Today I learned of Chester Bennington’s passing. I’d fallen out of fandom of Linkin Park as I grew up but when I was in high school albums like Meteora, Hybrid Theory and even Collision Course. Their depressing and lyrics complemented my teenage angst.
I remember excitedly playing the piano melody to “In the End” for everyone in class when it first came out. Whenever I had problems in life I would put on my headphones and blast songs like “Crawling” or “Numb”. These worked whether I was sad about relationships or my parents. It didn’t really matter. I related to the (somewhat suicidal in retrospect) lyrics. It probably gave me life.
It is sad to know that while Chester saved teens like me, he wasn’t able to save himself.
My friend had a Thera Cane at their house and somehow a group of us sat around using it and slowly one by one my friends all started buying one. I knew my time would come and it did. I ordered one on Amazon.
It looks like a super ridiculous stick thing that you could probably plant tomatoes with but the knobs are great for deep pressure massaging. This helps get me through the day between massages, which I get once a month to ease my anxiety.
The Thera Cane comes with a book of helpful diagrams of positions and pressure points. Some are a little bit more advanced then others. I use it mostly on my shoulders because that tends to be where my body is the most tense.
Now that I’m getting older, I totally appreciate anything that helps take away aches and pains.
I have been embracing wearables and finding fun health things to track.
Something I often lack in my day is water so I am trying the Waterminder app. It has a suggested daily intake due to your weight and activity. You can then program cup sizes that you normally drink. For example a grande at Starbucks is 470ml. All liquid counts but water is the most recommended.
There are achievements to unlock and constant reminders throughout the day to remind you take sips. They appear on my Apple Watch too, which can be a tiny bit aggressive. At least now I have no excuse not to drink more water!
SADS is hitting hard right now as the days are getting shorter. Mornings are too dark and by the time I get home from work the sun is setting.
I take Vitamin D3 and I have started turning on my Happy Light again. I don’t generally use it in the warmer months because the sun shines longer.
Placebo or not it does work for me if I have it on for 30 minutes. I wish I could have it on my desk at work but I’m scared that it would be too weird so it’s just on my desk at home.
What are your tips for curing SADS?
I spent Thanksgiving with my 3 fav dudes. We didn’t really do anything but sit around the whole day, which in the body of somebody who is a big ball of anxiety is like really hard to do. I can’t be not doing anything.
I took a lot of naps, pet the dog a bunch, watched Netflix comedy specials, finished Stranger Things (it was so good). Sometimes it’s good to let your brain turn off (or at least try), for a few days.
I recently went for my first registered massage. I have a lot of tension around my shoulders, neck and head (resulting in the occasional tension headaches). Generally, I don’t like to take Tylenol to relieve pain if I can help it so I decided massages would be a solution to try.
I had no idea how to find a place. Googling “Registered Massage Therapist in Toronto” was useless and still yielded many XXX results. I didn’t want to put myself in a compromising position or go anywhere that seemed unsafe. So I did what I usually do, I hit up Twitter.
I received a bunch of replies but Anatomica caught my eye because it was literally on the corner of Bloor & Lansdowne, an intersection I walk by every day! Another bonus was that they filed directly to my insurance and the less grown up paperwork I have to do the better.
Their current office is super new (they used to be just down the street). They seemingly popped up overnight one day because I swear to god I’ve walked passed this a million times and never noticed a massage place here! I think it used to be an art gallery type thing. It was cozy and inviting inside.
My therapist was Kate, who was specifically recommended to me on Twitter. She was super nice and made sure I was comfortable with everything at all times but also not afraid to dig deep into my muscles (I am not afraid of a tough massage). The blanket was heated and the room had relaxing music.
For my 45 minute massage I felt myself fall into deep relaxation. It’s totally worth doing every once in a while if you live a busy life. It forces you to let go of everything during that time (including your social media accounts). When I was done, I got up and felt like a happy blob of jello.
I seriously can’t wait for my next massage!
It’s a long weekend and I’m finally going to take the time to take care of myself for a bit. I feel like I’ve had a lot of mental stresses lately and I can feel myself wanting to snap at times. I also have this strange muscle tension at the back of my head/neck.
It’s busy season in every part of my life so I need some time to recharge, whether it’s cuddle with the dog, take some thoughtful walks, do absolutely nothing or more importantly: sleep.
I’ve been recording it and I haven’t been sleeping as much as I should lately. I keep staying up anxiously trying to be productive. I like to spend every conscious minute being “busy”, answering (staring) at e-mails, nodding off to books, daydreaming at empty blog post screens.
It’s stupid but I actually have to teach myself to let go, be a little lazy. Sleep. Play.
It’s been 3 weeks since I purchased an Apple Watch and started watching my activity levels closely. When I first got it, I was nowhere near achieving the 270 calorie Activity Goal it had suggested me. Since then, I lowered it and have been increasing it based on suggested levels each week and have been reaching them.
It might be a small (and probably mockable) goal, but it was a lot better than before I got the watch. In an effort to be beating them each day I’ve been going on more walks, standing up more every hour, using stairs instead of escalators and doing the occasional 7 minute workout.
Earlier this year, I had a scary episode of severe heartburn (or at least that’s what I think it was) where I felt like I couldn’t breathe and might not make it home from my commute. It had happened the month before too but not to the same severity. I made a small diet change: cook whatever I want to eat and limit buying pre-packaged (eating out at fancy restaurants will never go away) and bought the watch to encourage me to be more active in a less intimidating way than a Fitbit would.
It’s been less than a month but already I feel stronger, less tired all the time and mentally clear headed. Being more active takes away some of my anxious nervous energy and I’ve never felt better. I want to keep improving each week, with small goals, maybe eventually I’ll do something cool like climb the CN tower or something.
I’m one of those people who when there are too many clouds outside, I feel like I’m under an emotional cloud as well. It’s been especially bad November and December this year when I’ve been working so much I don’t see the sun shine. I decided to invest in one of those weird fancy energy lamps. I settled on the Verilux Compact Happy Light which was both inexpensive and still pretty if it didn’t do anything.
So far my experience has been positive. I feel like I have much more energy after 30 minutes sitting near the lamp. I wouldn’t recommend sitting in front of it for more than an hour as it makes you feel as if you drank like five cups of coffee (and possibly find it difficult to sleep, especially if used in the evening). Placebo or not, it’s working for me!
I’m so excited to be energized, and happy.
Dear blog readers, I think I’m a vampire. The sun makes my arms itchy.
It was a condition that I developed a year or two ago, in my mid-20s. My mom also has a similar condition, but I always assumed she made it up as a ploy to make me wear a hat or sunscreen. Now the latter is mandatory, so I believe it’s hereditary.
From my own google searching (though I don’t recommend you do this) it is very possibly PMLE (Polymorphic Light Eruption). I break out in itchy bumps on my arms which is the area that is most frequently exposed to the sun. I haven’t really had anything show up in my face or legs yet, fingers crossed.
Putting on sunscreen does help but it’s a nuisance to remember and on rainy days I always think I can skip it but the UV rays can still be quite strong in Toronto summers. I was wondering if any of my readers have had such an experience and what sort of tips you guys might have that can help!
I love going outside and I’d rather not be a vampire.