A Cheerful Approach To A Chronic Situation

A cheerful look brings joy to the heart, and good news health to the bones. Proverbs 15:30

It’s a gorgeous morning. The sun is shining, the birds are singing.

I can hear neighbours chatting as they enjoy a morning walk and a cool gentle breeze is blowing through my bedroom window.

I’m resting on my bed in the hope my broken bones will soon cease screaming at me. Pain meds will take the edge off eventually and I’ll be able to stand long enough to sort out my stoma and get dressed for the day.

Sometimes You Just Have To Laugh

I don’t have any concrete plans today. I am pretty much housebound every day. COVID-19 has had little effect on me in terms of changing my lifestyle. Social Distancing, self isolating and even lockdown are my norms.

Despite that I still like to dress as if I have something special to do.

Smart casual is my style…or it is now. It used to be corporate suits with high-heeled shoes. I miss that but I quite like my new wardrobe.

Everything has elasticated waists for comfort and ease of wear, plus it works better sitting over my stoma. I like slightly fitted, tunic style tops over 3/4 length bengaline pants. They must be easy to pull on and off and be made of slightly stretchy material to allow me to move freely.

The pants hug my legs a little, as this provides my broken bones extra support when I stand. A bit like bandages. So there is a slight method to my madness of getting dressed like this each day.

I’ve learned the hard way when it’s come to reinventing my wardrobe. My husband and I have been known to cut me out of tops that haven’t stretched, as I couldn’t pull my arms in the right direction to get out of them.

Sad….but oh so funny. On those occasions, through tears of laughter, I’ve managed to give my husband clear cutting directions while I’ve been stuck in the top. A great trust exercise!! Thankfully no one has been harmed during such a procedure. His handiwork has been so good, after each “surgical removal”, I’ve been able to turn the top into a jacket. Bonus!

You really do just have to sit back and laugh sometimes at such a ludicrous  situation.

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Letting A Cheerful Heart Emerge

Today and everyday I’m enjoying what I can do, rather than thinking about the things I can’t do.

It’s not easy.

A concerted effort over time was needed to change my mindset but it was well worth the effort. It’s always worth the effort.

That moment when the focus shifts to the possible, rather than looking at the impossible, is a life changing moment. It’s the moment a cheerful heart has room to emerge.

Don’t get me wrong, dreaming of the impossible, holding onto hopes and dreams, believing they can happen, is also important at times.

But when the very basics of life are verging on the impossible every day, a dose of reality and being grateful for what you can do, is so important.

A Chronic Situation

I’ve had a really tough few months with some bad news on the health front.

I have new spinal stenosis issues at L4/L5 and L5/S1. My recent spinal surgeries at L4 have been successful but have left my spine with instability issues. I have some kind of lesion in my spinal cord, all contributing to extreme pain and disability.

I’ve also been reminded by my medical team, my rare bone disease is progressing and there is no treatment and no cure.

While I need further spinal surgery, my Spinal Orthopeadic Surgeon is concerned I am at such a high risk for permanent complications or worse, we have both agreed no more for the moment.

I’ve been reminded by my lower limb Orthopaedic Specialist, my femur bone graft in 2016 just dissolved in a month as if it never happened. We are dealing with a rare complex disease that has a mind of it’s own. It’s not following any rules of medical logic.

My left femur is still well and truly broken nearly 6 years on from the initial break. It’s now classified as a permanent break. With the progression of my disease, my body is affected from head to toe with various ongoing fractures and systemic issues.

I can’t sleep or sit comfortably. Getting in and out of chairs or the car or any movement at all really, causes excruciating pain resulting in debilitating fatigue.

Pain medication only takes the edge off at best. I could increase the medication but it would completely reduce my ability to write, think and support others through my online forum. I would end up both physically and mentally disabled and it’s just not worth it for me.

It’s a chronic situation and one that requires me to make difficult choices to ensure I am living the best life possible.

The Best Medicine

I’ve needed some encouragement over the past few weeks. It’s can be a bit hard to come by when feeling so overwhelmed with pain and disease.

When the punches keep coming an encouraging word means so much, especially when you are really limited in what you can do.

Encouragement can come from friends and family, even strangers, or from something you’ve read.

A cheerful look brings joy to the heart, and good news health to the bones. Proverbs 15:30

This little proverb was on my calendar and it reminded me how much a cheerful heart really is the best medicine.

It encouraged me and confirmed I am on the right track when I focus on helping others, encouraging others.

I need to keep surrounding myself with things that encourage me and make me happy, so that I’m able to bring ongoing cheer and a sense of well-being to others.

It’s good medicine to do so. According to the Proverb, it even brings good health to the bones to give a cheerful look!!

So why are my bones so bad you may ask, especially those of you who know me well and know I give cheerful looks constantly?

Well, I don’t think it’s supposed to be literal. It means to give a cheerful look or to be cheerful, gives you a sense of well-being. When battling a chronic disease or dealing with any difficult chapter in your life, that sense of well being is exactly what is needed to help sustain you.

That being said, I did smile and felt very encouraged that the Proverb says “good news brings health to the bones”. A sense of hope flooded my soul and that’s a good thing. We all need hope and as a Christian, I believe and know that my seemingly hopeless situation is well and truly in God’s hands.

If God wants to send me “good news that will bring health to my bones”, then I believe it is absolutely possible.

In fact I do receive the gift of “good health” every day. Each encouraging interaction I have with others or each time I provide encouragement, I have a greater sense of well-being.

Without the good news of a cure or treatment, I am resolved to remain working on having a cheerful heart. It does make a difference to my overall well-being.

Giving cheerful looks and encouraging words to others, truly is good medicine.

Take care

Sam x

WEGO Health Award Announcement

Hi Everyone,

Firstly I want to thank those who nominated me for three #WEGOHealthAwards for 2020. I am so honoured and grateful as this is an amazing opportunity to raise awareness of my Facebook Support Forum, Medical Musings with Friends , and reach out to more people in need of genuine care and support.

So, now I’m nominated my goal is to become a finalist, particularly in the Best in Show: Community Award category.

The link below will allow you to click “Endorse” my nominations, which is the way the voting system works in the WEGO Health Awards.

You will see you can Endorse me for one, two, or three categories. Once you click the Endorse button it takes you to another screen where you choose which award nomination you are endorsing:

  1. Best in Show: Community
  2. Best in Show: Blog
  3. Health Care Collaborator

Thank you so much for your support, not just of me but for my forum and for helping me spread the word about Medical Musings with Friends.

If I can reach more people in need, as a result of these nominations, I will be absolutely delighted.

Love
Sam xx 💞💞

Healthcare Collaborator Nominee 2020
Best in Show: Community Nominee 2020
Best in Show: Blog Nominee 2020

https://www.wegohealth.com/Sam/awards

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 Contributor at “The Mighty”. You can check out my published articles at My Author Page

I also write @ Blogs by Christian Women

I’m a member of the Chronic Illness Bloggers Network, the Grace Girls Facebook Group and Salt and Light Linkup Group

If you would like to read a little more about my journey, here’s the link to My Story

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12 thoughts on “A Cheerful Approach To A Chronic Situation

  1. Like Barnabas, you, Dearest Sam, are a great encourager! Happy Birthday on the 14th July😇❤️🎶🎼🎉🎁🎂🙏🏼
    Much Love to you. Peter & Lesley. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A good laugh is the best way to improve anyone’s day. I try to laugh as much as possible. Even when Sheryl tells me to be quite. Be quite? No way, It has to come out. After all I am an only child. Of course i need noticed. SO LET ME LAUGH !!!!!

    ok I will do it quietly, I PROMISE !!!!!!!!

    Like

  3. Some times the situations we find ourselves in are so ridiculous! I could totally envision the shirt to jacket scenario! I’ve had a sports bra get the best of me and my poor sore shoulders. Good thing I could call out for help to get it off the rest of the way. (Any tops/bras like this are no longer in my wardrobe!) We gotta laugh:) It would be too defeating if we didn’t.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Katie. I’m glad I’m not the only one with the wardrobe malfunctions. A sense of humour really needs to be mandatory DNA for those of us with chronic illness I think. Certainly makes it easier to have one doesn’t it ☺🤭

      Like

  4. I know you put on a brave face and voice encouragement to others so very well, while not always feeling it, Sam. And yet I still think your enthusiasm, your perseverance and ‘cheerful approach’ are infectious. That proverb made me smile too – “good news brings health to the bones”. If only that were true in a realistic sense! I’ve found that laughing at things and at myself makes a huge difference. Sometimes we can’t see the humour or lightness when we’re deep in the situation but as long as we can try to see that side of it afterwards then we can ease some of the pressure; it can become very depressing and disheartening otherwise. It takes strength to laugh at needing to be cut out of a top, after the scissors had been put down, of course! 😉
    You rock, Sam. And this encouragement you give others, even when you likely also need it yourself, is incredibly valuable. xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Caz. You really are such a beautiful soul and one of the special people in my life who bring me joy and encouragement every time I read your comments.
      You’re absolutely right that laughter is often after a less than funny moment, but it does do the soul good to look back on the horrible moments chronic illness dishes out, debrief and laugh at the ludicrousness of the situation. 💞💞

      Liked by 1 person

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