The wheelchair is your friend.

Well, that’s how I feel.
I’m having a hard time right now, because my grandmother refuses to use a wheelchair. She doesn’t want people to see her, to say things about her, she doesn’t want to look old and diminished.
And I feel terrible because I can’t find the words to tell her the wheelchair is a friend.

The wheelchair is practical, it takes you places you couldn’t go without it’s help.

The first time I used a wheelchair was actually a fun moment.
My disease causes fluctuant paralysis, and tremendous pain. At that time, the doctors had a wrong diagnosis and put me on a painkiller that was actually not good for my disease, and it increased the pain instead of killing it. Very usefull indeed. Anyway, when I wasn’t paralysed, I could walk but not far and the pain was huge. The doctors refused to prescribe me a wheelchair, because they didn’t know what I had. (Now we finally found out what was wrong with me, and the new medication is working so far, so I’m walking again, not perfectly and I can’t run a marathon, but I know I might need a wheelchair again someday).

So my mother rented one, with her own money. She didn’t know how to talk to me about it, but she finally did and I was so happy she did. I felt like a 3 years old again. Because seriously, I was sick of starring at the ceiling. I missed the sky, the wind on my face, people, things happening. So I got into the wheelchair, clapped my hands of joy, felt like a big baby and starting rolling and it was a new life. We visited museums and places of interests. People happened to be very nice about it, most of the time. I would call the place I wanted to visit, explaining what I could and couldn’t do, and most of the time it worked wonders. I was so happy to see the world again I didn’t care for the “sorry” looks. Yes people feel sorry to see a twenty-something girl in a wheelchair, but whatever, I was alive and hungry to put new memories in my brain. I’m not saying everything is accessible, not that it is physically easy to manage that heavy stuff. But to me it was better than the ceiling.

But my grandmother doesn’t want the wheelchair.

Should I just shut up and respect her wish ? What do you think ? What is your relationship with the wheelchair ?

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My Migraine-Friendly Diet #1: Ingredients, friends and foes

I’ve been suffering from severe migraines for years, and found some tips to avoid some of them. I’m not saying this is a cure, nor that it’s going to fit in most people’s diet. That’s just my own experience.

I suffer from a lot of allergies and intolerances. There are so many ingredients I can’t have, cooking is difficult. But the good news is that now that I know what I’m allergic too, I can avoid those ingredients, and I’m having way less food-induced migraines.

Products and ingredients that cause me allergy and tend to cause migraines :

  • Soy. Often hidden as “lecithin”.
  • Strawberries.
  • Chocolate
  • Goat cheese.
  • Avocado.
  • Shrimp.
  • Oat.
  • Anything non-raffined. Contrary to most people, I have to stick to white rice or pasta as whole ingredients make me really sick.
  • Celery (often hidden in sauces, ham, soups…)
  • Aspartam

Products and ingredients I can have but that tend to cause me migraines :

  • preservatives in charcuteries, such as Bresaola or in dried fruits.
  • Strong cheese such as Comté, Beaufort, Blue Cheese, Roquefort… that’s a shame because I love those !
  • Sugar. If I eat something too sweet without a proper meal around it, here comes the migraine.

Products and ingredients that tend to relieve migraines :

  • Orange juice from the fridge.
  • Blackcurrant, preferably frozen or sorbet

I suppose these last 2 ones have in common to be cold (my migraines give me a lot of temperature), sweet but with no added sugar, and diuretic. I was on diuretic pills for a while, my kidneys are still pretty damaged, so I recommend you don’t get started on diuretics unless your doctors prescribes you so.

So basically, goodbye to chinese food, pre-packaged food, a lot of restaurants.

That was #1, but there’s still so much to write on the subject, can’t wait !

What are your migraine-friendly ingredients ? What are the food that trigger migraines for you ?