Women Veterans of Freeborn County

Published 9:00 am Sunday, March 29, 2015

The regularly scheduled meeting of the Women Veterans of Freeborn County met at 11:30 a.m. March 4 at the American Legion Post 56 in Albert Lea.

Women veterans present included Ruth Perry, Judi Olson, Sandy Maiden, Joan Paczkowski, Pat Johannsen, Deanna Luedtke, guest Jane Maiden and guest Roxie Adams.

Sandy Maiden announced she has ordered the Woman Veterans license plate but she is not sure when it will be available to her.

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Minutes of the last meeting were handed out.

Treasurer’s report was read.

Luedtke announced there would be a presentation at 2 p.m. today about the history of Albert Lea at Oak Park Place, which will be narrated by Pat Mulso from the museum.

The group discussed various personal interests and collectable items.

Paczkowski and Johannsen will also be helping at St. John’s Lutheran Home on March 8. They will be making and helping serve cakes and desserts to the residents.

Luedtke shared an article entitled, “Control Your Pain and Take Back Your Life.” In summary, the article encouraged several different key points which were discussed. First off, don’t let it start. Exercise and meditation seem to help some people. Research suggests that these activities may help to alter the brain in some protective way. Name your pain. Doctors used to identify pain by the cause, i.e. cancer, arthritis, etc. Now, they try to identify pain by the effects on the nervous system, i.e. inflammatory pain (burn), dysfunctional pain (fibromyalgia), or nerve damage such as from surgery or shingles. Even though pain is not visible researchers are using MRIs to identify pain centers in the brain. They can look at a person’s brain and prove they are hurting. They can give medication or other treatment to see which parts of the brain have changed. This could be an incredible new way of treating specific chronic pain. It is important to treat pain as soon as possible. Besides hurting, it can lead to depression. It has been shown that chronic pain may actually reduce someone’s brain tissue by up to 11 percent. Non-drug treatments may include acupuncture, cognitive behavioral therapy, meditation, spinal cord stimulation or deep brain stimulation.

Items for the food pantry were collected and Olson volunteered to deliver it to the food pantry. Thank you, Olson.

An excellent St. Patrick’s Day cake was made by Johannsen. The group had two desserts after lunch. Paczkowski made a wonderful bread pudding and Luedtke made a bourbon sauce to put on it.

The next meeting will be at 11:30 a.m. at American Legion Post 56. They would encourage all women military veterans to join them for an informal lunch, discussion and camaraderie. Those who would like more information can call Luedtke at (507) 473-2000.