Need remedies for the blues

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Oct 16, 2006
San Diego
The new year has not begun well for me and I am eager to hear from PALS about the things they do when they feel overwhelmed or depressed. I have bulbar ALS so I can't call up my friends just to chat as my speech is incoherent. I can still walk with a cane but my condition took a downward turn since the PEG was inserted on Dec. 31. I am not steady enough to walk alone very far. What do you do when you're home alone and feel you need to lift your spirits?
I am already using antidepressants, but my friends and husband are still working so my days are pretty empty right now. How about a list of "Uppers"? thank you
Cure for the Blues

Hi, When my husband leaves me alone I read. I can read for hours and hours so he doesn't worry me falling when he's gone. If I get depressed I call my sister. We're each others sounding board. If you can get outside and enjoy the weather.

Hugs, Vicki
Hi Anne. I sit on the patio and birdwatch from my wheelchair. My wife has 3 feeders out plus 2 for hummingbirds in summer. In winter I can still see the feeders from our windows. Quadbliss on here does digital painting. There are also a couple of internet chat rooms you could access.
I still work so don't have much down time but the days when I am too tired to go in do drag. I can see long days ahead of me in my future somewhere...I also love to read but books are too heavy to hold so I rely on books on tape. And I am teaching myself meditation, mostly as a way to cope with forced inactivity. RIght now if forced to sit on the sofa for hours I watch old movies and knit, but this hobby is becoming harder, thus the meditation.

Do you like to write? You could keep a journal on your computer or even use our blog feature on this site...
Thanks for the good ideas, I am losing my independence and that is what's really bugging me. My friends are still working so until I get a caregiver, I am pretty much on my own during the day. I know it's just a period of adjustment for me. thnanks Anne
Here are some things I do:

1. Spend time each day really thinking about all the things in my life for which I am grateful

2. I made a list (& continue to add to it) of persons who have told me they are interested in helping.

3. I call those people on the list and ask for help. Cleaning, meals, company (not that often since I don't need that much help yet - but, it's good to have the list)

4. I make sure I go to lunch or coffee twice a week. If I don't have the invitations I call and make the arrangements. People are glad to be called & sometimes surprised. They say they haven't called because they've felt awkward and weren't sure it would be appropriate to call - old colleagues, neighbors, old friends who haven't been in touch for years

5. Listen to music (Ipod works well for me) or on the Internet - you can access sites with free music and just turn your speakers up!

6. Meditate. That's a hard one for me but very rewarding when I do it. Last night I spent one hour laying on my back propped up by pillows so I could breathe easier. All I focused on was my breathing. It's hard for me to start that but once I'm there it feels pretty darned wonderful

***Actually I would advise being careful about the chat rooms and forums. This one is a favorite since the flavor seems positive On some other Forums there is a lot of arguing which to me is just negative energy

***OH - and my favorite lately: Telling myself, "I am more than my body. I have a lot to offer that has nothing to do with my physical ability"

Warmest regards,
I like what you said, "I am more than my body". I hope my Mom feels that way.
I know that in dealing with a life-threatening disease, sometimes the biggest battle is in your mind. I am a person who naturally thinks negative and is prone to depression. A few years ago I bought a CD series by Shad Helmstetter called Self-Talk for Women. It is what you might consider gentle brainwashing. It is encouraging statements about all areas of life, including health, that eventually become a part of the way you think. Now, I don't sell these or make any money, and his things are expensive, but in my opinion, it is an investment in your wellbeing both for PALS and CALS. If you are patient, you could try to find it on eBay, but with ALS in the picture, I know time is important. The women's set is $99 US, and the big set that is aimed at everyone is $399. I have listened to both (my parents bought the big set) but there is nothing specifically feminine about the women's set except that his wife narrates them verses him.

The very fact that you are able to refer to ALS as "life threatening" and not "terminal" shows that some of that positivity is already there in you. Build on that. :)
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