I thought I do something different today and link up with Sheryl Chan from A Chronic Voice for one of her monthly linkup parties! I love reading these, but have never got around to joining in until now. I love the fact that joining in with these linkup parties allows the opportunity for ‘meeting’ other members of the chronic illness community – there are so many of us and we all have so much to say and share. Sheryl’s monthly linkups allow us to reflect on five specific words – what they mean to us at this point in time – so I thought I’d go ahead and try October’s prompts: Inspiring, Dreaming, Reducing, Creating and Listening.
Being a member of the chronic illness community on social media platforms, such as Twitter, is so useful; you get to ‘meet’ other people who are struggling with the same difficulties that you are and that provides the opportunity to learn about tips and tricks that they use to cope. One such person is Emma, from notjusttired.com. Emma has chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and I love the way that she focuses on the good things in life as a way to help her manage the stress of her condition. Emma has been inspiring me with the #mydailythankyou hashtag on Twitter, where she focuses on the everyday ‘little things’ – help she receives from her husband, spending time with her little one and coping well on her own. These ‘little things’ are actually very ‘big things’ for people with chronic illness, so I just wanted to say thank you for inspiring me to think of my own daily thank yous.
This is an easy one for me because I have been dreaming non-stop about the new kitchen that we are about to have put in! Having a new kitchen wasn’t something that we anticipated doing when we bought the house five years ago, however it’s something that had to happen as a result of us not being able to replace the tap without taking out the whole kitchen! As a result, we’ve been trying to do it on a budget, which has meant travelling in order to pick up items bought on eBay and making the most of sales. I can’t wait until it all comes together, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it will all be sorted out for Christmas.
I have recently returned back to work after a period of long-term sick and I’ll tell you – the return to work has certainly impacted on my energy levels! As a result, I have been downing coffee like there’s no tomorrow. The trouble is, by the end of the day, I feel a bit jittery and dehydrated – I even had a few minutes of heart palpitations a week or so ago, which I can only put down to the large black coffee I’d just had. So it is my plan to drastically reduce my caffeine consumption. I’m sitting here now with a large bottle of water which I aim to get through by mid-afternoon instead of relying on my usual brew. The problem is, I have done this in the past and ended up with an almighty headache as a result, so my plan is not to forego coffee completely, but instead to enjoy one first thing in the morning to wake me up and then to move on to water or herbal tea. Fingers crossed it will work and I will notice the difference with my jitteriness and hydration levels.
Something that I have been doing over the past month is writing down choices for a playlist or two of my favourite songs – these are to see me through the tough times or simply just to enjoy some music that I can sing along to.
My husband and I are planning on getting a family account on Spotify – this will let me listen to whichever music I fancy without without having to buy it first and also without bothering my husband with my (often cheesy) music (he works from home). I have a varied taste in music – anything from Fleetwood Mac to 80s classics to Foo Fighters – and I often hear songs that I love that I’ve completely forgotten about, such as Natalie Merchant’s ‘Carnival’. My plan is to add them all to my own specific playlist(s) so that I can play them while relaxing, feeling stressed (to get me away from it all) or when having to do jobs such as cleaning at home. I’ve pretty much got my list of songs ready to program into Spotify, I just need to take the time to create it now!
I’m currently half way through an audiobook of ‘The Snowman‘ by Jo Nesbo. Listening to an audiobook was the recommendation of my husband, who often listen to books or podcasts in his spare time. Due to my MS, I often sit with fatigue and end up staring at the computer or watching the telly but I have really enjoyed listening to ‘The Snowman’ instead. It’s a creepy ‘who done it’ and I’m determined to get it finished as there is now a movie adaptation starring Michael Fassbender (whom I LOVE) that I’d like to see (although the reviews are abysmal), but I wanted to get the book finished first. I’d love to hear any other audiobook recommendations.
And that’s it! Thank you so much to Sheryl from A Chronic Voice for hosting this linkup party, I have really enjoyed taking the time to think about the different prompts and also enjoyed reading other people’s own responses.
Have a great October everyone!