Categories
Lessons

Your Life is your Everyday

Stop and enjoy Nature!!

This is the biggest truth I know. Took some time to actually realize it, of course. We tend to focus on the big events in our lives. The small everyday events that make our days, we just brush off. Not for me anymore, I know better now.

In the rush to get things done, to manage our daily tasks, we fall into a pattern. Get the small things done quickly, so we can get to the big stuff. We are always looking forward to the next event in our lives, the trip, the visit to family, the birthday party, the wedding or the family reunion. All very valid and important things in our lives, but they only come once in a while. The excitement makes us believe that they are what we should focus on.

I have news for you, if you haven’t discovered this already. It’s the everyday events that make up our lives. Think having coffee with a friend, visiting your mother, reading that book you have been hearing so much about, a walk in the park, trying a new recipe or just taking a nap. That is life.

When you step back and think about it, you will understand this insight. You’ll realize that sometimes, staying home is the right thing. Do it. Other times, just stepping back and having time on your hands because you needed to is a gift. No other choice, but to enjoy what you can do at that moment.

Life is made of those moments, enjoy each and every one. No need to wait, nothing to organize, nothing to plan, nothing to buy. Sit back and live!!!

Categories
Challenges Living

Embracing RA

Not all of you know this: I live with Rheumatoid Arthritis. I say live because suffer is such a strong word and one that I find doesn’t reflect one’s attitude towards this illness. Having clarified that, living with RA is far from easy. It is because of this that I have decided it’s time to embrace this and share how I cope on a daily basis. For those of you who do not know what RA is, HERE is an explanation. Albeit a simple one, it will give you an idea of what people with RA have to deal with. It is not osteoarthritis, so do not confuse them.

Life is far from perfect as it is, but some of us must deal with additional challenges on a daily basis, for the rest of our lives. Not only the disease, I prefer illness, has no known cure, but treatment can cause much havoc. Sort of a no win situation: damn if you do, damn if you don’t.

People can be curious, rude and insensitive about this illness because most of us do not look sick. Pain, after all, is not always visible. Unfortunately, it is ever present. A flare can turn our lives upside down. In some cases, internal organs or your skin are affected. This is due to chronic inflammation and the fact that your body attacks itself.

A good rheumatologist is essential. Someone that understands that treating the symptoms is as crucial as treating the disease. New treatments are available, but not always effective to everyone patient. So I keep up to date with what is out there. Reading, asking questions and being proactive are indispensable. Changing doctors if necessary it’s also a choice.

What I have learned is to accept the limitations, but do no let them take over my life. Work around them. Movement is my friend, so even if it’s just a little, I move every day. Walking, yoga, dancing by myself and stretching all help. I take care of what I eat. Food can be a great help or the cause of a flare, pain and worsening symptoms. Taking time to rest, changing plans at the last minute are things I do now without apologies. I have learned to take advantage of my good days and to take care of myself in the bad ones. Most of all, I have learned to live life to the fullest every day.

Categories
Living

Cheer the Season

A few days before Christmas, always a hectic time. We make it so, don’t we? So it is up to us to not get caught on that maze. Have a talk with yourself and sort this out. Today!

Breathe in while you count to three, hold to the count of four and exhale counting five. Repeat as necessary. Once you are calm, take a look at the what you have done and what you think needs doing. Make an assessment: are the things left to be done so important that you are going to be stressed, even get sick?

Unless you really haven’t done anything and are waiting for the last minute……everything can be achieved or put aside. Before you get all worked out, remember that spending time with your loved ones, enjoying time with friends are the most important things this time of the year. Everything else is just what we have been conditioned to do because……(fill in your reasons here).

Decorations, presents, cooking and celebrating preferences have been decided, done and organized. Now you should turn to the part you have worked so hard for: enjoying the Season. Anything else is unimportant. Give yourself the gift of relaxing, resting is needed. Look around you, all is as ready as it’s going to be.

Enjoy the lunch with friends, the neighborhood Holiday party, the office Christmas party, the visits, the cheer and the whole thing. Do not waste time thinking what you should have done or what you want to change. The presents you’ve forgotten or the ones you think are not right. It’s too late for that and it will only give you more stress.

You have done a fabulous job. Sit back and relax with a cup or a glass of Cheer!

Categories
Challenges

Holiday Traditions

Our Miniature Tree

Tis the Season and with it come traditions. Year after year we’ve kept them, they give us a sense of family, of togetherness, of happy memories. As a result, we feel we must keep them going forever. In fact we have been keeping them for years even if we do not feel the same way about them anymore. It’s the way we were brought up, the way we brought up our children. For most of us, it’s the only way!!!

This year, forget about bringing up all those boxes full of Christmas Past. They were wonderful in their time, but we must be realistic. Forget about buying presents randomly, forget about cooking for days to have more food than people would be able to eat, forget all of those traditions. Nowhere it is written that we must exhaust, stress and overspend ourselves to make the Holidays happy. Reality check, Happiness is subjective!!

Let’s try a different way. Let’s make it all about what makes us happy, what bring us together, what we want to do. Start new traditions, decorate with things that please you, cook less and spend more time with your loved ones. Share your blessings and volunteer, make other people Holidays bright, be present and share your time. The rewards will be amazing and your body, mind and pocket will thank you!!!

Categories
Living

Becoming or Unbecoming

You are becoming someone else. Haven’t you heard friends and family say that? They say you are becoming less of this, more of that. Haven’t you paused and consider what do they mean? Are you really becoming someone else? In fact you are becoming your real self. It sounds like a cliché, but it is true. You are unbecoming what is not you.

All your life you were there for everyone. You played all the roles needed to keep everything going. There was no time to think about it because you were too busy living the life that was expected of you. You kept going and thinking all was well. For must of us, all was fine. Life was good and we were happy.

Now you realize that people around you had gone on with their lives. As much as you love everyone in your life, you now have the time to pamper yourself, make yourself happy and do the things you want to do. This is not by any means being selfish, this is just going back to putting your needs ahead of someone else’s.

So when anyone asks that question, there’s no need to answer. No explanations are needed, suffice to say that you know why and are happy with the changes. What a time for you!!!