Throughout this global outbreak we’re all supposed to be self isolating as much as possible to prevent and slow the spread. If you are chronically pained like me you may have been practicing social distancing or isolation for years already and enjoying a bit of a break from your social calendar to focus on your health (mental/physical/or spiritual). On the other hand I know a bunch of people that are experiencing cabin fever while cooped up in their homes. You’ll either enjoy the break or you’ll hate being told what to do and having to be safer from illness in your home.
If you’re bored out of your mind at home I would suggest reading books or participating in your hobbies. This break has been less favorable for my creativity due to my roommates being home, but has been great for reading and maintaining my physio therapy and workout routines. I’ve also been adapting to phoning the friends I would regularly see to both catch up and check in on them instead of just sending them a text. I’m finding it better to hear someones actual voice and laugh than to just read a text in their voice. I have been playing guitar and songwriting here and there but in the last three weeks I have not been working on an projects seriously or consistently.
This too shall pass, in the grand scheme of things we just have to make the most of it and access what worked for us and pick and choose what we want to return to when we have the opportunity to. I truly hope that social distancing is done before I move so that I can go back to school in the fall, but just like everyone else I’m just taking it all one day at a time.
Whether you call it “the daily grind” or the “rat race” every one of us reaches a point where we have to take a step back and assess how to make our daily lives more sustainable so we spend less time running on nothing.
I will admit even coming up on six years in hemiplegia recovery and I have yet to find the perfect balance between physical output and rest. In fact I am skilled in overdoing it to the point where I am in too much pain to move and spend a few days trying to recoup.
More recently I have been working towards a better balance so that I do not require as much rest, but I am not making headway on the solution.
One thing that has helped me better assess the spoons I have is just breathing. Taking just a couple of minutes to pause, be present in my mind, body and environment. Then decide whether to continue on with physio/occupational therapies or to focus on something else and let my body rest.
Some weeks I still ignore my body because I assume that I can keep pushing a little bit more until I physically cannot move my arm or leg without wincing in pain and thus becoming couch bound.
I have been fairly strict with my recovery schedule this year. Planning my entire week around appointments, recovery, self care, and social outings, but lately I misjudge the amount of energy I have and end up cancelling all my social plans. This is a problem of having a goal in mind and being too driven for my own good.
Just like everyone else I’m very goal oriented and I would like to reach said goals in the shortest amount of time possible without injury. This is something I have to fight the urges to constantly be working towards my goals. Reminding myself that in order to heal rest is required, not earned as a reward.
For me the renewal in my chaos is the hour a day I put aside to do something unrelated to my recovery that reminds me of all the things I am grateful for in life. Usually this involves a creative outlet of various mediums, but sometimes it is spent just meditating.
What do you do to feel renewal in your life?