Mad Like Alyce

So, if you are new here, I have been living with Chronic Pain and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome for quite some time now, and for the most part, I’ve gotten to a good place in life with it. You probably wouldn’t even know it if you saw me out and about. I actually have quite a few behind the scenes things I have to do on a daily basis to manage my chronic pain issues that you might never see.

Invisible Illness

To be able to keep up with my job, I have to manage my energy expenditure. Ensure I get enough sleep each night. I wear braces on my arms while I sleep to help my nerves relax. I also sleep with ice packs on my shoulders (at least until they thaw), a pillow under my knees, a chiropractic pillow and  if it’s a rough day, a heating pad. I also take medication for my PTSD, which is, as with any mental health medication, important to take consistently. I won’t go into a tailspin if I miss a dose, but it can sometimes throw off my moods and especially my sleep for a few days. Finally, I often use Kinesio tape, which actually is visible, but people are often surprised to learn I have nerve damage 🙂

typing with kenisio tapeWearing it as I type this post!

Its all about balance

That is not the point of this post. What actually brought it up was a conversation today with a wonderful friend of mine who is going through a rough time post surgery that has made her rely heavily on friends and family. Because I also had a reasonably serious surgery in the past year, she asked how I balance trying to be independent with asking for help. Oh man.

To start with, I am very lucky to have a wonderful boyfriend who brought me ice every day, did all of the grocery shopping, laundry, and walked my dog… for 4 months. He also slept on the couch for 3 weeks post op just to make sure he didn’t jostle me until I could handle it. He kissed my forehead while he pulled the pain pump tube out of my shoulder on day 3 and I ugly sobbed, cuz it was  gross. The tube removal, not the kiss, that was adorbs. You should be jelly. I digress… and apologize for the “text” lingo, it just felt appropriate.

The truth is, I really don’t like asking for help, and aside from Damir, I didn’t ask for a ton of help when I probably could and should have. I really had to think about how to strike that balance between asking for help and independence, and if I could narrow it down to anything, I would have to say… its all about forgiving yourself. When you have to rely on someone else, you often feel guilty. That you are taking their time, their energy, and that you have nothing to give back. That guilt can really weigh on you.

Ask for Help, and Forgive Yourself

But really. Sometimes you need help, and sometimes… its a LOT of help. Sometimes its a lot of help for a LONG time. But someday, maybe soon, maybe years from now… you will be in a position to help someone else. A kind word, holding the door, making a donation to a gofundme to help someone in need. Pay it forward at Starbucks, volunteer. Take care of someone you know who is in the same place you are now. Your opportunity will present itself. I am a firm believer that the world is full of flowing energy, and it is completely ok if you need to draw that energy from others for awhile. Just know it’s just for now until you can give it back, either to them or to others.

Its ok not to be “on” it at all times. Its ok to sleep for 13 hours straight if you need it. Its ok to have ask for rides for weeks or even months, have your laundry done for you, or have to call someone in your darkest moment for help. The energy will balance. Forgive yourself for now, and pass your gratitude forward.

P.S. I finished writing this last week at somewhere around midnight on a work night. The post got stuck when I tried to upload an image, and I had to refresh the browser. To my dismay, the post had vanished. I closed the browser, and my laptop, and went to bed. Defeated, I put off posting until today, when I was delighted to find this post had actually (magically) saved!!! 

Hello!

Hi! I'm Alyce.
Welcome to my journey towards living a happier and healthier life while living with PTSD and chronic pain... and never letting it keep me from my passion for Halloween, cooking, and way too many DIY projects... all at the same time!

Instagram

  • Maybe Christmas doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas... perhaps... means a little bit more. 
Super excited that my family is NOT doing gifts this year! We are all just bringing a side dish, dessert, and a board game for some quality family time. What are you doing for Christmas? #thegrinchwhostolechristmas #whoville #grinch #grinchchristmas #christmasmovies #grinchmas
  • Even if I wanted to go, my schedule wouldn't allow it! 4 o'clock: wallow in self pity. 4:30: stare into the abyss. 5 o'clock: solve world hunger (tell no one). 5:30: jazzercise. 6:30: dinner with me, I can't cancel that again! 7 o'clock: wrestle with my self loathing. I'm booked! Course if I bump the loathing to 9 I can still be done in time to lay in bed, stare at the ceiling and slip slowly into madness. But what would I wear! #thegrinchwhostolechristmas #whoville #grinch #grinchchristmas #christmasmovies
  • "I'm gunna throw up... and then I'm going to DIIIIIIIEEEEEEEE!"
Probably my favorite line in the entire movie, so much so that it has stuck with me for years. This is often how my anxiety feels like, and I think of this line from the Grinch often when I'm struggling, even at the height of summer! So, the Grinch is a bit near and dear to my heart, and no one will ever take Jim Carrey's place in my heart, even if if it does grow three sizes. #grinch #thegrinchthatstolechristmas #christmas #grinchmakeup
  • I’ve never actually smoked a day in my life. #frosty #frostythesnowman #glamfrosty #winter #wintermakeup
  • One of the reasons I liked this makeup so much was the incredibly simple nose. I’ve tried some looks in the past and I don’t know if it was the white face, orange nose, or just my lack of makeup experience, but I hated them. Instead of trying to literally draw a carrot, this is just a nod in that direction. Also, I’m not one for glitter but I really dig these eyes! Good thing I like them, because I still have glitter on my face. #glitter #frosty #wintermakeup
  • Sticking with my winter theme, it’s Frosty! Ok, this one is a great example of why I love the internet. I saw an AMAZING frosty photo on an Instagram feature account and took a screenshot because I was dying to recreate it. Normally I make sure I have the artists handle in the screenshot so I can tag them if I ever do try it, but somehow missed it this time. To find her, I took to YouTube to find @victorialyn ’s tutorial, and I’m completely blown away with not only the makeup, but the production quality of her videos. I know how much time and effort something like that takes and they are so much fun to watch, even if you don’t plan on doing the makeup in the tutorial. I love finding new artists to follow and be inspired by! #frosty #frostythesnowman #winter
  • The last look at my Frostbite! What other injury makeups could be considered "Holiday"? or at least timely for winter? Or should I do something more glam next? I have half a mind to save more gory winter looks for January when i'm no longer feeling the warm and fuzzies when it snows! #winter #frostbite #frostbitemakeup #sfx #sfxmua
  • "Walking in a Winter Wonderland"
Im really pleased with how this turned out! I know it's no super glamorous but creating actual injuries and skin conditions is a great challenge. I'll spare you the reference material, but it was fun trying to re-create the blistering, as gross as that sounds. Stay warm my friends! #frostbite #frostbitemakeup #winterwonderland #sfxmakeup #sfxmua
  • "Baby it's cold outside."
This look inspired by a 3 hour drive in a blizzard last weekend. It actually wasn't too bad, mostly just excruciatingly slow, but living in SD, I know how dangerous it can be going off the road in bad conditions. #frostbite #SFX #sfxmakeup #brrrrrr #sfxwound

@madlikealyce

Costume & Makeup Tutorials

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