What The Disabled Diva is Looking at, Playing, Joining, Invigorated by, and Ditching This Month. Living with Fibromyalgia and Psoriatic Arthritis

Healthwise my body has taken a bit of a nosedive this month. Thankfully, I don’t need to be in tip-top shape to enjoy my life or follow through with my plans. Sheryl’s prompts for February’s A Chronic Voice linkup are looking, playing, joining, invigorating, and ditching. All things that can be done even with the hurdles that my chronic illnesses are creating. Read on as I uncover what I am looking at, playing, joining, invigorated by, and ditching despite interference from fibromyalgia, abdominal adhesions, and psoriatic arthritis.

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Looking at all the possibilities

This month is a month of planning. I am planning where to plant my garden and what I want to grow. A lot of time is being spent looking at seeds and learning what can be planted near each other.

This month I am looking for better ways to work around my #chronicillness

As I mentioned above, I am off to a rough start this month. For those new to my blog, I have on and off abdominal pain and issues that are the result of a botched hysterectomy that took place in 2005. Long story short, adhesions from endometriosis and part of a fallopian tube were left behind, became infected, buried itself into my sidewall, and the adhesions attached themselves to and began strangling my bowels.

My last surgery to address the issue took place in 2008. Even though I have had ongoing issues, no surgeon will touch me. One reason is because of how many abdominal surgeries I have had. The other is, and I agree with, that the adhesions will just return. The longest period of relief has been a year and the shortest only lasting three weeks. It is something that I have had to learn to accept and live with.

With that said I am looking for tips, products, and ideas to make my garden easy to manage while dealing with physical limitations and surprise flares. I have enlisted help from my family so that caring for our garden doesn’t fall solely on me. My husband is excited to put together a drip system so that I don’t have to worry about watering.

What I have been playing

Over the holidays my daughter bought a game from Star Wars Galaxy Edge at Disneyland. The game is called Sabacc. It’s a ton of fun and we recommend that you check it out!

Now that I have moved past the beginning phase of my new more relaxed lifestyle, I am finding I have more time to enjoy with my family. Sunday evenings are no longer spent frantically worrying if I have everything ready to tackle my work week. They are now spent watching a movie or playing games with my husband and daughter.

It is important that I make time to play. #chronicillness doesn’t have to take everything from me!

Not filling last weekend with activities that I knew my body couldn’t handle allowed me to conserve energy. That energy was then put to good use on Monday. As a result, I was able to have lunch with my son who was in town to perform at a convention in Anaheim.

And as always, I am putting a few days aside this month to play at Disneyland.

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Planning to join

I spend very little time on social media. As the past few months have shown, it was taking too much of my time and interfering with my life. With that said, I do pop in now and then. On one occasion I saw a post for yoga on the beach.

Finding balance in plans that are set in stone and flying by the seat of my pants! #chroniclife

I plan to join this group at least once or twice a month. My participation will rely on my ability to drive and move my body without having to medicate for pain. I have a handle on the pain from fibromyalgia and psoriatic arthritis thanks to pemf therapy. It is the ripping and pulling that is taking place in my abdomen that will dictate whether or not I can handle the drive and activity.

Even though yoga is something I can do from home, doing it at the beach is the best. The ocean is my calming place. It is where my mind and body both relax and let go of whatever is weighing them down.

I am invigorated by

Well, you could say that the weather in southern California has been invigorating! We started the month with an 80-degree heatwave and two days later dipped into the ’50s with nighttime freeze warnings.

I am most invigorated by the calmness that is my life. I know it sounds odd, but the improvements slowing down has made in my life have encouraged and invigorated me to examine other areas of my life that could use some slowing down.

What I am ditching this month

Last but not least, I am ditching preconceived notions of what my life should look like. Some of these ideas come from people who don’t understand the complexity of living with multiple chronic illnesses. Others stem from those who still believe that if they force their bodies to function like they did before their diagnosis, they will be perceived as normal. Then there are my own notions of what I thought I would be doing in my fifties.

I am also ditching the guilt that comes with ditching a frantic lifestyle. Gone is the guilt of doing things during hours that aren’t considered the norm. So what if I am not a nine to five kind of gal!

One last thing I am ditching is a bag full of self-doubt. I can’t tell you how many times I talked myself out of trying something because of how deeply I doubted my ability. But no more, I have had enough of that! If I have learned anything from all my years of living with my chronic illnesses and pain, it is that I can do whatever I set my sights on. Of course, that means taking my symptoms and pain into consideration by making modifications and working with/around them.

What are you looking at, playing, joining, invigorated by, and ditching this month?

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Published by Cynthia Covert

Diagnosed in 2001 with psoriasis, followed by fibromyalgia, psoriatic arthritis, endometriosis, and later a botched hysterectomy turned her world upside down. Cynthia shares her experience, advice, and tips for how to make life with chronic pain easier and less painful.

16 thoughts on “What The Disabled Diva is Looking at, Playing, Joining, Invigorated by, and Ditching This Month. Living with Fibromyalgia and Psoriatic Arthritis

  1. I love this post, although I am sorry you are going through a rough time. Reading through this, I felt like I had found a kindred spirit. I too am in the process of planning my garden, and enjoyed reading your thoughts about yours. I also am planning to set aside a couple of days soon to “play” at Disneyland. And I am also trying to work on ditching things like guilt and self doubt.

    1. It’s so funny. I felt like an oddball with all of this until I wrote about it. It is awesome to see how many more people are doing the same! Enjoy your Disney days and I look forward to sharing our experiences with gardening and ditching self doubt/guilt. 🙂

    1. My hope is that by doing it the sand my big toes which both have been broken in the past and my knees won’t experience the same pressure and pain as on the ground or floor. *fingers crossed

  2. I am sorry to hear you are having a rough period of time 🙁 I hope it improves quickly. And yoga on the beach sounds so relaxing and beautiful. I hope you enjoy it very much! x

  3. Ooh, yoga on the beach sounds amazing! I wish I was up to yoga…or driving… I’m out in New Jersey, so while I’m near the water, it’s a bit cold to go out without a few layers on!

    I’m really glad that you’re adjusting yourself to a slower, more relaxed pace. You deserve to enjoy life, and slowing things down can really help with that!

    I think one of the most important things I’ve learned while managing my condition is to pause and self-evaluate every once in a while, listen to my body carefully, and only keep going when my body and mind can manage it. It’s a hard lesson, and one that I’m variably successful at.

    thanks so much for sharing!

  4. The sound of yoga on the beach sounds idyllic. I hope your gardening plans work out too. And ditching self-doubt is probably one of the best things you can do.

  5. Hi Cynthia! I too am planning my ‘garden’ – a small area in front of my apartment. I’ve bought 4 fruit trees – apple, pear, plum and cherry- that don’t take up too much space. It took a lot of energy to plant them, but I’m hoping they’ll yield a lot of fruit in the summer!

  6. Cynthia, I have to start by saying I love your second sentence – “Thankfully, I don’t need to be in tip-top shape to enjoy my life or follow through with my plans.” Too often, we think we can’t start to enjoy our lives UNTIL… until we feel better, until life stops getting in the way, until our circumstances are just right…. You show that we can have a full, enjoyable life even when we’re living with chronic pain. Congratulations on ditching the self-doubt, guilt, and preconceived notions of what your life “should” look like. I look forward to seeing what’s next for you!

    1. Thanks Terri, that sentence took a long time to accept. I fought it tooth and nail for the first 10 years of my chronic life. I give thanks every day for learning that life can be good and fun, even when in pain.

  7. Hi 🙂 This may sound crazy but I am so glad to know that you’re in your 50’s! That AND that you’re ditching a bag full of self-doubt! I too, am in my 50’s & have FM. And I too, have lived a life full of self-doubt along with the ever popular negative self-talk, feeling less than worthy & deserving of…well, anything positive, including wealth, prosperity, happiness, & peace of mind. But unlike you, I’m still working on REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, LETTING GO of all that crap! Why am I glad to know that you’re in your 50’s? Because up to now I wasn’t sure that any of this was truly possible to do at my age (even though I’ve been trying). I felt that maybe I was “too old” for my new way of thinking to even make a difference in my life. That maybe it’ll take too long to make real changes and (this sounds morbid) but how many good years do I really have left? (All thoughts that bounce around in my head on a fairly regular basis, lol!) But after reading this post I feel like I can breathe! I feel inspired & hopeful and for that I thank you very, very much!

    Debbie O.

    1. Hugs Debbie!!! We are never too old! All changes, even small ones are worth making no matter how long we have left. To be honest, it is knowing that my good years are numbered that has motivated me to make these changes. I think it is important that we do what we need to enjoy as many of those days and years as we can. You got this! Keep in touch. I would love to hear about the changes you have in mind for your life.

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