Welcome! My health problems add craziness to my life. Here I post ideas I've tried, also questions I'm still asking. I have an electrolyte disorder. So I have crazy neuro stuff like complicated migraines, alkalosis, loosing my speech and paralysis. (including legs and hands) Little by little, foods had to go, they affected my brain and immune system. So I avoid like the plague: soy, dairy, gluten, nightshades, and try to avoid refined sugar. My body requires pink salt and electrolytes. I now use a speedy red wheelchair that I love. I've craved a simpler life, but how do you do that with crazy health stuff? I've already had a fire and flood, so I really don't value possessions. I value people and experiences. I am not compensated for any posts, just my opinions.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Decompressing, without electronics

One of the most difficult things about health problems for me, is when I can't do what I normally like to do to decompress. Doing something other than thinking about the crazy situation you feel stuck in, really helps life feel a bit more do-able. I love to do family history and read to decompress. If I have vision issues with episodes, my kindle still works great! I have the old black and white version with e-ink. It's much easier on my eyes and I can enlarge the font.  Sometimes I just have to wait out the episodes before I can look at electronics. (my phone or computer.) I started looking for other things to do to decompress, and remembered I have always loved puzzles. I asked others what they like to do, that's non-electronic. Puzzles, reading and coloring were the answers given. I found there's a number of "adult coloring books" (meaning not simple for children), many of which say "soothing", or "de-stress". There's lots of cool options like dragons, butterflies, cats, dogs, flowers, city skylines, Japanese scenic scenes...

Sleep issues has been a major challenge for my family for years. Bad enough we've had to ask doctors for help. We recently bought a SAD light, to sit next to the first 10 minutes we're awake. Another very important thing is no electronics that last half hour before bed. (An hour is even better.) I just ordered several color books. So now we have the options of puzzles, color books and books to read before bed. These things make a huge difference with fighting chronic insomnia, better quality sleep and getting into a regular sleep routine. Which also means better health!

When I was little, I always wanted to join the grownups with their puzzles, because I wanted a challenge. When I visited my grandma, we started doing puzzles (or board games) and having hot chocolate until midnight. I felt so grown up and had so much fun with that! My earliest memories doing puzzles, I was asking for old family stories. So I was working on game puzzles and real life puzzles at the same time. I recently met someone on a family history trip, who had a room full of puzzles. He said for years when people wanted to give him Christmas and birthday presents he asked for them to just give him a puzzle. He put a date on the box of when he did the puzzles. Friday nights, he has friends over to visit and do puzzles together and has a table set up just for that. I thought all that was really cool! He sent me home with a puzzle to try. It had two dates on the box. My mom has a really huge dining room table, with not so many of us left at home. During snow days, she pulls out puzzles and uses a section of her table to keep puzzles going.

My parlor is my decompress room. I surrounded myself with stuff I really like. We got more space when we moved and I was thankful I could have a parlor. Its almost just the way I want it. Just going to make the coffee table white again, and put up a much smaller light fixture. Its the first room people see when they come in my house, and where I bring company. If the whole house is falling apart, this is the room I try to keep cleanest and functioning. My cabinet holds board games and puzzles. My husband found a nice small table I loved, perfect for smaller puzzles and games. I love sitting in rocking chairs by the table. A drawing my father in law did of the church in Italy the Cabittos went to for centuries, is beside my couch.  There's also a 3 generation rock collection on the wall, and a shadow box of stuff found at our first house, in a historic area. I did an Alfred Hitchcock puzzle that came with a story, and no picture on the box. When finished, you look at the puzzle for clues. There's no electronics in my parlor. I also have 2 lamps with full spectrum lights, for calmer, softer lighting.

Growing up, I loved stories like those written by Laura Ingalls Wilder, Anne of Green Gables series and Louisa Alcott, especially Jo's Boys. They tell fun adventures despite challenges, that are non-electronic. I do love technology, but often feel bombarded by it. I don't really like TV, my eyes see it as flashing lights. Sometimes I watch movies on my computer while I scan/digitize. But in general, I like electronics limited, and prefer much more of the quieter, slower paced things in life. It helps my life feel calmer, with less drudgery.
What do you to to decompress?

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