At times, even just before really being wide awake, the pain begins; along with the stiffness in my fingers, wrists, hands, ankles, toes, and now my lower lumbar/sacral spine. My first "event" is to get my green tea that is in the refrigerator out, and take my pain medications, along with a muscle relaxer, Meclazine to settle my stomach from some of the "dizziness" I often have, due to double vision, (doctors think from the RA/Lupus), and the feelings as if "I" am moving. Some may call it a form of dystonia. It gives me vertigo, and without my daily medication, I would look and feel as if I had not "control" over my body moving, swaying, and sometimes if I am sitting, I almost "gyrate" from the waist up.
I have a couple of other medications I also take with those, and those are just a few of the many prescriptions and over the counter medications I take daily. My mouth is just as dry as the "Sahara Desert" as the saying goes, from the Sjogren's, which usually can come in tandem with RA, Lupus and so forth. So, I try to drink some iced green tea, and get myself awake enough to decide what to wear and so on.
I used to be able to get dressed to go just about anywhere in an hour or less. Unless it was something extremely dressy and formal, an hour was more than plenty of time to get ready.
Now I must plan to take at the very least over an hour and that is not counting the shower I had the night before. I used to take a shower the morning of what I was doing. Now, I usually have to shower that night before, or by the time I take a shower, dry my hair, do my makeup, get my clothes on, jewelry on, and have everything done, I would be too exhausted to go! Kind of like the "spoon theory". I have so many I use for a day, and just showering, dressing, doing makeup. hair, and jewelry/accessories, would use up over half the spoons for the day. I have had to learn to get as much ready the evening before as possible, so I am not completely worn out by the time I am prepared to go.
I usually take a short walk outside and around my home after I get up. It is usually quiet time, and I just take in the sounds of "nature" all around. Then it is in to take ALL of the medications (not counting the ones I take almost before my feet hit the floor). Then I have my two pups, and I give them their medication at the same time. From there, depending on the day of the week, it may mean collecting all of the trash cans, getting them emptied and out to the curb for the trash truck to pick up. Or laundry to do, depending on how much I have, may need to be done. There maybe errands to run for myself or my Mom, picking up medications, going to the market, or any number of things that may come up in a day that I need to take care of.
I feel like I spend more time either making doctor appointments, going to doctor appointments, getting prescriptions refilled, picking up medications... and life some days seems to evolve around something "medical" in nature.
Even down to what I may decide to have for my meals that day. Cereal usually follows my morning medications, especially during the hot months of the year, and usually warm cereals, oatmeal, or cream of wheat are my breakfast picks in the winter. I on occasion on the weekends will prepare a "big breakfast"... like eggs, biscuits, turkey sausage or bacon, and even grits, hash brown potatoes, or cream gravy and at times I make pancakes. But, since for the most part my stomach does not "hold" very much food at a time, I stick with breakfast less filling.
When I stop to truly think about a moment of time in my life, whether a few hours, a day, week, month and so forth, honestly something about an illness or disease is never left out of the equation. I have to always consider how I "may feel" physically before making any definite plans. Even then, it could be I wake up on that day, and must either postpone or cancel something, because I am not feeling well. I feel as if my "body" dictates what I can or can't do any moment of my life. Everything seems to evolve around how I am "feeling".
Chronic pain and/or chronic Illnesses, all too often "rule over" and "take over" your life. They challenge you, they can come on and knock you to your knees when you least expect it.
Each day, each moment, each breath that passes can mean a fine line between feeling "well" and being very critically ill.