Oh-My-Goodness!

United States
September 22, 2011 6:31pm CST
Okay, so let us take some inventory here. As my friends here know through my many discussions on this topic, I am permanently disabled due to a combination of many painful conditions that limit what I can and cannot do. Between the arthritis and the fibromyalgia, I am virtually bed ridden at least 75% of the time. That said, I am also one who refuses to give up and prefer to do as much as I am able to rather than lay in my bed and just wait for death. Let me recap what this past week has been like for me. It started with me trying to get some exercise (which I normally cannot do) by taking a walk through my neighborhood. As a terminally practical person, I took along my shopping cart and collected cans and bottles which I turned in for the cash. I did this not on consecutive days but staggered them so that I didn't overdo and trigger a fibro flairup. I was doing well so I tackled my sewing room, moving everything out of it and tearing up the carpet and padding! I even put them into the garbage can for pickup, although it took me a couple days to do that. I then swept the bare floor so that when my friend comes to pull up the wooden strips that run around the edge of the floor she doesn't have to kneel in dirt. Well, I managed pretty well and felt encouraged so I then proceeded to volunteer my time to help my sister go through her books, deciding what she wanted to keep and what she wanted me to sell for her on half.com. I took home about 40 books to list for her and by then my energy was at a peak so... I then volunteered to help my friend with the stuff her mother in law left behind when she died. Oh-My-Goodness! This project may be the one that does me in. Tuesday I went over and got two sets of porcelain doll molds and two boxes of books. That was enough to put me on my back for all of yesterday. My hands were so inflamed that they felt like they had first degree burns on them. Today (Thursday) I wasn't really fully recovered from Tuesday but went over to my friend's place again. This time I filled the entire back of my SUV (with the seats down) with boxes of books. I think there must be about 16 boxes in there...and we have only dented the amount that there are. There are still a ton of doll supplies to gather and go through and at least as many more books. Now, my friend is very sweet and suggested that I could do this for a living...taking peoples' stuff and sell it for them...but, frankly, I could not keep up the pace. Not only is my house small and room for the inventory limited, but my body could never manage so much work!...and much of that work is physical. Needless to say, I am going to be paying for all this work for a long time to come. I cannot even fathom doing this on a regular basis. Still, it feels good to have something to do, to feel useful and to be appreciated. As a disabled individual, I often run into attitudes in the public that are hurtful to me. I am often viewed as lazy and shiftless and have even been refused help when I needed it because people think I can and should do things myself. They have no clue about my limitations and don't seem to believe me when I tell them about them. Well, anyone who thinks I am lazy, just look at what I have done in the last week! I may not be able to work steady but when I have those short periods of (dare I call it remission?) respite, I DO stuff! My fellow fibro sufferers understand what I mean. Fibro presents itself in varying degrees, too, so some fibro sufferers may seem to not suffer at all with it. Others, like me, are crippled by it. Sure, my house isn't very clean because I have to rely heavily on a teenager to keep it clean but I do what I can when I can! How about you?
2 responses
@marguicha (82868)
• Chile
23 Sep 11
Dear alaskanray, I got tired by just reading your mail. Please ,don´t overdue. Our body many times knows better than us what we can do and what we cannot and how much of it is possible to do. Maybe you shouldn´t have done all that work for your friend. Or maybe, if she wanted help, she could have brought the books to your house properly boxed and waited for you to sell the ones you could on a commision. I discovered a long time ago that to work more than I could was more expensive than to do just my share. If I did it, I would have to spend money in meds that did not help much. I understand when people call others lazy, just because their body is different. But each of us have our own talents and maybe you cannot lift a safe, but you can do other things that don´t require Popeye muscles.
• United States
23 Sep 11
The problem is that there is no such thing as not overdoing for me. When I am home, I lay down as much as possible and hot baths help some. I got sick of living in this squalor because my daughter doesn't clean well and sometimes I just have to do it, myself. As for the books, they are the least of my concerns. My friend has them boxed up, all I did was haul them in my car (after loading them, of course). I usually have my daughter along to help with the loading and unloading but today she had to work so... Tomorrow and Saturday I'm having a yard sale and I'm asking my neighbor to help me set up for that. But I still do as much as I can, myself. I've always been very independent and self-sufficient and I hate to wait for others to get things done for me so I just go ahead and get started on things until they get here. That's what happened with the sewing room carpet. I asked a friend of mine to come help me with it and she couldn't come till Saturday so I just started pulling things out and then I just pulled up the carpet, then a couple days later I pulled up the padding, then the next day I put the padding in the garbage can, two days later I put the carpet in the garbage can, then the next day I swept the floor. See? I do pace myself as much as I can. lol
@marguicha (82868)
• Chile
23 Sep 11
I have found ways of helping myself by discovering things to do that don´t meanso much physical energy. I could never do all you said you did. Careful and take care!
1 person likes this
• United States
25 Sep 11
I will be...thanks. It's hard, too, when I'm hurting and I ask my daughter to do something for me and she just lays there ignoring me. Then I have to go do it myself in spite of my pain and I get upset on top of it...major stress, and stress makes me hurt even more. Sometimes I just want to wring my daughter's neck.But I can't cuz it's too much physical effort. lol
@ElicBxn (60167)
• United States
22 Sep 11
I do know what you mean. I know my fibro is not terribly bad but I've met others who can't walk anymore. I worry tho, that the fibro is getting worse, at least I've pretty much dodged some of the other age related problems so far. How much longer, as I near 60 I can continue to do so, I don't know... I'm one of the fibro people who can't bear the heat and this summer has been really bad so I've been suffering. I start having other troubles in the winter, my hands don't like the cold for example... Still, I think you've done great, keep up the good work!
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Sep 11
Thanks, Elic. Sometimes I need a pat on the back from someone other than myself, you know? And most folks just have no clue the kind of mountain I am climbing. There are days when I'm doing good just to get to the toilet, much less a bath! And I always know when I'm triggering a flairup because I sweat. Anytime I work myself into a sweat, I know a flairup is on its way. So no, I don't exercise till I sweat. And I actually avoid it as much as possible but sometimes there are just things that must get done and I'm the only one who can do them, right? So then I pay and pay and pay and...you get the idea. lol
1 person likes this
@ElicBxn (60167)
• United States
23 Sep 11
I'm pretty lucky that if I can go to sleep (and I pretty much have to do that) and take some anti-inflammatories then I can recover pretty quick, but I'm giving up and going to try the pain management route here soon...
1 person likes this
• United States
25 Sep 11
I hear you loud and clear, my friend. I take Tylenol every day and still have to do the Vicodin on occasion. Oh, well. Getting old ain't for sissies...and I don't think I'm a sissy so I should be okay. Still, some days I just want to lay back and wait to die.
1 person likes this