Life can be stressful at times, and I must be honest and admit that I am feeling overwhelmed so let’s talk about it.
So, I have spoken before here on the blog about being a disabled carer, it is something I did not choose but something that was needed. I spend most of my time looking after my mom who has Multiple Sclerosis, an illness I was misdiagnosed with years ago.
Now, we know I have several other illnesses, none of which come with much support from the medical professionals. Instead, I am given symptom management and just go see a doctor if anything changes, which is never easy with medical trauma.
This is very different from my mom’s experience, as she has a whole group of people from occupational therapy and physiotherapy to a dedicated MS nurse. Don’t get me wrong I wish all illnesses had this, she is very lucky, and I am thankful for it.
But she does not look after herself, I have to push her to do the exercises that would make walking easier, or to even eat well. The biggest fight I have on my hands though is getting her to go to bed, which is leaving her with enlarged legs and the start of pitting oedema.
Recently she started to get dark red markings along the toes on one foot, and the doctor stated that it was due to increased pressure because she will not go to bed. And yet since that mom has stayed up every night, three in total!
It is very frustrating and stressful because as she refuses to do the things needed to stop her getting more disabled faster, it is putting more pressure on me. That in turn, is making my own illnesses worse and putting more onto my husband and carer, because he has to look after us both!
On top of all that extra work and stress, my dad just had a heart attack and is in hospital having tests and surgery and it’s scary. I mean we are not as close as I wish we were, but I still care about him and love him and don’t want him to be sick.
Due to all this stress, I am having a flare of pain, and the return of tension headaches which is no surprise but makes life hard. Right now, I have taken extra meds while I write this, and I still have a video to edit for my YouTube channel!
Overall, I am feeling overwhelmed and times like this are something we all go through from time to time. It is not easy, but let’s talk about what I am doing to try and help:
I am feeling overwhelmed
- Take time – taking the time you need to feel your feelings is so important, it is okay to feel ‘negative’ emotions. Don’t try to push through anger or hurt or sadness feel them and do things to give you the time to sit with them. For me it is playing mobile games to focus my brain, for you it could be colouring, but no matter what just let yourself feel and be without judgement.
- Self-care – Use that nice bath salt you have been saving, drink your tea with a slice of cake out of a nice cup, wear that dress you save for nice occasions. It is so important to be kind, do nice things for yourself and refill your cup! I will be doing a nice face mask tonight and maybe watching a nice movie tonight do what makes you feel good.
- Look after you – If you are struggling and you are anything like me, you probably stop doing the basics for yourself. Stop doing that, eat healthy food, drink water, clean your teeth and make sure you are looking after yourself. Often, we can feel like the people around us matter more, but that is not true everyone is important, and everyone matters! So, take your meds, drink enough water and look after you!
- Meditate – Yes, I know you have tried to meditate etc, but even if you just put some music through headphones and get lost in the beat that is meditation! So, take a few minutes in the evening to meditate and get lost in something uplifting. For this I use the app Insight Timer, but you can find meditations on YouTube for stress and worry it all helps!
- Most of all – Talk to someone, there are charities out there for carers, places like the Samaritans, friends, family… find someone and reach out! Tell them how you feel and maybe they will have some ideas of how get through it.
I am feeling overwhelmed right now, but I also always want to use the things I am going through to try and help others. I hope these tips will help you if you are struggling and leave a comment if you have any ideas of things to help others.
Thank you xx