This is my first blog. I have no idea what exactly I will post here. Some of the things I suspect will happen include stories about what is happening in my life. This can range from stories about me, the animals, my perceptions and insights into my life, stories that contradict each other because I’m finding my way and asking all sorts of questions. I’m sure some people will find my prose valuable and others not. Either way, I hope you enjoy your time here. My plan is to submit a blog once a month. I may blog more often but, hopefully, not less.
Today happens to be one of my more difficult days. I took 2 weeks off for Christmas so I could hang with my husband and we could, hopefully, take a small trip. Unfortunately, I am not able to do very much without my body attacking me with joint pain and headaches. No, drugs do not help. I was diagnosed with MS in 2005 and I’ve had extreme fatigue for several years before and since the diagnosis. I had a relapse in November 2012 so I guess I’m still recovering. On the other hand, when I feel good, I feel better than before the relapse! Yea! So, this vacation has mostly been about me realizing I need to take it easy.
Today, I am preparing a Spinach Artichoke Dip to take to a family get-together on Christmas Day. I’m doing this early so I can rest Christmas Eve and bake the dish Christmas Day right before attending the party. I hope I have the energy, if I do all the work ahead of time, to go to the party without paying the price of pain afterwards.
Lessons I am learning include how to relieve the pain once I am in it. I have found I can rotate my vertebra one at a time starting at the base of my skull and going down to my tailbone. I do 3 rotations in each direction on each vertebra. This really seems to help the joint pain. I also do my fingers/toes, wrists/ankles, elbow/knee, and shoulder/hip joints. What made me think to do this? Thankfully, I am a Feldenkrais Practitioner and it is part of my job to think of ways to get places that hurt to move without pain. I don’t just do the rotations. I also include deep breathing and keeping my body relaxed. I can tell how relaxed I am by how much of my body moves with each breath. If I breath and my head, shoulders, or hips remain unmoving, I am holding somewhere. It is not so important for everything to move as it is to have the intention that all of my body can move freely.
My headaches will disappear with deep breathing and relaxation. I’ve also noticed how the deep breathing and relaxation brings me into the present moment. As soon as I move out of the present moment, the headaches return. Obviously, I am supposed to learn to stay present in each moment. I can understand this because I know staying present also helps me to stay calm. If I stay calm, I expend less energy. Expending less energy means I can do more before I’ve done too much. Yes, there is a method to the madness.
I’m going back to making the Spinach Artichoke Dip. This will give me another chance to practice staying present and relaxed as I tend to tense when I get focused. Wish me luck!