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Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Chronic Illness: Cleaning House

posted by mpratt

Maureen Pratt Author PicLife with a chronic illness can be cluttered quickly. There are all of those unused or partially used prescription bottles that litter our medicine drawers – oh, the ridiculousness of having to fill a whole prescription only to discover you’re allergic to it on the first dose! And, too, there are the objects with which to use the medications – inhaler extensions, spoons, droppers, vials, etc.

Medical paraphernalia – shoe inserts, braces, canes, wig brushes – oh, my! And, if your weight has yoyoed with your illness and/or meds, you might have two or three whole wardrobes – small, medium, and large.

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I realize that my illness can bring physical changes and different meds and other things, but fairly regularly, I clean house. I take any unused or expired meds to a recycling center that accepts such things (if there isn’t one near you, you can probably ask your pharmacist what to do). This way, I’m not polluting our water system or a landfill.

I take any and all items in good shape, including clothing and wigs, to a charity that will give them to someone who can really need them, but wouldn’t be able to afford them.

Aging with lupus has shown me that I exercise differently now than I did when I was in my 30s. I’ve donated much of my earlier-life exercise equipment already, and will do more of that, no doubt, as I continue to age.

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I also regularly go through my medical files and purge it of duplicates, which seem to find their way into the files seemingly without my having anything to do with it! This way, I free up space and keep a coherent narrative of my health flowing.

There’s no perfect time to clean house, but once done, I do get a great sense of achievement, and I’m happy that I’ve been able to help someone else, too!

A lean, mean, lupie machine – or, at least one that isn’t tripping over unnecessary “stuff” – what a way to clean house and move ahead!

Joys,

Maureen

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Chronic Illness and Lupus: The War Inside

posted by mpratt

Maureen Pratt Author Pic‘Tis the season for doctors’ appointments. Tests. Treadmills. And, oh, the dreaded “fasting bloodwork.” It’s generally fairly exhausting, and I try not to schedule more than one appointment per day (though sometimes, life doesn’t work out this way).

Health news aside, my “season” has kicked of in an unexpectedly nice way. The first doctor on the line-up (Batter up!) opened up about his thoughts on lupus – and they are so wonderful, I have to spread the word. This doctor gets life with lupus. And his words of wisdom just might, I think, help us all help others get it, too.

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Toward the end of the appointment, after my doc walked me through the frightfully complex, serious labrynth of science and patient-hood as it pertains to the problems with my retinas, I commented that it would be so much easier to be able to say to someone who doesn’t live with lupus and these other complicated autoimmune illnesses, “I broke my leg.” or, “I had a heart attack.”

Lupus and related problems are just so very intricate that it’s hard to make non-lupies understand.

Here’s how my doctor responded: “Watching someone live with lupus is like watching someone fight a war that’s going on inside of them. The lupus, or any serious autoimmune condition, is a war against yourself – an autoimmune process – and you fight that war every day. You try to look good and keep active, but it’s exhausting because you’re fighting that war all the time. I’ve seen people fight that war, and I’ve seen people with lupus die. I know just how hard, how serious it is.”

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Oh, my, I could have hugged him!

It isn’t every day that you find a doctor or other healthcare professional who will get lupus and what it means to live the life of a lupie. I am blessed that this doctor and my other tremendously talented medical team members do get it. And I tell them how much I appreciate them every time I get the chance.

Thank you doctors, too, especially those who get what your life is like. And if you feel one or more of them, or anyone in your important inner circle doesn’t quite understand, I hope this post will help communicate the idea, at least in part.

Joy and peace,

Maureen

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Memorial Day: As We Remember

posted by mpratt

American Flag by Michael ElliottThe important thing about remembering past wars is that we use their lessons to think of ways to avoid future wars – and to act on those peace-making ways.

This Memorial Day, beyond the barbecues and parties, the shopping and the relaxing, let’s lift up a prayer for those who served, gave their lives, and live on in our hearts. And let’s also say a prayer that we will be peacemakers –

As we remember

Blessings,

Maureen

 

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A Praying Spirit: Too Easy?

posted by mpratt
Image courtesy of Franky242/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Franky242/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Is your prayer time over before you know it? Gone through the list and all finished?

Sometimes, we get into a routine (yes, routines can be good, but…) and over time, our prayer life can become a bit too easy.

If you find that you’re just naming names and moving on, or rushing through the same-worded prayers each morning and evening, without giving deep thought to their deep meaning, take time to pause. Reflect. Maybe, for a few days, limit your petitions to three things and spend all of your time praying over them (rather than that laundry list of pleas). Or, force yourself to spend one of your prayer sessions in total silence – no words coming from you, but rather training your ears to listen to that small whisper inside that is Spirit, God.

Yes, prayer is wonderful. But like many of the things we do on a regular basis, we might find that it becomes too easy and too regular. If you notice this in your life, it’s okay. Just find ways to bring your prayer back from ordinary to, once again, extraordinary!

Blessings,

Maureen

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