July - August 1999
One to One
A sharing of tips,
strategies, ideas and helpful thoughts from one person with CFIDS to
Tiredness grips me most quickly when Iím standing or walking. Therefore,
it has been extremely
helpful to have a chair with 5-inch wheels that enables me to sit while doing kitchen work. This chair
is very easy to push around with my feet and is not clumsy like a standard wheelchair. One could use it
in any room without rugs.
This one was purchased some 30 years ago through a nursing home.
Nowadays, similar items are available through home health-care services. Catalogs show walkers with seats
and 7-8 wheels that would serve the same purpose.
An asthma drug has made a big difference since I began it last fall.
the all-over aches and pains I suffered with daily were related to the immune system up-regulation, my
doctor decided to give a new asthma drug a try to see how it would affect me, even though I do not have
asthma. Within days of starting me on Singulair, I noticed that my skin felt "thinner," as though I had
lost a layer between me and what I touched. Could it be reduced swelling or reduced fluid? All I know
is that it took away the daily pain. It does come back if I overdo or as I get tired at the end of a too-long
day, or if I relapse or get sick with something else. But I donít have to face it every morning, afternoon
and evening. My Advil, Tylenol and Exedrin bottles are emptying at a much slower rate. The only caution
I would share is that when I took it in combination with Claritin over several months, I developed stomach
ulcers that didnít respond to antibiotic treatment but did clear up within a month of going off the Claritin.
I have chronic, paralyzing vertigo.
Itís so bad, I would
not wish to be
alive if I had no help. I thought I was the only person with vertigo, not just dizziness, until a saw
a few references in the Chronicle. Any kind of benzodiazepine clears it up and also allows me
to think clearly. Valium is a good one, since it stays in the system longer than some others do. The difficulty
is overcoming negative medical establishment attitudes and convincing your doctor to give you a controlled
substance. I have not become addicted and have been taking the same amount (5 mg, three times a day) for
Susan Best, Pahrump, Nev.
I have found focus in this petition:
"Teach me to know
that the promise
of the rainbow is not found in cloud-free days but in the midst of the storm." I was forced to resign
from a teaching career of 25 years. Nothing can compare to this experience, and for the first few weeks,
the mere thought brought me to tears of complete discouragement. But I had been a survivor of many circumstances
throughout my life, and I knew somehow I was going to have to keep my eyes on the "promise of the rainbow."
So I decided to donate my teaching materials. Childrenís books, volumes of teacher lesson plans and educational
materials that I had collected over the years are now a part of several classrooms. If I could not teach,
then my teaching tools were going to continue without me. We have to continue to be survivors. No matter
how small or great the problem is, give yourself an opportunity to find the promise of the rainbow in
the midst of your storm.
Susan Hazlett, La Verne, Calif.
The success of this section
depends on you. If you have a coping tip, a favorite quotation or a self-care treatment that has helped
you, share it with others. Mark notes "One to One" and please include an E-mail address or a phone number.
For those who have intolerance to gluten, wheat
Sara Bass of Connecticut recommends checking out the Gluten-Free Pantry. This company, based in Glastonbury,
Conn., sells a variety of baking and cooking mixes, rice pasta, gluten-free vitamins, ingredients, cookbooks
and more. The company was founded by professional chef and food writer Beth Hillson, who is gluten free
and the mother of a gluten-free child. "Their chocolate truffle brownie mix is to die for," Sara reports.
Visit their web store at www.glutenfree.com, write to P.O. Box
840, Glastonbury, CT 06033, or call 800/291-8386.