Life Love Laughter and Learning

By Jo Collinge

I Love my Life, especially when it is filled with Laughter. I’m Learning to Live my Life with Parkinson’s, to challenge it as well as accommodate all the uncertainties that it brings.

It’s been quite a while since I have woken up in the middle of the night with a blog there in my head, ready and waiting to be written. When that happens, I have to get up, log on, and type it up before I forget what I want to say. The result is this, and replaces its former version, originally drafted about a week ago but not published, and titled “Exercise and Parkinson’s”. How dull is that, and my boring rambling spiel on the benefits of exercise and endorphins has been well and truly ditched in favour of this.

A couple of weeks ago, I woke, as usual, stiff and in pain, somewhere between 5:00 and 6:00 in the morning, in urgent need of a call of nature. Having managed to lever myself out of bed, thanks to the re-positioning of my bedside cabinet about a month ago, I shuffled off to the bathroom, stopping off en-route to the loo for my usual early-morning bleary-eyed inspection in [...] continue the story

Painting Pain Art Gallery – One

Paintings by Heather Bolinder Rachael

The newest scar looks like a 10-inch zipper starting from the base of my skull down towards my shoulders and the muscles around it ache like crazy. But my permanent nerve pain feels like bees stinging the top left side of my head.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beth’s Chronic Lyme Disease

Beth, an 18 years old suffers with Chronic Lyme Disease. This is when her life turned upside down.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hip Bullet

The painting below is inspired by Christine, who’s chronic pain is in her hip.  Her pain feels like a bullet going through her hip, shattering the bones causing fire like pain!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tooth Ache

Somebody asked me what chronic pain felt like.  I said ever had a terrible tooth ache that won’t go away.  Welcome to chronic pain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Migraine

It was one of those days and I had a bad Migraine.  The blue face is how nausea I felt and I was in too much pain to cry. The skeleton is how dark and miserable I felt, but the c-clamp keeps tightening.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More by Heather Bolinder

Painting Pain Art Gallery – Two

Paintings by Heather Bolinder Crushing Spine

This was my very first pain painting.  This is how my back feels, like two hammers are crushing down hard on it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pins and Needles

Many back pain patients get this feeling in their legs if they have a nerve/disc issues.  Feels like the pins and needles are stabbing you all over your legs!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bob’s Stroke

This painting was inspired by a chronic pain patient, that I have known for years, Bob.  His stroke happened two years ago and he is still adjusting to his new life.  The right side of his face feels like an empty space, is what Bob described to me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elephant Legs

A Painting where your legs feels extremely heavy, making it hard to move or walk. Many pain patients will tell you this is how their legs feels.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ponygirl

This painting was inspired by Ellen.  She is a chronic pain suffer and was thrown from her pony.  She use to be an avid hiker, but now feels the pain of nails going into her neck.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More by Heather Bolinder

Painting Pain

Hi, my name is Heather Bolinder and I am a chronic pain patient.

I am a native Cape Codder from Massachusetts and I was a very active person, involved in volunteering, founder of the Harwich Community Playground, a member of the Cape Cod Art Association and Harwich Artist Guild. I worked as a volunteer E.M.T in Colorado, as well as a private duty nurse’s aid and raised two beautiful children. I graduated from Mount Ida College with a degree in Fine Arts and went on to teach art at a local studio as well as a professional artist, which is where my pain story begins.

It was a beautiful day in late July of 2007 – I was sitting working in my garden when all of a sudden I had excruciating pain in my back. I was paralyzed, unable to stand; it was the most devastating pain I had ever experienced. The pain was shooting down my spine into my hips, pins and needles in my legs. I was nervous, scared, I did not know what to do. I slowly crawled into the house, called 911 and was taken to the hospital. My life was FOREVER changed in that one moment.

I arrived [...] continue the story

Shifting perspectives on Epilepsy

By Trevor Park October 2011

I have been dealing with my epilepsy ever since I was 13. I started getting grand mal seizures lasting anywhere from 30 seconds to a few minutes. I would black out, and the seizures would leave me confused, sore and usually lying on the ground.

Having seizures changed my outlook on life. I realized: stepping into the pool, bath or spa was now a potentially deadly activity. I wouldn’t be able to skydive, ocean dive or rock climb. And say goodbye to driving, that great leap from adolescence to adulthood. The only thing worse than being the only kid in high school who can’t drive is having gotten your license and then having it taken away.

You have to be seizure-free for one year to drive. I made it a year—but not much longer. When my parents were away, I took their car and was driving to a friend’s house when I had a grand mal seizure, lost consciousness and smashed into a lamp post at 80 kilometers an hour. Like that, my driving days were over.

I wanted to know: how can I fix this problem? How can I lead a normal life? The neurologists I saw said the [...] continue the story

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