There are some things we spoonies just can’t live without. Most of them come from a pharmacist in little packets or bottles and make your liver run for cover. Others come in the form of the wonderful people who help us (although those who don’t know how to do so properly can be an issue). But there are some things that are invaluable that you can buy yourself – here’s a little list of my non-medical spoonie essentials.
1 – Ultra Strength Deodorant. Not a popular topic I know, but I’m sure my fellow fibromyalgia sufferers will agree that being ill can be sweaty business! Driclor (my chosen brand because a) Big Sis gave me a sample of it and b) they sell it in my local boots) has saved me from turning into an embarrassed, salty puddle every time my faulty internal heating decides to give me a flush hotter than the Bahamas. Big Sis, who has long had a problem with being excessively sweaty as well, said it turned her life around. She wasn’t exaggerating.
2 – Olive Oil. No, I don’t mean the current fad of drinking it as a supplement. Eczema, excessive dry skin, sensitivity to perfumes, allergic reactions: all these are more common when you have an underlying health condition. A solid moisturiser is a must. Most included chemicals or fragrances that actually can increase symptoms so something gentle, natural and kind to the skin is needed. Screw all those fancy oils in spray bottles from health shops – good old, already-have-it-in-the-kitchen olive oil is where it’s at.
3 – A good array of pillows. I myself find that my pillow needs are rarely the same from night to night. One night I want to be entirely flat, the next propped up almost at a right angle, I need to be on my front, my side, I need a leg propped up, an arm supported…it’s like playing bed Tetris sometimes. Assuming you have somewhere to keep them, an assortment of pillows of different size and firmness is a must to help you get at least some of those fragile forty winks.
4 – Medical ID bracelet/emergency contacts kit. If possible, a neat piece of jewelry from a site like this (make sure it’s one with a database you can update) that you always wear is a must. All your medical information – allergies, emergency contacts, conditions – is stored on it and available for any doctor or paramedic to see instantly. If they’re a bit pricey for you then keeping a note on you at all times with the same info – somewhere easy to find like taped to the back of your phone or tucked in to the front of your purse – is a solid back up plan.
5 – Colouring books or other easy craft projects. This is all about stress and emotion management, two things invaluable if you’re dealing with pain and fatigue. Choose something you can do without having to concentrate and you can do even when you’re in pain and stock up ready for the bad days. Adult colouring books are everywhere these days having risen in popularity in the last few years – most supermarkets are selling them.
So they’re my essentials – do you have any different ones you’d like to share?
(Note: I am not in any way involved in selling these products nor endorsed by anybody, these are just my personal opinions. Please check for allergy information, suitability for your condition, use with caution, I’m not responsible for your choices, and all that legal bullshit.)