So, I thought I had this whole thing figured out. In fact, if you read back, it seems that over and over again I seem to think I have it all figured out. Reflect, start anew, get back up...it's all there. Yet, this past weekend, there were some new revelations. I've got nothing figured out!
I have been feeling better, a bit more pep in my step and I seem to be able to tolerate outings better and actually look forward to invitations to gatherings. What has most improved is my attitude towards myself. A few months back I had decided to make sure there were clothes in my closet that were comfortable and actually fit me. I went out and bought clothes even though they were in sizes I wasn't comfortable with admitting I could fit into. This has made getting ready to go out so much easier. I can't tell you when the last time I stood in tears and panic before the mirror moments before we were to be leaving was. Also making the transition easier was taking some of the blame off of myself. Steroids do a number on your body. Those close to me know how hard I am on myself. Releasing some of the blame was key. And lets not forget embracing the fact that so many accept me for who I am. I was/am the only one with a problem about how I looked.
As much as I want to believe that I am in control of this whole fibromyalsia and RA thing, I am not. Next month will be one year that the fibro diagnosis was given and December will be the one year mark for the RA diagnosis. I have come a long way, but am still struggling to find the norm. It's frustrating. Not only for me, but for my dear husband as well. I keep thinking I can get back to where I was before and he keeps trying to remind me that I may not be able to. I don't want to hear it. So I push and then crash. And then I get angry. I want my old life back. I have never asked, why me? Most certainly, why now?
The words, "I can't" have never been comfortable crossing my lips. I hear them bouncing off the walls in my head, but I struggle to get them out. "I can't" is weakness. I am not weak. It sounds like I am giving up. I have to change this way of thinking. "I can't" does not have to mean I am giving up or unwilling. That is what I really am struggling with. There is so much guilt about how much has been placed on my husband since this all started a couple of years ago, that I feel like, I can't, is inappropriate to say.
But, it is exactly what he wants to hear me say more often. Several times in the past months I have asked myself, what are we doing here in this house, with this massive property surrounding it? It is terribly painful to see the flower beds and gardens that are not up to par because we/I can't get to them. Sure, we have finally nailed down, as a family how to keep the inside proper, but the outside, I am so embarrassed. And then we argue because I can't let it go. I let it all get to me and my emotions get the best of me and then it all comes out. I can't keep up and I don't know what to do about it. He got very upset with me when I said that I would rather have people (who know us) drive by and say, "wow, I don't know how they do it" versus them seeing beds overgrown and understanding that we just can't. Because of me. Because of this stupid RA and it's partner. Because it could mean that I am letting it win.
So now there is a new resolution. We will wait. Until the fall and until the spring. And we will hope that I will continue to feel and move better and we can keep on top next year. We will communicate more. I was the one who usually took care of the beds in terms of clearing out and keeping up on the weeds. Now, if I don't get to it, I'll tell him and he will get on it. We will work together better than we have in the past. I can't do it all and I don't have to worry about it.
I have also realized that I am not going to wake up one day and RA will be absent. I can't have my old life back. At least not exactly as it was. We will continue to modify and take it one day at a time. So that I can do so much more with so much less frustration. I can't let this get the better of me. And I won't. Ever.