Category Archives: DisneyAbility

Did your chronic illness insist that you spend your vacation in bed?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Did your chronic illness insist that you spend your vacation in bed?

Before fibromyalgia, psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, and other chronic illnesses took over my body, I would return home from a vacation feeling relaxed or energized.

At first, my illnesses would require a little more rest while away. Because I pushed through pain and fatigue in hopes of keeping up with my family, I always returned home feeling like death.  It was not unusual for my body to need days, weeks, and a few times months to recover from a week away from home.

Through the years I have not only made changes to how I address and relieve my chronic pain, but I have made changes to how I vacation too!

Here are a few tips to help you better enjoy your summer vacation!

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How and why I am continuing to use straws despite California’s straw law.

Why I continue to use straws despite CALIFORNIA'S straw law

There are so many little things that either improve or make living as normally as possible despite having a chronic illness.

With California’s recent straw law, I’ve discovered how important plastic straws are to my own chronic life.

This post is not an environmental or political debate. Instead its purpose is to showcase why some people need plastic straws and to share some options for those who live in or plan to visit California.

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How to plan the best summer vacation despite your chronic illness

How to plan the best summer vacation despite your chronic illness

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Does the thought of taking a summer vacation get you excited or does it send chills down your spine?  I loved traveling before I became chronically ill.  In addition to yearly Disneyland vacations, I loved exploring new areas in other states or within the ones that I lived in.  Weekend road trips without a destination were my favorites.

Soon after chronic pain became a part of my daily life I began to loathe traveling. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to go exploring, instead it became too painful. Not only did my excursions increase my pain while away, it would take weeks and sometimes months to recover from them once I returned home. Not wanting to spend most of my time recovering I opted to stop traveling.

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Spring Clean: Clean up your personal care products

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clean up your personal care products!

You may not even realize it, but the personal products you love may be making you sicker than you really are or they may be triggering symptoms from your chronic illness.

Whether I have felt a difference in my pain level or not, I do not regret changing out many of my old personal care products with natural and organic products. Why? Because, down the road we don’t know how using the chemicals that we mindlessly apply on our bodies will affect us.  I prefer to be safe rather than sorry.

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What Happens When I Live My Old Life

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What happens when I live my old life

I received my cluster of diagnoses during the early 2000’s.  During that time not one doctor urged, nudged, or hinted to me that I needed to make changes to how I lived my life.  Not ONE!!!

Instead of issuing warnings or advice to improve the quality of my life, my doctors insisted that they would be able to find the right pill(s) to offset my symptoms and pain.  Of course everything they tried failed.  Click here if you would like to take a peek at the pain management plan that finally helped reduce the pain I experience from fibromyalgia, psoriatic arthritis, psoriasis, degenerative disc disease, coccydynia, and abdominal adhesions from endometriosis and surgical scarring.

Between the false hope my doctors were issuing and the pressure from friends and family to get better, making changes to how I lived never crossed my mind.  But it should have and here is why:

When I live my old life:

  • I ignore the needs of my body/chronic illnesses
  • I injure myself more often
  • I spend more time in bed than actually living my life
  • My family loses precious time with me
  • I spend more time and money seeing doctors and visiting emergency rooms
  • I took no responsibility towards reducing my pain.  I trusted and followed everything my doctors said.

*Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links. Meaning that at no additional cost to you, I receive a commission when you make a purchase through my links. The proceeds earned fund the giveaways I host in my Facebook groups.

Why changes had to be made

  • The longer I ignored the needs of my body/illnesses, the sicker I became and more damage was done to my body
  • Refusing to accept the need to use a mobility aid created more opportunities to fall, which I did often.  Each fall resulted with either a broken bone or blood clot.
  • I was killing myself
  • My family needed me
  • I would rather take my family to Disneyland, then to spend money and time in the emergency room over an injury that could have been prevented had I listened to my body, done things differently, or utilized a mobility aid.
  • I had to take responsibility and to accept that my doctor may never be able to help me.

 

Changes that literally changed my chronic life

  • I made friends with my diseases.  I got to know them and my body so well that I after awhile I could feel the beginning stages of a flare coming on.  In the past, I just pushed until I collapsed.
  • Using mobility aids may have been hard to accept on an emotional level, but when I look back and see how little I have fallen since I began using them, I know I made the right decision.
  • By recognizing and addressing signs of a flare or physical distress I am able to avoid complications like my body mimicking a stroke or muscles freezing to the point of feeling rock hard for months on end.
  • Spending the amount of time that I do in caring for my body, doing things differently, accepting what I can’t do, and letting go of unrealistic expectations has gifted me with less time in bed and more out making memories with my family.
  • I took responsibility and charge over my care.  I researched and tried alternative treatments. While I may spend more money on those treatments than any pill that my insurance would cover, I save by not having to visit my doctor for a refill every month and not visiting the emergency room throughout the year. Click here to read about my pain management plan.

All of these changes, plus others that you can read about in my eBook Make Pain Your Bitch: How to Dominate Your Chronic Life, has restored my independence.  Going grocery shopping no longer makes me anxious, because I can finally do it without needing a day or two to recuperate.  I can drive and clean my house again.

Now I am not saying that everyone who reads my book and follows my pain management plan will have the same results.  The changes you need to make may differ, but no matter what, any change that involves listening to and respecting your body/disease is going to improve your life.

Don’t make the mistake I did by waiting 12 years before even accepting that there was no way I could go on living like I used to.

Living our old lives doesn’t make us strong, instead it makes us weaker.

Living our old lives does more than increase our physical pain, it hurts us and our loved ones emotionally too.

Are you still living your old life? 

Whether you are or not, I challenge you to examine your day to day life and pick one area/task that could be done differently, in a way that won’t increase your pain level.  Then make that change.  You don’t have to change every aspect of your life immediately, take your time and make your changes one step at a time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three ways I relieve chronic pain at Disneyland

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After California legalized cannabis for recreational use in January of 2018, (it has been legal for medicinal use since 1996), Disneyland added marijuana and CBD to its list of items not permitted into their theme parks.  I will share my thoughts on this subject another day, but for today I want to share what I bring with me to get through a day in the parks without medical marijuana or CBD products.

*Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links. Meaning that at no additional cost to you, I receive a commission when you make a purchase through my links. The proceeds earned fund the giveaways I host in my Facebook groups.

Whether I was sitting in my wheelchair all day or walking everywhere as I do now, my spine takes a beating and must be tended to all day long.  To minimize swelling around my spine and in my hips I use a drug-free pain-relief device called Oska Pulse.  This little beauty is what made it possible for me to retire my wheelchair last year. It uses pulsed electromagnetic fields to reduce inflammation and pain like nothing I have ever tried.   While there are many PEMF therapy products available, this is the only one that is portable and safe to use wherever and whenever you want.  Click here to learn more about Oska Pulse.  FYI: As an Oska Pulse affiliate, I am able to offer you a discount of $55.00 when you enter my promotional code DIVA at checkout!

Click here to discover all the different pains and symptoms that this device has either greatly reduced or eliminated. Click here to visit Oska Wellness.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The downside to only treating pain with Oska Pulse is that when I am in the parks, I need to address pain in more than one area of my body.  When my lower back and knees flare at the same time, I often (especially in the cooler months) place my PEMF device above the worst knee and a Thermacare heat wrap at the base of my spine.  In warmer months I will place my Oska Pulse near my spine and use icepacks on my knees.  Heat wraps help relax my back muscles and provide comfort and relief.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last, but not least, I bring along a blend of essential oils formulated for pain relief such as Mend.  While not as powerful as my CBD infused oils, they do help relax muscles and reduce pain well enough to keep me from having to leave earlier than I had planned.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leave all CBD and cannabis products at home, in your car, or hotel room.  It is my hope that one day, as long as the guest can provide their medical marijuana certification, guests may be allowed to medicate with it in the parks, with the exception of flower because there are alternatives.  But until then, let’s respect Disneyland’s policy and find other ways to keep our pain levels low.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Disneyland Park Accessibility Update January 2019

 

 

 

 

 

Quick update!

Since I last updated the guide there have been a few new updates.

  1. Dumbo:  This attraction’s queue is now fully accessible to mobility aids, both manual and motorized.  All guests enter the same queue.
  2. Matterhorn:  The queue to this attraction has been widened making it easier for mobility aids to use.
  3. The Enchanted Tiki Room: This is my favorite update!! Gone is the awkwardly small and outdoor elevator for those unable to enter via the stairs.  In the entrance area, there is now a ramp to the right of the waiting area for guests to use.  In the past, guests unable to take stairs had to exit via the elevator and back through the entrance, now they exit out the same door and down ramps into the new Tropical Hideaway.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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