Thursday, November 8, 2012

Want to Lower Pain? Revolutionize Your Sleep in 5 Steps

Feel like this? Often? Every night?

Let me help.

When you go to buy a bed (and you should have a good one if you have chronic pain), you will be hearing the "latest" in FMS theory. Apparently, according to the Jordans Furniture Sleep Lab tech, pain clinics for major hospitals in the area are still advising buying a bed for pressure points. Really?

FMS theory is stuck in the dark ages. Probably because no doctors with FMS are writing anything. Oh wait, ARE there any doctors with FMS? Doubtful.

So that leaves you with moi, yours truly, to give you some sound ideas when it comes to choosing a bed & sleeping well in it:

  1. Take a medicinal approach to sleep. What do I mean by this? Just this: Sleep is a medicine, not a luxury. According to some, FMS patients have an underlying sleep disorder. So get what you need in a bed, not what you want. This means avoiding the cushy, comfortable ones that you sink into and that relieve whatever pressure point pain you may have (this is merely the symptoms). And focus on the solution instead: increasing oxygen flow to your blood cells. So a medicinal bed means one that keeps your back perfectly flat, allowing your diaphragm to expand UPWARD when you breath, not downward into the bed. Your hips should sink into the bed slightly, but not your back. If your shoulders roll forward, they will collapse your chest posture and you will not breathe effectively all night long. Avoid any plush tops, use a flat surface only. This is the bed I ended up buying, that worked for me. It is a hand-tufted mattress from Jordan's Mattress Factory that has a foam exterior and inner springs.
  2. Sleep on your back most of the night. Put a rolled up hand-towel under your neck, and another one under your back. This was taught to my be my first chiropractor years ago, and I have slept like this ever since. Have a pillow handy for when you roll onto your side. But spend as much time as possible on your back. This will ensure the most efficient breathing and minimize the time your muscles spend in awkward positions.
  3. Sleep on the floor if needed. If you are in a place with a bad bed, move to the floor. I routinely sleep on the floor, even if in the most exotic locations. When you get a hotel room, ask for an extra blanket and sheet, and start the night prepared to switch to the floor. Even a few minutes with your back straight on the floor will realign your body and breathing.
  4. Focus on breathing, not comfort. If you subscribe to the reality that you have pain because your blood cells are misshapen, and have trouble getting through the little capillaries to carry oxygen to your body, you will focus first on breathing. You will be more comfortable if you breathe effectively, and focus on that as the priority, than if you sink into soft pillows or a bed that interferes with your breathing patterns. And if you are like me, and it actually feels better NOT to breathe sometimes, then you must prioritize oxygen flow. You may not want to do it naturally. (Don't ask me what this is, but sometimes it hurts to expand my lungs, and I hold my breath involuntarily. Not good.)
  5. Get out of bed in 7 hours or less. I have found that 6.5 hours is ideal sleep for me. Sometimes I need more, and sometimes less. But lounging in bed makes me feel WORSE, not better. If you are in pain, get out of bed. Do not expect your bed to provide something more for you in the next few hours than it did in the last few. Beds have limited function. Get in a hot/cold shower, go for a walk. Get your blood flowing, and do not expect bed rest to help you.
It is hard to exchange luxury and comfort for efficacy. It takes a lot of will-power, especially in this "you deserve a marshmallow puff cloud for a bed, because you earned it" era. But when you start realizing how much better you feel when managing your oxygen flow, than you felt when managing your pain, you will be motivated to choose. 

Need a simple way to remember how to lower your pain when sleeping?

When in doubt, chose oxygen over comfort. 

Your body will thank you.

5 Ideas for Dealing with a Control-Freak CPer

People with pain tend to be control freaks. We can't help it. Every little thing gets on our nerves  and this is literal if we have degenerated or damaged nervous systems, like people with FMS do. We are a nervous wreck of the Hespurus, and it sucks.

Two very little secrets I will share with you...we know we are control freaks, and we hate it also, along with the pain we hate. Second, we actually do applaud you for putting up with us. Really.

But that doesn't make life any easier for you. You - the tolerant, endlessly patient caretaker who feels like you have no rights anymore, because the Control Freak has eliminated them all for his/her "illness."

Here is the dilemma for us CPers (chronic painers). For us, it's not just other people that create drama in our lives. We have the problem of being at war with ourselves.

Imagine your worst enemy is your body. It turns against you, and you are left in an eternal battle to accommodate it, override it, fix it, hate it, love it, etc. Instead of other people being the focus, YOU are your own everlasting opponent.

Credits:  DeviantArt 
Yeah, it sucks.

So CPers do everything they can to minimize external problems, because that may help lower internal  ones. That may translate to...complete control freakiness. 

In case you think it is only annoying for you, who can't seem to even breathe without your CPer complaining about it, trust me. It is more annoying for your CPer. We are trapped in a cycle we can never leave. 

So what can you do when your beloved (or annoying) CPer once again controls the heating, the lights, the sound, every move you make, and every bark the dog makes?  Here are 5 ideas
  1. Forgive & understand. Realize this is not about you. It is about them being overwhelmed & in pain. They cannot change the factors that create pain for them, and they are just trying to survive with dignity.
  2. Offer to help. Yes, I agree. This is not the time you feel like helping. But, to quote a famous Nike slogan, Just do it. Say, "Cutiesugarpieloverbaby, seems like you are frustrated. Is there anything I can do to help you out?"
  3. Call it what it really is. Realize often the control freakiness is - frustration. Anger at oneself and the universe that dammit, we are sick. So address frustration in your beloved CPer, before you address the control issues.
  4. Leave. For the moment. If you are annoyed at the behavior, just take a break so you don't yell at someone in pain. That really never helps anyone. So go get ice cream. Go to the gym. Leave your CPer to relax alone for a few minutes without you creating more stress for them.
  5. When you return, ask to chat about solutions. Stand up for yourself kindly and graciously. If you want to leave your sox on the floor, or want to feel like you can, start speaking up. Let your CPer know that you need to feel the freedom to put your clothes on the floor, at least sometimes. Then ask what options might be available to lower frustration levels around it. Can you put your sox on the bathroom floor on M, W & Fri between 7 and 9 p.m.? Should you pay for a cleaning woman to come pick up your sox daily (do they even do this!)? Can you buy trendy, fashionable new sox from the Arthur George line and leave them on the floor beautifully? Can you have a certain area where you can stack sox 6 feet high, vertically?
It's not easy dealing with a control freak, but remember, they didn't choose this. Their internal environment is in chaos & pain. Your CPer (or you) didn't choose to be like this. They can't help it. But you can help negotiate how you live in their world, so that you also don't get filled with resentment or start needless arguments.

Support your CPer in controlling their world by making it liveable and workable for you also. It takes communication & thoughtfulness, but you will be providing true love & care by lessening their load.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Alcohol. Et. al...

You may be opposed to liquor in general, but I will say, in my experience, using alcohol as a pain killer or distraction from it is less likely to result in:

1) Class action lawsuits against major pharma companies (i.e. just watch your television for a while)

2) Major biological problems (i.e. let's just say maybe you can't use the bathroom because a popular RX narcotic includes this side effect, that freaks you out, because what if you were like this the rest of your life? and you never had this problem before this you stop...)

3) Addiction, because, let's face it, you really aren't in NEED of this thing, just what it provides. Because the people you hear becoming addicted don't REALLY need it, they just have no pain tolerance, as opposed to you, who are the expert, living with it 24/7. So you don't NEED it, it is just a choice, to not feel the pain, say, right NOW.

Just sayin'. In my very limited experience with narcotics (i.e. meds) and alcohol, the latter seems less dangerous in moderate quantities, as opposed to the former, which can cripple you quickly without warning. If you have any question about this opinion, just note the recent commercials about what is it, bladder mesh lawsuits? Or just try to p** after you take ONE tylenol with codeine. And then imagine, what happens to your bladder after1 year or 10 of them? 

Then read the book "Peter the Great" by Robert Massie. And go to see St. Catherine's Summer Palace in St. Petersburg, where you can see the (real or replicated) 5-legged chair mentioned in it. After you will get done reading this book, you will see new validity to my point. Although, when in Russia, I saw plenty of dangerous drinking. Which may also invalidate my point. However. Let me just ask you: how many lawsuits did you see against Budweiser this year?

Lastly. Because I am a thorough sort, if there is any remote chance that the government is colluding with pharma companies to 1) conduct biowarefare on our citizens or Canadian citizens, and 2) give pharma companies profits by "fixing" the problem, I fully intend to deny pharmas all the profits that I can.

Additionally and most finally, I love the Budweiser horses. And frogs.

There. I rest my case. 

This ad not sponsored by Bud.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Yup, the guai protocol works...but what about the RBC mis-shapage?

In my last post I raved about how a new ingredient EPO (Evening Primrose Oil) might reshape blood cells - that can't fit through tiny capillaries - and lessen FMS pain.

The problem is - that multiple events exist. And none are "wrong." (Sound like your workplace? ;)

Blood cells do get misshapen. I know this because when I exercise and oxygen flows to my body again, pain is reduced by 1/2 to 3/4 and I get GOOD feelings.

But also...I have been taking EPO generously ever since Sunday when I read about it, and I am in intense pain because my body still will not process salicylates. Yes. So that means that BOTH the guai protocol as proposed by Dr. St. Armand & the RBC misshaping by Dr. Les Simpson are true.

I just went to the chiropractor & was nearly unable to be adjusted at all because my muscles were in such pain & tension.

So this means - I will lower my dose of EPO to one per day, and see if I can take that with the TrueHope EMP (which already has Ginko in it, and other natural ingredients).

In addition I have been putting multiple sources of salicylates on or in my body, what really set me over the edge I think. This weekend it was 90 degrees, and we went to the Charles River to cool off (ha ha) so I was using natural-oil-laden sunscreen for multiple days.

I think my liver just threw up its little red hands & said, I can't eliminate all these phosphates, so suck it up. muscles did.  Owwwww!

In other news, my niece tells me that a low-fat diet is proven to aid MS patients. And in the news today, a popular MS drug fails to control symptoms.


The body is made of natural substances. What do chemists think they can do with that? Craziness.

More to come...

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Fibromyalgia & Red Blood Cell Mishap-age

Somehow, in this high-speed digital world, it took 12 years for me to learn there is a physical symptom for FMS that shows up in blood tests and can prove you have it. I love my doctor (he is also super cute) but even he didn't know this, as he told me a few years ago you could see MS in medical tests, but FMS is invisible. Not so.

Dr. Les Simpson from New Zealand discovered that the blood cells of people with CFS, FMS and some other diagnoses are misshapen. Seems the cholesterol gets removed from them, and they get the wrong shape so they can't fit through the capillaries. They can't carry oxygen to parts of body, primarily the muscles & nerves, so - voila nerve pain. You can read more here

Credit: Biomedical Optics Express
This is not so surprising, considering that even stress will misshape them. Check out this site, which hosts this visual of what stress alone can do to blood cells. 

Also interesting to note as physical proof for CFS, one poor victim was shown to have scar tissue in her brain, possibly due to lack of oxygen. I say victim, because I firmly believe these diagnoses are all the result of mycoplasma biowarfare, which involves the exchange/agreement of the US and Canada to conduct experiments on each others' citizens. For more on the covert testing of mycoplasma, check out this site also:

(If you are reticent to believe the rationale behind this thought stream, check out this site, which shows again physical evidence that CFS exists, and then questions why CFS patients have a virus, and tend to get cancer...They ask "What is this virus, and where did it come from?" Perhaps here?)

So a bigger picture is emerging.

Equally disturbing is that doctors don't know about this. By choice! The site I referenced in the link above states that no doctors show up to Dr. Simpson's lectures on the topic. Why would this be? I am befuddled why our doctors (even my own, when I told him) ignore government biochemical experiments and their effects on the body. The drug companies may be paying them off to prescribe meds, but are they brainwashing them also, so they completely close their minds to reality? Another doctor referenced in this site apparently denied a connection between the mycoplasma and CFS, although the patient's mother had clearly heard otherwise.

Also unsure why the media doesn't acknowledge it. As an experiment, I may send this information around to some editors and see if there are any whistleblowers around. After all, the government openly admits doing these poisonings, yet nobody seems to care.

Fast forward to my care. So yesterday I picked up the recommended Evening Primrose Oil & took some. I actually feel better today, but it may be a fluke, so I am not celebrating. Yet. Because of course, it contains boucoup salicylates, and my back will likely start to hurt like crazy. But the Primrose Oil is supposed to help reshape my little blood cells so they can go on their merry way again.

What else gets blood cell shapes back to normal so they can continue their oxygen-laden journeys? Lack of stress, exercise, B-12, some medication he mentions that I need to research, and a couple other things. Sounds somewhat like some stuff I have already been doing for years. My primary way to lower pain has always been exercise, or anything that increases oxygen.

I had already figured out the link between pain & oxygen years ago. I have always known that anything that increases oxygen lowers pain. So now it is very interesting to hear there is a medical reason.

So this is the start of my foray into a new self-care regimen. It includes some old & some new:

1. Low stress
2. Daily exercise
3. Vitamin B-12 by Jarrow (I can tell these work, I have used them for a few months)
4. Guaifenisen protocol (For last 12+ years)
5. EMPower by True Hope (I just receive a few months shipment yesterday)
6. Evening Primrose Oil (6 weeks is supposed to show if it works or not)

Happy blood cells, here we come! :)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Loss is a Gift - An Unusual Poem

Blessings are big.
Blessings are small.
Some of them you might not notice at all.
Instead you notice them when they are gone, 
And mostly when you start to bawl.
When tears roll down
And eyes squinch up
And your nose turns red as a rubber ball
You notice a blessing you had but lost
And you forget all the others that still exist.

Can you walk? You are lucky.
Can you see? Lucky too.
Can you wipe your red nose that looks like a kazoo?
Your arms are working, your fingers move. 
You noticed you cried, your brain is not a sieve.
You remembered you had it, your cortex is in tact 
(You're not even sure if the cortex does that!)
Your reasoning is sound, you are THAT aware
You now know that you have it "up there."

For only those with memory forget
With reason comes judgement, and sensing a threat
Your anger is normal, but to feel it takes feelings......
Now, wiping your tears takes on a whole new meaning.

Next time you wonder why you're not Tebow,
Nor Gisele, Obama, Beyonce or Leo,
Ask yourself if you can wipe your tears
And feel lucky that you are still in the years
Where your body works, and your mind still commands it

Someday you may have it all go away
That day may be closer to today
Than you'd like to think
(And others would too).

Loss is a gift.
It reminds us we had "it."
So celebrate gently
Your blessings disguised.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Superfood = Superlife?

Every day new superfoods emerge. I have my kitchen cupboards full of them. One of the latest is mulberry leaves. These are supposed to make you lose weight. Personally, I prefer the mulberries instead. So do silkworms, so I am in good company. Also recently exploited for weight-loss supplements are lychis (yuck). Then there are quinoa and chia seeds, the breakfast of Aztec and Inca champions. And cocoa. Then there are goji berries and coconut-anything. I can eat a whole meal of superfoods, if I want to. This is not even counting the normal anti-oxidant foods we already know about, like blueberries & raspberries. (Wait, they are supposed to be weight-loss food too, right? I see a trend!)

All this superizing of food means that finally the food industry is acknowledging the value of natural food as the missing link to providing the building blocks that our body really thrives on.

But the most missing link of ALL, the original superfood, was the Tree of Life. Yes, according to Old Testament history there is one food that carried the secret to longevity. It was located in the first Garden, Eden, and had the magical ability to make you live forever.

[Picture credit: Gustav Klimt]

We were banned from eating that tree, after Eve ate the Fateful Apple, so people like me wouldn't have to live forever in chronic pain. God then said man would eat the fruit of the ground, nuts, grains & vegetables, instead. However, just the fact that a live-forever substance existed is a good reminder that what comes out of the ground has the power to heal us & keep us alive for a very long time.

No natural fuel, no go.

So the next time you eat, think about your food & how it nourishes you. What nutrients in this particular food make your life better by eating it? Natural foods may no longer make you live forever, but they can sustain the life you do have a lot better than factory-created munchies.

Don't believe me? Just ask Popeye...

Could there be chronic Hope?

Hope is a 4-letter word for those of us with chronic pain. The reason is - it is chronic. There ain't no escaping it for long...And we are sick to death of people telling us we will get better. God will heal us. Blah blah blah. We want to shout 4-letter words at them, and they are not hope!

But, some people do have hope. And I love to celebrate them. 

"A Promise of Hope" is the book written by Autumn Stringham. I read it today, with tears in my eyes, and a good feeling that somewhere, people are finding hope & health. My mom sent me the vitamins & minerals referenced in the book, EMPower. (Some are called Plus at the end.)

I am starting these vitamins today because I have long suffered from a history of deep dark depression that leads to suicidal thoughts. I have also, clearly, been long affected by chronic nerve pain, exacerbated by anxiety. I am hoping for some relief.

I will let you know...

Monday, June 18, 2012

You shall not surely die. Really? Dammit...

I talked with a friend today about eternal life. How many of you with chronic pain would like this? Please post to my blog. Assuming there are NONE of you, including myself, I will share another tidbit. My grandmother, who I never heard express pain, willed to die. God bless her generous soul. She who gave up life as she knew it to fulfill my grandfather's dream and open a school in San Pedro Sula, Honduras (now called CEA for short) tired of living. At about 100 years old, she had had enough. With only one living friend from her childhood, she decided to stop eating. My family couldn't let go, so she lingered a couple more years until, mercifully, she passed on. We all mourned her and celebrated her legacy, as it was a remarkable one.

Which of you would have been the devil to keep her alive without pain, and without friends? Let us say she had Pain With Joy? Which of you would have been such a bastard to keep her alive against her will, for either reason? 

And yet, let me ask you what you think of God. When Eve ate the forbidden tree, he knew that now all of us would love with pain and suffering. After all,  it was the Tree of Good and Evil. Since she already knew about good, what do you think came out of eating that tree?

Yes, you know it. Evil.

How blessed is it to live forever with evil? An eternal life of that would be pure misery. Would a God of love like that? Not really.

So who said you will never die? Hmmmm.

The Serpent.

The devil.

In a world of pain, death, temporary removal, is a blessing. Me, I rather agree with God. Only in a world made new, with no pain or suffering, would I ever want to live forever. I would never wish life as we know it eternally upon even my worst enemy.

I do look forward to a resurrection to a life without pain. In that world, eternal life is a blessing, not a curse. But the devil does not offer that. Only God does.

So the next time you judge the desire of a chronic-pain-filled or elderly person to live, think to yourself: am I wishing them a blessing or a curse?

"He sleeps." said Jesus about Lazarus.

I will wish that also, when the pain is too much. Only with a painfree world do I want to live forever...just like my grandmother.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Raiki Rocks - Third-party & Self-Administered Raiki

If you have nerve pain, where would it be most logical to put your emphasis on healing? Yes. Your nervous system. The LAST place the medical profession focuses on. There isn't a profitable drug for THAT! Enter raiki.

If you have ever tried acupuncture & experienced how your body channels open up with it, raiki is the same. But there are no needles involved. I believe you have the strongest results from a person with really good strong energy, so bear in mind, when you try raiki, your results will depend on the person administering it. If you get no results, try someone else, don't just give up on it.

I found two ways of experiencing raiki: through a professional, and self-administered.

First of all, raiki makes sense for people with FMS. If you assume FMS is a degenerated nerve disease or disorder, it also makes sense that anything that improves or soothes your nerves will make you feel better.

My raiki specialist, who I will call L, is just fantastic. I first noticed when she gave me a facial and put her hands on my face. I was like whoa, what was that? It affected my brain immediately. Just shut off the obsessive thoughts (that people with chronic pain have) like a light switch. She said I did a little raiki. I had already heard good things about it, so I signed myself up for a real session.

I enjoyed it because there were no aggressive moves that hurt me (as some well-meaning massage therapists have done). There were no needles. But I felt all the blocked places, mainly my abdomen, open up. I cried a river and drank a lot of water afterward. I felt energy I hadn't noticed for years. I felt, for a brief period, normal.

I have since been a couple more times with similar, but not as dramatic results. However, each time I have noticed my nerves were supported. My pain went down considerably, and my mental state improved. I would recommend raiki for anyone with pain. Longterm results aside, it sure improves pain in the short-term.

So how did I figure out this also works on yourself? By accident. I was in NY in a hotel where I couldn't sleep because the people upstairs were stomping around all night. I was excessively stressed and upset, and of course my pain level went sky-high. My stomach tightened up in knots (my biggest problem contributing to my nerve pain, or result of...). Then I thought hmmm. What if I put my own hands on my stomach like L did? What if I put the soles of my feet together so the energy can flow around in a circle? So I did that. I created an energy circle, and - amazingly enough - my crazy energy started to calm, and I began to normalize. Of course it wasn't as helpful as having someone else do it, but I learned something new. You can manage your own energy flow. I am guessing this is why when you meditate you sit with your legs under you, with the soles of your feet touching the back of your knees, and put your hands on your legs. Sound familiar?

Circular energy...

Hey, don't knock it until you tried it. And you should, if you have chronic nerve pain. After all, your nerves are IN you, you own them, and you can manage what they do (unless, you have MS, in which case, it really sucks).

More to come on raiki, as I experience more...

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Balance - Healing by the "Time for Everything" & "Natural is #1" Principles

Balance is imperative to recovery. Or to managing pain. Wherever you are along this spectrum, here are some things to consider. And my recent findings: If a little is good, a lot is not necessarily better. For example...I have been using the grounding pads that you can find on They are great. If you sit with your feet on them, you immediately feel the benefits. Calmer breath from your abdomen, a sense of peace, lowered pain. However, if you sleep on them every night for hours (or two of them) like I have been, you may find out - you become imbalanced. Like on edge. Like what happened to me? I can't RELAX!!!

So I asked my organic-farmer-and-all-things-healthy guru stepdad, Arnold Schmidt, why, and he told me...that cows only sleep on magnetic lines of the earth for a few hours at a time, and then they move off them. Are grounding pads the same as the lines of the earth? Hmmm. They aren't marketed as that, but they might be. How easy is it to replicate real, natural things with manmade ones? Not at all.

Which leads to point #2...

Fake is not real. Blue lights are NOT sunlight. I was wanting one, because they are recommended by Tim Ferris in the 4-Hour Body. Imagine my happiness when my friend gave me one, saying she had received several from a family member and had an extra one. Imagine my surprise when after 15 minutes of setting one up at work, I got a migraine, sick stomach, and my eyes hurt. It was so intense that I am reliving the symptoms reading this. Thank goodness for Amazon and Google. Because I started reading and realized that blue lights can lead directly to blindness. Yes, macular degeneration. Lesson learned? Man-made things are not equal to natural ones. God's handiwork cannot be replicated to satisfaction.

When you are managing your pain, pay attention to your body. Keep in balance. Remember, day turns to night...spring turns to fall...and there is a time and a place for everything.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Pain With Depression - When Your Joy Goes on Holiday

Superwoman I am not. I've been very depressed lately. As in very.

For a number of reasons I think.

One is, I ran low on guaifenisen, my life-with-any-value-saving drug. I had ordered from, my super-awesome supplier for the past 5 years, & they had delayed shipment due to the need to fix the pill stuffer or something like that. In the meantime, I started rationing my supply to about 2 pills (1200 mg) a day & my pain symptoms went up & up, I found it harder to breathe, I wasn't sleeping well, & all the symptoms of FMS started coming back. Such as lack of mental clarity. Such as ... I ... started ... staring off into space again... mind totally blank...and hard to move... my body. Basically, my brain started shutting down.

Finally I heard back from the wonderful folks at Fludan who explained the fluke & generously sent me extra product to make up for it. I got my shipment today from the post office & took 4 pills immediately. My energy popped back up, I went to the gym to work out, I could breathe, I had Tigger-type bounciness, and generally, my yummy, awesome, smart, self started to return. This all on a rainy day. So yea for Fludan & guai!!

The second problem was that we had the holidays. Holidays are taxing for everyone, most of all for those with chronic pain. You add a few extra activities and a whole lot more emotional taxation & we are basically almost non-functioning.

Then, thirdly I started a new job. Wonderful. My commute is lowered from 1.5 hours per day, including 2 train rides and 1/2 hour of walking in the elements (did I mention it got to zero degrees this week?) to now a 10-minute ride in a pre-heated car. Yes, a remote starter was among my gifts for Christmas. Coupled with a programmable thermostat in my house. Warm to warm to warm, goes my commute, work & home now. Oh. Yes, but there is the problem where I merely changed jobs. I didn't change my attitude TOWARD it, I still was stuck with the old stressed out me.

But I digress.

So I was crying on my couch the other day from my lack of hope for any of this improving, when I happened to watch the cool & awesome Tim Tebow before the Pats game. Yes, the one where the Broncos got, what, 15 negative yard plays, while we, the Pats, broke records? Where you couldn't even SEE the Brady plays, they were already over, while you were yelling at Tebow "LET GO OF THE BALL!" Yes, that game.

So Tebow is speaking before the game to a cute little girl named Bailey, and talking about the really important things in life. Such as how she put life in perspective for him. She had had 73 surgeries.

Here I am on the couch crying as I hear this, and it also puts life in perspective for me. I thank him, and I thank her. Depression aside, I am not dying. My body has turned on itself (thanks to biowarfare), my countries are unleashing deadly force on us unsuspecting tax-payers (said instigators of biowarfare), we are sick and in pain (hopefully we will buy the prescribed meds & boost the pharmaceutical industry coffers) - YET I am not dying.

Somehow, after I saw the cute smiley girl, I was no longer depressed. Yes, I was frustrated. I was in pain. I was sad. My situation did not change. But my perspective did. Somehow, she was finding JOY amidst her PAIN, while I was not.

Today is a new day. I am no longer that depressed. Yes, it is still there somewhat, but some of the joy has returned. I remembered what the goal is. Life sucks. For all of us in varying degrees. For some more than others. But still, there is JOY.

You just have to seek it out, and hang with those who self-manufacture it. The cute smiley girl did named Bailey. And I want to be with her, in the game of joy-making. Though I cannot identify with her condition or experience, I do want to share her joy.

Where is the joy? I think I found it again - in her.