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Archive for the ‘FitBit’ Category

A bit belated, but here are things that I am grateful for in no particular order:

My hubby. We’ve both been going through some health challenges lately, plus he moved to a new job, but he remains amazing and able to make me laugh when I’m getting too stressed out. I couldn’t do any of this without him.

Purring kittens, even when they wake you up too early by licking your face and sleeping on your head. (Yes, we adopted two kittens, Recon and Scout, which brings us up to four cats total. It’s crazy, but we love it!)

10,000 steps! I’ve had my FitBit since May and yesterday was the first time I walked a full 10,000 steps in one day. I’ve been working on exercising more and can do 30 minutes on the treadmill 3-4 times a week now. My goal is to be able to do it 5x a week, and then maybe move up to longer walks (but fewer of them). Staying on a regular schedule seems to be helping my metabolism and I’ve lost 5 lbs. The hardest part is getting on the treadmill even when I’m tired (and I haven’t had a pain-free session yet). The second hardest is maintaining a steady pace when I’m feeling good and want to push it.

A hubby who humors my whims. Using the sales I picked up a larger tank for Fish (my blue, half-moon betta). Hopefully he can move into his new home today or tomorrow. Once he gets settled, he will probably get a snail-friend to keep him company. Hopefully I can think up a better name for the snail than I did for Fish.

Smooth doctor transitions. Both my endo and my rheumatologist moved at almost the same time. I was a bit panicked, but the advantage of having my specialists in the same practice meant that all my files transferred to my new docs smoothly and I didn’t have to go anywhere else. Things are doing pretty well on that end, and it certainly makes managing my prescriptions a lot easier. I’ve seen both docs once already and I’m comfortable with the transition.

A good job. I’m still maintaining a full-time job, and despite frustration over technical issues making my job harder (trying to keep it positive here), I work with amazing, supportive people. I also just found out that I am getting a 2% raise in the new year, which is happy news!

Family. Thanksgiving with my in-laws was lovely, as was chatting with my mom on the phone. It is tough being apart at the holidays, but technology helps to keep us close. Thanks to family generosity, we now have my in-laws old set of livingroom furniture and our two oldest, most beat-up couches are off to couch heaven. (We’re in our 40s, so it was probably time to give up the sofa with the duct-taped corners.)

Warm weather. Okay, so maybe we’ve had a bit too much warm, wet weather: we had a bumper-crop of mushrooms coming up everywhere and mildew growing on the outside of our windows. As much as I enjoy the cooler, drier weather in winter, I don’t like the aches and pains from the cold, so I’ll make the most of it while it lasts. It’s nice to be able to open the windows on the weekends and air out the house. And despite how much I love looking at everyone’s pictures of the snow, I am grateful to be at a balmy latitude and not have to worry about walking/driving on ice!

The Internet. Being able to keep in touch with distant friends and meeting new ones through Tumblr and Spoonie groups is just amazing. Even if it’s just laughing at silly Vimes and cat pictures, it really helps me keep my sanity. It is also when fanfiction lives, so it has that going for it, too! (And computer games, of course.)  ;}

Cozy sweaters and blankets. I think this one is pretty self-explanatory.

Soy chai and sugar-free cider mix. My dietary restrictions are tough at times, but finding good substitutions helps me keep from feeling deprived. (And related to this- having a Keurig. It’s so convenient when I need a quick hot cup of tea or hot water for my oatmeal!)

Being able to help others. Whether it’s Toys for Tots, drives for the homeless, clipping baby coupons for friends or providing a place to escape relatives at the holidays, being able to help even in little ways really makes me feel better and helps me focus on what I can do, rather than stewing over what I can’t.

Financial stability. Also pretty self-explanatory. Job transitions are always tough, but hopefully in the spring we can start house-hunting again!

Decorating for the holidays. I don’t approve of Christmas stuff appearing in October in the stores, but now that it’s December I can enjoy other people’s lights and decorating the office. We may or may not do a tree this year due to the kittens. Even if we put one up it will be bare until they get over the newness and I won’t use any glass ornaments, at which point we’re debating if we should bother at all. I will put the wreath on the door and plan to do at a least a few cards and am slowly working through our gift-list. I also want to make felt ornaments for the new kittens, even if they don’t go on the tree this year.

Alternative Baking Company for making double-chocolate cookies without dairy so I can get my chocolate fix! I am being pretty strict on the no-dairy thing, but I feel so much better without it that it’s totally worth it. Chocolate is the only area where I’m tempted to “cheat”, and with so many holiday goodies around the office it’s been very tempting.

Health insurance. I am so, so grateful for health insurance. It’s been a tough year since I blew through my MRA so early in the year (May) thanks to needing bifocals. I’m starting to get my end-of-the-year statements and can see how much insurance covers and it staggers my mind (and that doesn’t even factor in my prescriptions, which if I paid full price would be hundred of dollars a month). I wish I could have waited to replace my TENS unit, but with insurance covering most of it I’m relieved to have it working when I need it.

Splints. I would much rather not need as often (or at all), but when I do need them they are such a big help!

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I am trying very hard to make updating here a regular part of my schedule. It can be tough to do, especially when there is no real news. After all my GI tests came back negative I was a bit at a loss. In general, I have IBS-D (no big surprise there). I am officially on a lactose-free diet for pretty much ever. It has been an easier transition than I expected, although I really miss cheese. I’m still doing daily probiotics and metamucil and take meds for it three times a day. I’ve figured out a few of my triggers. The next step is working with a nutritionist to establish an adapted FODMAP diet but I’m dragging my feet a bit… I’ve been doing better and I’m a little overwhelmed- I may wait until after the medical study I’m participating in wraps up next week.

The study has been going well, even if I’m struggling to meet my self-established goals. The support structure is a huge help, and having more tools in my treatment repertoire is a good thing. I saw my rheumatologist today and have a script for a new TENS unit (since my old one bit the dust). I’ll be swinging by a medical supply store soon- I don’t use it often, but it is really, really helpful to have when I need it. I have also been reminded how useful icing is. I really don’t like the cold (it makes my everything ache), but it really does help certain kinds of pain. The PT for the study also lined me up with some good exercises for my knee (I twisted it two weeks ago and I’m still getting back up to speed).

I’m still using the FitBit and will write a formal review when the study is over. I haven’t been doing great with tracking my food, but being able to record and evaluate my sleep patterns is really useful (I just have to remember to turn the sleep tracker setting on and off- I sometimes have trouble getting it to switch programs).  I haven’t lost much weight, but I haven’t gained any and can tighten my belt a notch and slip my wedding ring off easily again (when my hands aren’t swollen), which are both welcome progress markers.  :}

Hubby and I talked it over and decided that this isn’t a good time to buy a new house and we’re putting the hunt on hold. I am disappointed but also relieved- we’ll still be buying a house and moving eventually, but the timing just isn’t right at the moment. Hubby and the cats are keeping me sane, and I’m looking forward to the Independence Day weekend (even if I know my sleep will suck thanks to fireworks every night). I am still enjoying learning how to care for my betta fish (named Fish, because, seriously, I can NOT think of a name for him). After a bumpy start he’s doing well and we love giving him bloodworm treats- he’s so FIERCE!

Back to the subject of this post- my doctor is moving to a new location. I really like working with her, but the new office is not at all convenient, so I’ll be staying with my current practice and have been assigned to their new rheumatologist. I’ll really miss working with her and I’m a little sad but completely understand (her new practice will be closer to home for her). Overall, my pain is down and while I’m still frequently tired, I’m not fatigued (which is a huge improvement). My bloodwork still isn’t where we would like it to be, but at this point I’d be going back on oral chemo and I’m really hoping to not do that. I have three months before I meet with the new doc and we’ll she how my rates are then. *fingers crossed*

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