It's Okay Not to Be Okay All of the Time
You know what? It's ok not to be ok all the time. If you think about it, even people with good health are not ok all the time. It's a struggle living with COPD on a daily basis, and as the condition worsens over time, our fight to stay well becomes harder. We need to accept the changes to our health and pace ourselves. To realize we cannot do what we used to do.
It festers inside of us
It's not easy especially when we look back and remember what we used to be like. The important thing is not to dwell on it (easier said than done). Yes, it does make me sad I can no longer go out to work. I can no longer go out and do the weekly shopping on my own. I cannot walk around our local town. If we look at the negative too long, we start to beat ourselves up and it festers inside of us. Then the dreaded depression sets in.
I still go into town
To turn my outlook around, I still go into town either on my mobility scooter or wheelchair so I'm not huffing or puffing. I'm not struggling to breathe. I still go on a weekly shopping trip but not on my own. Again, I use either the wheelchair or mobility scooter. Ok, I can't go out to work but I can still do things similar to my paid work I used to do.
Do not stop living
Remember DON'T STOP LIVING after a diagnosis of COPD - you change and adapt to your new lifestyle. Who said life was going to be easy? No one said it. If you are not feeling well, have a rest day and do something you enjoy at home. It is difficult and frustrating when we have COPD, especially when we want to do something and we can't. We must remember that sometimes things are out of our control.
Turn the negative into a positive
Here where I live in the UK we have had really bad weather with gales and storms, so now I'm stuck indoors not able to go out. I'm starting to get frustrated and what I call "cabin fever." I am learning to turn the negative of not being able to get out into a positive by doing things I enjoy at home (again, not easy). Reading a good book or doing some arts and crafts.
Exercising at home
I am pushing myself really hard to exercise at home. It's not as easy as when you go out to an exercise group and you encourage each other. At home, I'm encouraging myself and trying to beat what I achieved yesterday. I keep my journal at the side of me so I can look and see what I have achieved on a daily basis.
One chance at it
Remember, we're in control of our daily lives how we live them and what we do with them. Life is precious and we only get one chance at it. Don't let COPD rule your life. Live your life over COPD. No one is ok all the time and that is ok, but don't let it stop you doing things you can still do. There is life after a diagnosis. Think positive and be positive.
Editor's Note: We are heartbroken to share that Debz passed away in October of 2021. She is deeply missed but her positivity and resilience live on through her articles. Thank you for everything, Debz.
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