RIP

My mom passed away today. I will be taking a break to attend to family matters.

What About You?

I blog. I write about myself all the time. I write about chronic this or that. I get sick of me!

What I’d really like, is to get to know you!

I want to ask you three questions! Don’t think, just answer!

Ready?

  1. What was your favorite childhood game?
  2. What did you name your first pet?
  3. What is your ‘go to’ article of clothing?

Write your answers in the comment section! It’ll be fun! 

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My Answers:

  1. Uno (still is).
  2. Meggie.
  3. Oversized, ivory cable sweater.

Happy Father’s Day to One of the Best!

A Man who grew up with no running water, no electricity, or heat. Now walking around in the age of computers and cellphones… I remember the day he brought home a “microwave” for my mother. All of us kids would watch that big, heavy, electric box cook as my mom would yell at us not to look at it for fear we’d go blind.

My dad was interviewed about his ‘roots’ and ended up on a YouTube special. Grab a cuppa, relax for 7 minutes, and have a peek into his boyhood family home that we have restored and still own today!

“A Place Called Home”

 

I love you, Dad!!!

FullSizeRender 87 Me and my Dad! (1995)

Dear Future Me …

May 2018

Dear Future Me,

You will be reading this when you turn 70, in 2037. You will have had fibromyalgia for 40 years. Maybe you will be cured, perhaps not. Either way, I am writing so you remember your time in 2018. How you searched and fought to live your best life with this chronic disease that is fibromyalgia.

As I write this in 2018, I am 50 years old. I have accomplished many things… I thought my life would be very different but then a chronic illness and its dastardly friends showed up and took my home and my livelihood in a matter of a few short years. But I am handling it. I learned to live with daily pain. I managed to get married. I started a support group and a blog. I published my first book, never thought I could ever do that.

We had some hard times too. We lost brother Kory in 2003. Although my marriage was celebrated in 2004, we went through a breakdown in family communication. There were misunderstandings right around 2011. Then there was the pancreatitis scare. So many surgeries and so many lost memories. We beat it, but that is a time I still grieve over. I can’t make what happened any better because I can’t recall the majority of two whole years. I hope you have figured out a way to repair those relationships. I have lost my way at this point. Letters and apologies did not work. I must have done something awful… did you figure out what it was?

I suppose we have lost more family members by the time you read this letter in 2037. Mom and Dad will be gone. Aunties and uncles, even some cousins will be gone. And the next generation should be well on their way towards taking over our family lake home; StoweAway. I wonder if they and their children will realize all that it took for us to make it what it is? A safe place for family and friends to gather and enjoy the company of one another. I hope you have made sure they know how special StoweAway is. How much work it takes to maintain this property. How many meetings, we five original board members held, to ensure the property would remain safely in the family. I believe you will ensure they are well versed in what it takes.

I am hoping this letter finds you and Jeff living the RV life full-time. We are working so hard right now in 2018 to make this happen. Remember all the classes we took about financial markets and trading platforms? Jeff quit his job in 2017 and started driving fulltime for Uber and Lyft. It was a jump into the unknown! We were so scared. It is working though. It was frightening in the beginning, but we knew this was the only way we would become mobile, making our dream of travel come true! All the planning, research, trade shows, classes, and textbooks! I hope you smile now as you are reading this. I hope you are smiling because you ARE living the RV life, Jeff and I are trying so desperately to get to.

I hope your pain has subsided. I hope you still look at our hubby and tell him you love him, every single day. I hope you still find laughter in each and every day and that you finally feel like you deserve to be happy. Because you do. You never gave up! You fought very hard from the beginning, then you found acceptance and did the best you could for you, your husband, and all those who came and went in our lives. You fought a good fight! Yes, sometimes it was just minute by minute, but you did it. If you are reading this letter, you made it! I hope you are wise and witty! I want you to lead a life of love, peace, and joy in your heart.

Happy 70th birthday, Kim!

From me, 2018.

 

My Brother, My Soldier

Kory was 37 years old when he died from a very aggressive form of cancer at the Brooke Army Medical Center, in San Antonio Texas. Kory was a Specialist in the U.S. Army. Kory became my little brother when he was 9 years old, we adopted him from South Korea. Kory was my brother for 27 years until his life ended on August 18, 2003.

He was holding our Dad’s hand as he left us. We miss him.

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Army Specialist.

My Brother, My Soldier

We are so far from home,

he and I.

Engulfed in a land so foreign to us,

a city within a city.

~

At times he is stubborn and full of mischief.

Teasing and laughing, the brother I know.

There are times when he is reflective,

Speaking as if communicating with the Divine.

~

He is so thankful for the help he receives,

and so apologetic when he is in need.

He loves and hugs all who are near,

Only they and I experience the fear.

~

His body tires and his eyes close,

he puts his hand in mine.

I wait silently for him to wake,

and I greet him with a smile.

~

I tell my brother he is a good soldier.

I tell my brother I love him so.

I tell my brother God is with him.

I tell my soldier it is alright

                                      …if he is called to go.

 

 

~k.Lynel

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Hello, Shadow Boxer???

The dictionary defines shadowboxing as a form of exercise used for training in combat sports. In psychology “shadowboxing” is a process one uses to overcome a negative self-image so success can be achieved. In the book I co-wrote, The ShadowBoxers, Fighting Fibromyalgia, Your Personal Journal, we define Shadow Boxers as individuals who are fighting against a disease they can not see. We fight to maintain health in the body, mind, and soul.

 

We, the chronically ill, are the modern-day Shadow Boxers.

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If you are thinking about purchasing this interactive journal, it doesn’t matter where you are in your disease, this journal will help you make sense of what is happing. If someone you love has fibromyalgia, this book will explain what they are going through. I am thrilled to list a few of the 5-star reviews that were received from Amazon customers who have purchased this book…

  • “Love this book! It has helped me understand what is going on and how to work through it.” 
  • “I like this book is a journal with lots of blank pages to let me write or draw what I feel. There are definitions that are easy to understand, and the book gives you suggestions as to what you could do to live a better life with fibromyalgia. I love the prompts. I liked reading all the stories. I am even starting to write my own story!”
  • “The Shadow Boxers is an insightful and informative book by two women who suffer from fibromyalgia and other conditions. This book describes their journies from onset, to diagnosis to the present. The authors give the reader and the fibromyalgia warriors ideas on coping with the chronic disease and suggest keeping a journal about day to day living. There are blank pages and ideas on how to start. If you are a family member or friend of someone suffering from fibromyalgia this book will help you understand this disease and hopefully give support.”
  • “I like that the book explains a fibromyalgia toolbox. It has Seven Areas of Positive Change and Six Healthy Habits to Develop for Fibromyalgia Syndrome.”

 

I thank the above for their great reviews, and there are more on Amazon! So generous and kind with your comments. Receiving, then maintaining 5 out of 5 stars since July of 2017 is very humbling. It is not only humbling, it feels like I have received a gift I had dreamed of but never thought it would come true.

May is National Fibromyalgia Awareness Month.

Sincere Thanks,

~Kim

 

The Shadow Boxers

I co-wrote The Shadow Boxers, Fighting Fibromyalgia, Your Personal Journal, with my friend, Karen Anderson. It was published in July of 2017 and now sells on Amazon for only $9.99. You may be interested in checking this book out further. We believe in offering options, not opinions. (There is also a Kindle version for $4.99.)

This book is about Fibromyalgia but can be used as an interactive journal for whatever chronic illness you have. The teaching elements; Seven Areas of Postive Change and Six Healthy Habits to Develop are written for anyone with a chronic illness. This is an interactive journal, so there is ample space to write down your own ideas. You decide what to implement in your life, and you decide what will work and what won’t. At the end of the book, you will follow prompts to write your very own story!

“Change your outlook! This new interactive Journal addresses day-to-day fibromyalgia challenges, showing you how to fight flare-ups, effectively cope with chronic illness, and participate fully in your life again.”

 -Editor, CreateSpace

The Shadow Boxers, Fighting Fibromyalgia, Your Personal Journal

I hope that you learn to live with your chronic illness the best way you know how!

Live your best life!

Screen Shot 2018-02-25 at 12.48.43 PM~Kim

Tagged! You Behind the Illness…Told in Four’s.

My friend Terri at her absolutely fantastic blog, Reclaiming H.O.P.E. has invited me to participate in telling you a little bit about me behind my illness. Like Terri, I am someone who mostly blogs about living with fibromyalgia. I appreciate this chance to talk about things that have nothing to do with illness, and this looks fun!

Here we go, this is me told in fours:

 

 

Four places you’ve lived:

  1. St. Cloud, Minnesota.
  2. Seattle, Washington.
  3. San Antonio, Texas.
  4. Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Four places you’ve worked:

  1. Director, Bishop Lewis State Work Release.
  2. Court Advocate, Region IV Council on Domestic Violence.
  3. Mental Health Counselor, Mt. Olivet Rolling Acres.
  4. Psychiatric Technician, Crisis Unit, Fairview Deaconess Psychiatric Hospital.

Four Hobbies you enjoy:

  1. Zentangles.
  2. Art Journals.
  3. Bible journaling.
  4. Decorating wreaths.

Four things you like to watch:

  1. Real Housewives of … (I’ll deny, deny, deny!)
  2. This is Us.
  3. Criminal Minds.
  4. Game of Thrones.

Four books you’ve enjoyed reading:

  1. The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende
  2. Many Masters, Many Minds by Brian Weiss
  3. Space Between the Stars by Deborah Santana
  4. The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats

Four places you have been:

  1. Cozumel
  2. Cancun
  3. Isla Mujeres
  4. Tulum

Four things you love to eat:

  1. Fresh guacamole and chips.
  2. Fresh melon with chili powder sprinkled on it!
  3. Grilled steak.
  4. Cheeseburgers.

Four things you love to drink:

  1. Dos Equis with lime and salt!
  2. Powerade Zero.
  3. La Croix flavored water.
  4. Cappuccino.

Four places you’d love to visit:

  1. Indianapolis to watch the Indy 500.
  2. Canada to ski Whistler.
  3. Africa to go on safari!
  4. Kentucky to watch the Kentucky Derby.

 

I’ve been cruising around trying to find folks to nominate to do their ‘fours’… I’m late! Please, if you read this consider yourself tagged! I Nominate You!!! (Caught you!)

This was fun. Thank you, Terri!

Version 2~Kim

 

Now I’ve Done It…

Have you ever signed up for an online course? Well, I did. AWAI. American Writers and Artists, Inc. I saw their ads and answered the call! They are a copywriting firm, basically. What I didn’t realize is they use a hard sell tactic to get you to believe that without ANY PREVIOUS writing experience they can teach you how to be a copywriter. Well. This should be a snap! I write a blog, I wrote a book… I got this! What was I thinking?

The good news; I think this program is a winner. The bad news; I’m taking an accelerated course and not accelerating! There are 10 lesson topics, one a week, and ten homework assignments. By the end of the ten weeks, you are set. Go out and proclaim, “I am a copywriter!” It’s like I’m in a life preserver being pulled behind a yacht and I want on that yacht! That’s the goal, the yacht or in my case living the life my hubby and I are dreaming of – full-time RVing! (And, no, I’m not kidding!)

So I signed up right before Christmas, sales you know. “Never again will we offer prices this low!” I signed up for everything they told me too, paid my fees and listened to the first lesson. All good, I get it, we are not sales people we are problem solvers… what? Well, to the best of my knowledge a copywriter is a salesperson who sells ‘goods’ through writing – but not according to lesson one. Ok, let’s move on.

The first assignment, read the most successful sales letter ever written ten times. This a 3 page typed letter about why you should choose American Express as your credit card. Now, hand write it ten times. (There are two other lengthy letters waiting for you to read and re-write 10 times.) TEN TIMES! That is three pages per letter, double that because you are handwriting it and you’ll have handwritten 180 pages. In school, when we got in trouble we had to copy dictionary pages… I don’t think I ever had to copy more than five. So I guess this must be for people who do not know proper sentence structure…??? Does anyone anymore?

I did it, kinda, but I rebelled and wrote in cursive. Schools no longer teach cursive writing. Take that! Well, it took me almost all of January. I really do not remember much about the ‘sales’ letters except I never want to write a sales letter. And what the hell happened to ‘be a problem solver’? I solved that problem by not re-writing the stupid letters more than twice. Lord, my hand!!! Painful. I know sentence structure, I also know bait and switch. I can write a sales letter.

I am not giving up! Besides, I really do like the program! I am just having some growing pains. I want to write content for the person who has a chronic illness and wants to travel. I will finish this course if it kills me! OK. It probably won’t kill me, but it could severely damage my hand if there are more homework assignments like the one I just did… so I signed up for live webinars starting this February for the accelerated courses that I am taking. I will have class every Thursday. I will be accountable! I will finish! I may be a glutton for punishment? They do have the webinars taped so I can watch and re-watch as many times as I need to for a week. (I’m prepped for the fibro flare and fog, it will happen, just a matter of when.)

Onward! I will be a freelance copywriter! Oh! They said I could call myself a copywriter since I am enrolled, should I get a ‘job’ they’ll help me complete it. That is very nice, I do not know who will be hiring a freelance (travel) content copywriter who is not currently traveling, but one never knows? I have, after all, travel experience with fibromyalgia!

Here goes nothing…again. 

 

Version 2~Kim

For All The Shadow Boxers!

First and foremost, thank you!

I co-wrote the book, The Shadow Boxers, Fighting Fibromyalgia, Your Personal Journal. This is the FIRST interactive journal about Fibromyalgia Syndrome to be published on Amazon -ever!

This journal now sells on Amazon for $9.99! This journal is proving to be very helpful to many individuals with all types of chronic illnesses, not just fibro.

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I am thrilled that the information Karen Anderson and I put into this book has helped so many! I read your comments, receive your wonderful emails, lovely cards, and am excited this book has helped you find your own way to living with your disease. Bravo!

For those yet to purchase a copy, I believe this journal is helping people and it can help you too! Learn to live like a Shadowboxer!

Many thanks!

I appreciate YOU!

 

Also available for purchase through my blog;

 

Live your Best Life!

img_0430 (1)~Kim

The Shadow Boxers, Fighting Fibromyalgia, Your Personal Journal.

After you have been diagnosed with a chronic illness, you will begin to know yourself intimately. You will be looking at your life as a glass; half full or half empty. There may be days when you can’t even find the glass. You will have to decide how you will live with this chronic illness. It won’t be easy. It will be one of the hardest things you have ever had to do, but you can do this.

I have co-written an interactive journal that is available for purchase on Amazon. This is not a self-help book like we are used to! Karen (my co-author) and I do not believe fibromyalgia is a ‘cookie cutter’ disease. We will give you suggestions, ideas to think about and implement if you decide they would work for you. This journal is to record YOUR thoughts and what YOU believe will benefit your life! This will be your personal planner, your personal journal. You will make your own choices and write your own story!

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The Shadow Boxers, new book listing!IMG_2728

 

 

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The Shadow Boxers is available to purchase in paperback and ebook format available on Amazon. Whether you are new to fibromyalgia or have had this disease for years, this book will speak to you!

The Shadow Boxers Link to purchase on Amazon.

IMG_0056~Kim

 

An Interactive Journal Just For You!

We have covered some of the 6 healthy habits to develop in order to live your best life with fibromyalgia, those that have been reading these habits know that they can be applied to almost any time in your life that creates a huge change, negative or positive. These habits are just part of the information you can find in the interactive journal, The Shadow Boxers, Fighting Fibromyalgia.

We have Covered;

#1. Know Thyself {Know Thyself. }

#2. Adjust Your Attitude { Adjust Your Attitude }

#3. Develop Your Own Coping Skills { Develop Your Own Coping Skills }

As a reminder:

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The Shadow Boxers, Fighting Fibromyalgia goes into depth with the remaining positive habits. It also covers 7 areas of positive change that you may already be doing or may want to do. If you decide any of these changes are for you then you may want to implement some, this journal will guide you. The book also reviews definitions, helping you define your personal definition to express how fibromyalgia affects you as an individual. Then there are questions and answers for you to answer and a few personal stories. At the end of the book, there are a lot of invaluable resources for you to check out.

In this interactive journal, we offer options, not opinions.

Once you complete the journal you will follow prompts to help you write your very own story. Your story is yours alone to tell, no one can put the words together for your story but you. I co-wrote this interactive journal with Karen Anderson and we are hoping you will write your story, maybe even publish it! Information is power and knowledge of how this disease connects us yet separates us by symptoms is invaluable information!

I hope you order the book, it is on Amazon; in print and in Kindle versions, it is also available right here, I will mail you a copy! Think about it but until you decide, keep working on the first three healthy habits!

My wish for you remains the same… and that is to lead your best life even with fibromyalgia or any other chronic illness or distressing life change that may come upon you.

Live your best life!~Kim

If you have any questions or concerns, remember, you may always reach out to me! Here is my email address; itrippedoverastone@yahoo.com.