How many times have you said, “No worries, that’s as easy as…….”
I know I’ve said it countless times during my life. In fact that’s how I used to live my life. Everything was seemingly easy and if it wasn’t I could quickly convince myself it was.
I had a positive can do, absolutely, yes to everything, kind of attitude to life.
I still have that attitude but my chronically ill, crumbling and disabled body, really does struggle to get with the agenda.
A Gradual Awakening
I feel blessed my change in life circumstances have gradually evolved. Many are faced with a drastic and life altering diagnosis in the blink of an eye. A serious accident or a terminal illness can so quickly turn life on its head.
My gradual awakening, while a blessing, has not been without its challenges. I suffer from fatigue due to my bone disease pain and autoimmune diseases but in general my brain manages to stay alert and functioning. At least I’m telling myself that at this stage!
The downfall of an active and alert brain, is the message “it’s not as easy as….”, fails to get through.
My brain still has a lifelong program installed, playing the opposite message, “you can do that, it’s as easy as……”.
Point In Case
Now I’m not completely stupid. I do know that my disabilities limit me severely. My regular readers will know I have made mountainous changes to the way I live my life.
Where I still trip up, is thinking that something as simple as packing a day bag for day surgery, will take me half an hour.
Ha…..how wrong could I be?
So here’s how that little exercise went;
- Got hospital day/overnight bag out of cupboard.
- Another bag fell on my foot…..oops a new stress fracture!
- Finally opened the bag (after trying to stand on my legs) to find that it was full of things I didn’t need.
- Emptied bag and gave surplus to requirement items to my husband. He had come to my rescue following the foot crisis.
- Realised that some of the things I thought were in the bag were not.
- Climbed on my stairlift for an unwanted trip upstairs.
- Gathered required items and headed back downstairs on the stairlift.
- Packed my pills ( you really don’t want to know or ask about that saga!)
- Realised I needed a few items from the shop and some prescriptions required refilling.
- Husband headed out to chemist, leaving me with firm instructions to sit and rest.
- I actually listened to his advice as I was in agony and I waited!
- Husband came home and I finished packing the remaining “normal” items.
- I say normal as next I needed to work out what I wanted to take in terms of my stoma supplies.
- I decided to pack each stoma change in a zip lock bag. This system works incredibly well when I’m trying to deal with bag changes and broken legs/feet. It does take time to pull together but worth the extra effort.
- Husband decided to tell me I perhaps should pack a little more in case they keep me in overnight. Thanks for that thought! Unfortunately with my medical history, experience tells us its a possibility.
- Extra packing gets underway.
- The whole process was spread over 4 hours!!
- Later that night, we were lying in bed just about to go to sleep, when I remembered I forgot to pack a spare set of underwear!
- Hubby got out of bed to put the items on top of the dresser so I’d see them in the morning. At this point we decided we’d completely had enough of this day/overnight bag shenanigans.
- Thankfully I still had 2 days to recover before my surgery!!
The Moral Of The Story
There is a moral to this story. It can probably be best summed up as;
With Chronic Illness it is never “as easy as!”
So many clichés spring to mind but I promise I will spare you those.
Basically we need to allow plenty of time to prepare for any lengthy event. Be that a holiday, surgery, a day visit to family or friends.
We can’t just think all will be ok on the day. We can’t just assume a task will take us 30 minutes like it did when we were healthy.
If we do we will set ourselves up for failure. Stress, anxiety, extra pain and fatigue and possibly not even making the event, are likely outcomes of not getting sorted days in advance.
My rule of thumb is, where possible, always allow 2 days minimum to recover from packing/preparing for an event.
We can’t guarantee how we will be on the day of the event, as Chronic Illness doesn’t like to play fair.
By being well prepared we can at least guarantee we will feel better, knowing whatever the outcome, we didn’t deliberately sabotage ourselves by leaving things to the last minute.
“It’s never as easy as, but it’s not impossible with a lot of preparation”
If you’re looking for genuine support, care, understanding & friendship, you are so welcome to join my closed Facebook support forum, Medical Musings with Friends . It’s a safe place to connect with others living with chronic & complex diseases, who truly understand the daily challenges. A warm welcome awaits.
I’m a regular Contributor at “The Mighty”. You can check out my published articles at My Author Page
I also write @ Blogs by Christian Women