Thursday, January 2, 2014

Calm Before the Storm

I picked the title of today's post for a few reason. One reason is that we are literally awaiting a major winter storm. Because of where we sit on the Ohio River, it's usually very hit or miss with the forecasting for snow totals. But, apparently the weather people are fairly certain we will get a significant snow out of this. The big story is the arctic cold air that is forecast to follow. They are saying we will have temperatures unlike any that we've seen in 15+ years. Yikes! I'm so blessed to have a nice, warm home. I'm a snow lover, so I'll take any that we get.

So, maybe you are wondering the other reason I picked my title. Maybe not. I'll tell you anyway. I think the calm before the storm is sort of like the life most of us lead before we become chronically ill. We go along living our life like nothing bad will ever happen to us. We may be too busy to visit with family and friends. We don't eat right. Don't exercise. Don't take care of our spiritual, emotional and physical health. It's like we are on a perpetual merry-go-round; never slowing down to get off and enjoy all that life has to offer. Then. Bam! Out of nowhere, illness or injury strikes. Our life, then, takes a different turn. Suddenly, we are thrown into the turbulent waters of illness. We have doctor's appointments, tests, medical procedures, and medical bills. We may or may not get a diagnosis. We may or may not get treatment for our symptoms. We may have to cut back hours at work. Or, have to leave our job all together. If we aren't careful we can get quite overwhelmed with our "new normal". Making sure we have a support system in place is the best thing we can do for ourselves. It's okay to rely on friends and family to lend a hand. Finding a supportive church family can be an important part of new life. I know, in my own case, I wasn't finding the support I needed in my childhood church. It was a hard decision to make, but finding a new church was the best things I did for myself. Gathering a team of medical professionals is also a necessity in dealing with a chronic illness. Making sure we find a supportive, caring team before we are in some sort of a crisis (should it occur), will go a long way towards easing our minds at a time when we should be as stress-free as possible.

I hope I'm not sounding too preachy. I guess I've really been thinking about how I need to get a better handle on how I'm living with my chronic illnesses. Last night, I was in so much pain that I had difficulty walking more than a few feet. This morning, I wasn't much better. I didn't have to think too hard to figure out what had happened. I over did things yesterday. Really, I've been pushing myself for weeks. So, this morning I stayed in bed. I actually ended up sleeping in until 9 o'clock. It wasn't until mid-afternoon before I got out of bed and did some housework and took a shower! I felt so lazy, but I know my body needed it. I'm sure this approaching cold front is probably also a factor in how I've been feeling.

Yesterday, Aaron and his fiance, Lauren flew back to New Hampshire. It was great having them here for the holidays. They got a lot of wedding planning done when they were here. I can't believe Aaron will be getting married in June! It just doesn't seem possible. I hated to see them go, but I guess it's a good thing they left when they did because if they would have left today, they would have had trouble traveling in all of the snow. He said they may get a foot or more of snow up where they live. He loves the snow and since he's on break from grad school, it doesn't affect him too much. Lauren, however doesn't care for snow and she has to drive to work every day. We're all hoping that they will end up living closer to home once he finishes grad school.

I suppose I could find more to talk about. That's never a problem for me. But, I think I'll go ahead and post this update and head off to bed. I'm really, really tired.

Have a pain free night everyone!

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