Posted by: hockeygrl1 | October 12, 2011

Activities of Daily living

I was laying in bed the other night thinking about how my life has changed since my diagnosis and extreme change in health. I once worked in the insurance industry so I know a little bit about Activities of Daily Living (ADL). I never thought that at age 39 these would apply to me. I mean, who goes around thinking they might become seriously ill and unable to work and need help taking care of them self.

I’m going to do some back tracking again here. I’m sorry if you’ve read this before, but it does apply to the story.

I was supermom! I got up at 4:30 am to go to work. I’d get there at 5:30 so I could work out for an hour and get ready for work at 7. I’d work for 8 or 9 or 10 hours then drive an hour home. I also had 2 kids to think of. I’d make dinner, pick up milk, run them to activities all on my own. (OK with some help from my mom & dad, but we had our own house) My house was clean and my kids were clean.

It is still a big change for me 4 years later. I still don’t ask for help when I should and do more than my body wants me to. Social security disability only cares about if taking care of myself takes all day or not.

These are activities that people normally do with ease and without thinking about it. Such as: cleaning, cooking, shopping, bathing or getting dressed. For example, today I was putting my clothes away. It’s not something that would have bothered me in the pre-lupus past, but today when hanging up maybe 10 shirts, my arms felt heavy and strained. I have decided to have the kids do their own laundry because it takes too much out of me.

Even cooking has been altered. There are some days that I just can’t do it so we’ll either get take out or have a frozen pizza or eat what mom & dad are having. I do have a stool in my kitchen so I can sit down while I cook or do dishes. I got that idea from an arthritis magazine. Doing dishes and cooking makes my lower back hurt and takes energy out of me. Sometimes I nap after.

Vacuuming sucks the most. It kills my back. I don’t understand why. My vacuum has an adjustable part that alters how long or tall the pipe is. I’ve tried all different heights and haven’t found one that doesn’t hurt.  So I make the kids do this too. I do have to step in because they don’t move things or get in the corners. It drives them crazy.

As you can see, I can’t work and take care of myself. It’s not possible. On the rare occasion that I go out with friends, it’s after I’ve slept all day and made sure I can rest the day after. I definitely pay for it. I even need to take breaks when doing my hobbies of jewelry making and knitting. It’s not a great long vacation like some people think.

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