All posts by apunkwithms

Blogger, MSer, Mainer, Freethinker.

The Long Road

I haven’t updated this blog in a while. Life has been pretty hectic (between mental health/physical health appointments, personal issues, and personal obligations it’s been quite overbearing.) My mental health issues have also flared up, and it’s been a huge struggle. Alas, I have a wonderful online community here and wanted to give my appreciation to all of you, because you have helped me as much as I’ve helped you. We are all a team of wonderful human beings going through similar things. I will be mindful of updating this blog more, because I do not want to throw all of the work I’ve put into this blog away. I am only human of course, and have been lacking the motivation to write, but I plan to use this as an outlet again as soon as possible. If there are any topics you would like to see me write about, feel free to email me at apunkwithms@gmail.com. Thank you all for being so supportive and for following me.

With love always,

-Rebecca Elizabeth  (A Punk With MS)

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Forgiving and Letting Go Of The Past?

You’re sitting in a chair relaxing on your front porch watching the sunset when suddenly a feeling of sadness arises. It causes you to feel guilty, useless, and empty. Why are you so sad when you are looking at something so beautiful? The answer? Your mind. Memories.

Why are thoughts so powerful? They can make us laugh, make us cry, and put us in the most positive mental space or negative mental space we’ve ever been in.

There sadly isn’t an easy answer. 

Numerous studies are done on human psychology all over the world, and we aren’t even halfway to learning about the human brain. There is so much information we have yet to find.

My point is, the past can be difficult sometimes. Traumatic events re-wire your brain in a way it wasn’t wired before. 

A lot of damage is done after so many events which can make it difficult to recover after a mental breakdown. 

Letting go is hard. So is forgiving. 

For you I have five words: One day at a time.

-Rebecca Elizabeth (A Punk With MS)

My New BPD life

Today I went to see my therapist (I see her weekly every Monday). When I walked into her office I was a complete mess. For over a year, I have had episodes of severe emotional distress whenever I come back home from being away longer than a day. I had no understanding of why these episodes kept happening. It literally has turned my world upside down. I asked my therapist for some guidance because I seriously didn’t want to end up in crisis again.

The past week has been emotionally exhausting. I left home for 5 days to see my family (there was a medical emergency for a family member) so I got some great quality time with them. I felt so happy……I was SO happy it was truly euphoric. Everything felt perfect and I didn’t ever want that happiness to end. When I got home reality sunk in and I hated everything and everyone around me. I remembered old events that detached me from everyone in the first place. I felt guilty, angry, sad, and felt like my life was truly worthless. I thought that I was worthless. Being on disability the rest of my life? Worthless. Unable to provide for my family like I used to? Again, worthless. An audio hallucination of my own voice inside of my head told me specifically that my life is meaningless. (this is a common symptom for PTSD and BPD patients..they will hear a past abusers voice in their head or their own voice in their head saying things to them. In my situation, it’s only a sentence than it goes away. This has only happened twice in my lifetime. This is from past trauma.) In the past, this intense mood pattern has happened not only after visiting family but after visiting friends for a couple of days. It happens out of the blue some days when I am home (I call these my “off” days)

I detach from everyone when I am in this mind frame. I think everyone is against me or is going to abandon me. I don’t call my mother for days and think everyone hates me. I think I’m not giving enough to others or doing enough for others. When returning home everything my boyfriend does annoys me and I lash out at him. It isn’t his fault, he’s been nothing but supportive of me. I am getting the help I need, and I REFUSE to let my relationship with him fall apart. I hate that I adore someone one moment and feel the complete opposite other times. I hate how I get angry outbursts and cry over the littlest things (little things to others, big things to me)

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(Artist: http://akirakirai.deviantart.com/)

The symptom I am describing is emotional dysregulation at its finest. I also am describing my inability to determine reality from my thoughts and emotions. This is a  huge symptom of BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder)
Well, as of today, have a Borderline Personality Disorder diagnosis.

My psychiatrist was originally going to look at a diagnosis between BPD and Bipolar 2 Disorder but my therapist beat her to it. She explained to me in depth why I do not have bipolar 2 disorder.

For more information about BPD, click here.

I once was a mental health professional taking care of people with Borderline Personality Disorder.

I am filled with grief, anger, and even relief to know exactly what is wrong with me. The saddest part of all this is that I have helped others with these struggles, but now I am receiving the same services that I used to give.

I am still human just like anyone else, my emotions and thoughts are just more amplified and more difficult to control.

DBT (Dialectical Behaviour Therapy) is a very important treatment for this disorder. There is no cure. Without DBT, the symptoms are not properly regulated. I am doing DBT weekly with my therapist and recommend whoever else has this diagnosis to do the exact same.

I will write more on this topic in the future, but that is all I had to write for now. If you have BPD and are also new to this journey, it is scary. Not only scary but sometimes it can even be terrifying. With DBT and a lot of determination, it can be fought. We have a long fight ahead of us, but we can make it. ūüíó

 

This is my new BPD life.

 

 

-Rebecca Elizabeth (A Punk With MS)

 

I Never Knew I Was “That Sick” A Mental Health Story

Some people go years wondering what went wrong in their lives to trigger a mental illness. Some people know what went wrong but choose to not accept it.

Childhood trauma?

Abandonment?

Mental/Physical/Sexual abuse and manipulation?

These types of issues can build up over the years and wreak havoc on your soul. The longer you hold it all in the worse your mental health will be. If you have a lot of baggage to carry, please see a therapist as soon as possible. Don’t go about your mental health like I did.

I thought I was going about my mental health correctly, but I wasn’t. I would only go to therapy when I felt I “needed to” instead of seeing someone on a regular basis. With a lot of traumatic history, this was my first mistake. ¬†Outside of therapy, I would stuff all of my emotions deep down where no one could ever find them. I would swallow sadness and show nothing but smiles because I didn’t want to let the people around me down. ¬†Or, I’d get really angry, upset, and say hateful words to those I loved the most. I would push them away intentionally.

I was originally prescribed a mood disorder medication as a teenager but stopped taking it when I thought to myself “I don’t need this anymore because I already take an antidepressant” this was my second mistake. Year after year my moods would swing constantly. Bad days, then good days, then mixed days. I was labeled with major depression, anxiety and PTSD with disassociative features. All of my therapists thought the mood swings were trauma related.

They are, but here’s the real kicker: ¬†I also have a history of Bipolar 2 Disorder in my family. Due to my traumatic childhood, my psychiatrist also thinks I may have Borderline Personality Disorder or Bipolar 2 Disorder.

Not in a million years would I ever feel that I would have those two diagnoses brought up to me. I’m still waiting for my mood stabilizer to work better. My psychiatrist will diagnose me officially from there.

My moods have ruined a lot of moments in my life and a part of me wishes I could get those years back with proper mental health treatment.

The moral of this story is that you need to take care of yourself especially if you have a mental illness. Go to therapy, see your psychiatrist, take your meds, do what you need to do to remain mentally healthy. You may need more help than you realize. The only way to get the most accurate diagnoses and the best care is to make sure your appointments are a routine. Don’t be afraid to get help because there are many options and many people who understand exactly what you are going through. Recovery is possible.

With love,

-Rebecca Elizabeth A Punk With MS

Medical Cannabis: My Journey

I have been smoking marijuana since I was 15 years old.  Never in a million years did I ever think that I would use it medicinally. I simply enjoyed getting high and forgetting about my days. As a teenager I was rebellious, carefree, and thought I knew the world like the back of my hand (as most teenagers do). I would sneak out, indulge in public drinking, and go for burn rides with friends.

Now, let’s fast forward to two years ago. The exact date was February 4th, 2015.  It was one of the rudest awakenings that I ever got in my entire life. I was going through numerous medical tests for months. The issue I faced originally was numbness/weakness on the right side of my body. I also had consistent vision changes/dizziness. After the tests it was confirmed by my neurologist that I had a diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis. This honestly wasn’t a surprise because my mother and deceased uncle both have/had  Multiple Sclerosis. (My neurologist is also my mother’s neurologist). I cried. Hearing this news was definitely difficult. I couldn’t cope with my life for a VERY long time. 

I have witnessed my mother struggle with this terrible disease my whole life. I also have witnessed my uncle struggle in a wheelchair around the time that he died. Those memories are still engraved in my mind to this very day.

For those who don’t know, Multiple Sclerosis is when your own immune system attacks your body (the brain and spinal cord). This causes lesions and a lot of muscle spasms and nerve pain. I have weakness in my right side, numbness, tingling, nerve pain, migraines, muscle spasms, and restless legs. 

My first MS medication was Rebif. This was an injection I took three times weekly. The side effects were brutal. I felt like I had the flu EVERY SINGLE DAY. The only thing that eased the body aches and pains was marijuana. Ibuprofen and muscle relaxers only helped so much. 

This chapter in my life is what began my use with medicinal marijuana. I didn’t use it to get high, I used it to find relief.

 I also suffer from PTSD. Marijuana helps lessens my flashbacks.

 You could say that marijuana not only helps me physically but helps me mentally and spiritually too. It makes my body and mind feel “normal” when I used to spend years feeling nothing but aches and pains. 

I’m on an oral pill called Tecfidera for my MS currently. It causes gastro issues and a lot of flushing. Because of Tecfidera I am now two months in remission. I still fight MS symptoms daily. I also use marijuana daily and do not plan to stop anytime soon. Medicated edibles, CBD oil, cannabis oil, smoking, and vaping are all great ways to get relief.

It gave me my life back. Thank you for reading.

-Rebecca Elizabeth A Punk With MS

Gluten-Free/Dairy-Free Banana Bread

Here is an easy recipe for Gluten-Free/Dairy-Free Banana bread that I tweaked from Pinterest (I added my own ingredients as a substitute!) I was nervous about doing this at first, but it came out perfect! It does NOT need to rise before being put into the oven (the baking soda in the recipe will help this as it heats up)

Ingredients:

-1 cup Bananas

-2 eggs (room temperature)

-2/3 cup Almond Milk (or any non-dairy milk of your choice)

-1/3 cup Coconut Oil

-2 Cups Gluten-Free Flour (if your Gluten-Free flour doesn’t have Xanthan Gum in it, then add 3/4 tsp of Xanthan Gum to this recipe)

-1/2 cup of Cane Sugar

-1/2 tsp Sea Salt

-1 tsp Vanilla Extract

1/2 tsp baking soda

-1 tsp Baking Powder

Add 1/2 cup of your preferred nut to make the banana bread nutty!

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Mix together your sugar, baking powder, baking soda, Gluten-Free Flour, Sea Salt, nuts (optional), and Xanthan Gum (add this only if your flour does not include this ingredient) together in one bowl.

Get out a second bowl. Add your eggs, vanilla extract, coconut oil, non-dairy milk, and mashed bananas into this bowl. make sure to mix the ingredients together well.

Now, mix both bowls of ingredients in the same bowl together.

Once your ingredients are all mixed together, pre-grease a bread loaf pan and fill it with the batter.

Put the bread loaf in the oven for 45-55 minutes (this depends on the oven, mine took 45 minutes to bake) Check it with a toothpick to be sure it is fully cooked.

Once your banana bread is cooked, take it out of the oven and place it where it can cool down for 15 minutes.

Cut, eat, and enjoy! Be sure to wrap it tightly once you are done to help keep it fresh for a couple of days. Feel free to freeze whatever you do not use!

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-Rebecca Elizabeth A Punk With MS

 

 

 

 

Cannabombz: A New Bathing Experience

Today I am going to share an open and honest review of a cannabis product that I purchased myself recently. I was not asked to make a review but had such a positive experience with this product that I absolutely HAD to share!

 

I had the pleasure of soaking in Cannabombz scent “Aquamarine” today.

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This was one of the most relaxing experiences I’ve ever had. This bath bomb is infused with highly concentrated CBD (Canna) oil, home-grown herbs, Epsom salt crystals, and eucalyptus oil. The owner of Cannabombz grows all of her herbs with love and care, she also loves using different essential oils. ¬†The eucalyptus in this particular bath bomb makes your skin feel minty fresh in the water, and your body is completely relaxed within 15-20 minutes of soaking.

 

 

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(look at the beautiful detail of this bath bomb!)

 

I soaked for 30 minutes and was most definitely NOT disappointed. When I got out of the bath my body felt heavy, euphoric, and relaxed. One of the most important things to me when trying a cannabis product is that it helps with pain relief. Living with Multiple Sclerosis has my body in constant spasms that don’t go away on their own. This product won’t only help people like me but anyone out there in general who lives with chronic pain. If I had to rate it on a 1-10 scale it most definitely would be a 10 for me.

The customer service was also wonderful. My bombs came with a tracking number and any questions I had were answered immediately! Her bath bombs come in different sizes, I purchased a small because my tub is small! She truly cares about her customers and takes her job very seriously. This is something we truly need in the Cannabis community.

Here is a link to a video I posted on Instagram of the Bath Bomb in the water

If you would like to try this product out for yourself, message Cannabombz on Instagram¬†here! Prepare for the relaxation of your life, you most definitely have to “soak it to believe it”!

 

-Rebecca Elizabeth, A Punk With MS