Life is tough my darling but so are you!

Almost a year ago now I was working 40+ hours a week

running here there and everywhere to get things done and

spent my days off resting for the busy days ahead. Now my

life consists of numerous doctors appointments, waiting for

referrals, filling in benefit forms and remembering to take

tablets. I must admit it has been difficult to adjust to as I

have spent the last 3 years constantly on the go with a

schedule to tell me where I need to be and what I need to do.

Time at home used to be a very rare gift and I would count

the days until I had a day off. Now however, I spend most if

not all of my week sat at home procrastinating. It is very

difficult to be productive when you are always in pain as the

line between being productive and over doing it is very thin. I

find that on days that I have a burst of energy and feel

motivated often leave me paying for it for the next few days.

Living with a chronic illness of any kind can be pretty

challenging. It can be difficult to accomplish the tasks that

you need do however, actually doing these tasks takes a toll

on you mentally and emotionally and you often start

questioning your ability and worth. On many occasions I

have begun to question whether I will ever be able to go out

for a few hours without being left exhausted and in pain for

the days that follow. Battling with my condition has also had

a large impact on my social life. I am unable to plan in

advance as I may not feel up to venturing out when the day

arrives. I find myself often choosing to stay at home rather

than going out and meeting friends as I know what the

outcome will be and usually do not feel it is worth the

aftermath. I find it difficult to determine how much is too

much as on some days getting out of bed and having a shower

I could deem as too much.

 


Honestly, one of the things that has hit me hard is the

amount of weight gain the lack of productivity and

motivation has left me with. The tablets I am on also

do not help as one of the common side effects is weight

gain. This is one of the parts of chronic illness that I wanted

to talk openly about as I am sure it is something that many

people are going through, whether they are suffering with an

illness or just struggle to find the motivation. Exercise has

become really daunting and as much as I would love to get rid

of the extra weight, the pain and fatigue holds me back and it

is just easier to sit and eat that slice of cake. Don’t get me

wrong, it does not matter what size you are as long as you are

comfortable with that size. Unfortunately, I am not

comfortable and since becoming a size 16, I have become

more aware that my weight continues to increase. Most of my

clothes no longer fit and the thought of wearing anything

relatively tight makes me uncomfortable. However, in all of

this doom and gloom there is a light flickering at the end of

the tunnel. You have to think about why you want to lose

weight. Two of my main reasons would be to feel like myself

again and to feel healthier. Although I am unable to control

the medical side of things, I can try my best to take some

control of my body physically. There is exercise that you can

do but, you just have to make sure you pace yourself and

don’t over exert. I am trying to jump on the exercise bike

when I can but, not for too long and go to aqua aerobics when

I feel up to it. I just have to listen to my body and not work

against it and hopefully I will start seeing the benefits 🙂

In relation to productivity, many people living with a chronic

illness are aware of Christine Miserandinos spoon theory

which I have only recently learnt about myself. The general

idea of this theory is that someone suffering with a chronic

illness or chronic pain would start there day with X amount

of ‘spoons’. This person will then exchange a certain amount

of spoons for each task (this would vary based on the

intensity of the task and how long it would take amongst

other things). The point of this concept is that you only have

a certain number of spoons to use on each day so you must

use them wisely. You can hypothetically borrow spoons from

the following but, this will leave you with less to use on the

next day. I have found this concept useful when prioritising

tasks and to make sure I do not overwork even on days when

I have the energy to do more. I would recommend the spoon

theory as something to be mindful of and also as a good read.

I didn’t write this post to get any sympathy and I don’t claim

to know the ins and outs of what is best for you but, even if

one person person finds comfort in knowing that they are not

alone when it comes to feeling unproductive, then to me this

blog is worth writing.

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