Healing

Learning Acceptance With A Chronic Illness

I’ve had a chronic vestibular condition for the last 17 months which led me to giving up my career, university degree and in general my Independence.

learning-acceptance-1

It’s believed I have possible permanent damage to my inner ear and vestibular migraines meaning my vision is effected on a daily basis, and I frequently get hit with waves of fatigue, vertigo, anxiety and insomnia. Just some of the things that set it off are;

  • Bright lights ( Shopping Centres )
  • Busy streets with too many people
  • Cars driving by too fast
  • Loud noises – Bars ect
  • Travelling – Cars, Tubes or Buses
  • Escalators – Vertigo
  • The weather – Rain or storms
  • Talking or trying to listen too much
  • Walking too far – Over a mile – Exhaustion, jelly legs

I get good days where my vision is around 90% and I can go to my local bar and as long as I’m sat down, I can have a drink and it actually makes me feel better! I forget about the swaying lol. But in general, every few weeks something will trigger it and I’m back to square one. Mainly housebound.

Ive tried to get on with things as much as an able bodied person, but it came to mind that this attitude of constantly fighting and not accepting my situation is possibly hindering my healing process, and it’s EXHAUSTING. It’s so demotivating to make yourself believe you’re going to get better, just to be hit by another hurdle. I used to do silly things like book a surf trip as I would persuade myself I’m going to get better for it, just to cancel 2 weeks before as I couldn’t walk more than 50 meters.

I also would tell my friends I suffer from a vestibular disorder but then I also find myself in the same breath saying, ‘but it will go soon’

IT HASN’T.

So after speaking to a support group, I’ve decided I’m going to try to accept it instead and stop FIGHTING it. Before, accepting it for me, meant giving up on ever returning to normal, so I fought even harder. But I researched it a bit and I found that acceptance simply means;

‘The recognition that the moment is as it is’

Accepting something as ‘true in this moment’ doesn’t mean that we endorse it or approve of it, and that was the ice breaker for me. I’m tired of planning things with friends and dropping out at the last minute as I put on all this pressure to try to be as NORMAL as possible. I need to start accepting that I can’t do certain activities and drop the GUILT! As the guilt’s the WORST part, like below for instance;

  • I can’t go to my best friends birthday, shes going to think I could make more effort
  • My friend is ill and needs help moving out, but I’m too unsteady on my feet. She’ll be disappointed
  • My partner wants to go on a dream holiday but I can’t fly long haul. 
  • I have to pull out of that girls night out AGAIN – they will eventually stop inviting me
  • I have to cancel at the last minute that trip to see my family. 

It’s hard when you LOOK ok and people can’t tell there is something wrong. INVISIBLE illnesses are the WORST!

So as from next week, I’m going to start swimming a few times a week. I’m going to work on acceptance and stop fighting it, instead saving all that wasted energy on healing instead. I’ve heard from a few people suffering from this mention that when they accepted it, they actually started to get better or have more energy.

I’ll update you in a few weeks my progress with swimming too.

Blogging

Living with migraine associated vertigo

What a name….. for over a year I suffered from constant dizziness, exhaustion and anxiety to name but a few symptoms. I was diagnosed with labyrinthitus, then FINALLY 2 weeks ago I saw a neurologist who told me it was actually migraines. Janet Jackson has recently pushed this condition to the forefront as she suffers from it too and had to cancel her concerts in the US.

Here’s what I have learnt.

  • Not everyone has actually headaches, sometimes you will feel extremely dizzy and exhausted and not even realise you are going through an attack.
  • It tends to be more prevalent in women – My mum suffers from constant dizziness due to this too as well as my half sisters interestingly enough.
  • You look FINE! The harder part is you look fine, it’s not like you have anything to show for it, like a cast on a broken arm so it’s extremely hard to tell friends than your having a rough day and are more limited to what you can do.
  • Overdoing it will make it worse – True I find walking a lot and pushing myself to go out helps me feel less like a recluse but the next day I’ll expect to spend a good few hours in bed. And that’s not even a night out drinking!
  • You realise who your real friends are – I have literally stepped back from a few, our lifestyles are completely out of sync now and I just would rather avoid the drama and stress.
  • Mind over matter – Acting as normal as possible and carrying on through the dizzy days helps, Who wants to moan day in and day out they feel like crap? It WONT change anything other than make you feel worse.
  • Thoughts are things – I really believe that what you think about the most you will draw that to you. There have been weeks when I have thought positively about my situation, that I’m healing and I felt better. When I have a relapse and feel worse, if I worry about it and feel sorry for myself it takes longer to recover!
  • Changing your lifestyle is a MUST! I used to go out every weekend and really party hard so to speak lol, even though I’m 35 I wasn’t slowing down in the slightest. Age is just a number after all. But now I can manage a few hours before the tiredness kicks in and I know when to stop.

Do you suffer from migraines and vertigo?

Support Group Facebook – Click here

Healing

Travelling With Vertigo & Natural Remedies To Help!

So I’m still fighting to get over an inner ear infection I’ve had for 10 months now called Labyrinthitus. Like most chronic inner ear disorders, the common symptoms are;

  • 24/7 Dizziness
  • Anxiety
  • Vertigo
  • Exhaustion

I was determined not to let this stop me from travelling and recently managed to fly to Edinburgh. I was completely dreading it. Would I be in a lot of pain? Would I get really ill on the plane? Would it make the dizziness worse?

Here are a few things I used leading up to the flight which are mostly natural products that helped me. Although if there was any turbulence I must admit my eyes really played up, it was a pain free trip and I’m so pleased I pushed myself to go.

  • Ginger Root Tablets – Well known for curing sea sickness and has been used for centuries
  • Ashwagandha root – Proven to increase blood flow and vertigo
  • Magnesium tablets – Assists the electrolyte balance within your body
  • Silver Colloid – More unusual but this was originally used by the Royal family and is a proven natural anti biotic to diminish viruses and Bacteria.