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Monthly Archives: February 2012

Experimental snacking

Yesterday, my mother came home after grocery shopping with a few snacks for me to try that are supposed to help with lowering inflammation levels.  The snacks consisted of dried cherries and cranberry butter biscuits.  Normally, the foods that are GOOD for you tend to be not-so-tasty.  I learned that when I popped a whole fig into my mouth and chewed proudly the other day only to realize it was a very bad life decision.  I still get nauseous thinking about eating a fig-I apologize if you are a fig eating lover-definitely not me.  However I must say, I was pleasantly surprised today while at work when I tried the cranberry butter biscuits.  The sugars aren’t too bad, but could be much better, totaling 10g for 5 biscuits I do believe.  I also enjoy oranges-again, it has been said that they could help lower inflammation levels.  It’s very hard to find accurate food information because it seems that one article claims one thing, while another article has a completely different opinion on that food.  I suppose the only way to truly find out if it works is to try it for a certain length of time and see if I can notice a difference. I’m always in the market for new, healthy snacks and meals that have benefits for RA sufferers.  If you know of any recipes, please send them to me.

Until next time, keep eating healthy snacks.

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Posted by on February 28, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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Appreciation

I think it’s safe to say…I think the medications are working!  Or maybe I’ve just had for the most part, a pain-free past few weeks minus a few exceptions?  Either way, it’s comforting to know that perhaps I’ve finally reached a stage with my RA that proves that it’s under control.  I realize I’m still going to have really icky painful days, those come with the territory, but waking up without pain is honestly a blessing in itself.  Tomorrow, I think I may call my Dr. and ask him if he could refer me to a different rheumy-one that is much closer to the one than I go to now.

On Thursday I was able to do something that I have not done in quite some time that actually didn’t involve large amounts of pain.  Jackie and I were playing with Braden, and we were hiding under blankets to make him giggle.  Hiding under the blanket involves bending your knees and resting your butt on your heels.  In the past, I would cringe with pain because of how stiff and sore my knees would get if I tried to sit like that.  I was so thrilled that I could sit in that position without wanting to cry!  Oh how I appreciate the little things in life.

I had an incredible weekend!  Matt was able to visit, and we had such a joyous time together.  Our weekend consisted of: playing in a worship band for an event on Berg campus, coffee date, shopping, game night, church, talking-and lots of it, and visiting some family.

Until next time, here’s to feeling GOOD!

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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The alligator

Yesterday, Brad and Lindsey (Braden’s parents) had to go to a rheumy appt. for Brad, therefore resulting in a Braden day on Tuesday!  I had so much fun with him.  We played with Tonka trunks, watched Sesame Street, he chased me around the basement for a good 10 minutes & then later on he decided to set up a jungle in front of the tv.  I’ve added another “you used to do this” to my list, that I am determined to tell him when he’s older.  As he was carefully extracting all of the animals from the basket, he found an alligator toy.  Background story behind the alligator- a few weeks ago Jackie and I showed Braden how to “feed” the animals by placing small cereals into the alligator’s mouth, which resulted in the cereal piece falling into the alligator’s hollow stomach.  In order to get it out, we were smacking the alligator against the ground and thought it would be funny to add spitting sound effects.  Well, yesterday, when Braden found that alligator, he began shaking the alligator… against my head.  I guess it’s partially my fault, but needless to say, the alligator in return needed to be hidden.  Win some, lose some.

 
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Posted by on February 22, 2012 in The Adventures of Braden Bradley

 

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Don’t you know, you’re beautiful.

Maybe it’s just me, but recently I’ve sensed the need to write about a topic that I suspect effects every single person, at some point in their life.  Actually, I know without a doubt that it does.  The belief in your beauty- feeling beautiful, and as for you men…handsome.  When I was at college, during the time when my RA was at its worst, I truly recognized how downright sickly I looked.  I was not comfortable with my body, and quite frankly my body wasn’t comfortable with me.  Losing 20 lbs without meaning to had such a negative impact on me, at the time.  It literally hurt to sit because I lost most of my cushion, AKA butt!  I didn’t feel pretty, beautiful, or stunning for that matter whenever I looked in the mirror.  I appeared gaunt, and was much more pale than I am now.  When my dad would rub my shoulders, he would always comment on how he could feel the bones.  Looking back at old pictures from that year, I shudder.

It’s important for each of us to NOT obsess over our image, though I realize that is MUCH easier said than done.  Yes, I am the first to admit that I spend plenty of wasted time on my hair and makeup each morning.  I pinch that stomach fat, spend a half hour each day using teeth whitening strips.  I do at times, but not that often, feel guilty after eating a large meal-that good home cooked meal where having second’s just seems natural.  However, despite all of that negativity, I am proud to say that I have a new approach to my self-image and respect for my body.

Often times, whenever I get discouraged over my appearance, God places something in my mind that snaps me back into reality.  I often refer to this verse found in Matthew 6:28.  “And why worry about your clothes?  Look at the lilies and how they grow.  They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are.  And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won’t he more surely care for you?  You have so little faith!” (NLT)  Each time I hear that verse or read it, I soak it in as if I’ve heard it for the very first time.  It speaks volumes to me.  I so often get caught up with shopping and the thrill of it all, get annoyed when a zit makes a home on the middle of my forehead(yes, I promise it’s that same spot each time), or how fit I could and should be that I forget how beautiful God has created me, and each of us to be.  I believe the verse says to me, “hey Becca…whenever you allow yourself to get so upset over your uniqueness…oh yeah, your body, remember this…when you really look at a flower, not just glance at it, but really observe a flower, it’s absolutely amazing how intricately detailed it is, and not to mention gorgeous.  If a flower is that gorgeous, then DANG you must be ten times prettier.  After all, we were made in the likeness of God”.  Just earlier this afternoon as I was cutting the stems of the flowers Matt bought me, I made a mental note to appreciate flowers more.  Funny cause I had not a clue I was going to be blogging about this topic.  And not only did I not know I was going to be blogging about this topic, I definitely had a “God moment” as I was searching for the verse I mentioned above.  Not even two hours ago, as I was cleaning my room, I found some old “17 magazines” under my dresser.  I noticed that I had written Matthew 6:28 on the corner of the magazine, but didn’t bother to look it up…until it literally presented itself to me just now, as I type this.  Someone out there needs to read this, I’m sure of it.

Why is it that we dwell upon that one negative, hurtful comment, and not the numerous kind compliments people bestow upon us?  It’s as if that one comment has the ability to completely ruin our day, and leave an unseen scar.  We often say that we don’t care what people think about us, yet find ourselves so hurt, so broken.  I have my faith, which drives me to love on others.  You may not agree or understand my beliefs, but I don’t have to prove to you that God exists, He can do that on His own.

I will leave you with this.  I may not know you personally, but I can tell you without a doubt, EACH and EVERY single person is beautiful/handsome.  Meaning, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL/HANDSOME!  Embrace the little freckles, big feet, and curly hair.  Most obviously someone may not be attractive to you, they may not have qualities that appeal to you.  But, who are we to put down others, crush their spirits with such harmful words, when we ourselves have our own imperfections?  We need to lift each other up, compliment way more often than we do, and most of all…love on others.  Not just by saying you love them, but by showing them that you do.

Until next time, make a list of all of the things you love about yourself and feel free to share them with me.  I’d love to hear how you are working on a better self-image.  I will share my list in my next post.

 
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Posted by on February 20, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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New territory!

I am excited to announce that I was given the opportunity to begin posting my blog on a website!  www.thenewamericanmedia.com/

You can find my blog by searching the health section under the forums tab.  My brother Ted, yes another brother of mine, is artistically talented and he designed the website for the site mentioned above.  He told to his friend, who is the guy behind the website, that I started to blog about my health and his friend has graciously allowed me to post my blog on his site!  I am honored to share my journey with RA with as many people as possible, and I hope that I can continue to inspire and give hope to many other sufferers!  How exciting!

Until next time, keep dreaming big dreams, you never know what can happen!

 

 
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Posted by on February 17, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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Innocence

Snapped this photo a few weeks ago.  Braden fell asleep on me, so I laid him down and tucked him in.  Precious.  Tomorrow, (Thursday) is considered Braden day because we get to babysit him until after dinner.  I took some fun videos of Braden but was not able to upload them onto my blog.  Any ideas on how to do that?

(Braden is my nephew)

I keep telling myself that once he’s older-like 16, that I’m gonna remind him of all the silly things he did or cried about.  Like when he cried because he insisted on “fake brushing” his teeth but we wouldn’t allow him to run around the house with a toothbrush.  Or when he would throw his head back and stretch after a big meal.  How he’s always dancing to any music he hears.  Or when he watched the same Sesame Street dance video tape four times in one day.  Yeah, I’ll remind him alright… 🙂

 
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Posted by on February 15, 2012 in The Adventures of Braden Bradley

 

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talent and love is in the air.

Last year, on Valentine’s Day, about 3-4ish in the afternoon I was hiding in my bathroom, convinced a “killer” was in my house.  I literally climbed out of my bathroom window to escape.  No really, this is a true story, except in the end the noises I heard turned out to be the bathroom door (wood) expanding after I showered.  Oh a day in the life of Becca.  This year though, I was blessed with a beautiful bouquet of colorful flowers, delivered, with a cute note attached from Matt.  I’d say this year was more enjoyable by a ton.  However, last Valentine’s Day also happened to be the same day I had my first conversation with Matt, the night I actually met him…at McDonald’s…explaining the above story in detail.  He laughed and thought I was silly.  Good thing he didn’t think I was a lunatic.

This past weekend, Matt took me to see Aaron Gillespie sing(I mentioned this in my previous post).  We had a PERFECT night, worshiping and enjoying true talent.  There were only about 150 of us at the concert, so we had a chance to actually meet Aaron.  He couldn’t talk for to long since he had a flight to catch and because there were fans behind us waiting, but he was very kind and was more than willing to take a picture with us.

Whenever I have lots of plans, even remembering that I have RA seems to fade into the corner of my mind.  I don’t feel much pain when I am so happy with things to do.  Of course there are pains though.  Just last night, randomly my left elbow started to ache.  I was trying to bend and lift my arm and it would lock up and get stiff.  Today it seems to have gotten better.  It’s a constant roller coaster, up and down, never knowing when the next drop off hill of pain is going to attack.

I’ve really enjoyed the large amount of encouragement I have received from many of you because I am blogging.  I apologize that it’s been a little while since I’ve posted, I promise it’s only because I have been busy with many plans.

 

(THANK YOU FOR THE FLOWERS MATT!) Aren’t they gorgeous!?

Just for your information, there are only 34 days left until Spring officially starts.  The amount of giddiness I have is building because I miss seeing the sunshine and sitting outside reading!  Unfortunately, because of the medication I am on called methotrexate, I have to lather on plenty of sunscreen because I will most likely have skin sensitivity to the sun.  I used to love to lay out in my back yard and attempt to get tan-never worked because of how pathetically pale I am.  But, I can’t do that anymore…truly bums me out.

In my previous post, I featured Greg & Mary Hartman’s websites and since I know plenty of talented people, I will feature my brother Doug in this post.  Doug is 25 and he just recently moved to L.A. and lives with our older brother Ted.  Doug’s painting skills blow my mind.  I truly believe that once he gets connected with the right individuals and continues to network, he will go very far.  He would like to collaborate with Ted, because Ted is immensely artistically talented as well.  I’m telling you, everyone in my family has that talent EXCEPT me!  I know he would appreciate it if any of you would like something painted, he’s always looking for commission work(I do believe that is what it is called).

Lastly, also on the last post, I showed a preview of what my DIY Valentine’s Day gift was for Matt.  Well…TA DA…here is the final result.  He really liked it!!

Until next time, keep jumping out of bathroom windows?

 
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Posted by on February 14, 2012 in My battle with RA

 

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