Thursday, December 29, 2011

# 35 Reflection Common not Capable

Common not all are capable
By Mary K. Mennenga

 In common:
Hopes and dreams, love and sadness, fears and joy, loss and growth.
Life is capable of teaching us many things.
If we are willing to learn compassion.

Some aren't Capable of:
Actively listening
Holding back judgment until both points of view are understood. 
What was your motive for sharing this type of information with me.
I'm sure it wasn't meant to hurt me.

As for me:
Sharing my History is easy it's unable to hurt me.
Sharing feelings of pain, loss and emotions is much harder
For that is my heart
That now stays safely in my chest
Long ago I wore it on my sleeve
Learned how easily it could be bruised, crushed and nearly broken
Would have liked to have learned that lesson much sooner then I did
Oh well it all worked the way it was meant to anyway

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Can't say much about weather in Minnesota.

What a different a year makes, much easier to get around to do just about anything that doesn't include snow. Do I mind heck no, haven't used the snow-blower once, shoveled only 3 times. The day after Christmas we set a record high temperature of 52 degrees, considering the normal high is in the low twenty's, dewpoints are still in between the 30's and 40's, yes I've written about the weather a lot, it's kind of becoming a big deal all over the world. Now I'm not going to get into climate change debate, if folks want to keep on the rose colored glasses, there's not much I can do about that. 

When we don't get the snow in the end of fall and early winter we do tend to get more in January and February so it does even it's self out for the most part. When it's this dry and warm I water the trees that get the most sun or are young, so they don't get too stressed. Need as many carbon eater as we can get here in the city, it won't replace the rain forest but every little bit helps, well it can't hurt. 

It been nice getting out and about without having to deal with all that snow, shush and ice.  Having not to fight so hard to keep the cold out and the heat in. Knowing many of you are needing to fight the cold and snow for the first time in many years if ever. Your houses aren't build for this kind of cold or to bear the weight of the wet snow on your roof. Don't know many up here that don't know what the R factor rating is of the insulation in their walls the roofs is. The roofs on the houses up here are built to hold up to the weight of the snow and the freezing and thawing that's caused by the sun. Not saying all this to worry any one just information to hopefully help you get through this winter. Best of luck to all who are needing to deal with for the first time. 

Saturday, December 24, 2011

What my brain and body did automatically

This has worked for me dealing with swelling hands and feet. It may not work for everyone else but here goes anyway. The human body is meant to be in motion it's how the body detox's it self, having limited mobility, spasticity and pain makes it harder to do. Understanding I've got to work at keeping it doing what it used to do, before m.s. got in the way of my body's ability to do this without my needing to think about it all! Heck I didn't even know it did this automatically, until after I talked to my old track coach. Never heard about it from any Doctor, Neurologist and or Physically therapist. Dealing with gout learning why it seems to happen in the toes. Because the body moves harmful things as far away from the heart as it can, how dumb I'm I that's why fluid builds up in hands and feet as far away from the heart as it can get. Understanding that Mobility is so much more then moving from point A to point B. It's amazing how little I know about this shell I've lived within for over 49 years. It's capable of and does try to protect it's self from my many mistakes.  

Moving on (pun intended) to communication brain to and from the body, spasticity and pain. Learning these three work together to break down muscles that adds to pain and is one of the causes of muscle weakness. For many people putting a thought into action is automatic. Most if asked couldn't tell you how they did it or what muscles were used, to do any given task, unless the muscle is or was painful or sore! For them communication is seamless, I for one don't have the ability to think and do, my brain and body doesn't work as a team any more. Messages go from the brain but because of the many scares along path caused by m.s. messages get misdirected or totally lost and or delayed. The central nervous system and spinal cord is only the delivery system when a message doesn't get out of the brain or into the right spot. What this does is hit or miss causing so many different problems, the main one for me is pain here is an example of  one my hope is it help people to understand what they take for granted. Thinking of standing up from sitting sound easy okay lets follow the path of a ms scared brain sends the message oops it got misdirected, nothing is moving find another way to get up without using my knee's, lift myself up using my arms works okay get feet under me done. Now I go to take that step oops here comes that misdirected message to stand up darn it now the muscles in my knee's are trying  ouch in my head I'm screaming I'M ALREADY STANDING SO STOP TRYING  TO OH MY THAT HURTS!! Finally they stop it's a good thing I have knee caps. The last piece as to how this causes muscle weakness, it's when my brain sends the message to the muscle to do work, but when the muscle sends the message back to my brain what's it's done but that message gets lost so there is a disconnect between the brain and the muscle, the brain doesn't know that the muscle it's been working and is in need of an increased blood flow to remove acid that is a by product of working a muscle, then acid isn't removed fast enough it starts working to break down the muscle making it weaker. This also true with spams At first I'm so glad it stopped pulling, I want to rest but now I've got to do what my brain should have done by increasing the blood flow. How can I do that I'm not in control of my blood flow that's my Brain's job. But I do Understand that moving will cause my blood flow to increase that with movement the brain will know that to do, I have to find a way to help build a new connection. 

Please remember I'm no Doctor,  This is my way of trying to make sense of that m.s. is doing, to the little things the brain did before m.s. of course I didn't know anything about what the brain does automatically until after I got m.s. Just wondered how or if the little stuff was the cause of losing the big stuff? As always I still have no answers just a whole lot of questions. 

As to swelling hands and feet what work for me is by increasing blood flow using movement even small ones help me. 

Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas this year here will be brown.

As you may already know I talk about the weather a lot, many folks in Minnesota do. Last year we had so much snow, this year we've had more rain then snow. With above normal temperatures it's keeping the heating cost down, after the cooling season that was much higher than I've seen before, it's helping the household budget to catch up. The snow lovers here are unhappy, earlier this week we had .34 inches of rain, that would have been 3~4 inches of snow, meaning the ski resorts are ice but are again making snow, I'll admit I like snow at ski resorts more then on the roads and sidewalks makes getting from point A to B and back again much easier. Mother nature I think maybe taking some of the same drugs that I am, or maybe shes having some fun with Mr. Frost. Yes I do know it about climate change, being it's so close to Christmas just want to give a lighter spin, for a short time. Now that it's gotten colder the birds are coming back to the bird feeder again and the three baby squirrels are getting a thicker coat of fur and are filling out nicely, I'm almost sure they'll make it through the rest of the winter. As for the brown, I don't mind it's nice being able to get out this time of year. The snow will come sooner or later, it always does just taking each day as it comes.       

Thursday, December 15, 2011

I've been well M.S. is making NO trying to be...

... A kill joy to put it nicely! Sorry I'm not given into that crap wait bull crap. 
Time for a little chat with my brain yes I talk to my brain No it does not answer not so far, one of these days who knows. However it has a lot to answer for! Like why does it not listen or at least try to find a way to limit the number of times it tells a muscle to do what it never did before m.s. I don't have or take dummy pills! (some may not agree) Come on making two muscle work against each other is painful and why did it let that message get through sense less. I'll think about getting up, after I do stand up without the help of my muscles. I swear my brain waits until I'm upright and taking the first step, that's when it sends the message, yep it gets through, so the those muscles try and thankfully don't get my knee to go backward the knee cap gets in the way. Wish my brain would listen to me, I thought I gave better sense then that.

Not going to fix what wrong with this and no I'M not "NUTS" but M.S. is totally not letting me talk to my BRAIN!  

Friday, December 9, 2011

#34 Of reflections One cold wind

I wrote this when I was in the eighth grade
after learning how fast life can change.

One cold wind
By Mary K. Mennenga

Love is as delicate as a flower
In the fall
One cold wind 
Could destroy it all
The same seed
Has taken root 
In two different heart's 
It will always
Be there 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A Christmas Reflection

Last year I didn't do the Christmas decorating thing, with my Mom gone and Jane's sister Karen so sick. Putting up a Christmas tree and all that goes with it, was too much for me to handle at the time. This year I've been making up for not doing it last year. Of course I hadn't taken into account having Primary Progressive M.S. and losing abilities that I had last year. Maybe I should ask for help but knowing if I did, I'd get all kinds of help, some in the form of doing it for me, which is taking over control, that isn't the type of help I want or need. The trouble is all my memories of  doing Christmas decorating with Mom at her house, even after I had moved out. We would go to get her Christmas tree at stands that pop up after Thanksgiving or go cut one down. Her requirement was wide and not too tall. Every year we went, At the stand she always pick the one that was a bit off that no one else seemed to want. At the cut your own tree place, never did cut one down she would see a poor discarded tree that someone had already cut down then have me hold it up and give it a spin, then declare it to be her Christmas tree! Telling her the first few times how bad the flaws were, some had two trunks or shaped like an S or a C. But she would hear none of that. Saying only that it was perfect because it was going to be a Christmas tree. After we got it home I would put on her 500 lights, working to hide as many of the flaws as I could. Together we hung all of her ornaments, each  had a special meaning and many had been gifts from people so dear to her. Each year after sitting down to check our work, that's when I realized she was right it truly was a perfect Christmas tree with all the love hanging on it.

My Christmas tree is up with it's 500+ lights, yes I can feel all the love coming from it and I know she's enjoying it with me.
Karen and her sisters
Char and Jane

Passed away October 4, 2011
My Mom Adele and me
October 25 1930 ~ April 13, 2010
Here is the tree that brought back so many wonderful memories of Christmas.
Thanks for reminding what Christmas is all about
Caring, Sharing and
Christmas or Xmas
Either way you write it
You can't take Christ out of 
Both mean the exact same thing!