Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Question of the Week: Are You Getting Ready for Summer?

summerImage by flavijus via Flickr Here in the USA, we just finished celebrating Memorial Day, which is considered the unofficial start of summer here, even though the summer solstice isn't until June 20th.

Robert and I spent part of our holiday weekend putting together our new barbeque, bought to replace the 10 year old one that was falling apart in the backyard and truly beyond repair. Warmer weather for us means switching from cooking inside to grilling outside, so we will be putting our new grill to a lot of good use over the next few months. Some of our favorite dishes are boneless, skinless chicken breasts, turkey burgers and vegetable kabobs.

I've also been trying to get my container vegetable garden together, though this has suffered as I have been distracted by a bunch of other stuff that needed my attention more urgently. So this year I resorted to buying seedlings from the hardware store rather than starting my garden from seeds. Time will tell if this method yields a different (better?) result.

Unfortunately, this time of year means warmer weather. My dysautonomia impairs my ability to sweat properly, which makes me more vulnerable to heat-related problems. That translates into using the air conditioning more and retreating inside the house during the hottest parts of the day.

Ironically, many indoor venues like stores and businesses don't keep their thermostats turn down low anymore during summer, so I often find myself walking out and heading home if it's too hot inside my destination. I don't know if this is a strategy to conserve energy or save money, but either way it's making it harder for me to cope with hot weather.

With so much of my attention focused on summer, I'm wondering if your thoughts have strayed the same way. Do you do things differently this time of year too? Are you planning any vacations or other special events? Do the summer months bring new challenges that require changes to your chronic illness self-management strategies?

Share your response in a comment or over on the Oh My Aches and Pains! Facebook page.

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Felicia Fibro said...

Have fun with your new grill! The Helpful Hubby and I spent 3 hours on Saturday working on our flower bed project - wedding, adding edging, adding compost and adding a little mulch around the edging. I'm so happy that the hard part of gardening is done so now I can go back to focusing on my smaller, 15 minute sessions. I'm still recovering from our long session.

I'm always excited to be able to exercise outdoors in the spring/summer/early fall. My fibromyalgia is way too painful to exercise outdoors during cold weather, but I love being in the sun. I've already gone hiking a few times this spring, but I haven't been able to go biking yet. Of course, more less-controlled exercise means extra planning to make sure that I don't cause a flare.

Although we won't be taking any major vacations, I will have to prepare for house guests coming to visit us this summer. That is always a tad stressful for me, so lots I plan on making lots of lists, planning and starting to prepare earlier.

Tami Stackelhouse said...

One of the things I learned the hard way (is there any other way?) that I have to do differently during the summer is that I have to salt my water!

The summer after my husband & I were married, I was complaining about how awful I felt: tired, headaches, all more than normal. He grabbed me a Gatorade and made me drink it all. I felt TONS better!

Come to find out my hubby from Florida Gator country (yes, Gatorade was made for the Florida Gators!) knew that my electrolytes were low.

Now that I know how to take care of my body better, I skip all the artificial colors, flavors & sugar. =) I usually just add salt to my water, or use something like Smart Water or Prolytes for the electrolytes w/o the junk.

Anonymous said...

I fee the same way. Summer comes and all the *usual* great outdoor things that come with it, and I almost shudder knowing I'm going to have to be even more antisocial bc being outside in he humidity kills me, and trying to just get by living normal life, let alone doing any of the normal summer fun activities.