It only matters what works for you.

Archive for March, 2014

That special something.

I have described myself as solar powered. I mean that. When the sun shines I have a ton of energy, I’m optimistic, and I’m usually happy. It’s very consistent, like I’m a junky or something.

When you hear about seasonal affective disorder (SAD) in the literature, everyone starts with ‘keep your vitamin D levels up’. Which I definitely do. Good quality, well researched supplement, taken with food and plenty of magnesium. I’m sure it makes a difference. At this point, it’s really a habit for me.

The next thing to come up is the light levels, and the recommendation is for a light box or some good natural light lightbulbs. Which I have. In every room I spend time in. Several hundred watts worth. I also have an Ott light, originally purchased for beading, which requires careful color matching and good directed bright light. And I spend quality time with that.

And still.

My batteries are so low.

A few days ago we had some nice bright sun, but it was so cold. I got some nice sunlight through the window in the one room in my house where the light actually comes in directly, but that’s a really limited time. Too cold to sit out side for long. And yet even with that, I felt so much more energized and relaxed.

So, if it isn’t just the vitamin D and it isn’t just the light levels, what else is it that I’m missing? I’ve done some searching, but nothing else really comes up. I know some people do well with tanning, but frankly I’ve always been concerned that I wouldn’t fit, and/or that I would burn, which I do fairly easily.

What ever it is, I need it. I miss the sunshine so much I can hardly stand it.

Do you remember those old Mervyns commercials where a slightly crazed woman waiting for their sale would stand at the door with her hands clawed tapping at the windows chanting ‘open open open’? That’s how I feel about sunshine right now.


This one is Just Right

As I mentioned, I had a pretty awful fall. It was going badly, and then my chiropractor disappeared. There was a message on his phone that mentioned ‘trying time’ and offered another phone number that went to another chiropractors office.

Through them I discovered that his wife died, suddenly and unexpectedly.

I still didn’t feel well, but things could have been much worse.

But physically I was a mess and I did need chiropractic support, so I visited the referred doctor.

Who was terrible. Completely cookie-cutter approach, including manipulations that are really inappropriate on someone my size and shape. She actually hurt me.

So I got a referral. The next guy had a bunch of alternative methods. And I understand why they work really well with the athletes that are most of his patients. They helped me some, but it wasn’t at all what I needed. Once my knees were working better I searched for someone else.

The new guy was pretty good. Much more what I needed, friendly and gregarious, great energy. His approach was a little more aggressive than my body likes, but it was the best so far.

Then my REAL chiropractor called. He’s back at work. So I went to see him and


I remembered why I liked him so much in the first place.

I feel better than I have in literally months.

I used to really limit how often I went because of the expense. Having been to a number of significantly less talented and more expensive practitioners, I’m going to focus a lot more on what my body needs to function properly and less on the cost.

Because without the physical health, money for vacations is kind of pointless.

Happy Spring

It’s been quite a while since I posted anything. I didn’t wander off and get distracted. I just haven’t had anything positive to say.

Back in November, I posted about a medication change that went horribly wrong. In 3 weeks (I have notes) I gained so much weight that I crossed the weight limit on my scale, needed to purchase new clothes in a bigger size, and felt practically immobilized. Wait, cross off ‘practically’. It’s very fortunate that none of the endocrinologists who say that adrenal fatigue isn’t really a problem crossed my path. It wouldn’t have been pretty. Or at least it would have beenĀ  very loud.

If you don’t have cortisol, you don’t have thyroid hormone uptake. If your thyroid quits, you gain weight. If you’ve ever seen a website that talks about ‘sudden weight gain’ as a sign of thyroid issues, I bet you don’t think in the range of 50 lbs or so. I can’t say for sure, as I mentioned, I exceeded the limit on my scale, so it’s all guesswork.

It was really and truly awful, and also scary how quickly I crashed, how hard I crashed, and how long it’s taken me to feel decent again. I distinctly remember a conversation with a very dear friend who called one day and asked “so how are you?” In the usual fashion of friends. And because she is a very dear friend, I answered completely honestly “I feel as though I’ve been beaten and left for dead, thanks for asking. How are you?”

It’s taken me most of 4 months to get my weight back to what it was in October. (A number up 30 lbs from my previous longtime steady weight.) I still haven’t regained the strength I lost, and I’m still having crazy problems with insulin resistance, which I recognize from a diagnosis I got in 2006.

I’m back on a pretty strict, controlled carb paleo diet. It’s boring, but it doesn’t make me feel bad.

I’ve been going to the pool, but I think I’m finally to the point where I can get back on the elliptical, even if I can only do it in 3 minute bursts, which is where I started back in 2007. I think I can also do some basic weights. I need to build up my muscles, both for ease of movement and because that’s the best way to reverse insulin resistance. That and controlling insulin in the first place with a controlled carbohydrate intake.

My allopathic doctor wasn’t helpful. I found an acupuncturist who also uses a lot of really non-traditional modalities that seem to be helping.

So in case anyone noticed I was gone, that’s where I’ve been. Limp and tired and hurting and despondent about my poor health. I had nothing positive to say, so I thought I’d keep it to myself.

But now recovery is definitely in place and progressing, and we’ve turned the corner to spring even though we in the DC area are expecting more snow this week. I’m feeling optimistic, so let’s get back to the things I love to do, like helping people raise a fuss about health.