Great Powerlifing Resources – Sigma Powerlifting Podcast

I want to really recommend everyone interested in powerlifting to check out this new podcast concentrating on powerlifting – Sigma Powerlifting Podcast by Danny Lennon from absolutely fantastic Sigma Nutrition (that I’ve talked about so many times 🙂 ). Danny interviews clearly the hottest (or coolest) names in powerlifting, already the cast is starting to look a list of who’s who in the sport. Definitely worth listening to! ❤

Check it out here:  SIGMA POWERLIFTING PODCAST

The above episode is so far my favorite interview, although all the episodes have been great 🙂 . I’m really fascinated in Mike’s approach to powerlifting training, especially the RPE system – check out Reactive Training Systems – RTS to learn more! I also tend to aim for more higher volume and frequency -based training Mike tells he often uses in his programming. As a smaller, less experienced female athlete it’s of course very reasonable to do so – I can recover must faster than, say, a 100 kg advanced male powerlifter.  I’m just not able trash my body so completely with training with my minuscule muscles 😀 . At least when my cortisone dosage is optimal. If I take too little I can easily work myself up to ER condition, though…

I have pretty amazing news – I’ll be attending the European Powerlifting Conference in Ireland this July! The speaker list is awesome – these guys are powerlifting rockstars and the best thing is we attendees get to hang out with them on Saturday at a beer & barbeque party! I’ll be going with my friend and we’re gonna spend one night in Dublin as well. I’m really looking forward to the trip as I’ve never been to Ireland 🙂 .

Learn more about the European Powerlifting Conference 2017 !

I’m already so excited, only a month to go! ❤ ❤ I will certainly give a detailed report from the conference (if I manage my cortisone dose to stay up and functioning from all the excitement…)

xoxo,

Veera

Practice What You Preach (And Take Photos While Doing It)

I had an absolutely fantastic weekend and I feel so much better now both mentally and physically! 🙂 I managed to hit most of the goals I set to myself on my last post Anxious And Overworked, But Hopeful and it made such a big impact to get a whole 3 days off work and finally I got to spend time with my beloved ❤ ❤

Last Friday started great already when I got to try real Olympic rowing for the first time in my life. My friend competes in the sport and she was supposed to give me some pointers in my indoor rowing technique but when we got to the Rowing Stadium (it was built for the 1940 Summer Olympics in Helsinki), the weather was so nice she asked if I’d dare to go to the sea on her double scull. It was great! The sun was shining and I tried to get the hang of rowing technique which is, I can tell you, a lot harder than using a rowing machine 😀 … I absolutely want to try that again!

Töölö Olympic Rowing Stadium, Helsinki – photo source

The weather was perfect for my first Olympic rowing experience!

Afterwards I just made time to my 90 minute sports massage aka the torture 😀 and then we headed toward Hamina with Franz ❤ . I had missed my boyfriend so so much and getting to spend a whole weekend with him was such a treat ❤ .

Franz instantly reclaimed one of his favorite sleeping places in Hamina 😀

The weekend was quite busy as we spend most the time with our favorite hobbies, working out and shooting 🙂 . I’m not much of a shooter yet but promising, perhaps? At least I have a really professional private tutor ❤ . The only negative thing was I overdid my practice by shooting way too much with rifles and shotgun that had that much of a recoil my right shoulder got irritated. By Sunday it was bruised and swollen and I was unable to do my benching workout which was a bummer 😦 . But I got a lot of practice (that makes perfect) and lots of sun – the weather stayed fantastic the whole weekend with nearly cloudless sky and above 20 degrees Celcius – enough for my very Finnish taste 🙂 .

And, I have forgot to write, I had SMILE laser surgery done to correct my vision at Eiran sairaala – I had both myopia and mild astigmatism and had to use glasses from time to time. Now I saw clearly and it felt so good to be able to aim and shoot straight without glasses when shooting from longer ranges without scope.

Only 50 meters here – on Sunday got farther to 100 m
Handgun practice is fun, too!
I guess not bad for a beginner learning how to shoot a revolver? 🙂

I’m getting used to shooting and only took some extra hydrocortisone due to the heat – we were at the range about 3 hours on both days on midday. At least I got some tan besides my bruises 🙂 . I have a lot of work to do to improve my technique but I guess that is why I like shooting so much – every little detail matters. I need to focus more on squeezing the trigger the right way and to the right direction, and holding the squeeze long enough after the shot is fired, for one. And I need to stabilize my position better, now my muscles aren’t used to static work and get tired holding a gun. I also use them too much and the wrong way to support myself. But it’s so fun and rewarding to learn!

Last set of deadlifts always feel heavy whether you are in Espoo or Hamina…

I’ve still been doing RP’s powerlifting hypertrophy template and next and fourth week will be the hardest before deload. I don’t feel extremely tired still but I know I need the extra recovery especially for my left glute which is still irritated. My sports physio now gave me new rehab+strength exercises so I’m now doing one legged hip thrusts and nordic curls twice a week before squatting and deadlifting and cable hip abduction+adduction once a week as my adductors were a bit lazy as well.

Last Sunday I did:

Hip flexor stretches

One legged hip thrust with weight 2 x 8 kg 9, 8

Nordic curl 2 x 10 reps

Block pull sumo 5 x 90 kg 9, 8, 7, 7, 7 reps

Leg extension 30 kg 11 reps, 35 kg 13 reps, 40 kg 10, 8, 9 reps

One arm DB row 5 x 22.5 kg 11, 9, 7, 7, 7

DB lateral raise 4 x 10 kg 10, 9, 9, 7, 7 reps

Full contact twist 3 x 25 kg 8, 11, 10 reps

All sets were left approximately 3 reps short of failure this week.

Here’s a video of my last set of deadlifts, I was already really wiped out:

And we did do other stuff besides lifting weights and shooting, too. The last time I got to go sightseeing in Hamina was actually two years ago, the time I had just started writing this blog. The weather was perfect and warm and sun shone so it was about time we packed ourselves and Franz into the car and drove around the town to see and visit a couple of harbors and some beaches 🙂 .

This week has still been busy, busy, busy with work and working out since I got back this Monday, but after getting some quality time with my boyfriend I feel a lot more relaxed and happy so bring it on! 🙂

xoxo,

Veera

Anxious And Overworked, But Hopeful

I seem to be able to write really seldom these days. The matter is I’ve been absolutely overworked and tired. I’ve done my usual consulting physician’s work and started my personal trainer studies, and on top of that had to start renovating an apartment I own and have been renting after a tenant left it in a bad shape… And of course I’ve tried to work out as usual. I had to end my diet last month as I was so tired with all my responsibilities I didn’t see a point in continuing a diet which would be an extra stressor.

I have also been anxious, probably due to all the stress and hurry. I worry about a dozen little things every day and chastise myself for not being efficient enough, smart enough, good enough doctor/athlete/friend/human/etc. I wanted to write about this as I know I’m not by far the only person in the world who feels this way in a modern society where people are valued based on what they do, how they look, how they perform… I’m sorry I don’t have an easy answer how to get rid of these feelings of worthlessness. If I did I wouldn’t see a therapist. My resting heart rate has gone up from 65 to 72 bpm and I wake up frequently in the middle of the night and my sleep seems to be much lighter than normally.

I’ve found some comfort by talking to my friends and other people who also suffer from same problems and by thinking about my core values – what is important to me in life and how can I incorporate things that make me happy into everyday living?

So here’s an impromptu list what I’ll try to add more of to my days:

  • Seeing my friends, making new ones and having fun
After a great, sweaty crosstraining session with my fellow pt course students 🙂
  • Reading more fiction

  • Taking long walks with Franz ❤

  • Remember to incorporate light, recovery exercise I also enjoy
    Relaxing in the pool after our gym instructor course training session
  • Managing my sleep better by getting to bed early enough, taking melatonin and meditating

  • Lifting hard and heavy but not too seriously 😉

  • Last, but not least – spending time with my man ❤ ❤ (who I see way too rarely)

This is just a phase in my life and right now the amount of stress is huge, but I know things will get better in the long run – in the meantime I have to be more mindful and forgiving to myself. I know I take too much responsibilities and try to manage every aspect of my life and often others’ as well. I have to remind myself I’m only one person and a disabled one on the top of that. If I want to be able to help others I have to start with myself.

xoxo (to myself as well),

Veera

Cruising Forward

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Truly Happy and Joyous Easter to all my readers ❤ !

I had a wonderful Easter on a cruise to Estonia with some old and new lifting friends aboard Silja Europa ❤ . I was really happy I got invited to the cruise with coach Anni and her fellow weightlifters and friends 🙂 .

Me and Anni ❤

I don’t have that much friends who lift seriously or at all so I’m happy whenever I get to meet like-minded people who also don’t wonder when I contemplate already on cruise when will my next workout be or roll their eyes at the quantity of food I eat even when dieting – or start lecturing me that I shouldn’t even diet in the first place as I’m already lean and blah, blah. I want to be an athlete and I may have different goals than regular people. That doesn’t mean that I can’t eat anything or don’t know how to relax and party.

Our merry crew 🙂 ❤

I had decided to play safe and took a HUGE amount of cortisone – 30 mg prednisolone during the 23 hour cruise, that is 4 times my normal dose – to be able to stay up late and do what normal people do. We danced in the ship’s disco until I called it quits ad 3:30 AM ❤ .

I also got to eat a lot at the ship’s buffet as I had decided I’ll have free 24 hour period to eat whatever I want to and sure I hit the dessert table 😉 I have such a big sweet tooth 😀 … Luckily, or unluckily depending on viewpoint, my 7 weeks of dieting had shrunk my stomach so that I couldn’t eat that much as I would’ve liked… I did buy a chocolate bar and one bag of candy but in the end didn’t even eat those as I just wasn’t hungry after a good sized dinner and breakfast buffet’s.

The weather in Tallinn was amazing:

Our ship, the Silja Europa was under major refurbishment last year when it returned to Finland from Australia to begin cruising the Helsinki-Tallinn route. Some pictures of the ship:

Silja Europa – image source

Image source

After I got home things haven’t been quite as nice, which should’ve been expected. I tried to return to my normal cortisone dose immediately after the cruise even though I was still recovering from lack of sleep and lots and lots of activity – idiot me… On Saturday alone I walked almost 17,000 steps in Tallinn doing some shopping.

Now I’ve updosed and hope my tiredness, vertigo and nausea will pass soon. It’s not nice when you can feel your heart thump so hard you think it will jump out your chest any minute and try to not take notice that you feel like you’re going to puke but then again can’t. Even if I try to rest it doesn’t help, I simply lie on the bed with my eyes closed but can’t sleep as I feel so horrible. Normal people at least get the hangover straight after cruise, not delayed and lasting for days and days… 😦

If I start to feel better I’ll try to make it to the gym to do my deload workout. Next week I’ll be starting a new training cycle and am already thinking about what exercises I’ll select. Now I’ve gone 5 weeks without barbell squatting as I did belt and hack squats to try to work on my quads more and get them to grow without my stronger back getting in the way of quad gains. I guess now it’s time for regular back squats and leg press, then. I’m still doing longer sets, approximately 6-15 reps and lots of sets. With bench I think I’m going for regular and close grip bench in the new cycle.

Though I’m still dieting I feel like I’ve recovered well enough for the most part. My sleep is always a bit of an issue, I sleep very restlessly and fidget a lot. It’s usual that I wake up several times a night as well. I guess that is one of the reasons I need 9-10 hours of sleep; I just don’t sleep deep enough. I used melatonin for about 2 years but recently have tried to go without, just to reduce the amount of pills I take, and don’t really see any difference in my sleeping patterns if I compare how I slept with the drug to how I sleep now. Though I only have my Fitbit tracker’s sleep data to analyze.

The only nagging thing regarding recovery is still my left glute, namely the small, annoying quadratus femoris muscle that has again mildly aggravated from high volume training. It’s tight and sometimes a bit achy, especially when it’s stretched like when doing stiff legged deadlifts and good mornings. I’ll try to get it massaged well, take some NSAID painkillers and let it rest properly during my deload. I’ll have to select exercises that won’t aggravate the condition more for my new training mesocycle and hope the situation will improve with time. I’ve still been training my glutes with direct work like bands, cable etc. and at least my medial glute tendinitis is completely healed.

More about quadratus femoris rehabilitation here: http://www.eastwestmassageboston.com/quadratus-femoris-muscle-treatment.html

Next week I’ll also start my personal trainer studies. I’m excited and happy, not at all nervous as we’re now having some basic studies about good nutrition, recovery and fundamentals of resistance and endurance exercise. Maybe I’ll find new friends interested in lifting from the course! 🙂

Nice and relaxing Easter Monday for everyone,

xoxo,

Veera

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New Career Path Ahead

I have wonderful news! I’m since this week a Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certified nutrition coach 🙂 !!

I finished my studies after two weeks of intense reading and doing online exams. I’m really excited and anxious to get new clients I can use my skills and all the knowledge I’ve gathered about dieting, mass gaining, healthy nutrition, change psychology and making permanent life changes 🙂 . This is all the stuff I’ve wanted to do with my patients as a doctor but haven’t had time as usually appointments are very short and we aren’t allocated time to talk about lifestyle interventions, which is so sad. I’m planning to open an online consulting business so I can help people no matter their location as I’m still living half the time in Espoo and other half in Hamina.

And this isn’t the only change in my life – next week I’ll be starting personal trainer studies!  I’m enrolled to graduate as a Trainer4You personal trainer this December 🙂 . I’m really psyched up about this and extremely happy that all my beloved ones and friends have been really supportive about my new career path. I’ll be also starting studies this autumn to become a certified fitness coach. The course is meant for people interested in coaching fitness competitors in fitness, body fitness (figure), bikini fitness, men’s physique, women’s physique and classic bodybuilding. The Finnish Fitness Alliance is Finnish Olympic Committee member and under IFBB umbrella, and is committed to drug-free sports and competitors are subject to WADA testing. I’ve been a fitness enthusiast since the 90’s and it will be so fun to connect with my old love again ❤ .

I’ll be continuing working as geriatric consult as usual but I hope I can start my side business with lifestyle medicine and getting people in shape and encouraging them to adopt healthy eating habits and maybe even help someone to step on stage in high heels one day 🙂 .

xoxo,

Veera

 

Dieting Fundamentals

Here’s a great new podcast where David O’Connor from Doc Fitness interviews Sigma Nutrition‘s Danny Lennon, who I’m a great fan of and have written about several times.

If you’re interested in losing weight the right way, and finding out what the right way for YOU is, give this a listen!

Listen the podcast here (sorry couldn’t get the player to work directly on this page).

My diet is progressing well. No cravings and good energy for a change 🙂 . Last week I reduced calories by cutting my fat intake as my weight loss has now stalled and my weight actually bumped up almost a kilo. This was the first time I had to decrease calories so as I’m now in week 5 of my diet things are going well. When looking at the mirror I appear to have lost weight – my face is more gaunt, and I seem to have more muscle definition allover. The weight increase is probably due to water weight.

Even the masochistic RP powerlifting hypertrophy workouts have been fun – so far 😉 … I have one more workout left from week 2 and the next two weeks will be considerably more challenging. But hell, bring it on! Progress is inevitable 🙂 . I love to train so lots of volume and sets is a nice change.

Losing size from waist, preferably not from my tiny quads…

Last Saturday I did:

Hack squat 8 x 65 kg 12, 11, 10, 10, 10, 8, 8, 7

Incline DB press 6 x 15 kg 7, 7, 8, 7, 5, 7

Parallel pullups assisted on machine 5 x (-17.5 kg) 8, 7, 6, 5, 5

Cable upright row 4 x 40 kg 8, 9, 9, 8

Cable donkey kicks 2 x 15 kg 15, 13 – I’m doing these to rehab my glutes after my tendinitis problems. Doing direct glute work with bands etc has helped tremendously and I’m completely pain free at the moment 🙂

Sit ups with twist 3 x 5 kg 12, 8, 8

Rest is also very important and I’ve been focusing on getting enough quality sleep, 8-9 hours per night. It means getting ready for bed early enough and shutting off all the distractions like TV and putting out the smartphone – ouch! Luckily we all value sleep very highly in my household 🙂 ❤ .
Franz knows the essence of recovery!

Another important method of winding down and getting my parasympathetic nervous system on the groove is doing stuff I enjoy on rest days, like reading and watching movies. Last weekend we watched The Accountant – it was great! Highly recommended, I’d give it 4.5 stars out of 5. If you have a great plot, action, Ben Affleck and sniper rifles in a movie, you can’t go wrong ❤ .

Exciting new week folks,

xoxo,

Veera

Who’s Afraid Of The Big, Bad Endo vol. 2

Cortisone is a miracle drug. It keeps me and other people with adrenal insufficiency alive. It’s not your enemy, it’s your savior. It’s the thing that keeps you pushing forward when going gets tough.

The instinctual drive to survive and stay alive is strong. It’s ingrained to all living creatures, including humans. Medicine is supposed to heal the sick and wounded and alleviate pain and suffering. It’s what you expect your doctor to do when you visit her / him.

So, considering those above facts, how is it that when our endocrinologist suggests that we lower our cortisone dose dramatically, or even with secondary adrenal insufficiency patients, wean off altogether, we are called emotional, hysterical, overdramatic, mental?

How would you react if you went to the doctor and your doctor started to contemplate aloud whether to cut off your legs, lobotomize you or simply put you off your misery by execution? In my opinion, we adrenal insufficiency patients are way too well-mannered and proper when we simply sit and listen to those threats year after year without yelling, throwing things and surging out of the doctor’s office screaming after restraining order.

But hey, that’s just me.

Starbuck said it.

xoxo,

Veera

Back To Diet Mode Again

How fast time flies… I returned to work two weeks ago, and luckily have coped better than I expected. No stupid mistakes or brain fog. That’s thanks to my wonderful colleagues and friends who talked sense into my thick skull and got me to start taking my SNRI medication again. That was one of the medications I wrote about earlier that I was trying to quit in my post Not F***ing Giving Up. SNRIs are a group of drugs called selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake and are used used to treat depression. The drug I was taking, venlafaxine, can also increase pain tolerance and alertness. At least it did both of those things with me. The withdrawal symptoms were only getting worse and also my mood darkened so I had no choice if I wanted to be able to function normally but to start taking venlafaxin again. I know there is a possibility that with enough weeks of suffering and triple-dosing cortisone might hae helped but as I really had to return to work I saw this wasn’t a viable option at the moment. I had to choose the lesser of two evils. Now I feel both mentally and physically fine – at least most of the time 🙂 .
This might not have been the perfect moment to start a new diet, but… Well, I kinda did. What can I say? An idiot is always an idiot… And I wanted to stick to the plan I had made earlier about starting a diet together with my man and a couple of friends so we could cheer and support each other. Now I decided minimal fuss with no progress pictures or measurements, and only twice-weekly weigh-ins. The diet plan is the same I used last summer, provided by Renaissance PeriodizationSo far in 3 weeks I’ve lost 2,9 kilos weighing now 65,1 kg. Perfectly on track! – thanks to RP! 🙂 I plan to diet another 4-5 weeks only, maybe cutting the diet even shorter if necessary health-wise. Now I had to increase my daily dose of cortisone by up to 33% going from 30 mg hydrocortisone equivalent amount of prednisolone to 40 mg. It’s still within limits of what can be expected as I just got back to working again so it’s a “new” stressor, and it’s perfectly normal that when dieting, cortisol values will rise in normal, healthy people, even up to double amounts.
I also started a new hypertrophy program for powerlifters, again courtesy of Renaissance Periodization. I can’t wait for my next mass season and the huge muscle gains with this! So far I’ve done 2 of the 4 workouts, all full-body sessions. Love the volume and the pump! Still leaving the sets 3 reps short of failure, with intensity increasing every week until deload by increasing weight used and leaving less reps in the tank.
Workout 1:
Stiff legged deadlift from deficit 3 x 60 kg 6, 7, 7
Belt squat 5 x 15 kg added weight 11, 11, 10, 11, 9
This is a new favorite of mine! Check down below for video of the movement 🙂
Wide grip bench press 3 x 42.5 kg 8, 10, 10
High bar good morning 3 x 40 kg 8, 8, 8
Ab wheel standing (assisted, with rubber band) 3 x 6, 6, 6
Workout 2:
Hack squat 7 x 30 (added weight) kg 6, 7, 8, 8, 7, 7, 6
Incline DB press 6 x 15 kg 7, 7, 6, 4, 5, 7
Parallel pullups machine assisted 4  x -20 kg 6, 6, 6, 5
Cable upright row 3 x 45 kg 7, 6, 6
Sit ups w/twist 5 kg plate 3 x 12, 10, 8
Here’s a great video of Marisa Inda, one of my favorite female powerlifters, training squat and also my new favorite movement, the belt squat. I have a relatively strong back compared to my quads so it’s an absolute must to start doing. I love the burn I get doing this ❤ !
Wishing all a great next week,
xoxo,
Veera

Going Out With A Bang

Brother Firetribe – Going Out With A Bang :

“There’s too much confusion
Everything seems out of place
Mental pollution
It’s harder and harder these days
It’s make it or break it
Won’t let it take it’s toll on me
I’m not gonna fake it
I’ll fight against the powers that be

You don’t believe in something
I believe in me
You hide your love and your hatred
I jump the gun, you’ll see

[chorus]
I ain’t coming back
I ain’t gonna crawl
Kicking and screaming
I’m having a ball
You take it or leave it
This is the real thing
Believe it or not
I’m going out with a bang

Fight fire with fire
That’s what I’m aiming for
I’m your gun for hire
Call me
I come ’round your door
You think you can’t go on
I think I’m pulling this through
You say it’s not worth fighting for
I’ll tell you what I’m gonna do

Cause a chain reaction
Finally breaking through
Keep my end of the bargain
Be someone not like you

[chorus]
I ain’t coming back
I ain’t gonna crawl
Kicking and screaming
I’m having a ball
You take it or leave it
This is the real thing
Believe it or not
I’m going out with a bang

You don’t believe in something
I believe in me
You hide your love and your hatred
I jump the gun, you’ll see

[chorus]
I ain’t coming back
I ain’t gonna crawl
Kicking and screaming
I’m having a ball
You take it or leave it
This is the real thing
Believe it or not
I’m going out with a bang”

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Image source

I’m gonna go out with a bang – how about you?

Happy Rare Disease Day 2017 folks!

xoxo,

Veera

rdd-social-profile

Not F***ing Giving Up

What a great week this has been – NOT. I’ve spent half of it lying in either bed or the sofa, mostly curled in fetal position trying not to choke in tears. After a good start to my week by hitting the gym hard despite terrible tiredness and brain fog, my fortitude completely thanks to copious amounts of extra cortisone, candy and fellowship of beloved Addy friend, I fell into the black abyss of pain, brain fog, desperation and depression.

There are times I think if there’s Ms Fate somewhere out there, I’m not liking her sense of humor. Now is one of those times. Or maybe this is just a balancing act after having such a wonderful time visiting my Addison friend and her spouse in Tampere, hanging out with them and lifting weights together.

Usually traveling completely wastes me and I spend a couple of days recovering a few hours’ trip. But recently I’ve built stamina by visiting my new part-hometown of Hamina almost every week by bus. Yes, I’m officially dating ❤ ❤ and am partly cohabiting with my new love ❤ ❤ and of course have found a new gym and already gotten a new lifting friend ❤ ❤ So no wonder as I’ve had way too many positive things in my life, f***ing Fate decided to throw some new obstacles in my way…

Soooo back to my week. I had two amazing lifting sessions with my friend. Squats great, bench great, deadlifts great. I have upped volume for my upper body as I lowered it for legs to let my hip problem and tendinitis recover. Last week I accidentally hit a new record in close grip bench as I did sets of 2 with 57,5 kilos (it was supposed to be 47,5 kg but hey, brain fog means inability to count sometimes…) and I feel my bench has benefited a lot from the bigger volume also as improved technique. But the increased volume was too much for my back, and my chin ups suck big time. Dammit. Well, at least I now know. Just 2 weeks ago I did 3-4 reps of chin ups with 5 kilos added weight but now I struggled to get one measly rep with 2,5 kilos :/

Here’s a video of my bench with 50 kilos:

Sucky chin ups aside, REAL trouble and pain started as I returned home. I’ve been trying to get rid of some of my medications or at least reduce their doses during past few months. There’s many reasons. Like hating to start my morning by swallowing over a dozen pills. Or spending about 100 euros every month for medicines. And treating side effects of the drugs with new drugs.

Filling my pill dispenser after quitting half a dozen medications - only ten different ones to go!!
Filling my pill dispenser after quitting half a dozen medications – only ten different ones to go!!

Well, the withdrawal symptoms of some medications aren’t very fun, either… Last three days I’ve been suffering terrible pain all over my body, from skin sensitive to touch to constant headache, throbbing pain in my bones and joints, complimented by flashes of sharper pain very closely resembling electric shocks. Guess if my need for cortisol has also gone up? Despite extra dosing, I’ve been half unconscious, half crying from exhaustion, pain, depression and desperation hitting me like a tidal wave, and just plain old boring hangover sensations of low cortisol. Funny, eh?

Past couple of nights I’ve laid awake and cried wondering if this never ends. The best bit is that my over 3 month long sick leave is nearing it’s end and a week from now I’m supposed to be in shape to work. I wonder if I’ll make til the end of first week before I once again disappoint everyone. If I’m not getting better and soon, it’s a stark reality as I haven’t been able to form coherent sentences half the time.

Filtered tired Veera
Filtered tired Veera
Tired as hell unfiltered Veera
Tired as hell unfiltered Veera

I’m torn. Between the feeling that I want to give up – to exhaustion, pain, black fog of depression – and the amazing, sometimes annoying, steely will inside me that shouts “shut the fuck up with the whining and get up whether you like it or not”… Some days I’m so tired that I have to be the fighter. But I just don’t know how to FUCKING GIVE UP. So here I go again.

This is dedicated to you all – my amazing Addy friends, every other rare disease butterfly, the ones suffering from depression or other mental illness, anyone crushing under the burden of hardship and setbacks in life. I know. Please stay strong. If not for anything else then just to prove the naysayers wrong. Let’s lift each other up ❤ ❤

Never Quit.

xoxo,

Veera