Interview: Message Board Administrator – Wendy aka “Beautifulbigblonde”


We at have been blessed to have so many wonderful, helpful and dedicated volunteers. One of our first and best volunteers is Wendy aka “Beautifulbigblonde” on our message boards. She has helped us build a friendly community and a safe place to chat and post. We could not have done it without her. In this interview we take the opportunity to get to know her better.

BYDLS: How did you first find and the message boards?
WENDY: I had a friend on Yahoo! Messenger who also had Fibromyalgia amongst other things, and she sent me the link to “The Spoon Theory“, Once I read it, I knew I was home. I knew that this place was going to be somewhere I could come to be understood. I noticed that there were message boards, they had only been in existence 2 weeks, so I joined.
BYDLS: What are some of your job responsibilities as “ Message Board Admin”?
WENDY: As Message Board Admin, I usually log into the boards everyday and check the new posts. I make sure that nobody is posting anything they shouldn’t be. I answer any questions that the moderators have, or individual spoonies have as soon as possible. I also rectify any problems or questions any members have with our message boards, like registration or log in questions, avatar issues or posting problems. I check all the new members to make sure that we have nobody trying to “spam” the boards. Then if and when I have 5 minutes, I then try to post something supportive or witty HA!.. Notice I say TRY! 🙂
BYDLS: Why do you volunteer your time for the site?
WENDY: I was asked to become a message board host when I had been a member for a few months, and was really honored. I felt that just being asked to be part of this site, was worthy of putting my time in. Being able to help people and just give people a reason to smile was a great reason to be part of People come here to seek understanding, a shoulder to cry on, and the feeling they belong. That’s why I volunteer.
BYDLS: Do you have invisible illnesses, and how do they effect your daily life?
WENDY: I have Fibromyalgia, High Blood Pressure, High Cholesterol, GERD and possibly IBS. Now I possibly have Costocondritis too. (Last two are undiagnosed.) The High BP and Cholesterol issues are all controlled by medication. I am on the Milnacipran/Fibromyalgia study which is providing me with a new drug to help control Fibromyalgia pain, right now I have only just started it, so I can’t tell you how it’s going to go. But I am taking Ultram for pain. I usually manage pretty good with everything going on. It’s the FMS that can slow me down, so sometimes I have to learn to limit myself. It’s not easy limiting yourself when you have always been so active. But it’s not all that bad.
BYDLS: When not on what other things do you do on the internet?
WENDY: I usually chat to some friends either on Yahoo!, MSN or Aol messengers, I go onto German Shepherd websites and message boards, as I have two German Shepherds of my own. My 5 yr old male called Nitro and an 18 month old girl called Khya. I check on my friends photo websites for updates on pictures there. I send emails to my friends and family.
BYDLS: Tell us about your family/ home life? How has being sick effected those areas of your life?
WENDY: I live in Orlando Florida. I am married with a 15 yr old son. I have two German Shepherds, two grey tabby cats, two turtles and two beta fish. I work full time in Orlando. I spend any spare time, after time spent with my family, on the message boards making sure everything is running smoothly. Then everything else comes after. I think being sick has made me learn to take it a day at a time and understand that when I am doing too much I need to take time out. My family are very understanding and know that when I have done too much I need to relax and recoup so I can save more “spoons” for family things.
BYDLS: What do you do for work? How has being sick effected your work?
WENDY: I am a nanny to three gorgeous children all under the age of 3. It does affect me some days being sick. We all have the “low spoon days”, or the achy days. I just have to suck it up and get on with it some days. I find that if I need it, I can usually take a pain killer and get through my day. Some days however I have been known to get home, relax with my dogs and husband and fall asleep until the next morning!
BYDLS: Do you have any hobbies? What do you like to do for fun?
WENDY: I volunteer at my local animal services, I like to bead, and I like to go watch movies. I have annual passes for Universal Studios, so I like to go down there, “spoons” allowing. I like to spend time with family and friends, again “spoons” allowing.
BYDLS: Do you have a “spoon” collection? Tell us about it.
WENDY: I have a Spoon Angel and a GREEN M&M’s Spoon that a very special Spoonie sent to me, I have a beaded spoon that another Special spoonie sent to me, I have several spoon pins, I have two Spoon Rings, two bracelets and two Necklaces that Special Spoonies also sent to me. There are really some beautiful people on the boards, who let you know just how wonderful they think you are in the sweetest of ways. Thank you to each and every one of you for sending me these beautiful gifts! I also have a Spoon Rose.
BYDLS: Do you have any tips or advice for anyone else wanting to live life to the fullest while “not looking sick”?
WENDY: Just to know your limitations, to not try to live every single day as if you were normal. To enjoy your life, but adapt it to your own personal set of rules. Doing too much doesn’t make you a martyr, it makes you foolish. I have learned that the hard way. Asking for help is never shameful! It’s wise. Also just a smile and a hug is sometimes all people need from you, not the grand gestures. As long as you have Pj’s, heat pads and cocoa, life is good!!!
Interview by Christine Miserandino, © 2007

  • JewesVN

    Love this! Nice to see a pic and a background on you. I have noticed the time you spend helping out at bydls and wondered how you “keep up”.
    Thank you for all that you do and for helping us to have a place to go where someone CARES AND UNDERSTANDS US!
    I have only been a member of bydls for about two months but in such a short time I have met many virtual friends through here who all have given me hope, encouragement and a ear.
    Thanks again for all that you and BYDLS do. I understand what a sacrifice it must be to give of your time and energy when we are so limited.
    Blessings and Spoons of appreciation,
    Julie VanNorman 🙂