Author Archives: Kel

Brain Dump – Auto immune edition

(positivelyrheumatoid.com)

I had all good intentions of writing up something great for this week’s blog which is a brain dump of whatever we want to talk about. Buuuut, life keeps getting in the way.  Kind of like how despite calendar reminders and alarms, I keep forgetting to do these weekly blog posts. Or if I do remember I’ve missed the deadline or simply don’t have the energy to do it.  

Methotrexate (MTX) has taken over my life. It’s a chemotherapy drug that can be used to treat auto-immune diseases. All of the side effects you think of when you hear chemo and think of cancer can happen when taking MTX. Hair loss, nausea, brain fog, extreme fatigue… yep.  I’ve been on it since March for inflammatory arthritis and have been pretty lucky. The first few months were hard but tolerable and I even had days when I felt better than I’ve felt in years.  My biggest side effect was brain fog which was annoying as hell, but manageable-ish.  I’ve learned how to give myself the injection each Friday night, and was feeling like a badass warrior for taking on the drug.  Then a few weeks ago my rheumatologist upped my dose. I thought, “Sounds good, I’m ready to feel even better!” 


Oh, no, my friends… there has been no feeling better. There’s been feeling worse and new side effects that I didn’t have before.  I don’t think I’ve worked a full week since starting the new dose and this week I finally broke down and took the rest of the week off so I can be at home feeling awful instead of trying to fake it at work. I barely made it through the day Tuesday while trying to contact all of the families that I visit and put together mailings for each of them (next week I’ll be at a conference for most of the week and won’t be seeing families then either). I sent them all a letter self disclosing the troubles I’ve been having and apologizing if I’ve seemed a little off for the past few months.  Some of my families knew what was going on, I even have a warrior mom that I see who is on the same drug so we trade stories sometimes, but  some didn’t know the full story other than that I was having medication troubles. 

Admitting that I needed to take a break was hard. Telling my families that I’ve been struggling was harder.  I’m the helper, I’m their go-to, and seeing their kiddos is truly one of the things that keeps me going.  But when the thought of a few days off with no commitments was the only thing that got me out of bed on Tuesday, I knew it was time.  Time to stop trying to be Super Woman and admit that I need to rest. I hate feeling like I let my clients down, but they have all been great and wished me well.  I still feel guilty though.  But I told them that I can’t preach self-care to them if I can’t do it for myself, right? 

I don’t know if the time off will help; I hope it will though! I don’t even know if this drug is going to work for me and if I’ll have to start all over with something else… but what I do know is that for the next five days I’m off duty and I’m going to take as many naps as I can! And I really hope I can make a dent in cleaning my bedroom because it’s beyond embarrassing right now. It’s hard to put things away when you’re either in ridiculous pain, feeling like you’re going to vomit, or you’re so tired you can’t keep your eyes open though, ya know? 

To my fellow chronic illness warriors… keep your head up the best you can! And if you can’t, take a nap and feel damn good about it. ๐Ÿ˜Š

Let’s check out what the other girls had to dump today!

Jessica | Bronwyn | Gwendolyn


Top Ten Lessons Learned from My Parents

This week we’re writing a top ten list of lessons we learned from our parents. I don’t know about you, but my parents are pretty awesome. ๐Ÿ˜

1. Be Brave/ Love Wins : My mom and dad, an interracial couple, got married in 1969 when interracial marriage was still illegal in some states. Being biracial is honestly one of things I’m most proud of. 

2. Friendships: My dad once told me that friendships were like bank accounts, you can’t keep withdrawing from them if you don’t put anything in. 

3. Laughter: My mom and I have so many inside jokes that keep us laughing over and over again. Giggling is good for the soul!

4. Music: Both of my parents have always loved an elclectic mix of music and even if they didn’t like something I liked, they never made a big deal about it and just let me be me. Now I listen to a little bit of everything.

5. Theater: My dad has been taking me to live theater since I was six years old. I adore being a theater nerd!

6. Movies: I’ve been a movie junkie since I can remember, back when movies were cheap we went practically every weekend. Movies are still a huge thing in our family. (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 on Thursday!!)

7. Book Love: My dad used to read books to me and would do all of the voices. I still remember how much I loved that, and once I was old enough to read novels, I just kept on going. Mom’s a big reader too!

8. Never Too Old: My mom had retired before deciding to pursue nursing. She went back to school, kicked ass in all of her classes, and followed her dreams.

9. It’s Okay to Be Scared: I had a huge fear of the dark, sleeping alone, and storms as a kid, not to mention crippling shyness. My mom never made me feel bad about it or tried to shame me into being brave.

10. Adulting: My mom and dad are the best example of what a divorced couple can be if they put in the effort. It took a while, but once they focused on parenting together instead of fighting all of the time they have been great role models on healthy parenting. 

Thanks, Mom and Dad! โค๏ธ

Now let’s see what nuggets of wisdom the other girls learned from their folks!

Jessica Jarman| Bronwyn Green | Jessica DeLaRosa | Paige Prince | Deelylah Mullin


Top Ten : Reader Edition

IMG_1014

In no particular order…

– Overly detailed explanations of scenery/clothing.  I simply don’t care and want to use my own imagination. (Hmm… Outlander Series)

– Pages and pages of historical crap. Again, don’t care. If it’s crucial to the story, just put in the least amount needed. (Gee… Outlander Series)

– Not enough historical crap. LOL don’t assume I know as much about history as you, but also don’t go overboard. (Again… Outlander Series)

– Multiple main characters whose names all start with the same letter. I can’t read a conversation between a John, Joe, Jeremy and Jacob unless you’ve done one hell of a job making the characters all unique. (I’m sure this happens in the Outlander Series LOL)

– Referring to one character by too many nicknames. (Ahem… Outlander Series! Jack, Jonathan, Captain Jack, Jack Randall are all the same person.)

– Drawing an event out over half of the book and then rushing the ending. (One guess… Outlannnnnderrr Seriessss)

– Spelling out accents/speaking in a foreign language but not telling us what it means in English. I can take a few words spelled out in an accent, but not every bit of dialogue. (Yep… Outlander Series)

– Be an asshole online to readers. (Diana G of… the Outlander Series. Bonus: Anne Rice who was a jerk to my Jenny and I don’t like it!)

– Overly stereotypical characters. We all do it at times, but I’m talking about those horribly stereotypes that are just uncomfortable to read. (Kind of like Mr. Cho in the Outlander Series)

– Overuse of catch phrases. (“Jesus H Roosevelt Christ!” said Clare six-hundred-eleventy-thousand times in… The Outlander Series)

Okay, to be honest, I don’t hate the Outlander books. I actually enjoy them for the most part and the reason I even bother continuing to read them is because she hooked me in the first two books with some really creative stuff.  I’ve been stuck on Drums of Autumn (#4) for a while now and it’s mostly because of all of the things mentioned above.  Once I get back into it I’m sure I’ll be fine, but I think it’s important to remember especially when writing a series that if you continue to do all of the same annoying things in each book, you’re going to eventually lose readers. (Laurel K Hamilton, anyone?!)

And that, my dears, is my top ten list. Now, go check out what the rest of the gang has on their lists! 

Bronwyn | Jessica | Kris | Deelylah | Gwendolyn


My Memoir, if I wrote it.

Finally, a blog topic that I don’t have to think about! ๐Ÿ™‚ 

This week we were asked if we wrote a memoir what we would name it and why.   I’ve actually had one picked out for years. In fact, it’s the same name as this blog. ๐Ÿ™‚

Coffee and Prozac; my life in black and white.
As for the why? Here’s what it says in my blog bio:

I have a chronic clinical form of depression called Dysthymic Disorder (or Dysthymia) which makes me a little, shall we sayโ€ฆ interesting to be with sometimes. Prozac has literally saved my life, thus the reason itโ€™s in the title of this blog. 

I’ve said for years that the breakfast of champions isn’t Wheaties, it’s actually coffee and Prozac. ๐Ÿ™‚ I love coffee, and like I said before, Prozac is life. ๐Ÿ™‚ As for the black and white… I’m biracial.  Easy peasy!

Now let’s see what the rest of the girls titled their memoirs!
Bronwyn | Gwendolyn | Jessica J| Jessica D | Deelylah 


Musical Musings

Hello, readers! 
Today is one of our Musical Musings posts where we talk about music. This should be easy because I always have a song in my head. Like, allllllways! But of course now that I’m sitting here I’m drawing a blank unless you want a bunch of Backstreet songs.  LOL So let me ponder a bit… 

Song that makes me hopeful – “Power of Two” by the Indigo Girls

Song that makes me happy – “Mama’s Got A Girlfriend Now” by Ben Harper

Song that makes me cry – “The a Circle of Life” from The Lion King on stage. Every. Single. Time. ๐Ÿ™‚

So what songs are on your list? ๐Ÿ™‚

Don’t forget to check out what the other ladies have to say! 

Bronwyn | Gwendolyn | Deelylah | Jessica | Torrance


Top 10 Things I Avoid

  1. Manipulative/Abusive People
  2. Conflict
  3. Bats
  4. Phone Calls
  5. Raw tomatoes
  6. Cleaning my bedroom
  7. Bullshit
  8. Negative People
  9. People who don’t have a sense of humor
  10. Creepy Birds

Bronwyn | Jessica JKris | Paige | Deelylah | Gwendolyn | Torrance


Top 10: Hooked

top-10

I’d like to think I’m pretty easy to please, but to tell you the truth, I’m kind of a book snob. Not in the way you’d think though. So without further ado, I give you the Top 10 Ways to Hook Me as a Reader.

  1. Screw the rules. I don’t care about the “rules” of writing so much as I care about things being enjoyable. Jump into the story or give me a prologue that gives me some back story. Just make it good and interesting.
  2. A good cover. Yes, Iย judge books by their cover. ย I don’t like cheesy old-fashioned Harlequin Romance-looking covers. ย I’m not a huge fan of the half-naked headless body cover either. ย I just want it to be appealing to the eye, have nice colors, and not go overboard with the design. ย Even a cover with no picture makes me happy if I like the font. ๐Ÿ™‚
  3. Great dialogue. I’m a sucker for good dialogue. ย I don’t care for teens who have ridiculously huge vocabularies and sound like adults. ย I just want people to talk like normal folks.
  4. Awesome kid characters. I’m a sucker for a super adorable kid in a book. The quirkier the better.
  5. Realistic setting. I enjoy books set in places that I know, as long as they don’t screw it up. LOL If I’m reading YA, I want to see adults popping in every so often instead of there being no adults around.
  6. Animals. Okay, this one isn’t a given, but a funny pet can be a great hook. Not a talking animal, but one who causes some silly moments. One of my favorite characters I’ve ever written is a dog named Vinnie. ๐Ÿ™‚
  7. Characters to fall in love with. No needlessly cocky guys, or girls, and thinly veiled abusive personalities. Just genuine characters with real problems, real feelings, and real real-ness.
  8. Comic relief. I love a good drama but I can’t stand when it’s serious from start to finish. No one is happy 24/7, even in the worst situations.
  9. A favorite author. Once I fall in love with an author I’ll pretty much read anything they write.
  10. A series. If it’s good, and doesn’t lose its steam (ahem, Anita Blake), I will read a series like a crazy person. I love to revisit known characters over and over again. I won’t, however continue a series just because it’s a series. I have to actually enjoy it.

There you have it! Now let’s see what the other ladies have on their lists.

Bronwynย | Jessica | Deelylahย | Gwenย | Kris


Go-To-For-OT Blog

Sharing and Caring in Pediatric Occupational Therapy

Caffeine, Cuss Words, Dauchshunds, Xanax

and other assorted ramblings

Babbling Brook

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Thoughts Off the Top of My Head

My life in black and white.

Writing is Hard

So sayeth the Prophet Chuck

Kris Norris

My life in black and white.

Paige Prince

My life in black and white.

Can You Vague That Up For Me?

Bronwyn Green's Random Thoughts

Tess Grant

Books and Bones

Marj's Musings

.....is this all there is?

Trout Nation

Your One Stop Procrastination Shop

JennieKnits

my life with knitting