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Sunday, December 9, 2012

IC Tired



Every year for the last 47 years it has been a cold, cloudy, dreary day on December 5th.  Or should I say it has been for the last 7 years since I turned 40?  When I look outside all I see is grey...how depressing!!  How do I know this? It is my birth date.  I am one of those overly sensitive people when it comes to my birthday.  I expect the loved ones in my life to make me feel special on this day.  To some people their birthday is just another day, not me I am sensitive to a fault. I am just a big baby about the whole thing.

I guess I could blame it on my husband who has spoiled me on my birthday over the years.  Gifts, flowers and limousine rides and such have my expectations pretty high.  This year I decided that I wanted to plan my birthday.  I just couldn’t stand the thought of going to work, like it was just another day and pretending to be happy.  

I planned a trip about 2 hours away to the mountains of North Carolina.  I booked a hotel in Asheville NC and picked a small, nearby town to do some shopping.  I chose Black Mountain NC.  I could not have picked a better place.  It was a small quaint town with lots of small,charming gift shops.

We began our shopping journey at an antique store.  I love to browse through antique stores and I haven't done it since I was diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis (IC) in March.  I was able to find 2 very unique prayer cards and a book that we are going to give to one of my brothers for Christmas.  One of the prayer cards has a picture of Jesus and the other has a bible verse on the back.  They are both made of delicate paper and are made to look like lace.  I have never seen anything like them before.  They are truly a rare treasure.

We ate lunch at the Veranda Cafe.  If you are ever near Black Mountain, I highly recommend this cafe.  I had a chicken salad croissant with potato soup.  Both were very tasty.

After lunch, we did more shopping.  We went into one store that had hand crafted items from local artists.  I particularly liked the hard carved wooden tables and a picture with birds and pieces of decorative glass.  The picture caught my husband’s eye too and he commented on it.  After browsing the whole store and picking out a pair of earrings for myself.  I thought the picture would look great in our house because it was very colorful and my house is too.  I told my husband I thought we should buy it.  I thought it was $37.00, he pointed out that is was $376.00.  We both got a good laugh from that and purchased just the earrings :)

After we shopped for about 2 hours or more.  My husband said to pick one last place and I picked a great little gift shop.  It was filled with gems from local artists.  I found a gift for my daughter…I can’t go into detail she might be reading…Santa’s little secret!

I had taken a couple of pictures along the way, but I wanted more.  I asked Alan if we could stop at a scenic place along the way home and take more.  As it turned out we went to Chimney Rock, but the park to the scenic views was closed.  We did manage to take a couple of pictures near the park.  Those pictures mean so much to me, because Alan went way out of the way, just to make me happy on my birthday.

I was so tired on the way home; I didn’t have the energy to talk much.  I wasn’t just tired, I was IC tired.  Before IC, I just thought I knew what tired meant.  IC takes tired to a whole new level for me.  My whole body ached from my fingers to my toes and everything in between.  Before, when I would get tired I could get a good night’s sleep and feel much better the next day.  Now that I have IC I have to have at least a couple of nights with good sleep and lots of rest in between.

For me being that tired was worth it.  I spent my birthday with my husband, went shopping and have some good memories AND pictures to remind me of how much he does for me.

When you live with IC or any type of chronic pain, you have to decide how you are going to use your energy.  Spend it on what will benefit you and your family the most.  We have to pick and choose because our bodies are different now than they were before IC.

 This can be one of the most hectic times of the year.  We think we have to decorate, bake, shop and socialize more in the month of December than all the other months combined.  As IC patients we need to let some things go. If the tree isn’t perfect or the house isn’t spotless, what does it really matter? (I can’t believe I just typed those words...but IC changes you, what can I say?)   The things in life that matter most are our relationship with God, our families and our friends.  Use this time of year as a reminder of that and not get caught up in all the doing and running around.

I'll admit that I over did it and became very IC tired. I will, on the other hand. do most of my Christmas shopping online.  My tree is not perfect and my house is far from spotless and I am at peace with all of it.

 John 14:27 - #1 Bible Scripture for Inner Peace- Gift from Jesus
"I am leaving you with a gift-peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don't be troubled or afraid.

http://www.ichelp.org/

Let me know how you are making changes in your life to survive the holidays  by leaving your comments below.

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Barbara at Chimney Rock NC












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Alan at Black Mountain NC