Putting Happiness into Your Life

When you have a chronic illness it is difficult sometimes to be happy. I think we tend to sink into the negative aspects of our illness and forget that we can be creatures of happiness in spite of a chronic illness.

Marci Shimoff author of Happy for No Reason and Love for No Reason spoke in the webinar Extraordinary Life after 40 Summit on happiness.  She said she was always unhappy even when she was on tour for her book on happiness.  She learned that everyone has a happiness set point: 10% circumstances, 40 % Habits, 50 % genes.  You can change 50 % of it through what you do in circumstances and your habits.  A change in habits can also influence your DNA. 

Changing your habits help your bodies response to negativity.  Most people respond to negativity.  It’s what we remember most about our day.  Changing this through a simple action can help. 

Write down 5 happy things from your day.  

Velcro the positive into your day, Teflon the negative. 

Three steps for helping reset your happiness point

  1. Look for the positive in your day.
  2. Savor the positive for at least 20 seconds.
  3. When your have a negative thought, make sure to have three positive thoughts, too

Become a creature of happiness.

Find your happiness.

I Treated Myself to a New Medical Alert ID Necklace

The first medical bracelets offered to me as a patient when I younger were ugly, so I never considered getting one; although I did know it was important to have one due to my medical conditions. One day I received an email asking me to look at an article about medical ID bracelets. Designs for women and men had changed in medical IDs. I saw many new designs that I would like to have.

Medical ID Bracelets are the first defense for patients to let paramedics and ER people know important information about their health. Sometimes a patient is unable to communicate with the health personnel and a custom-engraved ID bracelet or necklace can speak for them. Right now, there are so many options and ways to purchase medical alert jewelry.

There are the bracelet and chain that everyone has seen since the 1970s as medical ID bracelets. There are new designs out now that wearers can match with their style or clothing. Several offer pendants on necklaces for either men or women to wear. There are a lot of beautiful designs to choose from

This time, I chose this necklace from a brand called American Medical ID https://www.americanmedical-id.com their website came up first when I looked up search results. It’s a 10K gold-filled oval tag embossed medical ID necklace. I like the subtle look and think it’s really elegant. It’s not as big as the traditional medical ID tags. The medical emblem is embossed but still easily recognizable.

The new pendant necklace (front)

Now onto the engraving. My new medical ID necklace can be engraved on the back side of the pendant or tag. It can actually hold up to 5 lines of medical information. A lot of people are asking what to engrave, you can check this helpful engraving guide first.

The new pendant necklace (back) (Phone number has been removed for privacy)

I used all 5 lines for the engraving since the company offers unlimited engraving for just $7. I included these details:

1. My Name

2. Dialysis

3. No Use Left Arm

4. Ostomy

5. My In Case of Emergency Contact (This has been removed for privacy reasons in this picture)

Your engraving can be different from mine. Your doctor can also help identify the most critical information to engrave on your ID too.I agree with paramedics and ER professionals that a medical ID would be helpful in a time of need and I am unable to communicate with them. A medical ID is recommended to anyone with a medical condition. You can look at the website I provided to choose a medical ID that you’ll prefer.  

5 Things to Do to Feel Better on Dialysis

  1. Watch your fluid intake.  Keep track of the weight you gain on week days and on weekends.  Once you get a few weeks data, look at it.  What is your average gain?   Then track your fluid intake for a week or two.  Are you taking in too much?  Can you change it?  Fluid is such an important part of dialysis.  The taking off of fluid is one of the main things people complain about.

2. Eat well. Be sure your diet has all kinds of foods in it., Keep on eye on the kidney diet recommended by your dietitian.

3. Come to dialysis prepared to nest for four hours.  Make sure you are wearing comfortable clothes.  Be sure you have something to do.  Bring things that make you comfortable for those hours in the chair.

4. Sleep. Get rest and sleep as needed.  If you feel tired during the day, take a nap if you can.  Sleep those 8 hours a night recommended.  If you have insomnia, ask your doctor what you can take.  Use meditation or calming tea to soothe you to fall asleep.  Turn off the electronics a half an hour before going to bed. 

5. Attitude.  Dialysis is tough.  It is one of the hardest things to do.  It is day in and day out a grind every week.  The techs and nurses know it is.  They want to know how you are doing.  Bring your health problems to them.  Tell them what is going on, so they can help you.  If you have a good attitude towards your treatment times, you will be much happier. Remember- You can hate dialysis all you want.

A few places to go for help:

       I hatedialysis.com forums and Facebook page

       Dialysis Discussion Uncensored Facebook page

       DaVita.com- major dialysis corporation

       Fresenius.com- major dialysis corporation

I have a Facebook group for lifenotonthelist.com.  It is for long term dialysis patients.  Please visit.  It is new.

Remember: Dialyze to Live, don’t Live to Dialyze!