Blessed With An Ordinary (?) Day!

Hallelujah!!!  The thrill of an absolutely “normal,” uncomplicated day.  Abnormal,  for those of us who suffer from any chronic  illness.  The sun was shining and my aches and pain were minimal; I felt great and full of energy. It is a wonder to be me today. I happily went grocery shopping, bought exotic pluots (plums/apricots) ran into an old friend, so nice to see a familiar face,  chatted and hugged!  Drove to the Thrift Shop to see if  I could find cheap toys for my dog’s upcoming 9th birthday and also bought a soft-as-a-bunny mens 3x Tee-shirt to wear to bed.  Took my daughter, to the new friendly TD bank where we deposited all our coins into their new coin machine with great glee, and met the new Manager who smiled at us both and cheered us on. Scored a free  lime lollipop and a bright green pen. We left giddy with cash, smiling and laughing,  just the two of us.

When we came home from the bank we ate dinner.  Two tasteless macaroni and cheese (in my opinion ONLY) Weight Watcher meals and a huge salad, to which I added, red grapes, soft, silky avocado, bits of hard Jarlsberg cheese and baby carrots. My daughter had ranch dressing, I had bright orange Asian Sesame Ginger which came pouring out of the bottle at an alarming rate creating a huge orange puddle. Listened to Kansas on my computer “Carry On My Wayward Son”and emailed with a friend. Stroked my dog Callie’s soft fur, found out someone in our neighborhood was caught in a prostitution ring! So much happening in just one day, all my senses heightened, the sun, glowing brightly in the sky; or maybe it was just me?

A great day with a minimum of aches and pains, mostly my stiff shoulders and the small of my back but I can deal with that. Tested positive to the Thyroiditis Hashimoto’s antibody which I knew I had but somehow I felt reaffirmed. My mother e-mailed me the name of a chiropractor/homeopath person, forgetting that all these things require money we do not have. We have money issues to begin with but she meant well. You are your parent’s child forever.   The guru Dr. I see in the city is madly expensive but I have to see him every 3 months, there is no choice, we have to find the money for that!

After dinner, Jillian baked a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting for her friend, Katie’s, birthday. I helped her with it and while I do not know that much about baking cakes I am good with functional and basic things, like getting the cake out of the pan. Showed Jillian my way of frosting the cake, with swirls, and it actually made her  seem in awe of me: “Wow, Mom you could be a professional baker.”   I felt like the Betty Crocker of the 21 st. century while my daughter looked on with great admiration. She’s 15 and a half, that was a rare and wonderful moment!

Do not overlook your “ordinary” days. Those of us who have few of them are delighted when it happens because it happens so rarely.  Enjoy shopping, going to the Post Office, driving to the library, all because you can and don’t complain. When these days occur to those of us with chronic illnesses, we do not complain; we celebrate. Here’s to Ordinary Days!

Good For You, Great For Me

Today is a HAPPY day for me; for most others they would call it “normal.” After a good, solid night’s sleep (waking up only once and then able to go back to sleep immediately), I woke up at 11AM and felt good. Good, as in the absence of, pain and aches. Not just good, but GOOD, almost great. I had enough energy to get out of the bed and go down the stairs.  Feeling good is taken for granted by a whole lot of people but NOT to those of us who have auto-immune diseases, fibromyalgia or ANY chronic illness for that matter. Good to us is great. Unfortunately for some of us, to experience it  is sometimes rare.

When I feel sick I don’t know if it’s a side effect of the methotrexate (and plaquannel) that I am taking, whether it is my illness (Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and Fibromyalgia) OR a new virus or bug I picked up (probably at another Dr’s appointment.)  Last week I took, (yes, I asked my doctor’s permission)  gulp,  double the amount of methotrexate, 8 pills (bad idea, really bad idea) on one day instead of splitting the medication, 4 pills, twice a week.  I did get approval  from the doctor to try….but it was definitely a really bad experiment.  My fault. Entirely. I take full responsibility for it.  Big, bad, miserable mistake but I  thought it could turn out to my advantage (so not) and I wanted to try to feel good for a few days in between the two doses.  It backfired, I was sick for an entire, miserable, can’t-get-out-of-bed- week. Never will that happen again. Maybe the lessons I needed to learn from this are:  when I go back to taking the dose twice a week (starting Monday) it won’t feel AS bad as it was last week AND see how much sicker I could feel every day?

I took advantage of THE DAY (wish I could light this up with sparklers)  by doing “normal” things which to me were thrilling. I went to the Orthodontist with my kids (just being able to GO was a treat)   and then I took them out to eat at the local diner. First, having teenagers by themselves, outside the house, is a joy in itself. There was barely any fighting and a lot of sharing food and actual conversation. Anyone who has teenagers knows this is a rare gift. Besides my son taking illegal sips out of my daughter’s  strawberry smoothie and my daughter continually playing with the straw in her water-glass, it was calm and very enjoyable. My son ate his brunch, thinly layered pieces of a croissant, french toast style, with bacon in less than 4 minutes. My scrambled eggs and toast (why do they taste so much better when I am not cooking them??) and fruit served as the extra filling station for both the kids. It was fun to see them reach over and grab bites and an even greater joy just to be with them. Outside the house. Like a real person.  Most people would take this meal for granted. Not I.

Being on a roll on this celebratory day,  my husband and I plan to go to dinner at the Asian Fusion restaurant we used to go to.  We have not gone out anywhere for months so Carpe Diem (seize the day).  For me, a good day, like today, is a celebration. I can honestly say that I don’t know when I will feel this good again. I wish it was more frequent, I wish I could predict it  but I can’t and I have to accept that.

I hope people who don’t have any illnesses will read this to know how good they have it, that just having an ordinary day makes us feel so special. I may not feel like this for a few more weeks or months but it allows me to remember how it feels and that there is the promise of another day, somewhere…. in the future.