Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Ĉu Vi Parolas Esperanton?

I've been learning a new language for the past year or so now! It's called Esperanto and anyone can learn it for FREE now, by using DuoLingo.

The story of why DuoLingo offers a multitude of language lessons for free is very interesting, and is explained in this fascinating TED talk about captchas. Regardless of the goal of the overall project, millions of people are learning languages for free and they get to keep that knowledge forever and do with it what they please. Don and I are two of those people and we have decided to learn Esperanto.

Esperanto is a constructed language, created by a Polish Jew named L.L. Zamenhof. His vision was to create an easy to learn language that could unite the world by serving as the ultimate international language of the world. Until now, only a relatively few people had access to learning anything about this language, much less even heard of it. It's fun to learn and the community is very friendly as well.

We are now nearing the completion of the DuoLingo "tree" of lessons and can have beginner conversations using the language. We practice a little every day online and with each other and it's going very well.

In my enthusiasm for my new culture, I've created a few Zazzle product designs to help celebrate Esperanto and offer a unique way to discover other Esperantists or start conversations and gain interest in this great language, which is growing in popularity by the day. Please take a look and feel free to share and buy my designs so I can make a few pennies here and there. I hope to create more designs in the future.

View more gifts at Zazzle.

Take a look at the DuoLingo site and sign up to learn Esperanto or any other language. There are many, many options available, and developers are working on more options all the time, so keep checking back if the one you want isn't available just yet.

Ĝis la revido, amikoj!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Abandoned Fibro Blogs

I just unsubscribed from over a dozen blogs written by fibromyalgia sufferers about their lives with fibromyalgia. All of them have not published a post in over a thousand days. Nothing. Where did they all go?

Several years back, around the time of the great Facebook revolution, I did a brief stint on Twitter. While there, I found a group of fellow fibromites and some of them had blogs. We subscribed to each other's blogs and created our own, (myself included,) exchanging stories and insights about our many challenges. We wrote frequently back then, as there was a lot we had to say.

Maybe it's all been said now. I feel like I'm caught up on all the nuances of this fibro life, yet I still look for news and different perspectives here and there. Once in a great while, I share my own.

This has become clear recently while reviewing my Facebook Memories from years past. I used to post about my pains and health challenges, and sometimes my health victories. Now, I feel I don't want to bore or annoy my Facebook friends with the tedium of my particular collection of health problems. They may not understand what it's like to live like this, but maybe they don't need to.

I have learned that most everyone has their own set of problems. Would I want to read about them all? Wouldn't I start to see certain people as their most frequent complaints? This is not how I want people to see me. I am a person with interests and convictions. I look for opportunities to be more interesting. I am trying to live life.

Hopefully the lost fibro bloggers are all out living their lives and trying not to wallow in their pain. Although I know blogging is a good outlet for dealing with the struggles of living with an invisible illness, I know it can have the unfortunate consequence of limiting one's ability to move beyond that focus.

Today, my advice is to try to forget the bad and focus on the good, the positive. What can you do? What can you enjoy. Be a whole person.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

A Long, Long Year, and a Poem

It's been a long, and difficult spring and summer for my husband and me. He has Crohn's, as many of you know, and it has turned his life upside down, starting with an intestinal obstruction with micro-perforation that occurred in mid-March, and resulted in an emergency ileostomy that was supposed to be reversed after 3 months. Since then, it's been one complication after another. He is still dealing with the problems we never knew about until all this happened.

However, as he nears his reconnection surgery date, we have been trying to get his weight and strength back up, and one of the things we have been doing is walking every day. Those walks inspired this poem. I hope you enjoy it.

The Same Old Path by Benia Zouras