Sunday, December 30, 2018

Happy New Year

As another year ends and we prepare to begin anew, let’s leave the bad stuff in the past. Face the future with a brand new optimism. Let old grievances go. 

If we can do that it will make everything brighter. I know sometimes things pop up to remind you why you have those bad feelings, but accept them and then let it go again. Like you do with pesky thoughts that intrude during meditation. 

I know I’ve said this before, but I say the Serenity Prayer in my head to remind me that I cannot change everything. It’s my mantra. 

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to accept the things that I can and the wisdom to know the difference. 

I will find myself using this many times, because my brain will keep bringing up things, but I am doing my best to forgive and forget. 

I’ll focus on the people, animals, things and places that make me happy. I won’t let those other things take up residence in my head for more than a fleeting thought. 

2019 looks brighter to me and 2018 was pretty awesome. We took new adventures and will be embarking on a new journey in the spring. I will continue to find the strength within me to fight my body and head so I can enjoy my greatest adventures yet to come.

I am so lucky to have Ralph in my life. He loves me, and is beginning to understand the nature of Ménière’s Disease. We are planning many great adventures!

I hope the New Year is a happy one for you and I hope you are spin free.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Friday, December 28, 2018


This year is almost over and I am looking forward to the new year. 2019 has unlimited possibilities. While I don’t make resolutions, I do try to do things to give me peace. I wish I could say that I’m always successful, but I fail miserably.

So keeping my goal in mind I am doing my best to try to let things go. I wish I could forget, but my brain doesn’t allow me to. So I will try to let it go and forgive when applicable. Which means I am not going to discuss the past. Though I may vent about new things.

I am eating healthier out of necessity. Without the added stress of becoming ill when I eat, it’s worth it. Food allergies are no joke. My main ones are wheat and cows milk. I discovered that Yard House has a gluten free menu. It made it easier to figure out what I could eat. Don’t be afraid to make modifications to menu selections so you don’t get sick. I am lucky that my allergies just made me puke and gave me a different type of vertigo than the Ménière’s. If I accidentally ingest something I won’t die from it, but it’s still not good to be sick after eating.

As a result of eating healthier, I am losing weight. This will help with my overall well-being.  In order to help improve my balance, Ralph bought me a Simply Fit Board. This will help me get into shape as well. I want to do yoga too, but am not good at doing it on my own. 

I meditate to help me find my inner peace. It is always helpful when I follow through on it. Church has been helping by having a meditation time at the beginning of mass. And I am starting to explore my spiritual side through prayer. This should help with my letting things go.

Most of all I smile often, because even when I’m down it helps me and those around me to feel better. If I can make one person’s day by smiling then it’s worth it.

Like I said I am not always successful, but I try. I always try to be mindful and live in the moment. Do you have any New Years Resoulutions? How are you at sticking to them? 

I hope you are spin free. 

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Wednesday, December 19, 2018


I have written about this topic before. Right now I am still in bed. I need to get up and start laundry, but I am procrastinating. At lest I shouldn’t have troubles bringing the basket downstairs this week. Last week or was it the week before, I was serious off balance and dizzy and it took all my will power and a bit of help from Ralph to get it to the laundry room. Yes, I am stubborn.

We have gotten a tree yet, but I was digging through my decorations and found my Santa hat yesterday! I’d forgotten I bought it on clearance last year after Christmas. Yes I was still in my nightgown. I’d only come downstairs because Ralph made breakfast. 

I am a big procrastinator.., I have been forever. Even a college professor (Daniel Keyes) said I’d be a better writer if I stopped putting it off until the last second. Oh my did I just name drop? It was an honor to learn from a man whose book was required high school reading. 

Oh and I get easily distracted by shiny things, which makes me procrastinate more. I am even getting distracted as I write this as you can see by my reference to the book. 

I have lots to do today, but not out of the house. It’s easier to get distracted at home than anywhere else. That’s why I often went out to write before. Yes, I was still distracted by people and things when I was out, but not as much. 

Do you procrastinate? Have you been able to overcome this habit? Let me know. 

I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

What’s Happening?

I have been a bit quiet lately. The holidays are especially difficult for me, since my second husband died on December 20, 2012. It seems grief blocks my writing processes.

I still haven’t began writing like I used too. The words come when I sit down, but don’t drive me crazy like they used too. Yes, I heard the voices of my characters all the time clamoring for attention on the page. I had to write daily. 

The depression or grief is an ever present fiend that insinuates itself into my life. It makes me cry for no reason. I find meanings in songs I never guessed before. Like Of Monsters and Men’s song Little Talks. It made me burst out into tears one day as I realized he was dead. 

A commercial about a porcupine who was lonely... Tears flowed when his friends got him packing peanuts for his quills. Imagine what those old AT&T commercials would do to me today. 

Plus I was dealing with vertigo attacks. Not my usual  full blown attacks, but short spins multiple times a day. They were coming without warning. All my attacks do, but these were worse because of the randomness. 

Now that my ENT put me on a water pill the mini spins are almost nonexistent. I still get dizzy and off balance and the tinnitus never shuts up. And the middle of last week my hearing dropped out for a couple of hours. That was scary. Thankfully it came back. 

I got new glasses on Friday. I was so excited and happy to be able to drive myself to pick them up. Then I try them on. Suddenly the walls start going all wavy on me. The technician said it takes time to adjust to progressive lenses. I can use them some days better than others. It hasn’t been a week yet, but the days I use them is awesome, because my eyes don’t go blurry in the evening. 

I have been keeping busy. It keeps me from sinking further into a depression. We went to Big Dogs for their Christmas party. We danced and laughed. Ralph entered an Ugly Sweater Contest, but didn’t win. The little old lady with the light up sweater won! 

We’ll be going to a VGK game this week. I’ll be meeting friends beforehand and Ralph will join us when he gets off work. 

Cheers to you! I hope your days are merry and bright! And spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Progressive Lense Glasses/Water Pills

I picked up my new glasses yesterday. I was so excited because they are progressive lenses and I would be able to see all the time. So I put them on in the shop and move my head. The walls and whatever I looked at became wavy. My stomach was a bit nauseous.

The technician told me that they can take some time to adjust to and to just try them for a bit. “Oh and by the way don’t wear them to drive until you’ve adjusted.” I can return them sometime within 30 days if I cannot handle them.

The technician also told me that some people with Vestibular issues never get used to them. I hope I can, because I love them and don’t want to switch glasses for reading and driving. Oh and they are blue light filtering with just the barest hint of yellow. This will help with lights. I have been wearing a pair of blue light filtering glasses over my regular glasses or by themselves if I’m not driving.

I wore my new glasses from the time I returned home until I went to bed. I must say that except the wavy walls & such I can see everything clearer including my phone and no eye strain from using my phone. So if I can continue to wear them all the time, I’ll definitely love them. 

I just don’t need the added stress of walls moving because of my glasses. I get enough of that from my own eyes/ears/brain without adding to it. Fortunately, I am able to recognize that this new motion isn’t caused by something internal, so it didn’t trigger anxiety which causes more issues with my inner ear. 

I won’t do bifocals, because I can’t get the UV filters. So, I will ultimately get 2 pairs of glasses if I cannot get used to the progressive lenses. 

I know it seems silly to be excited about wearing glasses all my waking hours, but I love being able to see clearly even at night when my eyes are tired. 

I almost forgot to mention the ENT put me on a diuretic. After a few shaky days, I finally was spin free yesterday and so far today. I don’t know if it’s just a good day or if the water pill is working. I hope it’s working so I can have more good days. 

It’s so difficult to find something that works for the Ménière’s.  We are trying the basic thing all ENT’s try with their patients. I tried one when I was first diagnosed, but got so sick that I had to stop. 

This time I have more information and will be getting regular blood tests to check my electrolytes. So, I am hopeful that it will work for me. I know it’s not a cure and that I will still have bad days, but I am hoping for more good days than bad. If I can get that, it will be a win. 

Wish me luck and I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Good Days & Bad Days

I’ve had my fair share of bad days. I am lucky to have more good days than bad days. There are days I can fake it. And there are days I cannot even get out of bed. Really there has only been one day since December of last year that I couldn’t get out of bed. See I am lucky. When this first began for me that was a weekly thing. 

Today is a bad day. Yet I am up and getting ready to fake it until I make it. My ear & throat hurts which may be contributing to my dizziness. I have a chicken to take to the strip. Meet Henrietta Henigan. She’s getting ready to make a journey around the world. I am looking forward to hearing about her adventures. 

It’s things like this that get me out of bed. Without my support group, I am not sure I’d be handling the return of my Ménière’s. Also, I may not have recognized that I may have other stuff going on too. 

Plus they make me laugh. It takes a special group of people to make me laugh. My sense of humor is a bit warped. 

I look forward to the good days and enjoy them more. I survive the really bad days and fake the rest. And I do it with a smile on my face. 

Smiling makes it easier to cope. I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Healing Properties of Water

Water is good for us. Our bodies are made up of mostly water. Pink bags of water if you watched Enterprise. 60% water -I believe!

I drink mostly water. I find it helps with many of my problems. It reduces fluid in my ears, it helps with inflammation and soothes my thirst. 

When I took a boot camp exercise class, my body ached everywhere and I could barely walk, so I took a bath. Oh the relief I got from soaking in the tub was tremendous! 

So now when I overdo, which is easy, because I am out of shape. Also, with the fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis I get sore easily... so baths help restore me. 

The next time your muscles ache, instead of reaching for pain killers or a rub, try a bath, a pool, the ocean, a hot tub... It may help you. I know it helps me. 

Friday, November 30, 2018

Tips for Traveling with a Chronic Illness 

Today began with me feeling dizzy & drunk. Yes, MD often makes me feel that way. It began about 3:30 am when my DH woke me. We showered and headed to the airport bound for San Antonio. 


  1. Preorder wheelchair assistance. Also, you get to board first. It helps on days like today when I am not too steady on my feet. You can tell your assistant to slow down if you’re getting motion sick. Boarding 1st means I don’t have to bounce off people going up the aisle.
  2. Pack in advance. Make sure you have whatever you need to make your vacation fun. Rescue meds, medication to last the trip plus a few extra. I carry a folding cane in my backpack for days like today. 
  3. Try not to stress out about the what if’s. In my experience it makes my illness worse. If I should have a vertigo attack or feel like today, I will take it easy and even take a nap if necessary.
  4. Relax! You are on vacation or holiday after all, so take it easy. Don’t be rigid in your schedule. If you cannot do what you want or even everything you want don’t worry about it. 
  5. Take lots of photos so you have memories. Not just of the places, but the people who are with you.
  6. Make sure the people you are with know what to do if you have an attack. 
  7. Have Fun! This is probably the most important thing. Try not to dwell on what’s wrong, but live in the moment. Laugh & enjoy! 

Despite how I felt earlier, I feel much better now. We have done a bit of sightseeing before checking into our hotel room. Now we are resting before dinner. Yes, resting, because if you have an illness rest rejuvenates. 

I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita 

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

5 Great Things

A very talented friend of mine asked her Facebook friends to tell her 5 great things. I decided this will make a great blog. I hope so anyway. 

I think is important to be able to find 5 great things in my life. If I can’t then my life needs improvement. Sometimes just getting out of bed is a great thing. With a debilitating chronic illness, it’s not always possible. 

It helps us to be able to assess and re-assess our lives. After living for years in the depths of depression, it is important to be able to find the great things in life. Because my depression is chronic I still fall into it, but I don’t stay there for long. Winter seems to be the hardest time for me. 

I used to be a pessimist who hoped for the best. I was never disappointed. Now I am more optimistic. Changing my mindset helped tremendously. I try to see the positives rather than dwelling on the negatives. 

Some people make this harder. I found its best to eliminate them from my life. It’s not always easy when those people are in your family, but I limit my association.

It’s like the old song says, “eliminate the negative... accentuate the positive. I like to start out my mornings thinking something positive. Something simple like, I’m lucky to have my husband. Sometimes, it’s I managed to get out of bed.

The meditation (autocorrect wanted to change that to medication) that I do has been helping tremendously to get rid of my natural obsession of focusing on negative things. I am still a work in progress. 

Here are my 5 great things:

  1. My husband- I love him more everyday.
  2. Laughter- without laughter eliminating the negatives would be next to impossible for me.
  3. Travel- I have been blessed to be able to travel. It’s something I always wanted to do and even though I may need breaks because MD & FMS let me know they’re around, I still do it.
  4. My Ménière’s Worldwide Family- I wish no one had to suffer from MD. it’s good that I have people I can talk to who really understand what I go through. I am lucky mine is not as bad as others. 
  5. The Good Days- having a debilitating illness makes me cherish the good days. 

So there is my list of 5 great things and this is what I keep in mind on those days that I can’t get out of bed. They are gifts that I have been given and I need to remember to take the time to appreciate them. 

What are 5 great things in your life? Please feel free to tell me in the comments.

I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Monday, November 26, 2018

A Little Insanity 

I found the best website for corn muffins. It’s called A Little Insanity. These muffins are so delicious I could eat them all day. 

Since finding out about my allergies to cows milk and wheat, I haven’t had many bread products. So this is a win for me. I did follow her recipe and used the eggs. I have a minor egg white allergy and didn’t feel like separating the yolks. 

I used the corn meal as I didn’t have corn flour. I had the dairy free butter & the milk alternative. I opted to use Soy milk over the coconut milk, because I didn’t want the coconut to overwhelm the corn taste. 

My cupboards are starting to hold things that I can eat. There is a lot of trial and error in my kitchen. Not all recipes are created equal. 

There is a bright side to being unable to have wheat or cows milk. Technically more than one. I have lost weight. I am down to 195 from over 215. It’s coming off slowly, but I think this is good. I may be able to keep it off this time. 

My scarf hides the too big neckline of my sweater. I think clothes should change to fit the body. LOL!

I am excited when I find things I can eat. Some Italian Restaurants have a gluten-free pasta alternative. Mexican always has corn tortillas. And I am finding fantastic recipes online. 

I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Wednesday, November 21, 2018


Laughter is truly the best medicine. While it may not cure all that ails me, it helps me cope. Like getting photobombed by a goat. We wanted him to photobomb us. We had a lot of giggles trying to get this photo. 

Laughter also has the added benefit of releasing the chemicals that keeps depression at bay. Most people who have chronic illnesses are susceptible to depression. I have an ongoing battle with the fiend. Laughter helps me through it. 

I will be the first to admit that I have a warped sense of humor. Some people might not realize that I have one at all. Still I enjoy laughing. It takes special people to make me laugh. Fortunately, I am surrounded by special people. My husband and online support group. Ménière’s Worldwide is not for everyone, but it’s perfect for me. 

I am able to laugh at myself. This is important, otherwise I would cry. I mean bouncing off walls, bumping into stationary objects and tipping over are part of my daily life. I am able to laugh it off and make fun of myself. For instance when others see me tip and my arms go out, I say, “I’m practicing my ballet moves.” 

My advice is to surround yourself with people who make you laugh and don’t take yourself so seriously. If you can do this it will make life better. And if you have a chronic debilitating illness, it will make it more bearable. 

I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Tuesday, November 20, 2018


Thanksgiving is this Thursday in the US so I thought I’d take a minute to tell you for what I am thankful. 

First of all my husband and the new experiences he brings to me. 

We watch baseball’s Astros, hockey’s Vegas Golden Knight and NASCAR. Who knew I’d ever enjoy watching sports? 

We travel by plane, car and cruise ship. Whether we’re camping, cruising or staying in a hotel, we enjoy ourselves. I have done so many new things and visited places I never thought I could. Ralph and I are on an amazing adventure together. 

I love my furry children. 2 dogs and 3 cats. Holly, Chewy, Renegade, Blitz and Lazarus. I am thankful to have them nearby to love and be loved.

I am thankful for my sister, brother and dad. All my nieces and nephews and my extended family. 

I am thankful for my ability to write and speak my mind. That I am able to advocate for myself and others with invisible disabilities. To write and speak about my own struggles and successes. 

I am grateful that I found a group with others with Ménière’s who understand what I am going through. I don’t know how I would have gotten through coming out of remission without the members of MWW. They were with me when I had a full blown episode in May and through all the mini spins and even when I had vertigo from my food allergies, giving support and advice. 

I am thankful for my life! 

I hope you are spin free.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Monday, November 19, 2018

Celebrating Life

It’s been beautiful in Las Vegas this November. Now it’s just light jacket or hoody weather. I have been feeling better than I have in months on most days. 

The Ménière’s and Fibromyalgia still inform that they are still around.

So today as I am about ready to face the treadmill for my stress test, I wanted to take a moment to celebrate life. I have a wonderful husband, pets and family who love me and I love back! 

I belong to a wonderful church community here in the desert. In Zanesville I belonged to one as well. I have a wonderful online support group on Facebook that allows me to talk with others who share my disease. 

I am blessed in so many ways. So I celebrate life today. Life is beautiful if you allow yourself to see the good around you. I try to look for the positives. I’m not always successful. 

So here is my moment today to say Thank You for this wonderful life. I will try to make each day more beautiful for those around me and to look for the beauty even on cloudy days. 

I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Thursday, November 15, 2018


So Monday started off bad for my hubby. His tire was flat, so he took my car. My car is a pain since they “fixed” the ignition so it wouldn’t slip. It now refuses to give up the key. I know they can fix that problem, but I never got around to it.

It ended bad for him too. Somehow he broke his glasses as he changed the tire that evening in the dark. 

Tuesday didn’t start out much better, as the eye glass place he got his frames from couldn’t repair them & didn’t have that style anymore. We both have appointments for Tuesday. Unfortunately, it will probably be a week before he gets his new glasses.

I dropped him at work and proceeded to Discount Tire to repair the tire. I (we) was fortunate to be spin free, so I could drive. They were busy so I didn’t get out of there until 11:30, so I went to Cafe Rio to get a bowl. Then home to conserve energy so I could pick Ralph up from work so we could go to the Vegas Golden Knights game. Still no spins!

We drove to Born and Raised to catch the bus. It’s so much easier & cheaper than parking near T-Mobile Arena!

The game was awesome especially when #14 in the Ducks helped us make a goal. Our team was working together and playing like a well oiled machine. 

We shut the Ducks out. Here is a compilation video of some of the highlights before and during the game. As you can see the stadium was packed. Sorry Duck fans! (Not Sorry) Some of the cheerleader came up to our section for a period. I think my husband was in heaven. 

The best part of the day is that I only had two mini spins (1 rotation each)! It was the best day I’ve had for awhile. And as I lie here in bed writing this I still haven’t had my usual morning wake up calls of mini spins. So, you see occasionally this disease gives me good days. 

I hope you are spin free!

Love, Peace and Light!


Monday, November 12, 2018

Back in Vegas 

Our late flight gave us the opportunity to visit Boa Vista Orchards yesterday, Sunday. We had a lovely drive through some fall foliage. 

Fall foliage is one thing I miss in Vegas. Our fall is so late and then the temperatures just drop causing the trees to do the same without much color. There is some color change, but not as much as other places. Probably because we are a freaking desert, and not supposed to have trees.

The market was bustling with activity on the lovely fall afternoon. I wore a light jacket, though Ralph wore shorts and a tee. His Goat House Brewery purchase. 


I vlogged for The Ralph and Rita Show as we browsed. We bought honey, apple wine and of course apples. And the traveled safely home in our suitcase. I purchased a reusable zippered freezer bag at the grocery store. Did you know California you are charged if you was disposable plastic bags?  

We stopped on our way back at this little restaurant. I loved it the first time when I didn’t have food allergies. My allergies limited me to sandwiches without the bread, salads or tacos without cheese. Still my steak sandwich was filling if lacking for flavor. Thank God for Worcestershire sauce. You can read my short review on Yelp. 

Then we returned to MaryLu’s house to relax until our flight. We took Lyft to the airport. 

This weekend was particularly bad for Ménière’s. I don’t know if it was the late flights, the smoke in the air or the drop in temperature. Maybe a combination of all three. I pushed through, but also, took a lot of down time. I sat in the car while Ralph went to see the salmon at the hatchery. I went to bed early on Friday. 3:30 pm. And took a nap on Saturday before church. 

I am home now snuggled in bed with the dogs as I write this. Thinking of just staying here until my stomach calls me out of here. 

I hope you are spin free.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Saturday, November 10, 2018

A weekend in Sacramento 

We flew in late Thursday night from Las Vegas and after talking to Aunt MaryLu, we went to bed. Ralph and I were up bright and early to take his Aunt to see her trust lawyer. 

Then we stopped for lunch at El Tapatio’s. Delicious enchiladas for lunch for all three of us. 

Pair that with a late flight, and a little grocery shopping and I was wiped out. Before I could head for bed, Ralph had to stop a Moehler Egg Farm for some fresh eggs.

I went to bed around 3:30 pm. Only surfacing for short vertigo attacks and bathroom breaks. I didn’t wake up (for real) until 5 am. My sleep is always spotty. 

My dear husband prepared chili and breakfast while I attempted to regain my balance. We headed to Goat House Brewery, because my dear husband wanted to see the goats and have some beer. It’s good that I checked, because there beer is made with wheat. The goats were adorable. I am wiped out, so I am sitting in the car while Ralph is visiting a hatchery where the Salmon are coming up. We’ll have a video of his adventure on our YouTube Channel, The Ralph and Rita Show. In fact, the Goat House Brewery will be on it too. 

It’s cool in Sacramento, and lovely. The nearby wildfire that took out the entire town of Paradise is making it smoggy, so the skies aren’t as blue as they should be. 

I hope I’ll make it to church, but I truly am not feeling well. Stinking Ménière’s as Ralph would say. 

I hope you are spin free.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Monday, November 5, 2018

Trying to Find my Zen

I have been feeling stressed lately. It’s difficult to feel  Calm when my heartbeat is fast. Even when I am still in bed it 96 BPM. When I start moving it will be well over 100. So my sign to stop the anxiety, which is increased heart rate appears to be broken. 

Before you ask, yes I am going to a cardiologist in January. First I have a series of test. I had an echocardiogram, next week is a stress test and in December I get to wear a halter monitor. I wasn’t concerned about my pulse, because I thought it was my Mitralvalve Prolapse. It wasn’t until an actual MVP attack that sent me into vertigo that I became concerned. Hence all the testing.

In the middle of this I found myself in some drama. Maybe I created more in my mind than there needs to be. It sucks when I find myself replaying things over and over. Anything I perceived I did wrong or that others did, replay because of anxiety. This is what we called racing thoughts when I was a social worker. 

So I am beginning to meditate again. Thanks Father Bill at Holy Spirit for reminding me. I am doing things I enjoy like walking in beautiful gardens like at JW Marriott, when I am able. Multiple vacations help me relax. And I repeat my mantra over and over. 

My mantra or prayer (The Serenity Prayer):

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.

The courage to change the things I can.

And the wisdom to know the difference

Hopefully this will lead to a less stressed more thoughtful me. I need to live in the now and forget about the past and stop worrying about the future. I’ve already had one of the worst things any wife can endure... I made the decision to not resuscitate my husband after his third heart attack in less than 24 hours. And I made it through. 

It dawns on me as I am writing this that from September 22 (My late husband’s birthday and our wedding through Christmas, he died on December 20, 2012) are still very tough times for me, so my emotions are all over the place. 

I really need to be mindful that not only do I have this, but that due to fall/winter I get less sunshine and seasonal affect disorder will kick in. 

So, I am off to find my Zen, through meditation, movement and writing. 

I hope you are spin free.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Thursday, November 1, 2018

The Balance Act

Living with an inner ear or vestibular issue, balance can be difficult. It’s possible to be off-balance without others realizing it. I tip a lot. That’s right I tip, my arms go out to try to rebalance me. I joke when someone sees that I am practicing my ballet moves. 

Life is all about balance. Find what works for you.

You have to be able to laugh when you have a chronic illness. My late husband taught me to find the humor in any situation. Laughing also helps keeps the blues away. (Not always when you have chronic depression and anxiety.) I think it tricks the brain. 

If you have Ménière’s or some other Vestibular problems, I highly recommend Vestibular Therapy or Physical Therapy. It helps train your brain to compensate. It also teaches you to recognize panic/anxiety attacks that make the actual Vestibular problem worse. This for me was a godsend. 

So how do you live when you have a chronic disease? I know that when I make plans, plans may have to change as I never know from day to day if I’ll be able to stand. Or overdoing it may put me in bed for a couple of days after. (I have fibromyalgia too.) 

Knowing this is half the battle. You and whoever you’re with need to be aware. It helps take some of the stress of disappointing others away. Remember stress makes things worse. This past weekend we brought a friend along in case I couldn’t keep up, So Ralph would still be able to enjoy himself. 

Being spontaneous is good too. If you are having a good day ask your partner or friend if they want to do something. Tell them that you feel great and want to get out. 

Of course there are days when my balance is all over the place, but my head feels good. I use a cane for these times. If I am hiking I have a walking stick. Both are fabulous aids and give me a sense of security. Again it takes some stress away. 

When you have chronic illness(es) you have to pick your battles. Plan for a day of activity and then a day off to recover. If you are already having A bad day say so... Don’t push it. I made that mistake when I came out of remission. And I got sick in public after going on Space Mountain. (A ride I doubt I’ll ever go on again.) 

Unfortunately, we are able to cover up how we are doing so well that others may not know we are struggling. It is our duty to ourselves and others to let the people around us know. 

I have been lucky to never have had a full on vertigo attack in the day. At least it begins when I wake up usually in the middle of the night. It would be impossible to hide how I feel when I have one of these. It’s hard to describe, but it feels worse than being drunk and your balance is null. It takes two to three days for me to fully recover.

Notice my blue light filtering glasses and my cane. 

There are other props that come in handy for Vestibular issues. I wear or bring my blue light filtering glasses and ear plugs with me wherever I go. Lights and noise can be a trigger, so it’s best to try to be proactive with your triggers when you can. I would love to hear how others deal with their triggers, besides avoidance.

Also, I always bring my meclizine with me. I take it if I have a mini spin (a really short vertigo attack) or if I feel lightheaded or dizzy, especially when I am doing something. I try not to take it daily as I don’t want my system to become accustomed to it. 

So you see you can do things while having a Vestibular issue. You may not always be able to do things when you want or as much as you want and there may be a day or more of payback, but it is worth it to me. 

I took this shot from the car. It’s possible to find ways of doing things without really stressing your system. I am lucky that I don’t get motion sickness
Find what works for you, but please don’t give up, because there will always be good days. I know it doesn’t always feel like it. I spent a couple or three years in bed because of Ménière’s and Fibromyalgia. I didn’t have any energy. I only got out to visit family. Fatigue is something you can only overcome by doing things. 

I hope you are spin free.

Love, Peace and Light! Rita

Monday, October 29, 2018

You’ve Probably Heard This Before

Finding true love can and does happen. Sometimes a person can find love more than once in a lifetime. Sometimes I think it’s all about timing. 

My second husband died December 20, 2012. I was heartbroken and numb, but starting to live again thanks to my caring friends in the small river town of Zanesville, Ohio kept me busy so that I didn’t sink into the depths of dispair. 

I found myself getting healthier and happier and enjoying life again. Six months after Ken died, I had a dream. In my dream a friend from junior high/high school whom I’d had an unrequited crush on, kissed me. So, I told him via Facebook messenger. Ralph told me if I wanted to see how it ends to go back to sleep. That made me laugh and we started messaging everyday. 

Our messages soon turn into texts and phone conversations. Finally, Ralph visited me in August and we decided to see where our relationship would go. 

I joined Ralph and his family for Ralph’s 50th Birthday Cruise. My first cruise ever. You might have guessed I am now a cruise addict. Then I visited him for a few weeks over Christmas and New Years in 2013/2014 to see if we were compatible on a daily basis. This was not my worry, but Ralph’s. I had no doubts about where we’d end up.

In May of 2014 we traveled cross country from Ohio to Nevada bring me, my dog and two cats with us. Camping on our way sure tested our relationship. I think if you can camp with someone without killing them then you’re chances of a successful relationship are pretty high. 

At Christmas of 2015 Ralph kept putting little gifts in my stocking. Finally the last one was my engagement/wedding ring set. There was no big dramatic proposal, but I said yes anyway.

We married in February of 2917 in a Catholic Ceremony which was Ralph’s wish. We married in Vegas, but in a small chapel far away from the strip. We’ve been married almost 2 years and I haven’t regretted one minute of it. 

I know Ralph is mine to the end of time! And he’s had me since that first laugh. We have survived through his broken leg/dislocated ankle, my sudden coming out of remission on my Ménière’s Disease and family drama.

We realize as things change with us that we may have to adjust our lives to accommodate both of us and we will handle each thing as it crops up. In the meantime travel, camping and exploring are on our agenda. We are going to have many more fabulous adventures.

I hope everyone finds love and happiness!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita 

Sunday, October 28, 2018

A Fun Weekend 

Upon arriving in LA we visited The Last Book Store. Someone asked if it was really the last bookstore. I really hope not. I still love books, though it’s easier to read on my iPad. As I walked through a tunnel of books, I could feel stories pouring into me. 

There were many rooms of books both old and new. I could have stayed on one of the couches and read a book to completion, but I managed to limit myself to one book that called to me over all the others. 

After our visit to this fabulous place, which doesn’t compare to The Bookloft in Columbus, Ohio, which has more books than The Last Bookstore,we headed to our hotel in Burbank.

We ate at Market City Caffe, where we found Betsy the Wandering Cow. And the had some really delicious gluten free pasta. 

Saturday we headed to Universal Studios for mire fun. We entered early, because we had season passes and I headed for Guest Relations, where I got an express pass for my disability . Little waiting in lines for the three of us. I didn’t know that this was available until someone in Ménière’s Worldwide mentioned it. Since I have trouble standing for long periods of time it was handy. 

I wasn’t sure how I was going to do on the rides, but I didn’t have a trouble. Of course this disease (Ménière’s) is highly unpredictable and next time could be a different story. My vertigo held of until the morning after.

Still I said a big FU to Ménière’s as we played tourists on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Though we only walked half the steps of yesterday, I got to see the famous Chinese Theater, and the Roosevelt Hotel which was the inspiration for the Tower of Terror in Disney’s California Adventures. Not to mention seeing all the stars. I was a bit shocked at how filthy the sidewalks were, even living in Vegas I have never seen that level of uncleanliness. Still it was an experience, which I can put in my book of been there, done that! 

Then we took a winding road up a hill to get the best view of the Hollywood Sign. The turns actually caused a mini spin. See I never know what will trigger this damn disease. After many attempts to snap a picture of the sign, I managed to get one. It’s difficult in a moving vehicle as obstructions popped up frequently. 

Along the way we spied this garage... Which was a perfect way to end our weekend which started with a bookstore.

I hope you are all spin free!

Love, Peace and Light! Rita