Post-Holiday Care for AS
I don’t know about you, but the holidays exhaust me. I don’t even have a big family. We see my dad’s side for Christmas Eve, and then it’s just us for Christmas day, but I’m still so fatigued.
Small things can exhaust us
I took on the challenge of making Christmas dinner this year. Why you ask? Because I must be crazy. Instead of the usual turkey dinner, I decided I was going to make my dairy-free lasagna.
I know that when I make my lasagna it takes most of the day to make. I was determined to cook it, though. Back before I was diagnosed, I used to cook a lot more. Lately standing so much in the kitchen destroys me. I miss cooking a lot.
I started around 12:30pm and finished making it around 6 pm with small breaks in between. I had to make the ricotta “cheese”, make my own tomato sauce and layer it all. By the end, I would lie down in between steps because I was just SO tired.
After eating dinner my family decided to play a board game. After that, I was completely out of energy. I was lying on the couch when I felt a weird sensation take over my body. My limbs felt weak and heavy and my heart felt weak, too.
I decided it would be best to go lie down in bed, so I asked my mom to help me walk upstairs and help me get in bed. I fell asleep pretty quickly (I usually can’t sleep without taking a pill lately), and slept for a few hours.
Waking up around midnight, I felt immensely better. I needed the small nap otherwise I probably would have crashed. I didn’t feel right and I knew to listen to my body in the moment.
How to take care of ourselves after (and during) the holidays
The holidays take a lot out of us. We use up a lot of our energy socializing, traveling, cooking, etc. By the end of it all, we kind of feel like shells of ourselves. At least I know I do.
For those of us with AS, we need to take a step back and listen to what our bodies are telling us. If they’re telling us to take a break and relax, as hard as it is sometimes, we need to do that. If possible, sneak into a room and lie down on a couch or a bed for even 20 minutes. Rest can do the body (and mind) wonders.
Once all of the family visits are over, treat yourself to some well-needed rest. Use your heating pads, watch some movies, sleep a lot if you need to. Anything to help you get back to your “normal”.
I’ll be sleeping in and hanging around the house for a while. I tend to stay in my pajamas or cozy clothes unless I leave the house. I like to be comfortable at all times.
What things do you do to relax after the holidays are over?
Other than back pain and fatigue, what is the most common symptom that AS patients experience?