Mindfully Productive on Memorial Day Monday

Happy First Unofficial Day of Summer,

Or as the nation calls it Memorial Day. I’m taking a break from cleaning, organizing, moving, gardening, digging and just overall catching up on all the things I’ve put off over the last few weeks to say hello and wish you all a happy Monday.

Happy first unofficial day of summer

I cannot believe it is summer 2016 already. Every year it seems to sneak up on me overnight even when I seem to be waiting with bated breath.Hopefully, it is sunny and warm where you are. I can safely assume that summer is more or less here in Upstate NY as the last week and a half has seen our temperatures reach a hazy, humid, and balmy 85+ degrees.

The last couple of weeks have been such a whirlwind of activity for me and I expect the summer to be equally insane. Between the Rochester Gluten Free Health & Wellness Expo, preparing and remodeling 540WMain, holding an Open House at 540WMain, to remodeling  my home/office space,  my to do list has become never ending. It truly is more than enough to overwhelm myself to the point of a shut down. However, I’m a different person than I used to be. Now I take it all in stride 95% of the time.

Today, I promised myself I would be mindfully productive and get up 7AM. My circadian clock had a different plan and I woke up after 11 AM. Instead of becoming disappointed I took this to mean that my body needed a good rest after so many weeks of running and working. I took the late wake up in stride , made myself pancakes (Enjoylife) and quietly ate while meditating on my day and week. During breakfast I vowed to be mindfully productive all week.

A little work, a little rest, work again, then rest. Dabbling in this and that but being aware of the beauty of nature, the warmth of the sun, the blue of the sky, and the cool breeze. I hope you do the same.

Enjoy the sun. Enjoy your family. Enjoy peace. Enjoy Rest.  Work if you need to but stay in tune with each moment and day. Stay calm, stay cool, be mindfully productive.

Stay calm, stay cool, be mindfully productive

Living with Fibromyalgia| Stuck by Roger Allan Campbell

Throughout this never ending fibro journey I’ve had the pleasure to connect with more than a few A+mazing people. People who like myself, push through the ache, pain, fatigue, loneliness, desperation, and emotional roller coaster that this illness illicits each and every day. People who fight to live as full of a life as possible. People who use words and art as a way to express their pain, frustration, and despair; as well as to empower others to keep going no matter what.

”Today’s featured writing is titled: “Stuck”

“Stuck” is a piece written by a very special fibro brother of mine Allan Campbell . I met Allan  through the online support group; For Fibro Men.  This writing is an exert from this soon to be published book of the same title. His words have a emotional depth and poignancy that I’m sure many men (and women) can relate to. Thanks for sharing Allan 🙂


by Roger Allan Campbell

I’m lying next to my wife in what feels like sandpaper bed sheets, rough, and jagged edged thread counts, with our heads on paper thin pillows. I look at her face and try to kiss her, but her face is turned away. Did she turn it away or was it already like that? Why can’t I remember? Her hair is blocking her face and my insecurities can’t tell if she is sleeping. I just lie there in the dark trying to get closer, feeling her hair up against my skin, which burns and it is lit up tingling and on fire. I can feel every strand touching my face. I am Depressed, because even though we are so close it feels like an invisible wall is moving her away, and her closed off posture tells me there is nothing I can do to keep her in the bed with me. Where is our love headed now? Because I miss what we had. I miss us lying down together and listening to our favorite classic songs. I can hear them in my head now as I write this. I miss us being together and just staring back and forth out of pure surrealistic love. What has happened to bring us to this point? Because I miss where we were, I just want to hug you more than anything and I want you to kiss me and look at me again like you did the first night we met. THE FIRST NIGHT BEFORE THIS PAIN CHANGED ME. You loved me then didn’t you? I remember that you said you did, you always said you did…

I’m outside of the blanket now, and it hurts, and it hurts, and it hurts, I want to cry but I can never sleep. I just feel weird. What can I do to change this and change me because it’s hurting me more every single day. The alarm clock seems broken but it still flashes and blinks and stares back at me when it’s 3am and only the two of us are awake in my house. I want to touch her arm and tell her everything is fine and everything will be the same again. I want to have that undying faith but I don’t. My back’s up against the wall and I’m in the 11th round, but this is a bed and not a ring, and the ring of my life feels broken. I’m staring right at the person who has stayed with me even at times I abandoned myself. It’s so quiet it’s maddening! Maybe if I can just get some sleep things will be fine again in the morning, right? Oh wait, it is morning already. You don’t have to leave, let’s just lie here and pretend we’re stuck. It feels like we’re stuck anyways.

 Don’t forget to like my Living with Fibromyalgia page to learn more about how you can
we a free e-copy of one of the titles below. (Photo credit: Wagnerrios (cover)
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cooking with fibroClick Image to Purchase living with fibroClick Image to Purchase living with fibromyalgiaClick Image to Purchase

Living with Fibromyalgia: Don’t Let My Smile Fool You + smile (poem)

This article written by Carol Levy for the National Pain Report titled A Pained Life: Don’ t Let My Smile Fool You really struck a nerve with me. Many times we are asked Why don’t you smile? Then when we are smiling people say  “But you don’t look sick”! When we express how we are really feeling it can be taken as being a debby downer or serial complainer. But when we put on a fake smile when we are really in excruciating pain; it makes it difficult for people to believe we are really sick at all. So then the question remains:

“To smile or not to smile?”

This question has plagued me for as long as I have lived with chronic pain. I do not have an answer. But I do have a poem that sums up how I feel about the subject.  Smile if you want. Don’t smile if you don’t. Never allow anyone to invalidate your condition either way. Be Happy and always #stay triumphant.


just put a smile on they say

but a smile won’t make the pain go away

a vapid remedy for the ache

I tried smiling yesterday

and the pain continued just like every day

streams flowed incessantly down my face

red stained tears,

a woeful place

trapped inside this body

no escape

so I won’t smile

no not today

not worth the misery

can’t bear the heartache

that vapid remedy only fuels my hate

for I tried smiling yesterday

might try again tomorrow

but not today


Living with Fibromyalgia: Take a Bow (poem)

close the curtain

shut the door

the show is over

I can take no more

let bygones be bygones

exit stage left

a final bow

there’s nothing left

an era has ended

the moment has come

finale has finished

I’ll watch the reruns

although it’s all over

I have no regrets

my journey is just beginning

you haven’t seen the best of me yet

Living with Fibromyalgia: seasons change (poem)

Recently I ran across a status update from a friend that struck a chord. The post read in part ” “Change comes with seasons so as the seasons change so must we… I wrote the poem which I’m sharing below nearly two years ago entitled: seasons change with a similar theme.

Life is about evolution. Individually we go through a plethora of changes every single day.  Sometimes we fight against these changes and refuse to adapt and accept new realities. Situations change. Relationships change. We change emotionally. We change mentally. We change physically. Change can be good. Change can hurt. Change can heal. No matter what though; change in inevitable. Continue reading