Test and Adjust

 

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I had an intern once who constantly said “test and adjust”; when she said it I took it to mean whenever there is something new/ unexpected/ unwelcomed in our lives we test it so that we can learn and then we adjust to suit. It makes no sense complaining/ worrying/ fighting the change……………………learn and adjust…………change is constant.

I don’t know……… I’m tired of adjusting.

It seems like I am constantly adjusting, even before I can adequately adjust to one change along comes another and I am scrambling to deal with something else. The weeks since my last post have been one adjustment after another.

My GI issues have settled somewhat because I have made some additional diet changes. We believe that I do not have IBS, rather fructose malabsorption. I don’t know why and honestly I can’t be bothered about it ……well the reason behind it………..right now. I can no longer absorb fructose. This brings symptoms similar to IBS.  I have basically been testing and adjusting my diet. I cut out the recommended high fructose foods and reintroduced them alone one by one to gauge the effects on my body. I have been able to identify those foods that trigger my symptoms. I’m still working on this.

My allergies and sensitivities have also been heightened. Before, I could still have a little gluten every once in a while. I shouldn’t but I could and not have any reaction. Now I cannot do that. I must have and maintain the completely gluten free diet. Even grains that I could previously have, I can no longer eat. I developed a reaction to corn when I could previously use it without issue. Actually I think its the type of corn. I have reactions to taco shells and cereal that is imported but if I use corn meal or corn flour made here I am ok thus far.

My energy levels have improved but are still low compared to where I need them to be. I find it difficult to go an entire day without getting exhausted. This has been really put to the test this week. I am having an annual camp I host with a colleague. Its constant going, standing, talking and work from 8:30 – around 3:30 each day. Its too much for me, makes me worry about returning to work in September………work is quite similar. Today I just had to stop and put my feet up.

On the topic of feet……………I started wearing the compression stockings. They help tremendously. They take a bit of getting used to but the support is amazing. The only thing is that Barbados is hot…………and its summer 😦 Its an exercise in perseverance to deal with them and the heat. Still I have no choice. If I got so tired and my legs hurt so much with them on I definitely would not have been able to do half as much without them.

I’m also adjusting to losing/ rather deciding that some friendships I have are at an end. One in particular, I have been friends with the individual for over 15 year. I explained to the individual the challenges I was having with Pelvic Congestion and Endometriosis and how it was impacting my life. There was absolutely no response, no empathy or sympathy………….absolutely nothing. This person then went on to discount my discomfort in their presence, acted as if I they had no knowledge of my illness. As much as I accept that the friendship is over, I have yet to speak to the person and it still hurts.

So much more going on in my life and all around. Testing and adjusting is difficult………but its necessary…………I just wish it easier:(

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Embrace the flat/ or nearly flat…

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Yesterday I looked at Embrace the stretch… and that was mainly about the adjustment I had to make in the type of clothing I wore. I promised to look at the changes I made in my shoes.

Let me say that I love shoes. I guess in that way I am a typical woman. I think that any day can be fixed with a sexy pair of shoes…..I’m serious here. There were many days in the past where I was in a bad mood and I just put on a popping pair of shoes and my entire attitude changed. There is just something about how I feel in the shoe. Anyway, enough of that.

I am 5ft 10inches tall. So I really didn’t need to wear heels to begin with. I just loved them from the time I started wearing them around age 12. I would wear heels between 2 and 4 1/2 inches high. To work, church and to any occasion that was not completely casual.

I realized whenever I had a period- before the hysterectomy, or whenever I was in pain- after the hysterectomy, I couldn’t tolerate the heels. I always wore flats of shoes with 1 1/2 inch heels of lower. There was just something about the angle of the heel that made the pelvic pain worse. I think it increased the pressure somehow. I’m not sure.

As things got worse I found myself less and less able to wear the heels for any period of time. I would wear to work my heels and after about 1/2 hour take them off. The same would happen at church. I found that the pain was just too much to bear.

It came to the point about a year ago, around the same time I was adjusting my wardrobe, that I had to stop wearing them all together. Standing alone was painful if I had to do it for more that 20 minutes furthermore in heels.

I was depressed over the shoe situation. Really depressed. One day I took all my heels and looked them over. Those that I could give away I did and the others I threw out. There were numerous pairs of shoes. It was a sad day.

Since then I have built up a store of flats. Nice flats. I have a few shoes that are 1 1/2 inch high but most are flat. Even those with the small heel I can’t tolerate when in pain.

So, another lesson learned. Test and adjust a friend of mine always says.

I have come to accepting that I have to do what is best for me. I have come to accepting that flats look nice also. I have come to deciding that pain will try to define me and bring me down ………………but I won’t let it.

I am stronger and more flexible than I thought.

So what, my clothes and shoes are different………….but you know what? I am still here and that to me is victory!

Embrace the stretch…

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Just yesterday I wrote about The Space I’m in….. This was about embracing and accepting where I am on my journey with Pelvic Congestion Syndrome and Endometriosis. It was about dealing with those things I cannot do right now and not stressing.

Today I had a reminder of that….how hilarious it was.

Yesterday I wore a pants at home in the evening for probably an hour and after I had my shower this morning I took the same pants to wear. I proceeded to pull the pants up and attempted to zip it. The zip came about 1/5 of the way up and ran back down. I tried again and the same thing happened. When I looked down I realized that my belly was getting in the way and the pants could not be zipped closed. I started to laugh.

I laughed so hard I had to sit down. It was immediately distressing and hilarious……….most people won’t put those two things together but I did in that moment. In my head it was better to be laughing…….really laughing…………than crying.

I was reminded of one of the best pieces of advice my doctor ever gave me. He said “Lyn, embrace stretch fabric.”

Now I am sure that you have heard of the endo belly and I have written before about PCS causing my belly to swell to the point where I can be mistaken for 5 -6 months pregnant. So combine the two.

I must say when I got the piece of advice I was taken aback but I took it and ran with it. Good thing I did. I slowly started converting my wardrobe to stretch items or to styles that accommodate a big tummy.

 

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Faux wrap

I sewed several peplum and empire waist tops and dresses as well as a few faux wrap pieces. I made sure that anyone who ever purchased clothing for me knew that I preferred stretchy stuff.

 

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Empire waist

I even looked for pants and skirts either with stretch fabric or at least the waist from stretch fabric. Right now I would say probably 90% of my wardrobe has been converted.

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Peplum

In the whole scheme of things, being frustrated over clothing is one worry I could do without. I had days where zippers threatened to burst and I had to pin between buttons and that was extremely distressing. Embracing the stretch fabric has removed that stress from my life.

At the time it seemed like giving in to the conditions but now I know its more working along with the situation. Its just like converting to flat shoes – but that’s tomorrow’s blog :).

The pants today was a pre – advice item. It reminded me of how much my life has changed but I was also reminded of how much I have grown. A year ago I would have been weeping. Today I just laughed.

Maybe that’s the secret. Some things, when we embrace them and work around and along with them; its the best fight against the diseases we can give.

It says “you can’t bring me down…..I’m flexible like that”.

Embrace the stretch!