My Autoimmune Disease and Me

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For those of you who have been fortunate enough to have never experienced the effects of an autoimmune disease, I will explain to you what it is. Basically, it is when your immune system mistakenly attacks itself and the rest of the body. The immune system does this as it considers your own body cells as foreign i.e. a virus or bacteria. When the ‘foreign cell’ is perceived, antibodies are released, and they attack the cell in order to save the body. When this happens, it kills the healthy cells and leads to problems within the complex systems in the body.

Examples of autoimmune diseases include, celiac disease, type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, multiple skin disorders such and lichen planus and sclerosis and more.

Symptoms for autoimmune diseases vary from patient to patient so it can be difficult to categorize one set list for each condition but, pain is unfortunately associated with all or most of them!

For me it was two years and one long road which was filled with the intertwining paths that finally led to diagnosis…

For those like me with an autoimmune condition, it is sometimes so difficult to find remedies to help on off days! So, here are some hacks that have helped me and some things that I have come to realize:

Get yourself an E-scooter

They see me rolling, don’t know if they hating but all I know is I skip the traffic jams in the morning… Assistance in walking for me is a must as this condition can be so unpredictable so the e-scooter is my best friend! To put it lightly there have been many a time when I have been stranded unable to move so in times like these, the scooter fashionable or not is the thing that gives me back some control and mobility.

I take it everywhere with me! You may think I’m over exaggerating but to give a few examples:

  • Wetherspoons
  • Like every bar in town
  • Would most likely try entering it into a night club and get rejected
  • Do the same as above for concerts
  • Do the same as above somewhere else because I never learn lol

Bear in mind though, I have had many eventful experiences while storming the streets of Dublin City Center on my scooter. Some may have involved a pothole and ended with me flying off… (the whole incident was witnessed by two young guys in their car who shouted out at me laughing as I tried to regain stance and composure).

Dance like no one is watching

Dancing can be extremely difficult at times but as a full time groover myself, I can provide some top-quality moves to widen a probably limited collection of moves;

  • Try the standing wiggling the hips dance (gets the party going every time)
  • The swaying hippy
  • The hard-core fist pump with slow jump if you’re feeling frisky
  • The mixing bowl is also available but that is not a favourite of mine but I have witnessed it being done with some class and precision

(Viewers discretion; the above are very rhythmic moves and should only be delivered to the dance floor with confidence)

Baggy Jeans

These are my best friends!! You bet your bottom dollar, hipster is a word you’ll hear on the daily. I’m all about if you’re gonna do it, do it right soo I also bought some band tees and docs… Just remember comfort is key and dress the way you need to in order to be at your prime all day!

Always carry a book

This one is a life saver, honestly can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to sit in the most random of places physically unable to walk. People watching is only entertaining for so long, a book is essential!

To be fair though, I have had many a strange experience during these unscheduled pitstops i.e. a woman getting trapped in the Costa bathroom which started with a series of pounding and screaming and ended with a member of staff finally letting her out. (her only fault was failing to press the door release button! Swear it wasn’t a green button that has the words release written on it….)

Take up some new hobbies

Its difficult having to give up exercise of most kinds due to illness but there are plenty of things available which are suitable and just as fun. A few examples of my new hobbies include piano, art and design, choir, driving and yoga/meditation. Having hobbies makes bad days so much more bearable so definitely consider joining something new!

Take things at your leisure though because too much can contribute to excess pain too!

P.S. Life is for living so live your best life! Be it with an electric scooter or not, do everything you want to do because autoimmune can’t hold us back!

 

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