SPEAK OUT FOR PAIN!

LIVING, WORKING & SURVIVING WITH ARTHRITIS

Sharing your illness and the variety of effects occurring within your body and mind is difficult. Nobody wants to be a “Negative Nelly” or “Debbie Downer”, but everyone wants to be able to share their painful situations. Gaining trust and support from your peers remains a major factor in surviving and flourishing when dealing with a chronic illness. You and I both know this, but the tough situation persists.

Speaking out is cathartic for your soul. Your stress goes down and your friends / family realize you are not being lazy while saying, “No.” You want to be the “perfect” person you remember being before getting sick, but is it worth the pain? I believe your friends will understand and support you, but they need to know your unique situation.

I happened along this blog, “Managing arthritis pain starts with a conversation” and found it honest, interesting and most of all encouraging. Below is the URL for the blog, “Managing arthritis pain starts with a Conversation”

http://life.nationalpost.com/2013/11/04/managing-arthritis-pain-starts-with-a-conversation/

 

SHARE YOUR PERSONAL STORIES WITH THIS LINK ..... http://www.thepain.ca/

Whether or not you are suffering with any type of arthritis, please give it a read. If you are suffering, it leads you to an interest site for sharing your pain. If you’re not, it could help you understand your friends / family / coworkers situation. We all need a bit of empathy in the challenging world of health care.

Let me know what you think of the article and sharing your pain. I hope it positively affects you also.

Laura, a Crutch Caps Inc. team member

 

 

 

 

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FALL IS NOW – Take a moment to enjoy it!

Fall is my favorite season

     Here in the Midwest it’s a beautiful time of year. I love the incredible color variety in the leaves, the crisp and cool mornings followed by sunny afternoons with brilliant blue skies, and the chilly evenings for piles of blankets and open windows. Plus, soup is on the stove for a warm and yummy meal.

Gourmet Pumpkin Soup from AllRecipes.com

Ingredients:  1 T butter, 2 T brown sugar, 1 sugar pumpkin = 3 lbs, peeled, seeded and cut into matchbox size pieces, 1 T yellow curry powder, 20 oz. chicken stock, 2 T pumpkin seed oil, sour cream, and toasted pumpkin seeds.

Instructions: Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the pumpkin, brown sugar, and curry powder to the butter; cook and stir until the pumpkin caramelizes, 6 to 10 minutes. Pour the chicken broth over the mixture; bring to a boil, and cook until the pumpkin is tender, about 20 minutes more. Pour the soup into a blender, filling the pitcher no more than halfway. Hold the lid of the blender in place with a towel; start the blender, using a few quick pulses to get the soup moving before leaving it on to puree. Process in batches until smooth. Garnish each portion of soup with 1 teaspoon pumpkin seed oil, a dollop of sour cream, and a few pumpkin seeds.

Pumpkins are out and ready to go – I love almost everything having to do with pumpkins.  From heading out to the pumpkin patch, one of my favorite family outings of the year, to carving/decorating, to all the foods made from pumpkin – I can’t get too much of them.  Some of my favorites are chocolate chip pumpkin bread (I use a Cooking Light recipe), pumpkin soup ( see recipe above) , and yummy pumpkin pie. Delicious!

     Fall RunningImage from Well Fit Fusion. Thanks Lisa!

If you have kids, they’ve settled into school by now (hopefully), and you have a bit of structure back in your life from the whimsy of summer. The weather is perfect and it’s time to get fit using your beautiful fall surroundings – I’m not a die-hard athlete, so when it’s cold/rainy/snowy out, you’ll find me staying in for a movie instead of being focused.  But right now, working out outdoors doesn’t get much better.

I also love the lack of holiday stress.  Yes, you know it’s around the corner, and if you are ambitious you can feel good about any of those gifts you are knocking out now, with no pressure or stress.  Get it done while it’s still fun!

So, if you are busy all the time, as most of us are, I encourage you to just take a bit of time and do something you love this season.  If you are on a mobility device, such as crutches, or wheelchair, still find something you love about fall and do it, savor it.  Yes, you may need to make modifications, but don’t let the beauty of this season pass you by.  If you need help with ideas on how to modify your fall favorite to accommodate your mobility aid let me know.  I’ve got lots of experience and would be happy to help.

Have fun and be safe!

Temporary Crutch Use = Handicap Parking Eligibility

ASK  YOUR DOCTOR , YOU PROBABLY QUALIFY

I have severe rheumatoid arthritis, which is what led me to create this company (“necessity is the mother of invention”). I am sustaining fairly well right now and getting around without huge problems.  But, my history with crutches/wheelchairs, and the population our company serves,  prompted me to outline some information on getting a Handicap Parking placard. 

Many of you could benefit from this.  If you are not able to drive, you can get this to display in the car of those driving you (My husband has one for when I am riding with him). This will immediately reduce the hardship of your situation. Plus, it is like a little piece of the stars to help you live a more “normal” life.

Often people eligible for this benefit don’t realize it, or are afraid they don’t appear eligible to others. They don’t want to been seen as an abuser.  If you are eligible, please, make use of this accommodation made available for you. At first, I was embarrassed to use my placard, but I quickly realized it was a lifesaver! Now I can go to concerts, sporting events and even movies without extreme pain from the long walk to the event.

 This benefit will also save you energy and we all know our energy is limited while we are in pain! The less work you have to put in walking to your destination will help you get through extra errands, appointments or activities without wearing yourself out shortly after arriving and trying to make it inside.  This means you can actually pay attention without trying to hide your pain. Also, if you are not tired, you can better focus on doing something fun later in the day. 

 The application is easy. Just give it to your doctor to sign and take it to your local DMV. They will issue the placard immediately. Then you can be on your way to saving energy and reducing unbearable pain.

We LOVE Halloween!!

     We are officially into October and I finally feel like it’s appropriate to start talking HALLOWEEN.  I have severe rheumatoid arthritis, and a five year old.  As an artist by trade, this combination makes for some interesting pumpkin decorating with my uncooperative hands. Yesterday, I saw the latest edition of Family Fun Magazine.  Not only do they have very creative ideas, but they are doable for me with my bad hands and safe for my five year old.  Here are my favorite ideas:

Bat-o'-Lanterns

Bats anyone?

Celeste and Pearl
Glitter Pumpkin – I actually just made one of these as a gift and put a circle monogram on it – so cute and well received!

Crystal-Covered Pumpkins  Brush on a thin coat of glue, then roll your pumpkin in sugar crystals for a look that's sure to sparkle. (i've heard that you can use epsom or sea salt also)...

Crystal Covered Pumpkin – just use sugar crystals and glue – simple and sparkly. Thanks Family Fun Magazine

Get your Halloween party started with a mirror-ball pumpkin. Lay strips of metallic silver duct tape onto parchment paper, then cut the tape into squares. Peel off the backing and stick the squares in place. For greater realism, use smaller squares near the top and bottom of the pumpkin, as shown. Everyone loves a great disco ball pumpkin!

Think Beyond Orange!

Paint your heart out.

I’m sure, with my husband’s help, we will also create some traditional carved pumpkins.  If you have any of my luck, they sometimes get moldy, rotten, and smelly before the big day. I found this recipe on Pintrest that helps to prevent pumpkins from turning nasty. I am looking forward to trying this recipe to help “preserve” our carved creations.

IMG 6415 opt copy How to Preserve Your Carved Pumpkin with Household Items!

PUMPKIN SAVER RECIPE

SUPPLIES:

Carved Pumpkin
Bleach and Water
Bucket (If you don’t have a bucket big enough for your pumpkin, don’t worry! Grab a garbage bag, your pumpkin and head to the tub! Make sure to tie your bag closed.)

IMG 6416 opt How to Preserve Your Carved Pumpkin with Household Items!

1. Place carved pumpkin gently inside the bucket.
2. Pour 2/3 cup bleach into the bucket & fill with enough water to submerge the pumpkin. Don’t forget to put the  pumpkin lid in the water too.

3. Keep the pumpkin & lid in the bleach water for 24 hours. (During this time the pumpkin will disinfect itself and the water it soaks up will aid in the prevention of mold. This won’t work forever.)

4. After 24 hours, pull your pumpkin out of the water and pour out any excess liquid. (make sure you dispose of it correctly)

IMG 6431 opt How to Preserve Your Carved Pumpkin with Household Items!5. Set the pumpkin out to dry.

6. Once it’s dry, let it grace the scariest of haunted houses!

Good Luck, have Fun and be CREATIVE!