samantha sloves

@samanthasloves
In 2018 I started a blog: https://samanthasloves.com. I realized over the years while I was sick that I went online all the time looking for advice and someone to comfort me. I never found that. That is why I started “Trapped,” so no one feels as alone as I felt. My readers are not just people suffering with illness but anyone suffering. I do not want anyone to feel alone. Illness, divorce, relationships, high school, hospitals, death, and life in general can be isolating. I now have a regular viewership and following in over 20 countries. I often work with Global Lyme Alliance in spreading awareness for Lyme Disease and other tick-borne illnesses. When I started my website, I told myself if I could make one person feel better, I did my job. I now speak to a lot of my followers daily, and it has not only helped them, but also helped me so much in the healing process. I never imagined that this is where I’d be in my life, but it is. Now that I’m here, I would just like to use the knowledge that I have to help others.
Community Voices

HOW AMAZING ARE YOU?

HOW ARE YOU? We are asked this all the time, casually. Though never really a genuine how are YOU? Are you taking care of yourself? Taking time for yourself?

If you were asked a few follow up questions from “how are you” on a scale of 1-5 what would your answer be? No one knows your answers but you. Now, no one knows what you are thinking or what any of your answers to the chart will be, but YOU. Just think. How is life going?

Terrible. —–1—–2—–3—–4—–5—– Amazing.

Unhealthy. —–1—–2—–3—–4—–5—– Healthy.

Weak. —–1—–2—–3—–4—–5—– Strong.

Where I am at … my turn to answer the BIG question!

There are two sides of the spectrum. Two extremes. Somewhere in the middle? Personally, I am solidly in the middle; my life is definitely not completely amazing, but it is getting there. I am not completely healthy, but I am much better than where I was. I still don’t have all of my strength back, but I am getting there. Emotionally I would say I am pretty strong. Life gave me no choice but to be strong, and I am working on getting more towards the right side of the spectrum daily.

Now back to you!

I know what you’re thinking… what do I know? Your life isn’t perfect. I get it, just hear me out ok? … Ok. Good, glad we had that chat.

If you are satisfied with your answers, great. Life is good for you.

If you are reading this, shaking your head saying everything’s amazing, first you are lucky, second don’t take it for granted! Personally, I have never met anyone whose life is perfect. You would be my first. Enjoy it while it lasts! Do not forget to comment below and tell me your secret to the glorious life! (there’s a comment section for a reason).

If your answers scored in the middle and you are thinking to yourself right now: very mediocre, my life has room for improvement, I hear you. I have been there. I still am there. Whether you’re struggling with #Depression, going through a divorce, relationship issues, have an illness, mourning a loss, or you’re just dealing with life, whatever it may be, take a second and breathe. Block out whatever “noise” you’re surrounded by, and just BREATHE. I know it is hard, trust me! Just try.

YOU HAVE ONE BODY IN THIS LIFE, NOW LET’S TAKE CARE OF IT!

Somehow for many of us self-care is the first thing we take off our daily to-do list when we’re rushed for work, school, or a busy holiday season. OR when going through a crisis. We have one body in this lifetime, and we have to take care of it! I only know this from experience.

Unfortunately, it is common for mothers with a newborn, or people struggling with a #ChronicIllness, depression, or the elderly, to have increased difficulties showering, getting out of the house, eating, socializing, doing laundry, going to the gym, etc. I know for me personally, when I was at my weakest, I made it a point every single day to get out of my pajamas. That may sound like no big deal to some people. But if you get me, ya get ME!

I was sick for four years. I learned how crucial it is to not start looking, how you feel. I’ve done this quite a few times, and I am not proud of letting myself go. I will never do it again.

No matter what happens in your life, a lot of it is out of your hands. However, you can control how you react. Try to deal with it the best way you can. When going through troubling times, it is nearly impossible to stay positive all the time. I know this better than anyone … but I have learned that being negative gets you nowhere, so just try to be positive when you can. When you have an off day, you have an off day. It’s okay. You’ll get through the day. And whenever you want to cry, LAUGH! Here is why: because if you can’t laugh, you cry. Crying all the time is depressing. It is only going to make you more upset and give you wrinkles! I know I sound like an annoying guru or therapist. I get it. I hate when people say this. Why do I think I am somehow different? Here is why:

I have been through hell and back. I am not perfect. I am not always positive. But I try my best to be. I learned that being negative is not changing anything. It is just going to make things worse-make you look bad, make the people around you feel worse. There is no point in being negative. Be positive. PLEASE know that there is always a way out! It may take longer and be hard, stressful, and annoying, but no matter what is stopping you from your complete happiness or being at ease in life, do not give up. There is an answer, and you will find it and get your freedom back. It may not be right away, or a magic pill overnight that we all hope and pray will be there tomorrow, but there will be something. I won’t stop until there is, and neither should you.

You shouldn’t stop until your day today was better than yesterday. It will come. You just have to believe and you will receive!

© Samantha Sloves 2019

4 people are talking about this
Community Voices

AM I THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM?

People have been telling me to start a blog, or just do something to get “my story” out there for years now. So here it is I’m finally getting my act together!

I have been diagnosed with #LymeDisease, other tick borne illnesses, and have had tons complications from all of it. But enough of my medical history and more about me. I absolutely hate being sick. I’m not someone who plays victim or does that because it’s so not me. If you know me at all you know that (well now you do). Before this I was actually not as private as I became maybe private isn’t the word I’m looking for, mmmm…. selective with my trust. When I’m around people now they become so uncomfortable with illness and make it this big thing and forget that I’m a person not an illness or a wheelchair. If I had the flu they would come over bring soup and get on with the conversation. They get uncomfortable which makes me super uncomfortable, and puts a big elephant in the room. So I stopped seeing a lot of my friends and family, because I didn’t want that energy, the awkward pity they act like they don’t have in the room and I just don’t have the energy anymore to be as social as I was, and go out as much.

Of course I still see my very close friends that have been here for me. And you really learn who they are at times like these and are often surprised. People I wasn’t as close to four years ago have become my best friends and some of my closest friends from before this are now strangers. I miss being social and going out and about to the movies, mall, and parties with friends like old times.

I have missed years of important events not just my own and feel completely robbed of my teenage years, I feel like a stranger going through the motions but can’t fathom that this became my life. This can’t be real I say at least 3 times a week to my brother when he comes into my room he always say to me “is this all a bad night mare?” Am I going to wake up sleeping at my desk at school tomorrow?

I can barely recognize myself some days. It feels like my body has been hijacked. So much is different. That’s why it’s so important to try to look better than you feel, it is so easy to let yourself go and fall into a rut and not care at all. Trust me I know. Make that effort as exhausting and hard as it is, its! You are worth it. I know because it has taken awhile for me to follow my own advice.

Although a lot in my life has changed, and I’m not able to do as much as I used to which is very hard for me to admit to myself and say out loud, it is not permanent. I know that and am eternally grateful. I know it’s a luxury not all people have. Being in so many hospitals really changes your perspective on life.

If you hang out with me and know me or anyone else that’s going through something you know at the core they are still them. Just with some scars (not all physical)! So don’t treat them like some damaged goods that you’re afraid to talk and be around. Because you may think that’s helping them but that’s the worst thing! Well at least for me and the people … my friends that I’ve met throughout these past few years of hell! No not my “amazing journey that I have embarked on” these past few years have been ups and downs and all around. Many different states, doctors, hundreds of blood tests, and painful cringe worthy tests (so many you couldn’t even put them on your fingers), waiting rooms, places and experiences I never imagined I would encounter or envision myself doing or going.

As my mom tells me on those really hard moments when I don’t think I’m going to get through this she says “you are strong and it’s happening so you just got to get through this day to get to the next one and hope for a better one!”. I have learned that better days don’t always come right away and it sucks waking up not having that magical pill work but it’s going to come you just have to believe.

God gives people what they can handle. I have come to believe everything happens for a reason. Maybe I was given this to help other people going through the same thing and spread awareness so it doesn’t happen to anyone else.

And no I’m not always so positive and optimistic but I do my best that’s why I surround myself with people who I know it sounds corny, but that pick me up when I’m down! That’s what good family and friends are for! I always say if I was on Real Housewives on Bravo my tagline and it’s basically my words to live by are: if you’re not there through it all, you shouldn’t be there at all! So there it goes my first blog post! Hope I can help some other people by opening up and being my authentic, unfiltered, raw self or just get to know and connect with others! I’m no professional advisor just trying to get through each day!

Tata for now!

Xoxo Sammy

Sending positive good healing vibes to all suffering! Hope tomorrow is a better day!

© Samantha Sloves 2019

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Community Voices

35 GIFTS AND TIPS TO SUPPORT SOMEONE ILL

Hi everyone! So this is definitely a topic that I never would have known about if I had never gotten sick. But I did and I now, unfortunately, know. I have learned that people are usually speechless and awkward when looking for the words to say and what to do and buy somebody who is ill. Here are some helpful hints on what to buy!

ALL THINGS SOFT:

Pillow (Pillows are great especially when you are in a hospital. I got one when I was hospitalized the first time and brought it with me to every one afterwards.)

Blankets that are soft (This is the only thing you want when you’re in bed a lot at home or in the hospital, but especially when you’re in the hospital.)

Robe

Socks – fuzzy, soft, and patterned

Pajamas – cute ones (When in pajamas a lot you can get into a funk… it is nice to have nicer pajamas. No, this doesn’t change the fact that you are still in pajamas, but it just makes you feel a tiny bit better.)

Sweats

Stuffed animal – if you’re a kid, not a big one that you will have to bring home with all the other belongings if this is for someone hospitalized.

GROOMING:

Face mask

Nail polish, remover, clipper, file (manicure set)

Massage gift card

Hair salon gift card (it is hard to do your own hair when you do not feel well)

Manicure – pedicure gift card (I don’t know about you but this always puts a smile on my face even on my WORST days and I mean worst!)

READING MATERIAL:

Magazines

Books (try not to get depressing stories)

DIGITAL:

Online shopping gift card

itunes gift card

Amazon gift card

Netflix/Hulu subscription

DISTRACTIONS: ( I NEVER THOUGHT I WOULD ENJOY TOYS I PLAYED WITH AS A KID SO MUCH UNTIL I WAS SITTING IN A CHAIR WITH AN IV IN MY ARM FOR HOURS AND IT WAS THE BEST DISTRACTION I EVER HAD!)

Etch-a-Sketch

Rubik’s Cube

MY FAVORITE: Toysmith classic pin art 3D velvet (Look this up it’s that push pin where you put your hand down and it makes a shape. What I just wrote was the “formal” name you can use to buy it.)

Yo-Yo

Adult coloring book

Fidget spinner

IF THEY ARE IN THE HOSPITAL FOR A LONG TIME:

Pictures

Poster

Just stuff to put on wall (walls in hospital are depressing, and you tend to stare at them when you are just sitting there for awhile)

Ear plugs (alarms go off all night in hospitals)

Soft, dark sleep mask-bright in hospitals (I can’t sleep without one ever since I have been in a hospital)

Notebook and pen

Anything on this list

Just be there for them – call, text, and go and see them!!!

When you go and visit them.

Some tips will be in the next post on what to say and not to say. People often try to be comforting and end up being the opposite without even realizing.

DO WHAT THEY CAN’T:

Help out with rides for the other kids

Help them do their laundry (I know this not fun but very helpful)

Helping them with the dishes (Again I know this is not fun, but helpful)

Ask them what type of food they can eat and either pick it up or cook it for them

Cleaning service for someone who can’t clean and lives alone

WHAT NOT TO BUY:

Not something big to carry ( especially if they are in the hospital)

Flowers (personally I hated flowers and most hospitals don’t let you bring them up for allergy purposes … in my experience )

Before buying food, ask them if they have a restricted diet. I have had people buy me sweets so many times when I was on medication that I could not have sugar or salt on, and it was just a temptation and another aggravation. Trust me when someone sends you Baked by Melissa you want it. It is annoying, SO ASK! I personally think a gift card to a restaurant that you know the person eats at is best because you then don’t even have to start the whole discussion. In the case of a chronically ill family member or friend, a meal could be very helpful though, so just ask so it is not a complete waste.

TIPS ON HOW TO TAKE YOURSELF:

Even just simply wearing your favorite hat, or putting your hair in a braid, putting on lip-gloss, changing into your favorite outfit, going to the gym, calling a friend, putting on fresh clothes, yoga, maybe even cheating on your diet, or going out with friends, going to the mall, manicure, pedicure, car show, movies, anything … whatever makes you feel more like yourself, it doesn’t have to be something physical. Whatever helps you feel like you and makes you more centered. NOW GO DO IT!

© Samantha Sloves 2019

#ChronicIllness

3 people are talking about this
Community Voices

HOW AMAZING ARE YOU?

HOW ARE YOU? We are asked this all the time, casually. Though never really a genuine how are YOU? Are you taking care of yourself? Taking time for yourself?

If you were asked a few follow up questions from “how are you” on a scale of 1-5 what would your answer be? No one knows your answers but you. Now, no one knows what you are thinking or what any of your answers to the chart will be, but YOU. Just think. How is life going?

Terrible. —–1—–2—–3—–4—–5—– Amazing.

Unhealthy. —–1—–2—–3—–4—–5—– Healthy.

Weak. —–1—–2—–3—–4—–5—– Strong.

Where I am at … my turn to answer the BIG question!

There are two sides of the spectrum. Two extremes. Somewhere in the middle? Personally, I am solidly in the middle; my life is definitely not completely amazing, but it is getting there. I am not completely healthy, but I am much better than where I was. I still don’t have all of my strength back, but I am getting there. Emotionally I would say I am pretty strong. Life gave me no choice but to be strong, and I am working on getting more towards the right side of the spectrum daily.

Now back to you!

I know what you’re thinking… what do I know? Your life isn’t perfect. I get it, just hear me out ok? … Ok. Good, glad we had that chat.

If you are satisfied with your answers, great. Life is good for you.

If you are reading this, shaking your head saying everything’s amazing, first you are lucky, second don’t take it for granted! Personally, I have never met anyone whose life is perfect. You would be my first. Enjoy it while it lasts! Do not forget to comment below and tell me your secret to the glorious life! (there’s a comment section for a reason).

If your answers scored in the middle and you are thinking to yourself right now: very mediocre, my life has room for improvement, I hear you. I have been there. I still am there. Whether you’re struggling with #Depression, going through a divorce, relationship issues, have an illness, mourning a loss, or you’re just dealing with life, whatever it may be, take a second and breathe. Block out whatever “noise” you’re surrounded by, and just BREATHE. I know it is hard, trust me! Just try.

YOU HAVE ONE BODY IN THIS LIFE, NOW LET’S TAKE CARE OF IT!

Somehow for many of us self-care is the first thing we take off our daily to-do list when we’re rushed for work, school, or a busy holiday season. OR when going through a crisis. We have one body in this lifetime, and we have to take care of it! I only know this from experience.

Unfortunately, it is common for mothers with a newborn, or people struggling with a #ChronicIllness, depression, or the elderly, to have increased difficulties showering, getting out of the house, eating, socializing, doing laundry, going to the gym, etc. I know for me personally, when I was at my weakest, I made it a point every single day to get out of my pajamas. That may sound like no big deal to some people. But if you get me, ya get ME!

I was sick for four years. I learned how crucial it is to not start looking, how you feel. I’ve done this quite a few times, and I am not proud of letting myself go. I will never do it again.

No matter what happens in your life, a lot of it is out of your hands. However, you can control how you react. Try to deal with it the best way you can. When going through troubling times, it is nearly impossible to stay positive all the time. I know this better than anyone … but I have learned that being negative gets you nowhere, so just try to be positive when you can. When you have an off day, you have an off day. It’s okay. You’ll get through the day. And whenever you want to cry, LAUGH! Here is why: because if you can’t laugh, you cry. Crying all the time is depressing. It is only going to make you more upset and give you wrinkles! I know I sound like an annoying guru or therapist. I get it. I hate when people say this. Why do I think I am somehow different? Here is why:

I have been through hell and back. I am not perfect. I am not always positive. But I try my best to be. I learned that being negative is not changing anything. It is just going to make things worse-make you look bad, make the people around you feel worse. There is no point in being negative. Be positive. PLEASE know that there is always a way out! It may take longer and be hard, stressful, and annoying, but no matter what is stopping you from your complete happiness or being at ease in life, do not give up. There is an answer, and you will find it and get your freedom back. It may not be right away, or a magic pill overnight that we all hope and pray will be there tomorrow, but there will be something. I won’t stop until there is, and neither should you.

You shouldn’t stop until your day today was better than yesterday. It will come. You just have to believe and you will receive!

© Samantha Sloves 2019

4 people are talking about this