Holistically MS

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Getting On The Saddle 

Well hello folks…

I’m still on the wonderful OMS programme and I’m still improving.

I’m getting the odd little flare up however considering the emotional challenges that I’ve had I am amazed how well my MS is holding up. My mother passed away very recently and the months leading up to her death were very stressful and sad…and now I am doing my best to maintain my overall health…physical and mental wellbeing…whilst managing my sadness. My Assistance Dog Uma has been fantastic, as has my wife of course, through this recent time. My cognition is my main remaining challenge these days, however things are becoming easier to work out, and my sensory processing is improving.

Having relocated six months ago, I’m just starting to get to grips with life here in Devon, England. I’ve previously lived in this area however my current health now provides me with open doors!

My exercise programme is still doing wonders for me…even if I feel like avoiding it I still do it and feel much better afterwards. I do this first thing in the morning…although for a bit recently I have been sleeping more…I’m also facing the “hormonal change” so it’s all a bit for my body and mind to chew through. However…my MS is managing! 

I do some lovely daily walks locally with my gorgeously loving Uma who really helps me get out and also meet other dog owners, whilst getting fresh air and sunlight. Alongside my Assistance Dog and my determination, the OMS programme is really getting me better; onwards and upwards in my life. It’s amazing and yet scientifically logical.

My diet/meals have pretty much become my standard way of life. I do aim to do more cooking myself…soon…as my cognition continues to improve. Eating out is still a new area for me however part of this is due to anxiety from social challenges, money and now having moved to a new area I’ll be needing to get to know people. It’s also getting familiar and working out what I can eat when scanning menus. In fact someone from the OMS website has organised a meetup this week, so this will be good to go to. The Facebook group and the website forum are great resources and communities.

My future dream is becoming my present day…with meditation ironing out the creases and keeping my relaxation in check. One analogy I’ve recently started to work with is to imagine yourself sitting or standing in the middle of a see-saw; on the pivot; the equilibrium. To one side is threat, anxiety, alarm, fear and to the other side is adrenaline, excitement, competition etc. Both of these raise the levels of MS. You want the see-saw to be level as much as possible.

I focus on staying in the middle – calmness and observation. Sipping life one day at a time.


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One Year of Walking

Well…I’ve just celebrated one year of walking. One year of being out of the wheelchair.

During the early months of the year I increased my exercise routine. You may find some of the following info interesting and hopefully useful:

I exercise daily for about 45mins first thing…with 1.4kg ankle weights on. This goes like this: stretches, yoga interspersed, lying down limb stretches (my take on lying down aerobics stretching, instead of swimming), upside down cycling, meditation (5 mins), jogging (5 mins on the spot), dumbbell weight (1.1kg*) exercises, stationary bike (2km full on). A dog walk for 1-2hrs in the daytime. Then 30 mins meditation in the afternoon.

In the mornings, after I’ve cooled down from my workout, I do some cognitive exercises recommended from a MS article; the Einstein Brain Trainer. At first I was concerned about thinking against the clock, however I’ve gradually improved and also learned of where my weaknesses lie and are improving. It’s a self competition where I also learn to accept blips from outside influences and how this affects my cognition.

My mindfulness course went well, despite some enormous stresses occurring at the time. This improved my meditations also. So I tweaked my meditation to going through each part of my body, whilst focussing on the breathing/counting. I was using an affirmation from George’s book “Let whatever is happening be okay” and sometimes say this in my mind – however sometimes that makes me look for an issue!

Last week I also saw the neurologist. I’m in a new area so needed to check-in with my new local team. The neuro went through the physical examination and I passed it all with flying colours. He was genuinely amazed at my nerve and muscle responses and when doing the muscle responses he was uber amazed…I grinned whilst saying that I do weights. Grins all round. He went on to say something along the lines of other doctors would be unlikely to tell that I’ve got MS. Can you imagine how mind blowing this all was for me? Remember that I’ve had MS for 28.5 years with a late diagnosis, then retracted for 8 yrs (whereby medics questioned my psychiatric ability) and then diagnosed again – so I’ve been through the mill. And now I’m not seeing a neuro unless there is a need!

Just remember…blah blah blah…we are all unique and have MS affecting us uniquely. However also remember to keep on the OMS, keep exercising, keep meditating, keep knowing that all improvements are improvements. 


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Jumping for Joy

* dumbell weight increased to 2kg on 28th November. After one week this increase in weights became easier. Within two weeks it gave me a great feeling.


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Speedy Short Update

Well…I’m active with life these days! Better than I have been for years.

I came off of the Wahls Programme on 1st October 2015 and switched to Prof Jelinek’s Overcoming MS Programme. My reason for the change was due to having three relapses during 2015 on the Wahls Programme, with the last relapse being too full on for me.

I read the science behind Swank and Jelinek’s theories and practices. I was hooked to trying out this scientific logic of flexible oils to rebuild the myelin sheath. I also increase my Vit D3 levels; increased my meditation time to ease the cognition lesions and various other aspects were fine tuned…as well as the different diet.

I’m ever so pleased to say that I’ve just hosted my first party in 7 years, to celebrate 3 months of feeling in remission. I’m socialising, volunteering, walking, cycling and generally living a very different life than anything I am use to.

A huge thanks to the wonderful charity and work involved at OvercomingMS.org