Packing and Praying

I messaged my son earlier and I asked him to pray for me. I said “Please pray for me that I can do the work and be strong enough to go on with it”. He replied “Always do mom”. I said “Thank you”.

My recent Twitter posts were meant to be known and while I could have held back on the potty mouth it wasn’t all that necessary. Why? Truth. Because that’s the reality in it all. I have my dead daddy’s mouth and while I didn’t use those words when he was alive or even in the first 20 years after he left us I’m sort of proud that it really doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. It only matters that I don’t drop those words if I want not to. It’s not beneath me otherwise. Why? Because I’m not above anyone.

Ozra is coming to pick me up on Saturday. We’re going to get this hair cut off. Yep. Most all of it. Short. Most likely to my shoulders or layered down a little farther. If there’s enough without going shorter, I’ll leave it with our girl who owns the shop to donate it.

I leave California the next day for awhile.

Threw some things away today, did dishes, cleaned up, and started packing.

Taking a break right now. I do still use my pennies carefully, but I don’t run out as quickly and that’s a good thing.

I posted about guilt some. The one thing I feel most bad about is not being able to work sooner to fix things before they got so out of hand. Carrying it all is heavy. If one person can’t carry it someone else has to. I did and I will. I have to.

I never stepped away from God and I never stopped praying. I did stop believing in hope even though I continued to be hopeful for one day.

I’ve always known I’d have to live it hard to understand it. Understand what pain is, poverty, loss, and rejection. To love so deeply that it hurts. That’s why I understand that people sometimes have to choose roads that another would never go down and many pretend don’t even exist.

I’m not looking for an easy life yet I’m hoping there’s at least an easier one out there. Hard is good. We learn. Too hard can have devastating circumstances, consequences that can’t be taken back.

My mom said “The reason you’ve gone through it all is because you have a place in heaven”.

I don’t deserve heaven.

heaven

But maybe she’s right.

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Review | Gohl Program | Part 1

Review – Gohl Program

By Twinkle VanFleet

Approximately 3 weeks ago I was contacted by Barby Ingle, President of the International Pain Foundation with a program to consider. Barby sent me Dr. Edward Glaser’s phone number and a link to what the program entailed.

Those of you who know me would also know that I had to do more research on the Manual Ligament Therapy (MLT) being offered. I had to learn more! I had to try to understand the concept, and how it might work if it could. It wasn’t just the Gohl Program itself that I researched. I also pulled up each name involved. 3 of which were Dr. Glaser, Arik Gohl, and Dr. Forbes. Then I read up on Monica DePriest and her daughter Haley DePriest who had CRPS and who is well today because of the program and the techniques that Mr. Gohl’s therapy provider her. Testimonials.

http://rsds.org/tag/the-gohl-program/

See how my curiosity piqued even more? We’ve all been told that CRPS/RSD is incurable. We’ve learned that it’s also in our blood not just our bodies. I wasn’t as skeptical as some may have been because I had already, several times, researched techniques involving manual trigger point therapies, acupressure, Chinese medicine techniques and similar holistic treatments dating back to the 1800’s. I had already been treated earlier this year with the Bowen Technique.

I had become so let down by western medicine not being able to relieve my own CRPS, or specifically CRPS Type 2/Causalgia in any way other than by Lumbar Sympathetic Nerve Blocks, medications, and traditional physical therapies that only provided minimal relief, if any, that depressions worsened and hope was nowhere to be found. Since December of 2006 the only steady I had was my Medtronic Spinal Cord Stimulator which reduced or disguised enough symptoms that walking wasn’t as painful as it was prior, and pain medications could be reduced by my choice in the permanent placement.

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: Systemic Complications
CRPS is becoming the great imitator in pain medicine. This article discusses the symptomatology of the disease, including atypical presentations.
By Robert J. Schwartzman, MD

http://www.practicalpainmanagement.com/pain/complex-regional-pain-syndrome-systemic-complications

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome Guidelines 4th Edition 

CRPS-guidlines-4th-ed-2013-PM

All those things I had accomplished over the years, I found little happiness in. I put on the fake it to make it mask and I wore it quite well. Who would have ever thought that I struggled so badly with suicidal ideations that even my spiritual beliefs couldn’t stop me from wanting to bail on this world.

A mid-metatarsal separation of my right foot (also known as a Lis Franc fracture) January of 2001 in an industrial injury began the last 16 years of uncertainty, loss, rejection, abandonment, failure, and secondary diagnosis’. I still had my upper body though. My hands, fingers, and arms would make up the difference. I could still write type and use social media. In 2009, 9 years after, I got a left foot accelerator pedal installed on our van to be able to drive again. Oh I tried! By that time my left leg was too weak also to drive safely.

I had already had degenerative changes in my spine, but pretended that I didn’t. My legs hurt so bad that it diverted any back pain. 3 years ago my arms started doing things I didn’t understand. Beginning with my left and worsening on the right. By the time I had an EMG my left was reduced and my right just continued to worsen. I’ve never had an EMG or nerve conduction studies on the right side. As 2016 approached the pain in my neck, shoulder, chest, upper and mid back, head, face, the sensations of pulling, tugging, ripping, intense pins and needles, paraesthesia, became so unrelenting that I really couldn’t take it anymore. Bending at the waist started a flare each and every time. I still have to work on that. I had lost feeling in my thumb, forefinger and wrist. My right hand had lost strength.

But wait! I still had my left hand and arm. If I ever needed the gift in being ambidextrous, I would really need it now more than ever to be a part of anything, offline or online.

I had unknowingly believed in hope while other’s told me I was in denial and that I had to accept all those things I wouldn’t be and couldn’t do and would never do. At a higher level of consciousness I saw the light ahead, but was conflicted by the darkness of despair.

I’m already so much better than I’ve ever been in 16 years because of MLT.

I celebrated my 48th birthday while at the program. My son drove my husband to Loomis CA to spend an hour or so with me. First time I’ve been away, on my own, anywhere in 15 years.

While I’m still wrapping my own head around it, it’s not as unbelievable as it seems. I promise.

But wait! There’s more..

To be continued…

Review: August and September 2016. California Advocacy Day (NPAF | CCCC) Music Moves Awareness (iPain)

On August 1st and 2nd, I was honored to have been invited to attend the California Advocacy Day, debriefing and meetings with Senators and/or their staff at the California State Capital via the National Patient Advocate Foundation (NPAF) and the California Chronic Care Coalition. Attending as the Advocacy Director of the International Pain Foundation and NPAF patient advocate, I had the privilege of meeting many new people including Liz Helm, and be in the presence of others I’ve crossed paths with at the Capital over the years.

caadvocacyday-aug-2-16-npaf-cccc-ipain-castatecapital

For the last 2 years the International Pain Foundation has been working on a multifaceted project. Music Moves Awareness premiered on September 1, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. Releasing their Debut song Hope is True, iPain moved to inspire everyone with an an upbeat, inspirational dance  tune that can get patients moving simply by it’s enthusiastic beats.

The 12 Steps to Patient Empowerment was developed with each contributing writer not knowing what they were writing about. The most amazing challenge to create without secondary knowledge and the best outcome that might be hoped for. https://powerofpain.org/ipain-living-magazine/

Copies are available for your business, offices, health establishments. Please contact: media@internationalpain.org or contact me directly at: twinkle@internationalpain.org

Meet the iPain Featurettes https://powerofpain.org/ipain-featurettes/ 

Nominated and awarded the Melanie McDowell Awareness and Advocacy Award – Hero of hope 2016. Smiles for miles.

twinkle-vanfleet-receiving-ipain-heroofhope-award-from-barby-ingle-musicmovesawareness-september-1-2016-los-angeles-ca-in-los-angeles-california

https://powerofpain.org/heroes-of-hope/

with-mr-dominick-spatafora-president-neuropathy-action-foundation-naf-musicmovesawareness

This year was an accumulation of heartache and hope.

twinkle-vanfleet-liveongiveon-ipain-recognition

the-morning-after-mma-premiere-party-gayle-twinkle-and-barby-september-2-2016

The morning after Music Moves Awareness debut in Los Angeles California. Gayle M. Taylor-Ford, iPain Board of Directors and author of Step 10 – Pain Management, Twinkle VanFleet, Advocacy Director,  Melanie McDowell Hero of Hope recipient, iPain, and Barby Ingle, President International Pain Foundation and author of Step 1 – Empower! and co author of Step 3 Discussion – with Sara Hobbs. internationalpain.org

I’m thrilled to be the author of Step 2- Responsibility. 12 Steps to Patient Empowerment and feature- Stronger Than Pain in the current addition of iPain Living Magazine.

Godspeed.

iPain Heroes of Hope – iPain Foundation

iPain Hero of Hope Awards 2016

THE INTERNATIONAL PAIN FOUNDATION IS PROUD TO ANNOUNCE TWINKIE – THE GUINNESS WORLD RECORD HOLDER FOR BALLOON POPPING DOG IS AN IPAIN HERO OF HOPE; THE NERVE TO BE HEARD 2016 AWARD RECIPIENT July 25, 2016 – Phoenix, AZ – The International Pain Foundation presents the Hero of Hope Awards annually. Celebrating our 10 year anniversary we have split the award into 4 categories for the first time; The Nerve to Be Heard, Corporate; Caregiver; and Pain Patient, to recognize more outstanding recipients who have demonstrated outstanding commitment to assisting and advocating for people with chronic pain diseases.

Nominations were solicited from the pain community of those who are making a significant contribution within the field of research, education, awareness, or patient assistance for each category.

Twinkie – The current Guinness World Record Holder for Balloon Popping Dog is a 2016 recipient of The International Pain Foundation’s I Have the Nerve to Be Heard Hero of Hope award. This past year we turned to Twinkie and her human Doree Sitterly, to help the pain community get our #painPOP heard around the world. With Twinkie’s help we are sharing stories of chronic pain patients who have ‘The Nerve to Be Heard”. In preparing for the Guinness World Record attempt Twinkie took the opportunity to help the pain community raise awareness about the challenges in receiving proper and timely care as a pain patient and the public health crisis it has created. Since launching #painPOP we have had individuals and groups participate from all over the world; including Africa, Australia, Israel and the UK in an effort to make a difference.

Barby ingle, iPain President, said, “Twinkie is making a difference in people’s lives through her unique talents. The inspiration and energy Twinkie provides in her iPainPOP helps to keep patients positive as we deal with our chronic pain challenges and learn how to become our own best advocate. Thank you to Twinkie and Doree for all you do to put a spotlight on chronic pain diseases and other chronic pain conditions.”

The other 4 award recipients will be announced live at the Music Moves Awareness World Premiere Party on September 1st in Los Angeles, CA.

The finalists in caregiver category: Gayle Taylor-Ford LSCSW, LCAC, Ken Taylor, Melissa Geraghty Psy.D..

The finalists in the pain patient category; Amanda Greene, Twinkle VanFleet, Melissa Geraghty, Psy.D., and Tenah Watts-Callison.

The finalists in the corporate category include Alignmed, Intellectric, and Neuro Drink. The Nerve To Be Heard finalists include Avril Lavigne, Billy Blanks, Jr, and Jennifer Aniston.

Twinkie will also be performing a live painPOP during the finale of our event.

Source: iPain Heroes of Hope – iPain Foundation

iPain Here of Hope Award

iPain Hero of Hope Awards

The Opposite of Fear is Faith

Image Credit by Ozra September 24, 2015 Bay Area CA_1.

Image Credit by Ozra

Is it? I think that’s a truth statement, mostly. Fear is defined as a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc.,whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid. One definition of Faith is defined as confidence or trust in a person or thing; belief in anything. Without having something to believe in, to add light to darkness, or hope in pain, change, love there really can’t be either. Yin and Yang. It takes one to have the other. It also takes commitment to oneself. Believing in ourselves when no one else does. Saving our own lives, if we must. 

“One betrayal costs a hundred devotions. One deception sacrifices ten loyalties. One misconception is the price paid toward assumptions and against each other”. ~Dyversiti

The struggle has been real and it’s been hard, but no one has really known that but me. I feel like the 5 years forward I’ve come (and the 10 years it took to get the there) has led 15 years backwards. I’m not physically or emotionally well and trying so very hard to not have a bitter heart.  ‘Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do”. I’ve always continued to love and care, and.. forgive even when the pain was on me because I was #StrongerThanPain and I was stronger because fear and faith ran simultaneously through me, always.

In Theology, Grace is defined as the freely given, unmerited favor and love of God; the influence or spirit of God operating in humans to regenerate or strengthen them. The Grace of God has been with me all the while. I’m already flawless in his eyes. Yet I fear… yes I fear, my journey has only just begun. Faith will evenly carry me through it. Hope is seemingly unconditional, but hope is conditional upon others, energy, an action.

BELIEVE

by Twinkle VanFleet

WITHOUT HOPE,

WE WOULD HAVE NOTHING TO PRAY FOR-

WITHOUT FAITH,

WE WOULD HAVE NOTHING TO BELIEVE IN,

WITHOUT LIFE AND DEATH,

WE WOULD HAVE NOTHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO-

WITHOUT GOD,

WE WOULD HAVE BEEN NOTHING AT ALL.

©1995-1999-2016 Twinkle Wood-VanFleet/Golden Rainbow Poetry/All rights reserved. (Written in the 80’s)

 

Dependent on medication management, I was. I still am, yet I’m not actually taking any pain relieving medication at all. It’s easier to send someone off to mental health than it is to understand that sometimes, usually, those meds give back life, instead of take it away. And in my case it did both.