Gettin’ on with the gettin’ on

As you guys know summer + MS can lead to fatigue. In the past I’ve done pretty good. I’ve rocked the beach in the past and still worked in my yard. Last year and this year not so much. I hadn’t blogged the way I’d like to and basically been a lump on a log for me most part.

I’ve been exhausted, hadn’t even really participated in my group very much. To say I’ve been a spent bitch would be an understatement. My DH has been helping me around the house because even vacuuming has been hard on me.

Vision, dizziness and fatigue have been more than I can wrap my head around. Does this piss me off? Very much so. I get very frustrated with my body failing me. Failure has never been an option for me.

I’m Alex mother effin Pierce-King and I will NOT succumb to the MS bullshit!!!!

I see people in my MS groups dealing with a boatload more than what I deal with. This is always a wake up call to be grateful for the things I CAN still do. I’m still blessed and still grateful that I woke this morning. It can all be overwhelming at times but if we look at the big picture and see this from another perspective we can find the good in any situation.

There’s a fella in my group sofaking sick and tired of MS who posted about how he was three years into MS. And while he wasn’t celebrating having MS he was adapting to the day to day changes that are unpredictable.

I agreed with his take on this sassy ass of a disease and it’s ever changing ways. While I’m not happy or celebrating having it, I am grateful for the person it has made me. I see most days as a gift.

This morning as draggy as I’ve been I pulled myself up by my bootstraps and got moving. I got into some work out clothes, called my son and requested he pick me up to go work out. My legs have been funky so I didn’t trust my driving.

In true David fashion he came and got me and we worked out. I was weak and tired but I did a little something. By the time we left my head was throbbing and David had to hold my hand to walk to the car. Even my cane didn’t make me feel secure walking. I was dizzy and unsteady and probably should have had my walker, but my boy held my hand and got me safely to the car.

Kind of crazy how the roles reverse. Needless to say I’m very grateful to have his and his brothers support when I need it. So while today wasn’t my best MS day it was better than yesterday.

The different angles of perception

In this I’m looking at the different angles of perception. For instance I can look at a picture or piece of art and see something very different than let’s say Lance or my boys.

What one person perceives is and can be very, very different than what another sees, hears or feels.

There are obviously things we all see that are in our face and not up for debate. But most things can be picked apart and questioned.

I know I’ve reminisced about my boys childhood with them. While I remember things a lot more lighthearted than they do, they remember me being a firm at times a harsh mom as well as at times a tyrant for sticking to my guns.

I make no apologies. I remember telling them “I’m your mother NOT your friend. When you’re grown we can be friends until then you WILL mind me.”

I know with my own behaviors I’ve noticed some take me as harsh, snarky and most think of me as strong. Probably because at times I can/will curse like a sailor.

I believe the perception of me being any of those things is due to my gruff exterior. I’m not apologizing for any of it. I can be and most times am strong as well as harsh and snarky.

I have to give all the credit to my childhood. Growing up in Brooklyn is NOT for the faint of heart.

I remember being about 6 and living with my Aunt Jovita briefly. Her and uncle Ramoncito lived on Essex street in East NY they had a nice well maintained house. It was the hood, God knows but their house was nice.

This was a VERY rough neighborhood. There was a local gang called “The Sex Boys” Those were some crazy, bad to the bone mother effers. One night I remember hearing a woman screaming so I ran to the window to see what was going on. As I looked out of the second story window I saw a young woman running screaming down the side walk, when all of a sudden a guy was running from the opposite direction. He ran up to the screaming girl and slit her throat right there in front of my aunt and uncles house. She crumbled to the ground and he ran away like a bat out of hell. My aunt pulled me out of the window and told me (in a very stern voice) “you didn’t see anything”.

It was there and then that the lines became apparent to me, keep my nose out of other people’s business. Is this a correct way of being? No, it’s really not. As I’ve grown, I’ve seen that we can’t just mind our business and not care about our fellow man. But this was my very young perception of how things should be. Mind your business and take care of your own. In my aunts defense she was looking out for me by saying what she said. She didn’t want trouble with the local gang. I can’t say I blame her. We never spoke of it again.

Several months later my dad moved us to Starrett City with him. It was heaven in comparison to Essex street. There were rolling hills smack dab in the center of Brooklyn. Even though it was a much nicer environment, the Essex St. lesson was engrained in me.

As much as I hate to admit it it’s a NY inner city way of being. It was my perception of self protection.

My thinking growing up was to be strong, don’t let people see you cry and never let them see you sweat.

My Da always reinforced that. He always told me to be strong, so for the most part I am, but we all have times when we’re not. With MS I admit I have those moments that I’m not 10ft tall and bullet proof and that’s ok.

I guess the conclusion to this is perception is ever changing. Where I thought I had to be strong all of the time I now realize I don’t. I’ve learned that as we age we get a bit softer and not so hardened and life gets pretty chill.

Now that my boys are grown, I don’t have to be a hard ass so they grow up to be responsible young men. Thankfully they did, my job is done. I can be their friend. At this point I can enjoy a little and not be wound so tight. It’s about time, because I’m bone tired. lol

While I see my boys upbringing as being downright chill in comparison to mine, they looked at things from a different angle. Their perception was mom’s a hard ass. Luckily the older they get their perception is changing.

So to all the young people out there, don’t worry about things, your perception will change greatly the older you get.

Feeling blessed is a state of mind.

I think we can all agree we have good and bad days. Days that it’s a struggle just to shower or stand by your stove to cook a throw together meal. But we also have days where we feel human, like we can go for that short walk or hit the gym for a bit. It’s a mix to say the least.

I do believe feeling blessed is a state of mind. Regardless of the day I wake to I always thank God for waking me. Another day to talk to my hubby and kids and let them know how much I love them.

God knows they all three can work my nerves, but I’m grateful for another day with them still and all.

I was talking with Lance today (man am I grateful he was off for the summer) and I was telling him how now my good days are what my bad days used to be. Funny how that change happens and you don’t even realize it. Bam you’re there and think WTF when did this happen?

Last year was rough, but I had a flare so I could excuse it away. Surely this summer would be better. It wasn’t, but at the end of the day I have my family and for that I’ll always consider myself blessed.

Every morning I thank God for another day. If we all look at life that way we can all consider ourselves blessed. Another day filled with possibilities. Even a bad day is still a blessing because it’s another day to do something, to make someone smile, have a good chuckle and make the world a little brighter or be the snarky asshole that I so enjoy being.

Life is hard and messy at times but it’s always better than the alternative. So I’m challenging everyone that reads this to find a blessing in every day.

These two are mine them and my sweet hubby

Happy Friday folks. Btw I woke thinking it was Thursday. Days seem to slip by at times like smoke through a keyhole. Enjoy it and be as present as possible.

Black and white challenge.

This is my contribution to the 7 day B&W challenge. This is Vivi Le Croix she’s a jerk as is her owner. While I love blogging I hadn’t felt up to it. I hadn’t been very present in my FB group either. Between having some type of crud and dealing with summer heat I’ve found this summer very draining.

I’ve recently went vegetarian and found that it has done wonders for my digestive system. ie.I’ve been going to the bathroom regularly.

But as you all know with the heat there are issues we MSers suffer with, fatigue as well as vision issues seem to plague me more in the heat. So while I am still the little spitfire I’ve always been, Im a bit out of the loop as far as blogging and social media.

Hope you all can forgive my lack of participation, I’m just pooped out.

My old boy Hamm

Let me tell you about my old boy Hamm. His full and proper name would be Hammbone Jenkins III. No there wasn’t a first or second the boys thought it sounded fancy.

Hamm is one of my senior pups. Mr. Wiggles is my other. Enough about Wiggles. This entry is all about my Hamm.

It was Jakes 13th birthday I believe. Jake put in to go to the shelter “just to look around”. I remember vividly saying “Jake when have we ever went to the shelter just to look around?” He pleaded “please mom pleeeease”. I relented and said “ok we’re just going to look.”

We wound up at the Lynn Haven animal shelter. We walked around the exterior, all of the dogs in the separate kennels barking for attention. It was pretty chilly out because it was February and the previous winter was still in the air.

We went inside to say hi, I had worked for the police department in Lynn Haven and the animal control was a branch of law enforcement for the city. I had several friends there. So I popped in and found a playpen in the office filled with pups. There had to be 10-15 pups.

While Jake oood and ahhhd over the little pups in the playpen I chatted with my friend Cheryl. She said the pups had been dropped off about a week ago In a box without their mother. They had been about a couple of weeks old. We talked about how heartless some people are and both agreed whoever dumped the pups was a piece of shit.

Jake was loving on all the little fur babies and of course put in to get one. I said nope, we agreed we wasn’t going to get one before coming and by golly I’m not leaving with one!!!

We said our goodbyes to Cheryl and loaded up in the suburban. I was firm in my decision NOT to get another pet. We had Max (our pit mix) at home and the year prior lost our Rottie Shelby Woo. She had to be put down and it was very upsetting losing her. Her loss was felt by the whole family. She was an awesome girl. Daisy reminds me of her.

As we was driving out of the sports complex that housed animal control Jake had such a sad look on his face. He asked what’s going to happen to those pups mom? I said they’ll be adopted Jake. He looked so sad. So of course I turned the truck around and went back to the shelter. Jakes little face lit up. I couldn’t have him sad on his bday. I told him ” just let me help you pick one. Some of them didn’t look like they’d fair too well. Jake picked up one that had rottie markings. It was a cutie but looked sickly and lethargic. I picked up one that had spots and was a bit more active. He looked like a tiny cow.

Cheryl let me know real quick we couldn’t formally adopt one but we could foster and if things worked out we could adopt.

In the car Jake reminded me he had plans that night with his best friend Casey for his bday. I was not too happy about having to tend his new pup the first day he got him but of course caved and said ok. I held Hamm all the way home while driving. He was just like a little baby.

We got him home and David, Jake and myself decided on a name. I’m pretty sure David was the one to come up with Hammbone Jenkins III. I loved it. It was the coolest name ever.

Bob came home from work and was none too happy that I got a pup without discussing it with him. But as everyone knows I’ve always been an ask for forgiveness vs. ask for permission kind of gal. Bob was also concerned because Hamm was so tiny. He didn’t think Hamm would live. We wound up getting pup formula for him and I tended him like I birthed him myself. The doting mom kicked in and never left.

I admit Cheryl and myself thought he would be a small breed of dog. He kept growing and growing. He wound up in the 80-90lb range.

It turned out Hamm and I would have an incredible bond. He followed me constantly, never needed a leash. He just knew he had to stay with me. If he walked too fast I’d say slow down Hamm and he would. When I’m feeling poorly he’s right there with me watching me closely. He looks at my face more than any of the dogs ever have.

As you all know I’ve went through some very trying times. Ya know who’s always been there? Old Hammbone Jenkins III that’s who. He’s seen me through the passing of Bob as well as major health issues of my own. I can’t tell you all how many times after Bob passed I’ve sat and cried to old Hamm. I swear he understood. He was my service dog before I ever thought about getting a service dog.

He’s a true G that boy is. He’s my ride or die pup. I love all of my pups. But he’ll always be special to me. He’s seen me through the toughest of times. He’s getting old now and slowing down quite a bit. He’s not as handsome as he once was but then neither am I. You can always count on him being by my side, watching me and making sure I’m ok.

Yeah this is a kind of corny entry but I just have to give my old boy props. I’m sick with an upper respiratory funk and he’s right by my side as he’s always been.

When you’ve had your fill

I had a good fourth. Most of you know I’ve been doing a vegetarian/almost vegan diet for several weeks. I made quinoa and black bean burgers, French fries and homemade coleslaw. It was ok. Not great but still tasty.

It’s been working out pretty good. I’ve been substituting meat with quinoa because it has the 9 essential fatty acids our bodies require every day. We’ve been eating a lot of veggies in different dishes and it’s working out well.

My sweetie likes to say it’s because of my MS. This is not true. Lol

Although it is really good for MS we started doing this particular diet for his arthritis. He had knots forming on his knuckles that became very painful. He was suffering greatly, so I suggested doing this diet for both of us.

I had suggested it in the past but he was very firm in saying he didn’t think he could do it. Kind of humorous to see someone do an about face when they’re the one dealing with intense pain. Not judging my hubby because I get it.

You don’t get it until you get it. Pain will change your way of thinking in a hurry.

So we cut meats and cheeses out of our diet. I like it. I do find I have a bit more energy. Nothing too crazy but any improvement is a welcome change. I still have to sit or lay down frequently but I think it’s helping. So as you all know I’m going to go with the positive at all times, so far this is a good go for me and for him.

So Lance cut the grass and I cooked my fake burgers. After everything was done we attempted to play a little golf. This was NOT my best idea. I have a cold or sinus infection brewing and felt puny to begin with.

Why did I feel the need to play? I didn’t really feel the need, but felt guilty. It’s Lances summer vacay and I know he wants to do more than just sit around the house. I’ll be honest, I’m not really up for more than sitting around the house but I figured we’d play and maybe I’d be ok. Was this ok? No it was not. Besides the normal MS bullshit my nose was running and my throat was sore.

I regret putting myself through that. The heat was intolerable and I was cranky AF. I attempted a couple of holes and failed miserably. It was a waste of time and money. Last I played we had been neck and neck, this time I could barely get around. The heat zapped all my energy and I just couldn’t. I stuck it out so as not to ruin his game.

It was a bit much for me, as we left I told him I am NOT putting myself through that again in the summer months. I had my fill at that point. This is in no way his fault but my own for pushing myself.

I’m sure you all remember I have a hard time listening to my body. This has worked against me time and time again. Needless to say I’m suffering the consequences for my silliness. Lesson learned.😉

Note to self: stop being a punk ass punk and take it easy when need be.

So now I’m showered, resting and going to try and not beat myself up for doing myself in yet again.

On another note, eating a plant based diet has worked In favor with regards to going to the bathroom. Go team Alex!!!! I should also report the squatty potty is a win win. Not a cure all but definitely worth the money spent.

So Happy 4th folks. Hoping you all have a great holiday

Revisiting the poop chronicles

I’ve blogged about this in the past. See those brown eyes? They’re that deep brown because I’m full of shit. I joke about it but pooping is a serious thing. I joke that I’m literally full of shit because I am.

I’ve suffered with major constipation for what seems like forever. I’ve heard tell this is common for us MSers.

For a hot minute things was moving smoothly. I’d say a couple of months give or take. I had started eating Raisin Bran with almond milk nightly and it seemed to be working well. Well that ended as quickly and unexpectedly as it started.

Mind you in the past I had tried everything from green smoothies to power pudding along with a ton of water to try and get things “regular”.

Years ago yogurt kept me semi regular. Not any more. Now it’s rocks in my belly Bullshit that I deal with. Raisin Bran has failed me as well as all the other things I’ve tried. Lance jokes that it’s a demon inside me brewing. This makes me chuckle. He keeps me laughing with all the MS BS I deal with. He loves his shit filled wife. Go figure. That just goes to show you there’s someone for everyone.

As you all know I’ve been working out. The working out is also an attempt to try and keep things in my belly moving in the right direction.

Yesterday I went with David to the gym and told him i wasn’t feeling my best. I told him I was 4 days in. No poopage for momma. He knows of my never ending struggle. He says have you tried a squatty potty? Not sure why he even asked he comes to my house all the time and would have seen it in the bathroom. Maybe he thought mom suddenly got private about such matters. No such luck. I told him no but I have tried using a stool to raise my legs while on the toilet. Sorry if that’s TMI but you all know at this point I have no shame about pooping or anything else having to do with health matters.

We went after our workout and got me a squatty potty. I wasn’t real jazzed about it. It cost 25.00 at Target. This to me seemed a bit pricey for a maybe. David insisted, so I caved and we got it. We walked around Target with my squatty potty, kambucha and work out shirts in my buggy. No shame here. There was a bright white and blue sticker with the words SQATTY POTTY on it. Was I embarrassed? Nope no shame in my pooping game, or at least attempt at a pooping game.

Have I mentioned all the probiotics, kambucha,yogurt and water I ingest? It’s quite a bit in an attempt to keep my gut healthy to be able to SHIT. Have I been able? No I haven’t. Apparently it’s just not in the cards for me to have normal healthy bowel movements.

So I get home with my squatty potty,kambucha etc. I put it in the bathroom drink a bunch of water. Ate some Raisin Bran sat on my toilet (legs raised in the appropriate position) and I wait. Sitting hoping. Pressing on my belly. Nothing. 25$ down the drain.

I wound up taking a laxative along with more water. Nothing. A big fat 0!

So day 5 of the poop hostage situation. I really am not sure who the hostage is, me or the poop. I woke had my coffee yogurt and an apple and headed to the gym. Surely this would be the day. Nope nada, nothing. I’m getting ready to bust. I’m still eating and not evacuating a damn thing. Today I took two laxatives after lunch. I’m determined to get this going. That or it’s going to start running out of my ears. Not pretty, not pretty at all.

Lance and I went for sushi. It was a good time. Finally relaxed on the couch and suddenly felt movement in my tummy. I scooted to the bathroom excited to use my squatty potty. SUCCESS!!!! Two laxatives later, legs in the appropriate position and I got to go. I swear it was like birthing a child less the 18 yrs of parenting. I was that excited!

I know it’s not very glamorous or pretty but this is just one of the many things we deal with. Not that every BM is noteworthy but I figured this one was. So back to the drawing board in hopes to find something besides a laxative to get me going. I’m going to continue with this squatty potty thing and let you all know if it’s worth the 25.00$ spent.

Wish me luck everybody.