This year Easter was especially meaningful. Our son was able to celebrate with us for the first time in over 10 years. Easter is a very special holiday for our family. To be able to celebrate it together is super special. But at the end of the week, I needed time to rest.
I have shared how listening to my body and the clues it gives me when I’ve overdone it has proved to be beneficial managing my inflammation. I’ve learned even happy stress is still stress as far as my body is concerned. Therefore, I have learned to allow for recuperation time, even when the events going on are happy and heartwarming. Such was the case this week.
I decided to limit my commitments for the week in order to give my body plenty of room to recharge. That turned out to be a wise decision for two reasons. First of all, I could already feel aches creeping into my joints. That is an indicator of inflammation I’ve learned not to ignore. I was feeling a little fatigued, as well. That is a another sign of inflammation I have to listen to. Fatigue was so pronounced in my body before the inflammation was managed that it affected my ability to even speak what I was thinking! And that, of course, becomes a problem with even simple communication and social interactions. It is just another way a chronic disease effects our quality of life.
The second reason it was wise to keep my schedule light for the week was to allow for the things that come up unexpectedly. I had a built in buffer when situations came up that I had to deal with. This is something I never needed to consider before my rheumatoid arthritis (RA) diagnosis. I lived day-by-day naturally absorbing whatever stresses came up. I now have to purpose to allow time for my body to rest, decompress and get recharged. It is all a part of managing my RA. And feeling as normal as possible is a powerful motivator.
This is an example of how having a chronic disease that has rather silent symptoms to the outside world completely changes the way I live my life. As my dear friend frequently says, “I can’t see your RA so I forget you have special considerations”. It is the way it is.
So, at the end of the week I gave myself time to rest following our son’s visit, I am thankful I had the insight to do so. There were commitments I wish I could’ve made, but my body needed the opportunity to renew itself. I would rather dodge a flare and lay low for awhile than to be wasting time regretting my choices and really being put out of commission!
Now that is using Arthritis Wisdom!
What choices have you made with your RA in mind? We would love to hear and learn from you.
Take good care.