Monday, December 15, 2008

The Holidays And You, Everyday

Let's face it, the holidays are overwhelming at times for us all and saying that they are just stressful can sound like an understatement. When you add a chronic condition to the mix, it can be downright mind blowing for the sufferer.

My family, though lovable, tends to ask me to do things for them at the last possible minute throughout the year, but when it happens to be around this time of year, it just seems worse. For instance, there are many people who like to do cookie exchanges around now, and you usually have to bake at the very least, 5 dozen for those exchanges. There's also the school time fun of Thanksgiving feasts, Christmas gifts for the classroom, cookie treats, school plays and concerts that require outfits, and sometime in between all of this, you are supposed to squeeze in Christmas shopping, preparing a meal for the whole clan, and oh yeah-- there's that tree with ALL of those lights...

I don't know about you, but just typing out all of this is making me tired.

So how do you cope? Well, I learned this wonderful word in the English language that seems to work well-- at least some of the time. And that beautiful word is the word
no. Now, it may sound mean to say that kind of word during this very special time of year, but it's really not.

I know that this time of year, we all tend to think about people less fortunate and of course all of our friends and loved ones that have helped us in one way or another throughout the entire year. But you also have to think of yourself. You've helped out people this year and you have probably thought about people less fortunate than yourself during the year too. So why beat yourself up for not being able to do it all? Especially around this time of year when you are cramming a year's worth of time into a month.

My grandmother taught me two very important phrases. One is
Christmas is everyday and the other is Charity begins at home. These two phrases are beautiful because they are packed with so much meaning.

Christmas can truly be everyday when you get together with someone you love. Even just calling someone you care about that might be far away is also like a Christmas get together because you are spending time with them.

Charity can't happen unless a person is well enough to give of themselves. So if you are stretching yourself so thin that you may wind up with a flare that lasts all winter long, what good have you truly done if you can't give to yourself or your family? The unfortunate part about having Fibromyalgia is that we have to learn how to manage our time and our pain. But once we learn this valuable lesson, we can be charitable to our family AND to others.

Staying as flare free as possible makes this season extra special because you won't be too tired to see those little ones open up the gifts that Santa gave them. Or bake tons of Christmas cookies with your children to enjoy with their class and Santa of course. Being as flare free as possible might even be enjoyable for those Christmas parties with your partner that require a certain amount of dancing too. So give the word
no a try with the things that are not as important during this month and have a fabulous holiday season!

Stay fabulous!
Love and friendship,

Kimberley

P.S. If you look to the right of this blog, you will notice that I am in the running for a People's Health Blogger award. If you like
Fibro And Fabulous, please take the time to vote. Take care of yourselves and happy holidays.
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