Life 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.
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.
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!