Collage of hobbies Including gaming and tv remote, hair clips, make-up brush, books, puzzle pieces, list, and pen.

Keeping Busy During a Flare-Up

I think I speak for everyone when I say AS flare-ups are the bain of our existence. There is no worse feeling than waking up in the morning and instantly feeling that nagging, stabbing, stiff pain that lets us know it’s going to be one of those days (or weeks).

Flare-ups can be boring

I have ADHD, so for me, a flare-up is irritating in more ways than one. Other than the pain and lack of energy, I constantly find myself in a state of boredom and chomping at the bits to get something (anything) done without overdoing it. I thought I’d share a few ways I keep myself busy during these times and maybe in the process, I’ll be able to help anyone else out there who is, well, bored out of their mind essentially.

Ways I keep myself busy

  • Netflix. This is completely unoriginal and something you all probably already take part in, but Netflix has gotten me through some long, hard days in bed. I’m honestly not much of a TV watcher, but some of these binge-worthy series really entertain me.
  • Hobbies/makeup. I never had a hobby prior to getting sick. Sure, I’ve always loved all things girly (makeup, hair, skincare) but never took the time to learn real skills, that is until I got sick. Through many days of scrolling Instagram and seeing all these beautiful makeup looks, I thought, “Hey, I have the time. I’d like the learn how to do that!” And so I did. I watched hours and hours of Youtube tutorials and practiced every day. I also got into paper-planning along the way. There are SO many hobbies out there that don’t require you to leave the house (or even the bed). You just have to find your niche and run with it!
  • Planning/lists. As I said, I got really into paper-planning, so much so that I have multiple planners for all aspects of life. One thing that tends to happen during a flare-up is that my house becomes a disaster area. I have two little boys and a husband who works five days a week, so there’s not really anyone here to pick up the slack when I’m down. So what do I do? I make a list and a plan of action of what I’m going to do and what needs to be done when I’m better. I can’t really explain how this keeps me busy, but something about planning, writing, and visualizing helps me pass the time.
  • Reading books. I have always loved reading since I was a little girl, but when I had children, I stopped. Now that I have all of this extra downtime, I’ve picked reading back up and I can’t believe I ever stopped. Fiction, non-fiction, self-help- I love them all!
  • Gaming. This one makes me feel the most present with my kids, and therefore is probably one of my favorites. If you’re a parent living with AS, then you’re probably familiar with feeling like you’re somehow depriving your children of the parent they deserve. I’ve been there, and it’s rough. So any chance I get to play a few rounds of Mario-Kart or Super Smash Bros, I’m in! My kids LOVE when I play with them, and it feels good knowing I can be the mom they deserve, even on really bad days.

I’d love to hear from you on what you do to pass the time during a flare-up! Please feel free to share your ideas and experiences down in the comment section below!

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