Yet again I’ve fallen behind on my site sorry about that everyone. It’s that time of the year again Christmas! The thing about this time of year is that it’s my favourite time of the year but it’s also the toughest time of the year. All the hustle and bustle that goes on is stressful to a person living with chronic pain. The added stress makes pain worse and if you have CRPS some of the triggers that set off my pain are really unavoidable at this time of year. Getting together with family and friends and just hanging out is so much fun, but it doesn’t come without a price attached to it. Over time though and with lots of practice I’ve been able to manage those triggers to the point where I don’t let it ruin my Christmas.

The girls get an extra long holiday this year because of where Christmas falls, so at the end of the week school is done until Jan 6 and we get to enjoy lots of lake time. Family will come from out of province and Christmas will be great as it always is but sometimes it all gets to be too much and I have to take some time out for me! Fortunately I have a very understanding family and they know what I have to do in order to keep my pain levels under control.

My family means the world to me and no illness or disease is going to take that away! This is the time of the year when all the alarm bells start going off  and I sometimes want to crawl out of my skin, and I know a lot of you who suffer from CRPS can identify with that. I have to put all the coping skills I’ve learned into action to be able to function in and around family and friends. I know I’ve posted about this before but I want to encourage you to try to put those skills to use because they really do work!

If you don’t about what coping skills I’m talking about, then email me and I can send you a reply with some of the things I put into action in order to calm down the flare ups. Christmas should be a time where you enjoy being around all your family and friends not having to isolate yourself because you can’t cope with your pain. I’m not trying to say that by using all your coping skills that things will be perfect and you’ll be totally pain free because that  isn’t the case. The last time I checked this illness was called CRPS and you never know when or where the symptoms are going to hit. If you manage the pain though it can make things a little bit easier to handle.

So my message to all of you out there who find this a hard time of the year to deal with is this. Don’t give up! It took me a long time to figure out what worked and what didn’t when it came to dealing with Christmas with my family. I had to figure out what set off my triggers that caused flares and how to work with them. This is a really busy time of year for most families and the best piece of advice I can give people is to pace yourself. Make sure that you take time out for yourself when it all gets to be to much.

So for now I say Merry Christmas! I’ll talk to you all soon!