covid · health

When Your Neurodivergent Brain Has Post-COVID Brain Fog

In my last post I wrote a big ol’ paragraph about the time change, and 24+ hours later (2 a.m. this morning -it’s 4 now), the fact that the advice (that does work) is for the March (MAKE IT STOP) time change, not the November one, slowly dawned on me. I know this, I really do…but for some reason something glitched, and I was certain enough to even tweet about it, too.

Photo by Alexander Dummer on Pexels.com

This has been happening more than I like lately. For instance, bills: I’ve paid all the bills on the same day as rent for years. And any that are auto-pay are deducted in the check register (yes, a register – I have to see my finances) so I know where I stand for the month. But since we had COVID in July, the two bills that fall either at the end of one month or the beginning of the next are messing with my head. I just can’t get straight how to deal with them, even though I know it’s easy to do so, and that I did it for months before July.

Now I’ve always been easily distracted – I couldn’t take a purse to school because I would hang it on the chair and promptly forget it was there. Baked desert for an hour as a teen, and didn’t turn the oven on. And the more I watch Jessica’s ‘How to ADHD‘ videos, the more I see myself in many ways, especially since menopause (I also see some Autistic traits, too…neurodivergent buffet, anyone?). Cooking, oh, cooking…don’t leave the kitchen or I’ll come back to an exploded Pyrex pan that once held water and eggs, or a tea kettle without a whistle, burned right through. And the oven…if I knew how many times I’ve left it on, the number would scare all of us, I’m sure. But now, jeesh. An InstantPot, air fryer, and auto-turn-off electric tea kettle have changed everything, and without them, I’m not even certain I’d be able to cook. Even with them, I check the chart more than once to make sure I have the times and settings right, because if they can be done wrong, I’ll do it.

Laundry. I’ve done laundry on Sundays for years. Clean clothes for the week…nice. But during COVID, that schedule got screwed up, and now I completely forget to do it until I open my drawer and there’s no underwear. If I’m lucky, I’ll notice that there’s one pair left, turn around, grab a load, and wash it. Hopefully I’ll remember they’re in there (the washer and dryer are in the garage, but I remembered before, so…), put them in the dryer, set the timer, turn the dryer on, and all is well. Lately, though, I forget all of it. I’ll remember they’re in there hours later. And so many times I’ve gone out to find wet clothes in the dryer because, well…

And, almost worse than the rest, I’ve had to resort to setting alarms on my phone for appointments and sessions, because unless my planner is open and in front of me where I can see it multiple times a day, I won’t remember a thing. I remembered an upcoming birthday for two weeks because planner…and then again the day after. Completely spaced it the day of. Planner was in a pile, not open on my desk.

It’s scary. Out of sight, out of mind, easily distracted, is my norm, but double it and it starts to feel like the Earth has fallen out from under your feet, ya know? And with a new part-time job that is something I normally excel at, but that ‘at’ is being super organized and remembering things, I’m lost more times than I care to admit. The ‘glasses are on my head’ thing is just the tip of the iceberg, and I don’t know what to do about it except utilize all the tips and hacks I can find to get through this post-COVID life.

Is anyone else having problems like this – not just neurodivergent people? How are you handling it?

With love, hope, and a fuzzy brain,

Pip ✨🦩

health

“It’s the depression…”

If you’ve followed along for a bit, you know I haven’t been feeling like my usual self for quite a few years, and it’s been worse recently. Had a chat with my doctor, and we’re doing some tests for a few things, but when I was mentioning how I’ve always been strong and had a brain, she said, “It’s the depression. It affects everything. The brain fog is your mind trying to escape…”

Photo by Kat Smith on Pexels.com

One, she’d never mentioned depression before, and two, that blew my mind. I had never heard it put that way, and it really hit home. The past 7 years have been so, so difficult – and my health started going downhill fairly quickly. The last 18 months sent it all over the edge: I had my month-long “breakdown” in July after 6 of the absolute most traumatic and stressful months in my entire life, and as I’ve mentioned before, I haven’t recovered and I don’t think I ever will. No wonder my brain wants to hide.

The weirdest thing happened after I left her office; the depths of my depression showed itself, and I saw how much I’d been hiding it from myself and everyone else. Well, mostly. The edges have peeked out in my writing and social media, but overall I had no clue that I’m not even treading water any more, I’m sinking.

I hate meds because if there’s a reaction to be had, I’ll have it, so we didn’t discuss anything like that. My friend Kellianne gave me a card reading a couple years ago, and in it she wrote, “Use your depression as a soft place to land and heal…” The though is so soothing, and at the same time I have no idea how to do that. There is so much on my plate and no way to let any of it go. There should be more, but I honestly haven’t been able to make myself go in search of a job, and that’s scary. You don’t get paid to have a breakdown, ya know?

I have a lot to think about, a lot to process, and being gentle with myself and my feelings is at the top of the list. I know there are a ton of resources out there (so, please, no links; thank you, but it’s too much right now), and right now all I can do is sit with this new knowledge and take each moment as it comes. Tiny steps. Tiny freak-outs. Tiny joys. Tiny laughs. Tiny everything.

Because anything bigger is overwhelming.

With love and hope,

Pip 🌻🦩

PS: sending light always cheers me up and brings me joy. If you need help but can’t afford to purchase a session, I’m happy to take donations via Venmo. Send me a wave, and we’ll get your session set up.

©Pip Miller – June 2022

health

Too many forks, not enough spoons

I came up with that phrase a few years ago (or whenever it was that I read the fork theory), and it so applies to my life right now. Lots of responsibilities (many of which I am simply letting drop to the wayside, though they need to be taken care of), and worry, so much worry. I’m stressed beyond words because it looks like there’s absolutely no way I can avoid re-entering the workforce, even though that pitchfork will send me crashing. And that means the physical pain (especially the new one) will cause issues that most likely will cause me to lose yet another job, and the thought of all of it has me on edge and running out of spoons almost before I even get out of bed (thanks, kitty, and your “I’m awake, why aren’t you, the sun is almost up and I need to be fed even though there’s food in my bowl” meowing every morning).

Photo by Dids on Pexels.com Not my cat

I keep pretending something magical will happen and my schedule will be filled with retainer plans, and lots of 3-session packages, and everything will be fine. In reality, unless I win the lottery, I’m screwed. The clock is ticking and I can’t avoid what must be done anymore. The thought makes me want to scream and burst into tears because being let go from a job due to your body rebelling against whatever the hell it’s rebelling against makes a person feel like a failure. And means more frickin’ interviews, pushing myself to be extroverted when I’m far from it, and the whole damned merry-go-round. Again.

Then there’s the caregiver worries, such as what if he falls while I’m at work? What if he’s having one of the days where he can barely get out of bed or walk? How will he eat when he can’t make it to the kitchen? What if it’s a good day and he decides to go into the garage and hurts himself trying to do something he still thinks he can do no problem, but it leaves him immobilized for days, and I have to leave him alone for those days?

No wonder I can’t sleep lately. That and the fact that the minute I get comfortable and start to fall asleep, my legs decide it’s party time. Sigh.

Luckily I’ve been able to distract myself a bit with a Firefly marathon, lots of reading, and 3 sessions for someone with chronic migraines. Today (Sunday) is her last session. She’s away from home, so I haven’t been able to check in and see how it’s going on her end, but I know the energetic flow is really strong on mine.

I hope you’re all doing ok!

With hope and love,

Pip 🌻✨

PS: all 30-minute sessions (except for the Retainer Plan) are still 45-minutes for the same price until the end of May! Get your session(s) here!

PPS: I’m trying very hard to live by this quote I found recently (and foolishly didn’t write down who said/wrote it or what book it was in):

Bring me peace with what comes,

and until it comes,

peace with what is.

health

A tremor crash? What’s that?

I have had essential tremor for, oh wow, just shy of 30 years. It was after my divorce, two moves across country, and a lot of stress, which can trigger tremors that you didn’t even know you have. Essential tremor tends to run in families, and no one I was aware of had it (my son does now). I was playing pool with friends and someone commented on my shaky hands, which I hadn’t even noticed. Did some library research and came across ET.

During stressful times it gets really bad, interfering with just about everything because my hands are shaking so bad that I can’t even hold a glass of water.

Food can set them off, though I’ve not really been able to nail down what foods in particular because one day I’ll be fine eating something and a few days later the same exact food has a completely different effect. It’s bewildering.

Photo by Alexandr Podvalny on Pexels.com

The last two years they’ve calmed to manageable (except for the occasional food disruption), mainly because my overall stress calmed. I’ve been home, without a schedule or any expectations beyond getting through the pandemic. But this year things have been more stressful as people get “back to normal”, and as a result, my tremors are acting up again.

Years ago I noticed that there are times when they are so bad that my entire body feels like it’s buzzing, and when the tremors finally calm down, I’m exhausted. Fried. A wet noodle. And if I’m lucky, I’m able to go to bed, sleep, and recuperate. That’s what I call a tremor crash.

And now there’s a new addition to the problem; inhalers. I have asthma and inhalers intensify the tremors (nebulizers are insane! I shake out of control for 4 hours). So I’ll wake up, use the inhaler, the tremors kick in, and then I’ll eat. Some days all is well, the tremors chill, and I’m good to go.

Today, today…wow. it was bad. The tremors, the inhaler, the food I ate; I was on super-buzz. We had to run errands, I was coughing a lot from the asthma, had to use the rescue inhaler, and things got really bad. I was shaking so much that I was having difficulty breathing (more than normal), which isn’t something that’s happened before. I made it to the bedroom when we got home and fell asleep for a few hours. I’m still feeling weak and shaky, but I can breathe ok.

All this did, besides freaking me out a lot, was intensify my determination to work from home, to actually make a living from, if need be, my bed. I cannot have something like this happen at a job, right? You may have noticed some changes on the website, such as returning to This Healing Hobbit’s Life. I jump in without thinking things through, and I suddenly realized that I simply needed to make a few changes and not mess with whatever internet following I have. Sometimes it just takes me a while to get the point. lol

Check out the Essential Tremor website (March is National Essential Tremor Awareness Month, too); you’d be surprised how many people have it and don’t even know it.

And as always, I hope to be of service for you and/or your pets!

With hope and love,

Pip 🌻✨

©Pip Miller – February 2022

covid · health · palliative lightwork · social media

Brain Fog Central

Every week I write ‘blog’ in my planner. And every week I have zero idea what to write about. Even if something comes to mind, when I sit down to start typing; poof, it’s gone. The same goes for the newsletter I was going to resurrect. Blank. My mind has left the building, taking all the notes, quotes, and inspiration with it in a rolling red suitcase. And I’ve no idea where it is.

It also seems to have snuck all my energy in there, because it’s the same with to-do lists; I write them, I fully intend to achieve them…and the effort is just too much. I know being anemic contributes to that, but still, it’s as if all I can do is get through each day and hope a good night’s sleep will refresh me and kick things back into gear. So far, it’s not happening.

OH, and get this. Remember this post, “Laters, Alcohol!” (still a work in progress, sadly)? In it I wrote that I was about to start my 60th year of life, aka, turning 59 (I’ve since fixed that). I had a dr’s appointment Thursday, the type that requires a medical bracelet, and that night I was looking at the bracelet and noticed that they’d mistakenly written that I was 58. Then I looked at my birthdate, did quick match, and son of a…somehow I managed to get my own age wrong! That’s how foggy my brain is lately.

I noticed lately that I’ve been scrolling through Twitter for way too long every day, and I removed it from my phone. I don’t know if it was a subconscious attempt to kick my brain into gear with all the information, or if all that information was overwhelming my brain and contributing to the inability to think straight. I suspect a bit of both, but I’m pretty positive the overwhelm was real. I still have Instagram (on an old phone; it creeps me out that it works on my usual phone even if blocked by the firewall), but one: I don’t follow as many people there, and two: picture-posting isn’t as frequent as tweeting, so I spend a lot less time scrolling. I really enjoy accounts that show real life, and aren’t just for marketing. I’ve also removed other ‘mindless scrolling’ accounts from my phone and caught myself wondering ‘Now what do I do??” yesterday. Because somehow reading books had fallen to the wayside in favor of what’s on my devices, even Hoopla and Kindle. And I have a room full of books to read!

It’s almost as if I’ve forgotten who I am, and need to find my way back to me. Does anyone else feel that way? Removing the digital accessibility is going to take adjusting to (which, coming from me, who tries to be all about safety and using encrypted email and texting, is a bit ironic), but it’s getting warmer so I’ll be able to sit outside and read in the sun again. I can send light while outside, too, and that always makes my day.

How has the pandemic affected you? I really thought that I was doing ok, because while I stayed home most of the time, NM was very aggressive about dealing with the restrictions and masks, so I was able to go shopping and get out of the house. It felt like normal life. But it really hasn’t been, and I wonder how long it will take before we all are hit with PTSD and in what forms it will manifest?

Be safe, take care of yourself!

Much love,

Pip 🙂

©Pip Miller – March 2021

health · palliative lightwork

Hello, Spring!!!!

I love spring. It’s the brief time before the weather gets so hot here in New Mexico that sitting outside to read isn’t happening. The wind, well…the wind is spring here. It’s worth it.

It’s also the time of the liver. Time to be gentle with it and take care of it. I recently read Wheat Belly (again) and Grain Brain (wow) because I noticed certain symptoms when I went back to regular eating after doing my best to eat plant-based for a while. So it seems the perfect time to drop the wheat and see what happens. I have a friend doing the same, and we’ll support each other, yay!

Great photo, wish I knew who to credit.

The biggest news is that I’m tweaking my focus a bit more to working with animals. The horse I’ve been helping made it through the winter and the polar vortex without any problems, and I love how easily animals respond to the lightwork. They say to find your niche and I think this is mine. I still love helping people so much, but this decision feels really good.

Here’s to a wonderful spring, lots of rain (fingers crossed), and wheat-free belly! lol

Much love,

Pip

©Pip Miller – March 2021

covid · health · palliative lightwork

Stress and Covid-19

Well, my attempt at a 30-day digital detox didn’t last for than a moment; I’m at high risk concerning the virus and I couldn’t step away from the news and how things are going worldwide and here in NM. This is me (not literally) reading Twitter and the news daily:

Image from palife.co.uk

Add to that the loss of income, and issues with social distancing, and I’ve been really, really stressed. I keep wanting to offer any and every one distance sessions, but people seem to feel that others deserve it more than they, or that it’s only for serious issues. And frankly, it feels wrong to charge for the sessions knowing a huge, huge portion of people are in the same check-to-check life, or are now without an income, too. It’s a bit of a Catch-22, ya know?

There’s that curse, “May you live in interesting times”, and boy, are we ever. All we can do is support, encourage, and listen to each other (from a distance). One of my favorite Firefly quotes is this:

Tracey: “When you can’t run, you crawl. And when you can’t crawl, when you can’t do that … “
Zoe: ” … you find someone to carry you.”

Let’s carry each other in whatever way we can.

With hope and love,

Pip 🙂

©Pip Miller – March 2020

health · palliative lightwork

It’s a Small Fibromyalgia World

Kind of. To quote the National Fibromyalgia Association,

” Fibromyalgia is one of the most common chronic pain conditions. The disorder affects an estimated 10 million people in the U.S. and an estimated 3-6% of the world population. While it is most prevalent in women —75-90 percent of the people who have FM are women —it also occurs in men and children of all ethnic groups. The disorder is often seen in families, among siblings or mothers and their children. The diagnosis is usually made between the ages of 20 to 50 years, but the incidence rises with age so that by age 80, approximately 8% of adults meet the American College of Rheumatology classification of fibromyalgia.”

That’s an astounding number of people.

Yesterday I was reading Stacey Chapman’s blog, Fighting With Fibro, and I came across a comment from my mother. She has her own blog called Strangely Peculiar (which completely fits her), and has fibromyalgia for decades. Seeing that comment really brought home the fact that fibro is hereditary, though I hadn’t know that til very recently.

Photo by Kat Jayne on Pexels.com

It also brought to mind the time when I first discovered that I could help others feel better, and I wanted to try and do what I call, ‘sending light’, and called my mom to see if she wanted to be my guinea pig. Now my mom is just like Scully…woowoo isn’t her thing, but facts are. So I figured she would be the person to ask, rather than someone in my woowoo world, because I would get from-the-hip feedback.

She agreed, and I began to send. Within 10 minutes she called and asked me what I had done?, and I kind of freaked out. I thought I’d messed something up or hurt her, but it was the exact opposite. She felt better, her head was clearer, her pain had lessened…she was amazed and I was, too. I haven’t sent to her in too long (sorry, Mom), but today is a chill day and I plan to do just that. If anyone else would like some light, click here to purchase a sessionthe best part is that you don’t have to go anywhere or do anything to receive the light! – and I’ll get back to you and we’ll set up a time. If you have any questions, you can contact me.

BTW, my flare has lessened some, but is not completely gone. I’m relatively new to this level of severity, and I cannot imagine how those of you who have it 24/7 function; I would love to just crawl into bed and stay there. Major kudos to all of you!!!

Fighting the fight,

Pip 🙂

©Pip Miller – July 2019

 

health · palliative lightwork

At A Loss For Words

Which is why I haven’t posted in so long. There’s too much to say, too much horror going on in the world and this country, too much…everything. What do you say to all that?

So I sit and retweet things on Twitter because others are saying it all and there’s nothing I can add to it. I cry and my heart breaks more and more each day. And don’t say “we aren’t this”. Obviously a vast amount of us ARE. And admit it, we always have been. We just sugarcoat things in history books and the news and to ourselves. Humans have an innate fear of things we don’t understand, and that turns to violence and rage and wars and murder and the list goes on and on.

We suck.

Not totally, but in many ways. Think about those little comments you say in your head when you see someone different, you know, the ones you would never say out loud because they aren’t nice things to say. It’s almost an unconscious act to have those thoughts. The problem is when people act upon them. Then the shit hits the damned fan and we end up with concentration camps (again…don’t forget that we’ve had them before; no ovens doesn’t mean they weren’t) and the government we have because they freaked out over a black president (what nerve he had!, they think)…

So…maybe not so much at a loss for words.

And this wasn’t even meant to be the focus of this post! I’m having a fibro flare like never before, and I am lost in the pain. Swimming in it. Someone get me the hell out of this pool, please. I’m reading fibro blogs, and something not in the slightest bit important jumped out at me: I like to read blogs, if they aren’t decades old, from the beginning if they interest me. Please, PLEASE put a calender widget in your sidebar! I read a post, hit ‘back’, and then have to scroll through the entire blog to get back to where I was. Over and over. ETA: discovered that if I read them via WordPress Reader, I can scroll through all the posts. Win!

I’m just sayin…

BTW:

Want this shirt.

I’m too tired to eat properly, which isn’t helping at all, and I’m not sleeping enough, again, not helping, and I sit and read Twitter and blogs. I haven’t had a healing light client in months, which hurts my soul (honestly. I’m great at my day job, but it doesn’t feed my purpose in life), and this week, due to this flare, I won’t have a paycheck next week. Fun times.

OH, and I keep coming across people noticing that things they are doing online (and of course on their phones) are showing up as ads on FB and IG. Even from text messages. I re-upped IG recently because “everyone is on it and it’s the biggest marketing tool out there”…but those niggling feelings, coupled with our government now, has me planning to drop it again. Not that Twitter isn’t checking out our shit, too, I know. Stonekettle says that CounterSocial is a bullshit/Nazi/troll-free site, similar to Twitter, but you know how it goes…getting people to shift to something new is harder than getting that fake dude out of that office he didn’t actually win.

I think I’m out of words now. 😉

©Pip Miller – July 2019

health · palliative lightwork

It’s All Just Too Much

The endless news, the draconian abortion laws, the immigration crisis and people in cages separated forever from their children, climate change…

It’s too much. We are under such a tremendous amount of stress and fear right now, and it seems like there is no way out, doesn’t it?

Mr. Rogers always said, “Look for the helpers”…and now I say, “Look to the Lightworkers”. They come in different shapes and sizes, and they don’t always make a big splash, but they always manage to bring a smile and a feeling of “ahhhhh” to your day.

I do that by helping others with my energy work, my friend Pearl fills her timelines with pictures of all her critters and nature (warning, snakes!!!), Johanne, an amazing card reader and artist, uses Twitter for her mental health diary, and it’s awesome; there are those who refuse to pass on anything stressful, such as Tiny Buddha, which I adore, and Anne Wheaton (yes, Wil’s wife) is unfailingly optomistic and kind, no matter what is thrown at her…the list goes on. I could write an entire post with links to all the amazing lightworkers (who don’t even know they are one) in my Twitter and Instagram feeds alone!

Look for them. Weed out who you follow (my political list on Twitter was insane, and now I’m down to about 10 key feeds because I just couldn’t handle it any more), check out more cute animal feeds, go outside and read a book, take a day or two off social media (believe me, if anything major happens, you’ll still find out about it)…step back. Ask for help! Community is so important now, and an online one counts just as much as in-person.

And if you would like some energetic relief, I’m here for you.

With hope,

Pip

PS: I recently read “Walking Home” by Sonia Choquette, and there’s a line that I can’t get out of my head. It reads, in part, “…all I really wanted, more than anything else…was to be comfortable and comforted.” Doesn’t that resonate with you, too?