Throbbing, all over achy feelings in feet, hands, and joints that make me wake in the middle of the night. Is it thyroid related? Sharp shooting pain emanating from my elbow down to just above my left wrist daily now. Tendonitis? Right knee area that locks up on me when I practice Yoga in almost all positions. Is Osteoarthritis flaring? Left arm/shoulder becomes painful to move unless I massage it as I take my 45 minute walk each day. Is this Bursitis? Rising and shuffling on painfully sore feet some days to the bathroom each AM. Is this Plantar facitis again? Painful migraine that arrives each month like clockwork. Is this menopause? Body moving slowing each AM until all my joints "wake up" and allow me to move more freely. Is this the colder morning temperatures of late or just simply a precursor of things to come?
There are things I can simply no longer do without painful reminders of the limitations set not by my mind, but my body. Things like: playing games or drawing on the floor with my son, kneeling in any position, propping my head up on my elbow when I lay on my side, running, jogging, jumping, ascending or descending stairs, turning too quickly to pivot on my feet, sitting in any position for too long, and writing too long on the computer keyboard.
The body is an amazing creation, no doubt about it. When it all works, it hums along like a well-oiled piece of machinery, think of a Mr. Machine toy, anyone recall that one? However, when the body starts to remind us of the fragility of each muscle, tendon, bone and sinew we quickly realize our limitations. Rather then wallowing in what my body can do no longer, I look for ways of appreciating what it still can do...which is a lot more then some people and yes, perhaps much less then others.
In essence, I try to re-frame my thoughts in order to not compare myself to what or who I was at 20, 30 or even 40. Thinking like that gets me nowhere quickly, and I can do that all on my own without moving! So, we do what we can, and we think what we must to make the pain a little more bearable and the fact that we are here at all so much more poignant. And if that doesn't work, I have a heating pad in the living room, foot brace on the stairs, 3 different sized ice packs in the freezer, Arnica, Alleve, Tylenol and Advil in the medicine cabinet, knee and arm braces in my dresser and Epsom Salts in my bathroom! Gotta love it!