I bet most people don't think twice about showering. It's something we all have to do and for most people it's a very simple task. You get in, wash hair, soap up, rinse off, shave and get out. Easy right? Not for me.
Most days I do OK. But there are days when it's almost impossible just to turn the water on. And then there is trying to get in to the shower without falling. I'm sure that's amusing to watch. I avoid showering when I'm flaring because it is so hard to do. The energy that it takes to shower is something a lot of people take for granted. I know I did. I can't squeeze the shampoo bottle. I can't balance on one leg to shave my legs anymore. It's too hard for me to get up if I sit. Not to mention trying to hold onto a slippery razor with hands what don't want to move. I know most people would say to wait until Rick can help me but sometimes that isn't an option.
We have a bath seat. We didn't buy it for me but I'm sure the next time I'm in a horrible flare and can't stand to shower I will use it.
How about cutting your food? Do you realize how hard that can be? My grip isn't what it used to be when I'm not flaring so when I am I have even less strength! Cutting meat is a challenge. If Rick is home and I can't do it, he will. Along with the kids.
There are other things too. Opening a door or turning a key. Walking to the corner or down the street. Opening a can. Riding a bike. Typing/texting. DRIVING. Tying shoes. Wearing certain shoes! I cannot wear heels anymore-- it hurts too bad. And I can't wear my wedding rings most days. If I do my hands will swell... never fails. It's like something is against me.
Have you ever had to hold back tears when your child runs up to you after school and gives you the biggest, tightest hug? On really bad days the slightest touch from the kids me can put me in tears. There are times when it hurts for them to sit by me or hold my hand but I grin and bear it.
Everything I have mentioned is stuff that I struggle with. Some things daily and others only when I'm in a bad flare. But everything listed is something I never thought twice about until I couldn't do them. I cleaned and vacuumed my car out this afternoon. Something people do all the time. It totally wiped me out. I am so exhausted that I couldn't make dinner or do dishes. My shower will have to wait until tomorrow. Again.