Friday, February 04, 2011

Let's All Sit and Have Coffee (or Tea)

Let's all sit and have coffee and tea and let me catch you up a little bit on what's been going on with me.


I'm going to try not to over-share into the icky stage, because until things happen, I see no point in talking about it.  I'm dwelling on it in my own mind --  oh heck yeah -- it's hard not to.  I've shared with a few friends the whole guacamole.  But to yammer on and on and on and on before anything has been set in stone is dull.  I think even two three days of "snap out of it, kid" blog posts was pushing it, even if there was a bunny and a penguin involved.

There have been a lot of little things lately that have added up to a massive load on my shoulders, things that I would normally have scoffed at or ignored or taken care of.  But when you're faced with a big fat uncertainty, those little things can make even the best faker fall flat on her face.

Most of you are long-time readers and know I have fought a debilitating type of migraine that does not respond to normal, or ANY, migraine medication.  (If you're new, and are interested, click here to catch up).  I finally, after waiting since June, got my long-awaited appointment at the Johns Hopkins Headache Clinic.  I went last Friday.

The doctors are tops.  I will say that.  What's distressing is half of the medicine I take for other things may be exacerbating my migraines -- and I have to take those meds.  

Also, there IS no pain medication for my condition.  None.  We are in the "pain management" stage of things now.  I can't tell you how stunned and ripped off I felt driving the hour-plus home with nothing in my purse to help me.

I must hide all of this from my son.  He can't know I'm in pain, or at least, not the level of pain I'm in.  It would crush him, worry him, cause anxiety that he's too young to understand.  I do go to bed a lot earlier than usual, but then I get way behind in work.  Which upsets me, especially now that I have a show tomorrow and a HUGE show the end of March, and I'd like to just go out and do something for once.

Some major medical changes will be happening soon.  I promise to keep you posted.  



I have other worries for others I love.  My friend, mentor, and surrogate mom, who recently nearly lost her life to pneumonia (she's also fighting cancer), is now doing better, well enough to notice a mole on her husband's arm -- and now he has melanoma for the second time.  He's already got mesothelioma.  I'm destroyed and devasted.  Please pray for them.

I've had a lot of emails lately from exceptional jewelry artists who hurt, who are feeling inferior, wondering when their time will come, wondering why they work so darned HARD when certain people seem to have stars shining over their heads all the time.  To them I say, you're so much better than you think you are, and if you're constantly working to grow, working at something you love, you're that much better FOR YOURSELF.



Where is this leading? 


All of you, dear readers and friends, are sitting with me, virtually having tea or coffee and I imagine us sharing.  We are not alone in our fears, our thoughts, or our pains.  What I'd like to see is our sharing our triumphs, our successes, and our hopes, regardless of what they are!  A triumph doesn't have to be "gee, I got a book contract today". It could be "I finally opened that package of PMC that's been sitting on my desk for two years" or "I finally tried that tutorial in "Step by Step Wire and now realize how much I love wire!"


Beyond the physical and mental pains nearly all of us have, we do have the ability to share our happiness, too -- and they can be odd happinesses.  I'm happy I live close enough to Johns Hopkins that I don't have to either take a plane trip each time I have an appointment or skip it altogether.  I'm happy I have an understanding husband who doesn't mind if I have to spend most of a day in bed.


If you've stuck with me this long, I want to thank you for dealing with the slightly-falling-apart-at-the-seams me, and keep rooting for the growing me.  I know I root for all of you every day.  I don't always have time lately to respond to your blogs, but I DO respond to all email, and I'll be better about it again soon. I want you to know you're not alone in either fear, pain, or doubt -- and let's toast our cups to happiness, no matter how small that happiness may be for the day.


(PS -- Did someone bring doughnuts to the tea/coffee party?  Or pie?)





60 comments:

  1. sorry, sweetie, I already ate the pie...all.of.it!

    Now, hugs to you, I love you and your sweet soul - hoping and praying things will work themselves out for you :)

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  2. I can get donuts tomorrow morning! Sending you lots of good thoughts and prayers. You are always there for us, cheering, encouraging, pushing! Please let us know how to be there for you. Hugs!

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  3. Prayers for you Lori! Life is a journey and you have been a bright spot in mine! Thanks for sharing your joys and pains. It makes life more real and bearable to know that we aren't the only ones who go through valleys.

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  4. Dear Lori,
    I understand much of what you are going through. I have had a chronic pain disorder for twelve years and it isna constant struggle. I have migraines, which truly are some of the worst part of chronic pain, but mine are resposive to medication. I have had bouts with status migraine...just enough of this hell to know what you are going through. I am glad you live near a major med center but so sorry there is not more to help now. Thank you for the encouragement with jewelry. We have done so little since Jud has been sick and I am feeling so inadequate. I do need to keep taking those little steps...I could relate to both that you mentioned. Like opening the PMC!
    You are such a lovely, compassionate person and we do except this side of you because we are all a little rough and ragged at some point in our life.
    Keep on with those baby steps! I will pray that you get some help with the awful migraines. They sound unbearable :-(

    Love,
    Suz

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  5. Lori, I'm sorry to hear you are struggling with a number of different pains right now. My heart goes out to you. I agree sharing happiness as much as possible helps heal us all. I'll be thinking of you. I hope that lightens a little of the hurt. <3 You are inspirational!

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  6. I've decided to have a gin and tonic rather than coffee or tea :-) I am very sorry to hear that you have so few answers. In fact I am rather crushed that life is dealing you such burdens right now. Having a supportive partner, though, is worth more than anything. I know, I have one, and it would be difficult to get on in life all alone. Thank you so much for your words of encouragement to all of us. It really is one of the things I treasure most about your blog and your visits to other blogs. But it's perfectly OK to just sit back and say I am tapped out and I am resting. Many hugs to you and I will light a candle to help to focus you in my thoughts.

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  7. I brought wine that tastes of elderberries. I love elderberries, a joyful memory of my childhood.
    Darling, I can't say a lot that would not sound either empty or tacky. I hope you know that I wish for you to get better, if that's possible.
    Pain management sounds like placebo- nothing I would want anybody to be stuck with. Life can be such a b.tch, and you sure got a huge share of $%@& to deal with.
    I don't want to sound cold or heartless, please don't get me wrong. But it could be worse.
    When I started reading your post, my heart sank with anticipation of what would be one of the most horrifying diagnoses ever, brain cancer. This could come across as the most awful comment ever, but I am actually glad it still is migraine.
    Please let me know if there is anything a random blog stalker from over the pond can do to make you feel any better and I'll happily do all I can.
    You are inspiring and beautiful inside and out. Knowing that you are carrying such a huge burden only makes me admire you more, and I hope you will be able to overcome this awful adversity with your inner strenth.
    If I ever prayed, you, your mentor and her husbnd would be in my prayers; I hope including you all in my thoughts will do some good.
    Cancer is a rotten bstrd, and I will do my bit for cancer research by running 5 miles in June to rise some funds. Nearly lost my Mum to cancer, and the husband of my wonderful colleague and friend is currently battling it.
    If man can hop over to the moon, man can beat this, too. And migraine on the way.
    I'm sending you my love.

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  8. Hugs. Just hugs.

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  9. I brought some of my son's fabulous cookies to our virtual tea party. And a glass of wine.

    Today's triumph was that the new kitty Francine did not hide herself in an inaccessible location today. And Homer sat on my feet and napped.

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  10. I'm so sorry you are going through this. I get migraines, but luckily the prescription meds I'm on do work for me. I did try a daily pill, but that caused more medical problems due to the side-effects and my allergies. I'm just sharing to show you I have at least a small idea of what you are going through.

    I'm so glad you are going to a headache clinic. They know so much more than your average physician. I hope they find something that allows you to take your meds and keep those damn migraines away.

    Do try to keep the stress down. I know, it's almost impossible, but it's important. It might be the only thing you have control over that can help.

    Virtual hugs to you and hope you find those answers you are needing so badly.

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  11. I wish the best for you.

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  12. Hang in there, Lori and know that we are all there with you. You and your family are in my prayers in a very special way.

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  13. Chronic pain sufferer here too. I take it a day at a time. I try to remind myself that tomorrow is a new day. Cheesy, I know, but it's what gets me through each day.

    My triumph of the day is that I saved $45 at the grocery store using coupons and in-store specials! Woo hoo! :-) Thank you for being so, so real.

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  14. I hope all turns out well for you Lori. Great big hugs to you and your loved ones.

    Sorry, no pie - I'm supposed to be on a diet - yeah right - lol!!

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  15. I'll bring sweet rolls or even better--cookies! to coffee. We all have these days--like when I found out that my kidneys were so damaged that I'm living on borrowed time before dialysis is going to happen. So like you, I try and try and try again. Because at this point, I have nothing to lose and EVERYTHING to gain.
    *Zen Hugs*

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  16. Dear Sweet Thoughtful Lori: I have read and re-read your post and consider it to be very wise words of wisdom. I am very sorry you have such pain and and so little relief. With age I have out-lived my horrible debilitating migraines I suffered so many years. It is so important that we celebrate even the tiniest successes...like opening that PMC or stringing those beads or sewing a pattern into fabric. Thank you for being YOU!!! Happy February Hearts to you my dear...

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  17. I got the chocolate chip scones and hey I also have extra coffee! I am with you and you already know that. I do however feel terrible that I am in my own bit of medical drama so I haven't been here enough. I am sending hugs to you and your son with all the love and respect I can offer! You are a great Mom and have been a great friend to many. Never ever worry about laying it out for us we are here for you!

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  18. Hey Lori, thank you so much for sharing and letting me know you better. You have so much love & support in your friends here and I can tell that you also have a loving family ... just rest in their love.
    I'm sending you hugs & sweet tea!
    Susan

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  19. One the of the wonderful things that I love about visiting you (virtually) is that you are always so encouraging to all of us. You support each one of us on Planet Bead even though you have pain and fears of your own. You may not "know" us or recognize each of your readers, but I think that we are appreciative of all that you contribute and share. Instead of huddling in and hunkering down in your pain, you encompass all of us with your kindness and warmth.

    My thoughts are with you, Lori. I wish you some moments free of pain. Sending you warm light.
    Hugs,
    Michelle

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  20. I did just bake a HUGE batch of butter cookies...

    Hugs and prayers headed your way <3

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  21. so sorry to hear JH can't help more. Pain sucks the life out of u as u well know.

    Hugs and a huge krispy kream of your choice!

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  22. Lori,
    You are the epitome of what I love about the crafting community... kindness, support, encouragement, mentorship... and not a competitive environment. I am sending good thoughts that you, your mentor, and her husband will all get better. Know you are in my thoughts!

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  23. i am not going to have internet access for a while, so I'm glad I was able to check in. I am so sorry for the news about your migraines, and for your dear friends.

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  24. I've got chocolate chip coconut bars??? Will that work? Lots of prayers and hugs going your way...thanks for always being so inspiring to us all!! :)

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  25. Anonymous10:06 PM

    Lori, I am touched by your honesty and courage. After reading your posts, I feel as though I have just spoken to a wonderful friend.
    Namaste, Laura

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  26. Oh Lori! hang in there. I will be praying for you and your family. My dad struggles with cluster headaches- migraines that come on fast and leave him writheing on the floor in pain. they only last a couple of minutes, but he has slowed / slurred speech for hours afterward. and the worst part is that they hit in clusters, so he will have many for a week or two, and then get a break for a month or so. no meds have worked, so he just muddles through. I just feel so bad for anyone who struggles with head pain. REST, take care of you, shows can wait.

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  27. I'm so sorry Lori =[ My mom suffers from migraines too, and she puts on such a good show for my dad, my brother and I, I don't know how she can live through it when I barely handle little headaches. I empathize with you. We're all here for you!

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  28. Bed for me is minutes away so no tea or anything for me! Id like to of read this earlier but my Daughter was over today and she took me shopping. So here I am now. I was feeling alittle bit bad in the past about some of the same things that people wrote to you about in your emails. But I said to myself heck its not worth it and tossed it up into the Wind! And I havent worried since is all. I know I make nice things and lovely things and that surfises me. I can understand how people feel too tho, but theres so many people making jewellery now. Its kind of a fate thing I think but some people do have a different angle and they are noticed. But there are some Really really talented artisans out there and all people can do is keep plugging. Ive kissed it all up to God!
    Im so sorry to hear that there is nothing the Drs can do for you and you have to be feeling empty with that. But tomorrows another day and maybe the management thing will help. Such a burden you carry. Please take extra good care of yourself Lori you have an awful lot on your shoulders. Remember you must take care of yourself and maybe you might have to let a few things take a back seat. (I know..wrong words) Please know you are really cared for Lori and I am going to be praying for you. So many huggs across the miles...
    With Love~Janet ox

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  29. Sending much love.

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  30. Sending you good vibes!!! I brought a frozen banana-almond butter-soy milk concoction :) How great to have such an understanding husband. Do well on your show tomorrow!

    My happiness for the day is that my dog survived her third surgery in as many months. Hopefully, it's the last!

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  31. i'm sorry to hear that John Hopkin's wasn't able to give you more incouraging info and some thing that would ease this situation ..you are an amazing person and i don't know how you keep your chin up and bright outlook dealing with chronic pain..it's worth a million to have a supportive partner.

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  32. Oh, Lori <3 In fact, I'm having my morning coffee here with you!
    And, yes, familiar to almost constant pain, arthralgia - makes one so helpless! My thoughts with you <3

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  33. Hang in there honey...life is good, that is what i like to tell you and hope that it would be enough, but i know saying them will not fix it...so just know that i am here if you need anything let me know...
    Jelveh
    Peace
    oh yeah I want some pecan pie, who has some?

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  34. Hang in there honey...life is good, that is what i like to tell you and hope that it would be enough, but i know saying them will not fix it...so just know that i am here if you need anything let me know...
    Jelveh
    Peace
    oh yeah I want some pecan pie, who has some?

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  35. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Lori you're a fantastic mum and a inspiration to all that read your blog wishing an end to your pain and really wanting pie niky xxxxxxxxx

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  36. Oh darling you,
    I hope everything turns around for the better in ways you haven't imagined!! Also, I can't help but think this is a difficult time of year for so many. Maybe because spring is too far away, I don't know, but I hear so much about illnesses and sorrow. It has to get better.

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  37. I know it's hard for us to hear a fellow beloved designer is hurting and in pain because we all wish we could help or just take the pain away. We're always here to chat and listen.

    Hey, I'm a vegan, did anyone bring any fruit?

    xo

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  38. My thoughts are with you. Your post is most appreciated. You have such a strong, positive spirit that I believe things will get better for you. And as you say, so many are good already. Thanks for being so open, encouraging and sharing.

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  39. Both my twin sister and I suffer from migraines, but I have found that mine come from stress, hormones, and barometer changes. While meds typically don't help, a long rest and a dark quiet room do.

    I pray that you find some relief from yours soon! I'll say a prayr for your friend as well! Take care.

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  40. I myself am currently in a state of perpetual pain due to a severe middle ear infection. And every time I feel sorry for myself I snap out of it pretty fast because of stories like yours and other lovely talented artists.
    I can't as well as won't imagine what it must be like to constantly feel pain. Every day. To be debilitated by it.
    All I can say is don't give up. You have a lovely family, a supporting spouse and your jewellery business is a success. Take all the consolation you can from that.
    I wish you all the best!

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  41. I'm so sorry that the trip to Hopkins was a bust. I was really hoping for good things.

    I had a few small triumphs this week: 1) I finally started to tackle a project that's been weighing me down for months, 2) I got a couple of small freelance jobs that will likely lead to others, and 3) After a week in which my weight loss stalled, I saw good results again this week.

    Hang in there. Holler if you need me.

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  42. I'm there with you with the migraine and keeping it from you child. I also lost both my parents to cancer. All I can say is to hang in there. I know it is cliche, but time does heal all wounds. Sharing with friends will help lessen the scars.

    I had cafe mocha and a Cinnamon roll.

    Kathy from Sedillo Hill Studio

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  43. Thinking of you today Lori, I know when there is pain it is hard to keep up your spirits. Thank you for sharing this so we can send good thoughts your way.

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  44. I hear ya and i'm here for ya but as for the pie, just started atkins this week so I can bring eggs if you'd like! Yeah, didn't think so.... Keep a positive attitude. Hugs

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  45. Lovely cuppa, thanks Lori. How wonderful that despite what you go through yourself, you still have words of encouragement and thoughts for others. You're a star, Lori, I'm glad you have the strength and support of your husband, he sounds like quite a guy. xx

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  46. Wow Lori, I so wish I had a magic pill for you. My heart goes out to you in your determination to keep your pain from your son.
    As I have read all the lovely comments from everyone, I hope you are feeling the love from us all. I have only (virtually) known you a short time, and you have already had such a big impact on me. We will all continue to lift you up, and share cups of coffee with you.
    And, for JeannieK, I brought some lovely apple slices and dip!

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  47. ::passing chocolate around:: Lori, I can't say more than these lovelies have been saying, so just know I'm lighting candles and sending light your way to help you through this difficult time.

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  48. I can't imagine dealing with a migraine disorder, or some other painful physical condition! Challenging, to say the least.

    I don't have kids, but I was one for several years, and I personally think it would be better for your son if he knows the truth of why you are sometimes out of commission, or why you appear to be in pain. Kids in their tiny worlds will search for whatever explanation they can find for why their parents are sad or in pain or not available to them, and since they are by nature self-oriented creatures, they will blame themselves first. Is Mommy in bed because I was bad today? Was I too loud? Was it because I asked for a puppy? They will fill in the gaps however they can, and the adults around them may not realize they are creating these seemingly crazy explanations in their little heads. And of course when a parent is ill, there is the fear the parent will die. I think they notice more than we think, and they know when a parent is not OK. He needs to know that your periodic withdrawal or obvious illness is not his fault, and you're not going to die. Your head hurts sometimes and you have to lie down. That's all. Maybe a family counselor would have some insights for you on how to help him deal with your migraine disorder. I would be surprised if he didn't already realize something is wrong.

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  49. Lori, thank you so much for being someone who, on a daily basis, lets me know I am not alone in fear, pain, or doubt.

    Per your request, I am happy that I share my fears, pains, and doubts on my blog because if I didn't do that I wouldn't grow and I would not be able to read yours and be grateful that truly, I am not alone. Without your encouragement and sharing, I wouldn't know that my own truthful journey inspires others as you inspire me.

    I hope your next step to be pain free is as successful as chiropractic was for my own headaches.

    Thank you Lori; enjoy the begnets and hot chocolate!

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  50. Hugs:) Best wishes to you!

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  51. Oh Lori I'm so sorry for your pain. Sending you good vibes and hope all is well soon.

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  52. I'm so sorry to hear about your pain Lori. I really hope you will be able to find something to help you manage it. Indeed we do all have our pains and our struggles but I agree with you, focusing on our happiness and our triumphs no matter how small makes us stronger and happier people. My favorite quote is "Life isn't about waiting for the storms to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain." Thank you so much for inspiring us all! :-)

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  53. Dearest Lori, I´m so sorry to hear that. I´m so thankful for you beeing in blogland. Despite all that awful pain you´re still bringing out love to all of us. I´ll pray for you. I´m sending you a big hug, some virtual flowers and newly brewed coffee!! Big hugs and love!!!

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  54. You are an inspiration,e specially to those of us who, if a turn can possibly be missed or taken too soon, will do just that. If someone is in the car with me and the chat is good, forget it -- I'll miss the exit, the turn, the destination every time.
    Whenever I get a little headache (which is rare), I think of friends who have migraines and marvel that they can keep going. Nothing is worse, not even back pain (says she of the herniated disk). It's amazing what you do and how you keep doing it. My very best thoughts and wishes for a diagnosis and recovery plan.
    Oh, and yes, I had brought some delish cheese danish but I ate them while I was circling back on the highway, having of course missed the exit to your blog.

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  55. Yes Sweet Girl,
    You have been such a wonderful support for me on my journey finding my brother. I want to be here for you as you go through your journey of trying to become pain free.
    You are so right, we all have trials & paths on our journey that lead us through some rough patches. I feel I have spent too much time on my blog relating that to my friends. But now with things settling down & hospice in place, I want to focus on the fun & joy I also have in my life...thus my post on Bead Soup this morning!
    I am here for you too sweet girl & I will help you in any way needed to get ready for your BS Party...just let me know.
    Big Hugs Lori & here's to finding our joy even in times of hardship...I KNOW WE CAN DO IT!!!
    Your Partner,
    Susie

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  56. Lori, my heart and prayers go out to you. I dealt with migraines until my 30s. Then hormonal changes apparently made them go away.

    Yours sound so much worse than mine.

    I admire your spirit and am so glad we had this little chat over tea ;-)

    Hang in there and God bless you.

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  57. Oh Lori, I send you lots of hugs. I suffered from heavy and recurring migraines for years.In my worst times, I did have up to 3 migraines a week. I tried nearly everything except hard drugs to get rid of them.
    I have been feeling much better for nearly a year since I changed my diet. I had developed some strange rush and the doctors made more exotic blood tests, searching for allergies and I was found to be suffering from allergies to gluten, dairy products and the white of eggs.
    I have cut all these out from my eating habits and now I only get 2 migraines a month but these are hormone-related and I can deal with that knowing they will come only then.

    I have a daughter and while I tried to hide my sufferings from her when she was younger, I told her all about my migraine when she was 7. She understood very well and it did not cause her any trouble.

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  58. just catching up on your blog. hang in there. lots of us care and somehow this will get better for you.

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  59. As usual I am way behind on reading posts. I have a dear friend that is in chronic pain. Though I have no idea what you are going through I know that it is not easy and some days are just horrid. Thanks for sharing your thoughts,

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  60. -Sigh-
    Pass the donuts.
    Hugs.

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