Radical Changes

The improvement in my health from August 2014 – March 2015 and now is dramatic. I was either working or in bed. I couldn’t walk 20 meters without needing a rest and on a couple of notable occasions calling my husband to come and get me from the corner of the road and help me home. I was using a wheelchair to go anywhere more than 15 minutes. This is all because of my EDS-HT.

The hardest thing was the utter mental exhaustion. All of my brainpower was going at work, I couldn’t read or focus outside of this. By Christmas I was struggling to have enough focus to watch children’s programmes or films.

No way to live a life.

I made radical changes. I cut back on so much of what I was doing. I left an amazing job. I started turning down job offers, I left being a guide leader.

Essentially I got really selfish for a while so that I was able to concentrate on getting well.

I used all this extra time to rest, heal and to work on my rehab and learning to walk properly again.

This has worked. But it has meant some serious sacrifices along the way. I am really careful about how much I go out. I make sure I have every third week with no meetings. I only have two meetings a week at the most.

I only do client work 3 days a week. I work according to my body, sometime sitting at my desk, sometimes standing up, sometimes sitting on the floor, sometimes from bed. Somedays a mixture. Whatever it takes to be well.

I might nap, or I might go for a walk in the middle of the day if that is what I need to do.

I spend a great deal of time on things which make me well, exercise – especially walking and swimming, eating healthily (although I still have a long way to go on this one).

Obviously this wouldn’t work if I wasn’t self employed.

And even more obviously this has resulted in a lower income than when I was working full time and flat out. But I have learned to adjust to that and the price to feel well and to be able to read, write, and play music is one I am happy to pay.

I still have to live within my limits, but those limits have grown, quite literally a step at a time.

Radical changes in my lifestyle have meant radical improvements in my health and I hope it may continue!

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2 Comments

  1. Those are amazing results. Taking care of yourself before attending to the needs of others is often thought to be selfish or self-absorbed, most likely by those who want to use you or might be stressed enough to need some self care, but are reluctant to do so.

    If we do not take care of ourselves we have nothing to offer anyone else. Jen, I did the same thing when I moved at the beginning of this year. I paced myself and did fewer than the five or six days I was working each week.

    My finances were less affected because I am retired and was doing volunteer gigs. I now enjoy one full day of work and have the energy to do more things for myself and work a day or two extra if need be.

    I have brought my health to much better levels and last month when I had a major check-up, all of my tests came back significantly improved. Still working on that old food thing, though.

  2. Ys, we are not supposed to take care of ourselves, we are always supposed to put other people first. Difficult to explain whey we are having to be so strict and turn down so much, but it really is worth is.

    I am glad you are doing well too!

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