• My Experience

    Feeling Stuck

    I have felt stuck lately. Stuck not knowing what’s coming next, I feel unable to move forward. It’s difficult when so much of life hangs in the balance. I could have another move in my near future or stay in Minnesota, surrounded by friends and family. That may sound like an easy option for most people. I like being off on my own though. It’s been difficult to accept the past few years that being on my own wasn’t an option. It wasn’t even a thought in my mind. I guess maybe it was a distant dream, but a dream that was far in the distance. Now, it’s not only…

  • My Experience

    Having a Flare

    I recently had a flare of my POTS. I chose not to wear compression and didn’t drink nearly enough water. The end result was intense dizziness and a killer headache. I brought up a lot of fear for me initially. Recently, my allergies have really taken a toll on me. My skin breaks out in rashes without warning. I’m itchy and Crush alerts a few times a day now. The more I thought about how close my illness is to being out of control again, the more discouraged I felt. I sat in that for a couple hours. Now, I’m trying to reframe. I think I can border toxic positivity…

  • Helpful Hints,  My Experience

    My Response to Service Dog Questions

    Every time I go out, I get questions about Crush. People ask entirely inappropriate questions. Luckily, the company that gave me Crush prepared me to answer these. I had no idea how I would respond initially. Even now, every question and person gets a variation of the same answer. Sometimes these questions leave me laughing, crying, or somewhere in between. So here are some of my pre-programmed responses to the question: Why do you have him/ What’s wrong with you? I have a disability I like this because it’s short and sweet. It also addresses how. Inappropriate it is to ask without shaming the person for asking. I like that…

  • My Experience

    Our Flight to Nowhere

    Recently Crush and I went on an expedition. Okay, that might be an exaggeration. In reality, we went through more training. This training was particularly exciting. It was preparation for being able to travel together. I think most people get overwhelmed when flying. I typically fly alone and have adapted to that well. Now I have Crush and we have to learn how to travel together. I am so grateful to Can Do Canines for the opportunity to go through this “class.” So how do you prepare to travel with a service dog? We went to the airport and did a dry run. Hence the “flight to nowhere.” Can Do…

  • Helpful Hints

    Ways To Practice Self Compassion

    Self compassion is a journey. I would say I’ve come quite a long way from where I used to be. Sometimes, I need a reminder though. There are great ways to start practicing self compassion in daily life. These are ones that I practice daily, let me know if they help you! Saying No If someone is exhausting you, set boundaries! This is a great way to practice compassion. Often, we feel like we need to be constantly available to people 24/7. We can set our boundaries and respect what our body and mind needs. This is a way to show love, respect, and kindness to yourself.  Affirmations Affirmations are…

  • My Experience

    An Update on My Day Without Crush

    A couple weeks ago, I talked about how I was going to go out without Crush. I had to get an MRI. I go to my appointments alone, I didn’t want to leave the technicians in charge of watching him while I was in the machine. The scans take at least an hour. This is already stressful for me because I’m very claustrophobic. Having to worry about Crush on top of that was not an option. So I went out alone. When I left, I felt extremely nervous. I had anticipation anxiety through the roof. When I finally got to Mayo Clinic, I took a deep breath and gave myself…

  • Helpful Hints,  My Experience

    Reconnecting With Your Space

    I have been completely overwhelmed lately. My classes started. I have had multiple mini allergy attacks, and medical appointments that were challenging. When I feel overwhelmed, my OCD starts to become more intense. I feel lucky and grateful that I have the awareness that these thoughts and feelings are a result of OCD. That being said, it’s still challenging. How do I deal with this? In the short term, I use grounding techniques. In the long term, I find things that I can control. Often, what I can control is the space that I live in. With the pandemic, I have spent an excessive amount of time at home. Not…

  • Helpful Hints

    How to Set the Tone for Relaxation

    I’ve been working really hard on relaxing lately. After getting out of my pattern, I’ve felt an excess of tension. In order to combat this, I started doing these things to help me relax at the end of the night. This is what works for me. Let me know if you have any tips of your own! Tea I love settling down with a cup of tea at the end of the night. It helps me hit the reset button really quickly. It also helps me to slow down. When I drink something hot, it’s almost impossible to drink it with any type of speed. Therefore, I’m much more aware…

  • My Experience

    Preparing for More Surgery

    Here we go again. I’m preparing for another surgery. I’m excited at the prospect of getting this done and over with. I’m grateful that I have the opportunity to receive great medical care. This surgery is going to be more complicated to prep for though. I need to have my left hip fixed. If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that almost a year ago I had a labral repair on my right hip. Along with sewing my labrum back together, they pulled apart my tendon and shaved down my bone. I’m waiting to find out the extent of the surgery I need on the right…

  • Helpful Hints

    Links To Help You Understand OCD

    There are large misconceptions out there about what OCD is. It’s often associated with cleaning, neatness, and organization. That can be true and accurate for some people with OCD. However, there’s a large variance in types of OCD. Here are some links to help you understand OCD and what someone is going through. It’s often best to listen and ask questions. Be patient but most of all don’t pry. If someone doesn’t want to share, that’s their right. If they want help, they’ll ask for it. If you’re going to watch any video, watch this one. Most people with OCD that I know struggle with intrusive thoughts. Even if they…