinny).  There’s a lot more to it, but you’ll get the idea:

About Multiple Sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis interrupts the flow of information between the brain and the body and stops people from moving. Every hour in the United States, someone is newly diagnosed with MS, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are moving us closer to a world free of MS. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with more than twice as many women as men being diagnosed with the disease. MS affects more than 400,000 people in the U.S. and 2.5 million worldwide.