'listen to your body'

daffy2
daffy2 Member Posts: 1,713
edited 26. May 2015, 17:06 in Living with Arthritis archive
I didn't find this advice particularly helpful when the GP first dished it out and I was struggling to find my way through the deep end I'd just found myself in. On days like today it's even less helpful. This morning, with hands looking like poor quality sausages and feeling as if paper cuts had been rubbed with chilli peppers, a knife lodged somewhere south of my shoulder blades, and eyelids and brain that kept shutting down, my body said 'duvet day, snooze day, drugs'.
So I ignored it. The weather put paid to the garden work that needed doing, so I got wet going to town and doing errands. It didn't make anything worse and I got exercise and to talk to people(important when you live alone) - and to tick some tiresome things off my 'to-do' list.
This isn't a totally reckless attitude I should explain. Having assessed what I'd done yesterday I decided that it didn't warrant a 'take it easy day' and chances were I would actually feel worse for inactivity. But oh I do wish I didn't have to make these judgement calls and assessments to decide whether to listen to my body or not.......
Sorry, bit of a whinge there, the past few days have been a bit of a challenge.

Comments

  • dibdab
    dibdab Member Posts: 1,498
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Whinge away.....sometimes we need to. Only you know what you can deal with in any given day, but sometimes we do need to take time out and just "be", it's not an admission of defeat, rather a way of saving something for tomorrow.

    Hope things improve soon.

    Deb x
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,278
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    He said “Listen to your body” daffy. He wisely didn't advocate whether or not to give it what it was demanding :wink: Bodies can be like spoilt little brats. Give 'em an inch they'll take a yard or, in this case, give 'em a duvet day and they'll be screaming for it every week.

    Like you, I'm not big on listening to my body. I'm inclined to tell it to shut up and do as you're told. (I was a dreadful mother :oops: ) I think I take after my own Mum. Whenever it was suggested (in her '90's) that she might be more comfortable in bed she'd reply. “Nah. The' dee in bed.” (She didn't, God bless her.)

    I think there is a place for listening to ones body. I do it sometimes with food. It has resulted in some very odd but, at the time, delicious meals. I do it sometimes when I'm properly ill with eg flu. But I dislike giving in to arthritic demands. Even when I have to. Or pacing myself when I'm aware of demands ahead. I do it grudgingly with as many compromises as I think I'll get away with.

    For what it's worth I think you did brilliantly today and your efforts brought their own, thoroughly deserved, rewards. I fear tomorrow you might just have to listen to your body a little and not answer back :wink: It will be annoyed at having lost the argument yet again. But, quite rightly, nothing can take away your achievements.

    And it wasn't a whinge, either :P
    "The deeper sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain." Kahlil Gibran
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,558
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    There is nothing wrong with listening and also nothing wrong with deciding to ignore what you think you are 'hearing'. I agree that it is important to get out and about as often as one can because interacting with others can take one's mind off what may be happening and the social stimulation may offset the possible payback.

    I agree that it is ridiculously demanding having to make these judgement calls on such a regular basis - I know it peeves the heck out of me, the continual 'Do I or don't I?' but it is what it is. Whether I like it or not is of no relevance - also peeving! :wink: DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • theresak
    theresak Member Posts: 1,998
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Sometimes when you ignore your body telling you to slow down, it's worth it for the boost you get mentally. I helped hubby clear a wardrobe out today & sort bedding out. Now I feel physically tired, but mentally smug!!

    Good for you for getting your errands done!!
  • Slosh
    Slosh Member Posts: 3,194
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Well done on getting things done today. I think the listening to your body thing is a bit of a tightrope, it's important to get the balance right and learn when to give in and when to push on through.
    He did not say you will not be storm tossed, you will not be sore distressed, you will not be work weary. He said you will not be overcome.
    Julian of Norwich
  • LignumVitae
    LignumVitae Member Posts: 1,972
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Sometimes we can hear and not listen. Sometimes that pays off and I am really pleased that it did for you. I hope there has been no pay back today though.

    As for a whinge...hardly. You must try harder if that is as whingy as you can be.
    Hey little fighter, things will get brighter
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,278
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    How goes it today, daffy? Who won the argument :wink:
    "The deeper sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain." Kahlil Gibran
  • barbara12
    barbara12 Member Posts: 21,107
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello Daffy,not easy listening to your body..and don't you worry about the whinge it will do you good to get things out..I hope that thing ease up for you soon...I really do...x
    Love
    Barbara
  • daffy2
    daffy2 Member Posts: 1,713
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you all for your kind replies, much appreciated. Today has been much better, hands have subsided to just rather sore, fatigue is business as usual(dip mid afternoon), and knife between the shoulder blades has settled to just a sore patch. Being busy, but not being able to do what I had first intended, seems to have paid off, and today I was able to catch up on some of the 'undone' stuff.
    I think the grump was because over the past few days something else has been sticking its oar in but I don't know if it's a new/recycled virus or general allergy grunge. Running through the OA, scoliosis, fibro checklist I can just about manage, but trying to factor in the latest side dish proved too indigestible.
    The GP's use of the phrase was bad timing as I'd gone to him in rather a panic right at the start of this OA fun when I didn't know if it was OK to work my joints despite the acute pain. At that stage I didn't speak or understand arthritis so listening to it talking wasn't a relevant strategy.
  • GraceB
    GraceB Member Posts: 1,598
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi, difficulty is that with the jolly old arthritis we have more than enough to cope with, without other things gatecrashing the party!

    It's so frustrating when your body says "no" but your mind says "hell, yes!".

    Take care,
    GraceB
    Turn a negative into a positive!
  • bubbadog
    bubbadog Member Posts: 5,544
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I do ignore if my tells me to rest but when it's screaming ' take a bloomin rest day' I listen!! The difficulty starts when do you and when don't listen you have to decide for yourself not when someone tells you to do so. Only you know what your bodies limits are.
  • daffy2
    daffy2 Member Posts: 1,713
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Not sure bubbadog that either my body or I know what our limits are! Things seem to change so quickly and for no obvious reason most of the time. On Wednesday suddenly the fatigue and fog lifted and I was literally fizzing, so ignoring the hurts and doing my volunteer garden stint was easy, and then in the afternoon I decided I wanted to shift the pile of logs left from the removal of a 60 foot long conifer hedge and make a proper woodpile of them. Thursday wasn't a payback day as would have been expected, and Friday has been fine, just usual jabs and aches, so what do I make of that?
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,278
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    What you make of it, daffy, is that bodies are fickle things and not to be trusted. The arthritic body in particular is a sly creature, usually lazy and whiny but occasionally, as you've described, apt to leap into action for no clear reason whatsoever. Do not trust it. It's intention is to lure you into a false sense of security so's it can play another dirty trick on you.

    How's things today?
    "The deeper sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain." Kahlil Gibran
  • daffy2
    daffy2 Member Posts: 1,713
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Today Sticky it's a bit of 'spirit willing, flesh weak' , so I'm going to compromise and do a bit of art tourism. The Open Studios scheme kicks off today and with a bit of planning I can see quite a lot within limited walking distance, and use the bus to get there and back. As you say it's a sly opponent, but today I need exercise(mind and body) so tomorrow will be quiet, even if I feel like digging the allotment! I had forgotten(as one does) the extent to which mental/emotional state can make everything seem so much worse. I hurt(quite a lot actually) and need to keep moving to prevent joints and muscles(especially them at the mo') from seizing up, but as the fog and fatigue have lifted for now I can face doing that.
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 26,278
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    daffy2 wrote:
    mental/emotional state can make everything seem so much worse.

    Or better :D I think it was a good plan of yours and I hope the art therapy helped. Now don't forget about today's resolution :wink:
    "The deeper sorrow carves into your being the more joy you can contain." Kahlil Gibran
  • daffy2
    daffy2 Member Posts: 1,713
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    The art tourism was wonderful - a good lunch first and then 9 studios in about 4 hours. The sun came out and the temperature went up(thank heavens, it was bitter in the morning), I met interesting people known and unknown(I've been 'doing' Open Studios for some years now)saw all kinds of art and also some fascinating buildings I would never otherwise have occasion to go into. And there's more to see over the next couple of weeks.
    The fatigue and fog are still in abeyance, but I've been good and resisted the temptation to spend hours gardening.
  • bubbadog
    bubbadog Member Posts: 5,544
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    daffy2 wrote:
    Not sure bubbadog that either my body or I know what our limits are! Things seem to change so quickly and for no obvious reason most of the time. On Wednesday suddenly the fatigue and fog lifted and I was literally fizzing, so ignoring the hurts and doing my volunteer garden stint was easy, and then in the afternoon I decided I wanted to shift the pile of logs left from the removal of a 60 foot long conifer hedge and make a proper woodpile of them. Thursday wasn't a payback day as would have been expected, and Friday has been fine, just usual jabs and aches, so what do I make of that?

    I think I was high on 'Meds' when I posted that! I don't understand what I was meant to be saying when typing that sorry Daffy!!
  • daffy2
    daffy2 Member Posts: 1,713
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Well I did wonder bubbadog!... but actually you saying about knowing my limits has I think highlighted the root of much of my irritation. Not so long ago, before OA and then fibro kicked in, I did know what my limits were, and could judge how much I could do before causing problems, but now I really don't know - except with hindsight occasionally. Never mind, I could be a lot worse off, and while the obscuring veil of fatigue and fog remains lifted it's much easier to be positive and appreciate that fact.