I promised that I would post about decorations. I did go a bit overboard. In my defense, I only intended the one tree, but Ralph wanted to say goodbye to the other one.
So, I put up two six foot trees. I had to add lights to the one that is going in the trash this year. I had to take an entire day off between dragging everything out and actually decorating. I guess I used up all my spoons on Monday and had to recoup them on Tuesday.
These are my decorations. I am not a designer. It’s not fancy, but they bring me joy.
I do what I need to do to protect myself, my family and friends.
We stayed home for months when the state (Nevada) shutdown. Only going for walks. We wear masks, social distance and wash our hands.
When restrictions started lifting and numbers fell, I started going into stores. It was strange. I hadn’t been for about 5 months. We started going to Ralph’s parents and on day trips with one friend. An occasional lunch with a friend or two.
Then numbers began rising… I am isolating once more. This time the virus seems to be hitting harder or maybe that’s because I have family that’s been impacted by it.
People say that means I and others like me are afraid. I don’t have the anxiety this time around. Even then the anxiety was not fear based. I don’t think it usually is. At least nothing based in reality.
And this virus is real. If by isolating I can stop me or someone I love from getting Covid then that is why I am willing to remain apart from others.
I make a good recluse. I don’t mind being locked away in my own little bubble. I feel at peace here. I am happy here. I guess the fact that I am happy helps me stay in my bubble.
Maybe all those people upset about being asked to stay in their bubbles should ask themselves why aren’t they happy with their own company? Happiness comes from within.
My sister-in-law has been really sick since Thanksgiving. She has rapidly gotten worse. She has gotten to the point where she couldn’t walk without assistance. It amazes me that she was still able to get up and down the stairs. She was so weak.
Although she had been seeing a team of doctors… cardiologist, pulmonologist, etc… they never put it all together. Until she went to the Emergency Room so weakened the doctors did a lumbar puncture.
The answer was there in those fluids… Guillain–Barré syndrome.
Answers finally. It’s unfortunate that all the symptoms are similar to other things. Hopefully the treatment will work and she will feel good finally. Though it’s an autoimmune disease a full recovery is possible. I pray she makes a full recovery with no relapse.
Prayers or whatever good vibes you have would be appreciated.
Who’s celebrating? Will it be different this year?
Yesterday I dragged out my totes with my decorations in them. After weeks of watching Christmas movies and listening to Christmas songs, I am ready to decorate. Also, I have taken to dressing for Christmas. Much to the dismay of my husband, I have been wearing my Christmas leggings. Or sweatshirts. So, that I can dress a bit more upscale I purchased a few necklaces.
These are two of my favorites. The third is a bit more busy. Ooh, my Santa Tiara hat was stowed away with my decorations. I love this bargain I picked up a few years ago after Christmas for 50 cents.
Today, I will be decorating the two big trees. Ralph felt we needed them both. So why not. The one need to be trashed, because 2/3 of the lights are out, but I put other lights on instead.
I was surprised at my energy yesterday. I know it doesn’t look like I accomplished much, but I did laundry and dishes too. If you are a fellow spoonie, you know that was a lot.
This year’s focus is on not all disabilities are visible. IDPWD includes disabilities such as mental illness, chronic pain or fatigue, sight or hearing impairments, diabetes, brain injuries, neurological disorders, learning differences and cognitive dysfunctions, among others.
I discuss my disabilities all the time. Meniere’s, fibromyalgia, migraines, to name a few. The only visible one I have is the arthritis in my fingers. That seems to get worse all the time.
This organization says that 15% of the world’s population live with a disability. That’s over a billion people. Yes, we live with disabilities. Many still work with them. I applaud those who do.
I miss being independent. Being unable to drive due to my Meniere’s drop attacks and vertigo is hard. It was stressful when I worked having to call off or getting to work and having to go home due to the lights triggering an episode.
Oh, and stress is the worst trigger for me. So by eliminating work, I was able to eliminate some of the constant episodes.
Anyway the mission of this day is…
December 3 is International Day of People With Disabilities, an annual occasion designated to join together to support people with disability in our communities, and raise awareness of the importance of creating a future where people with disabilities experience equal opportunity and face no barriers in all aspects of their lives— whether it be going about their day-to-day lives with adequate accessibility in their communities, joining the workforce, or being able to showcase their abilities and reach their goals without facing barriers.
So as we move forward let’s keep in mind that we want to be inclusive of everyone and try to find ways to accommodate us all so we can live happy productive lives.
I have some ideas on how to help our youth once the pandemic is over.
So there is this thing that I get every winter… yes, on top of the depression. It’s called SAD (seasonal affect disorder). The Mayo Clinic defines it as a type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons — SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you’re like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody. Less often, SAD causes depression in the spring or early summer.
Mine may be a tiny bit worse lately because of all the losses I’ve experienced during the holidays the last 8 years or so, but I’ve known I have had it for many years. Even before I was aware of the depression.
The symptoms are similar to depression if not the same. Don’t brush it off. Get help.
Signs and symptoms of SAD may include:
Feeling depressed most of the day, nearly every day
Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed
Having low energy
Having problems with sleeping
Experiencing changes in your appetite or weight
Feeling sluggish or agitated
Having difficulty concentrating
Feeling hopeless, worthless or guilty
Having frequent thoughts of death or suicide
What can you do?
Light therapy can be effective.
Medication- the winter is generally when I ask for antidepressants.
Exercise- this may help reset your serotonin levels.
There are a few things specific to winter SAD:
Appetite changes, especially a craving for foods high in carbohydrates
Tiredness or low energy
I hope this helps you to identify it within yourself or someone close to you.
Is there such a thing as too much Christmas? I don’t think so. I love Christmas. People seem happier this time of year.
With most people doing their part and staying home, Ralph and I are watching Christmas movies. Some are funny, which are much needed right now. Some are cheerful, also, welcome. Some bring on the tears… I never mind the tears. It helps me release those pent up emotions that I try to stifle around the holidays.
Why do I stifle my emotions at this time of the year? My late husband died 5 days before Christmas in 2012. Though it’s been 8 years Christmas is hard. Since then I have had one friend pass way around Thanksgiving and another on New Year’s Eve, so holidays are hard.
Hence buried emotions. Watching these programs help keep me sane. So far I haven’t slipped into a depression this year. I think being isolated with my husband has been a blessing.
I am blessed that Ralph chooses to watch these movies with me.
Today I woke up thinking it was Monday. Why? Maybe because yesterday was turkey day in the United States and we were up early. I am exhausted.
I didn’t even prepare dinner, except the deviled eggs and the candied yams. I did, however, do dishes throughout my husband’s meal prep, which left little clean up after the meal.
My body feels like it’s been through the ringer. Such is the life of living with a chronic illness. Overdoing things does this and stress.
Stress of worrying about family and friends with Covid is taking a toll. Worrying about friends who have lost family members this week is overwhelming. Not being able to help is frustrating.
It doesn’t help that people in our own circle don’t get why we didn’t gather. The guilt trip is pretty thick. I am just trying to keep everyone safe. And I follow the rules… so I had that on my side. After my mind was made up, still no more than 2 households can gather worked in my favor.
So, instead of standing in lines to shop, I will be resting. I shopped on Black Friday anyway. I think Hallmark movies might be in order today. Though we maybe watching The Christmas Chronicles 2. I love that my husband is a big kid like me and he cooks.
So once I get out of bed, shower and dress, I am camping out in my recliner today. I’ll start with tea and end with wine. Sounds like a perfect day. Leftovers are on the agenda.
That rings a bit hollow for many this year. Not being able to gather together is tough on people. I choose to look at it as being able to spend future events with my friends and loved ones.
COVID-19 has taken many lives already. There is already an empty place that will never be filled for them. Others are struggling with the long term effects of the virus. Some of their symptoms sound like my own… fatigue, vertigo, etc. I wouldn’t wish a chronic illness on anyone.
I am always preaching on my Facebook page to wear a mask, social distance and stay home. It’s not too much to ask to stop you or someone you know from catching COVID-19. We now have hope that a vaccine will be available much sooner than we thought. Hopefully, we can return to normal by 2022 when everyone has gotten vaccinated.
My Aunt is in hospice with a DNR due to internal bleeding from complications of COVID. It’s not looking promising. 4 of her children gathered from different states to help her move about a month ago. My cousin, who used to babysit me, got the virus first and is struggling to overcome its effects. Her brother, who lives in another state, appears to have had a milder version of it. He wasn’t tested. My other two cousins, wear masks, weren’t infected. This is what a small family gathering from multiple households can do.
I implore you to stay home. Use common sense! Trust in God as my first two cousins do, but know that he needs your help to protect you. If you don’t wear the mask, social distance and stay home, he cannot keep you safe if he provided the means and you refused to use them.
Happy Thanksgiving America and Happy Thursday to everyone else!
I am hearing impaired. Yet, I only have minimal hearing loss in both ears. It’s a bit worse in my right ear. The constant tinnitus (locusts and other sounds) adds to my inability to hear effectively.
I have trouble understanding words. Not all the time, but sometimes it will take me a minute to interpret what was said. Sometimes I just nod after repeatedly asking what and still not understanding.
I can’t always hear you. Sometimes no matter how hard I try I cannot hear you.
Things You Can Do
Make sure you have my attention.
Look at me.
Don’t turn your head as you’re speaking.
Turn off other noise when possible.
Loud noises/high pitched may hurt ears, other noise overwhelm my hearing so I can’t separate what is being said. This is called hyperacusis. Sometimes, especially when the senses are overwhelmed, I can do breathing exercises to calm that down. But the soprano singing or the too loud television, I can’t stop from hurting.
At this point a hearing aid won’t help because my hearing loss is minimal. I am heartened that when it worsens that it can help. When I began this Meniere’s journey, I was told that hearing aids wouldn’t help. Now, people are having success with them and cochlear implants.