Inspiration Monday: Making life work!

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I have in the past used Inspiration Monday to shine light on someone who well known. Somehow they are a “success” in a way that we would define success – famous, rich etc despite their challenges.

However, not all of us are meant to be famous or own 16 cars and a helicopter, or take selfies with strangers. Some of us are just trying to get through our day.

During this time I read an amazing article by Joshua Becker on the Becoming Minimalist Blog called Here’s to All of You Trying to Make the Most of a Bad Situation.

However this article made me think about those around me that I know are making the best of a hard situation. I am reminded of Graham, who is the locally famous Blind Busker in Brisbane who I would pass every day to and from work. After he went blind he could have easily stayed home but instead navigates the people-filled city to bring joy to everyone with his music.

There are plenty of people that I am in contact with every day that provide inspiration who are very private people that I cannot name them. I know some who have survived abuse from the people who were supposed to protect them and they have found a way to use it to show compassion for others. I know others that are dealing with painful divorces and are having to raise children on their own with the knowledge that the other parent involved wants nothing to do with their own children anymore. I know people who have lost a child, people dealing with end-stage cancer.

Their attitudes are positive – making the best of a difficult situation. Getting up every day and giving the most they can to those around them.
I also know of women who are dealing with health conditions – not unsimilar to mine, who have husbands or partners that resent their illness. I have to say one thing I am most at awe with is that despite the many times I have ended up in hospital and in a difficult/dangerous situation – my husband has never treated me with resentment – has not once complained. He has made the best of many bad situations within our marriage and I know that is worth more than all the gold.

Please read the article, mentioned (I think everyone should), and know that if you are doing your best in a difficult situation – you are an inspiration.
Sometimes you get given a difficult hand, and the only choice you have is to play those cards the best way you know how.

It’s not always about moving mountains, but doing your best to keep climbing.

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Organization Friday: Your inspiration/meditation box

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Today has been difficult because I am exhausted with still recovering from my hospital stay – but I did receive lots of wonderful gifts of friends that not only helped me keep me sane in the hospital but encouraged me and still provides inspiration now that I’m home.

I put these gifts into a box and named it my inspiration box, however it’s a great box that helps me meditate too.
Here’s a glimpse of my own personal box (I keep it under my bed):
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This includes coloring pens, pencils, and adult coloring books. As well as some fancy lead pencils and a journal.
On top is a book that provides a bit of energy when I read it. This may be anything for you, maybe a poetry book that speaks to you and makes you feel understood when you read it. Me? I have a thoughtful gift that has provided a lot of thought and inspiration The Book that Made Your World by Vishal Mangalwadi.
Also I recommend maybe some highlighters, a favorite bookmark that makes you smile, something that is just for you.
Why this? We rely so much on electronic devises that are there to share so much of our personal information (take it from a blogger), you need something that is yours, and something that is personal that fits perfectly for you.

I suggest you take one day a week (schedule it if you must) to take the box out and use what you have in there.
We live in a society where we are trained to be on the go all the time – to make something happen – to produce, to connect with others – this is the opposite of that. This is a way to organize your own special “mental health” box, to reconnect with yourself and help you remember who you are and that you are taking care of you.

Hope you have a wonderful weekend! Happy Friday!

Deep Thought Thursday: Embrace the pain!

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When I was in the hospital for the last couple of weeks, one thing that the doctor told me was that most of his patients would have begged for a spleen removal because they can’t tolerate the pain.
The thing is, I knew how high risk a spleen removal for me was going to be, and I refused to give myself a way out.
I knew this pain was temporary which kept me going.
Before I went into the procedure I listened to this key speech that helped me mentally prepare myself for the pain that I was going to have to endure. I highly recommend listening to it (warning there are a lot of ‘unnecessary’ profanity in this video).
However Navy Seal Veteran David Goggins speech kept playing in my head. Instead of his saying “Embrace the suck” I entered into my head “Embrace the pain”.
Whenever the doctor or head nurse or anyone had to come and tell me “You now have to do this,” or “This will be painful” “This pain is going to last a while” I kept thinking of this speech and telling myself “EMBRACE THE PAIN”

I kept telling my doctor I could get through this… he kept giving me a look of concern – waiting for me to say I had enough, thinking I was all talk… but I assured him that I could handle it. I NEVER GAVE MYSELF AN OUT.

We live in a world where if something makes us uncomfortable, then we don’t do it. We pay too much attention to our feelings and don’t think about strengthening our mental muscle. If there is something you don’t like doing in your life but you have to do it… I highly recommend you watch David Goggin’s Speech, and change the way you think about the things that suck in your life that you need to do. I promise, you will only become stronger and better for it.

Jen

(P.S. Here are some inspirational “Embrace the Pain” Tshirts to get you started)

Awesome Finds Wednesday: Ready for summer?

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Well, as I am blogging in Australia – it feels like we have our first taste of autumn being that our seasons are opposite here. However where I live in Australia it can be warm all year round – I have been known to get a sunburn in the middle of winter. So it can feel like we’re experts when it comes to hot weather.

So today’s find is in honor of some of you who may still be feeling a bit of that (late) winter but can’t wait to feel the heat… Here are some awesome finds:

1. The inflatable Unicorn is the hottest new pool accessory along with inflatable cup holders:
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2. Having a big party out on a lake this summer? I personally think you couldn’t do without an inflatable island

3. A fresh pair of anti-fog UV protection goggles? These are hot!

4. Or are you so desperate for the beach that you are ready to decorate your home like you are on the beach already? Here are gorgeous pieces to decorate the home.

5. Last but not least – keep those toes and heels happy with proper beach and summer footwear:
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Hope this post brings you a little sunshine to your day no matter where you live! Bring on the sun!
Jen

Tuesday Health check: A Slam Dunk?

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Well, my procedure did not go as planned but in a good way.  My doctor used coil he had never used before to fix my splenic artery aneurysm (which other radiologists don’t believe me… “you mean brain aneurysm? heart Aneurysm??” “No, Splenic artery Aneurysm” – in which they then say “oh you’re that girl I heard about”. “I’m as rare as a unicorn” I tell myself).
My doctor looked nervous – the whole team looked nervous. Couldn’t barely crack a smile even with my pre-surgery jokes I was telling (Trust me, it was comedy gold to anyone else that wasn’t under pressure).
He ended the procedure early and called my husband to tell him how it went better than expected.

The funny thing is – a week before the procedure my doctor called me in to have a consultation about how difficult this procedure was going to be. It was not going to be a “slam dunk” is what he kept saying. He also told me they had planned for minimum 6 different scenarios… none of them being “a slam dunk”. 

As soon as I woke up and heard how it went extremely well and easy from the nurses (doctor went into another procedure), and my husband who also explained everything to me that was relayed over the phone.

I knew that as soon as I saw my doctor I had one thing to say to him:
“So, it was kind of a slam dunk huh?”

He then said “Well.. it was as if we were standing with our backs towards the hoop, and we just throw the ball blindly over our heads and we somehow got the ball in”. Is how he explained (and demonstrated) it.

I know this post might not get many hits. It’s not about that. I  hope this reaches those that have something super rare – something possibly like a splenic artery aneurysm – with all the complications I had (portal vein hypertension due to old clot, dangerous varices, hypersplenism etc etc etc). I had a hard time searching and reseaching positive outcomes of people like me… because there is very little out there. Why? To have a splenic artery aneurysm is literally less than a tenth of a percent of aneurysms – and very rarely someone of my age (I got lucky I suppose). I want those that don’t know what to expect, or even when your doctor seems nervous because he/she doesn’t know what to expect… that you can find someone out there that has had this. That it doesn’t have to be as lonely of a walk. I know for some – a tenth of a percent of aneurysms is actually a high percentage for the rarities that they have with their health. BUT I am writing this not for the majority -I’m writing this for those out there who have doctors who are doing everything they can to understand and figure out how to treat their issue.

Sometimes – no matter how the doctors tell you, “it’s not a slam dunk” and even the months of warnings I received about how hard it would be to survive – that it could actually go better than expected –
You could get that slam dunk! Stay hopeful!!
Sometimes miracles happen.

(P.S. This post means I am back on board with posting more regularly again – thanks for being patient).

Princess of the ward

well, I was out of my procedure and recovering thinking about my next blog sharing what an amazing success it was (better than the best case scenario planned for). I felt so blessed because of the unpredicted outcome.

However yesterday afternoon I suddenly got nauseous and and felt pressure in my chest. It turns out that my body decided I didn’t get enough attention and my spleen decided to cause a bit of drama and decide to kill itself a little bit (aka a splenic infarct). I didn’t feel pain at first, just sick, dizzy and pressure. However overnight the nausea and pain has increased just to remind me that my spleen isn’t joking.

Doc came by this morning to confirm I’m staying for a while. In order to make myself smile after a difficult night I decided to take a picture of myself with an obvious filter – a crown.

I’ve deemed myself princess of this place (not sure if the nurses have figured out they are in the presence of royalty yet…) 😉

Hope your night was better than mine. Keep smiling! From Her Royal Highness, Princess Jenny.

Life is like a box of chocolates…

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Well my week has been made up of phone calls, organization, and preparing for the procedure tomorrow – only 10 hours to go. I’ve been told the doctors feel confident but it is a highly difficult procedure and not a “slam dunk”.
On a strange note one of my friends gave me two huge boxes of chocolates – not for me…
She is a pretty intelligent woman and told me that there is a scientific study that if you give your doctor a box of chocolates before surgery that there is scientific proof that your surgeon performs better during the procedure.
While I can’t guarantee this study… it sounds a bit crazy to me, I know this woman knows her stuff… and so I am sure there is some truth to this (feel free to post a link to this study if you know about it).
Which is funny because my doctor has explained that “anything can happen” with vascular procedures so… they really can’t guarantee what will happen – but they believe I have a real chance. Which is positive. With that it is my time to attempt to go to bed… I am exhausted as I have not slept well for a few nights now, and if there is any night I need sleep… it’s tonight…
Hope to be updating you soon!