I’ve returned to aquatic therapy at a local hospital. I must say I always leave there feeling good, yet a little out of place maybe? For example, I’m probably the youngest person in the group, yet one of the most disabled too. This gets me a little down. Again, only my husband experiences my misplaced frustration.
“Will you please just wheel me over there, please?” I snarled.
Today, instead of using the chair lift, I insisted on being wheeled closer to the steps leading directly into the pool. This would allow me to walk directly into the pool. It’s important to note that I can’t really walk that well. Thus, the chair lift is safer. I know this. But sometimes I just want to do what I want to do. He pushed me to the steps. Helped me up, then proceeded to leave the area. He normally leaves, but I couldn’t help but wonder if he was a little aggravated.
Anyway, the chair lift gently and safely lowers me in the water. It’s not bad, but boy did it feel good inching down those steps! Now, I was holding the rail for dear life, but the class even cheered me on! It was a little victory. Today I’m going to choose to focus on that.
I’ve blogged about my pool therapy more than once. Apparently, I must really like the water! Or maybe it gives me some sort of satisfaction or joy perhaps? After all, I’m no longer going to physical therapy due to insurance issues. In turn, my visits to the gym are of monumental importance to me. I’m inside a lot. As a matter of fact, I often feel socially isolated. I wonder if my caregiver, my husband, does too?
My point is the pool makes me feel happy, but it’s probably fleeting. “Transitory happiness brings momentary pleasure but enduring or “authentic” happiness, as positive psychologist Martin Seligman calls it, manifests as deep satisfaction with how you live your life.”
That’s what I want.
[…] a reason. In fact everything in this life exists because of a reason. Based upon this theory the authentic happiness exists. There are many reasons to stay happy and look for true and authentic […]
I HAVE HAD MS SINCE I WAS 29. I AM NOW 42 WITH AN 8 YEAR OLD CHILD. STRIVING FOR GREATNESS. DIFFICULT AS THAT MAY BE. I HAVE TAKEN YOGA, T’AI CHI AND WATER AEROBICS IN THE PAST YEAR. NOW I AM HAVING DIFFICULTY DRIVING BUT AM STILL TRYING TO GET THE PHYSICAL ADDRESSED. TRYING TO DO WHAT I CAN TO HELP MYSELF ALONG THE WAY. I EVEN HAD A FRIEND COME OVER AND MASSAGE FOR AN HOUR YESTERDAY; I WAS SORE BUT IT HELPED A LOT. WHAT OTHER SUGGESTIONS DO YOU HAVE OR SUGGEST?
Jill, Sounds like you got it covered to me!
I need to try a massage too.
Be careful with the driving!
Very inspiring blog. Thank you! I love the quote on happiness. Awesome…keep it up!
Thanks for the kind words. I’m glad its inspiring!
Reading your blog I get to truly hear how you feel, instead of “I’m okay”. I do not thing aggravated isn’t the correct term, but instead it could be a wish that I could do more. Sorry it wasn’t one word. I’m glad you write. I do also think it is important to find a social life outside the house. We have to work on that part of your life. (:
That’s good to know. Yes, I agree about the social thing.
I also enjoy water therapy. For a long time I also used the chair lift and it DID really feel good to go back to using stairs. I suspect that there is something chemical that happens in our brains when we exercise. I feel it , not only in the pool, but on the recumbent bike or even just walking a longer than usual distance. Perhaps these chemicals contribute to our authentic happiness. I do know that if your exercise, diet or other routine is healthy and makes you feel good…..KEEP DOING IT !!
I forgot about my recumbent bike! I’m going to pull it out tonight!
Hi Nicole, I love being in the water and it’s really helping me. My pt suggested a few things esp for MS. – like walking in the water. Can you manage it? I can tell you, heel to toe pool walking, over time, has helped. Addicted to this form of exercise,
Toni, I guess that makes two of us!
Making our own happiness………….sweet!
I like that!
Hi Nicole – and everyone else!
I also love the pool, or should I say “loved.” Took aquatices for years – even B4 the diesease took hold. Bladder incontinence, all too common in the majority of us w/MS, has prevented me from returning to the water for the past 2 years. It’s not fair to others for me to pee in the pool when I’m 57 years old and know better – but tell that to my bladder!
Perhaps now that I’m self-cathing, this won’t be an issue. So now I’ll have to deal with getting this fat body into a swimsuit – *not* a pretty picture.
Hmm. Maybe the Y will let me wear some baggy shorts and a tee shirt?
Your blog is giving me hope. I’ll think about giving the water another try – thanks!
You won’t regret it!
Congratulations on your victory! I often set up a small goal for myself each day that I know I can achieve. That way my week is full of small victories. That one fleeting moment of happiness can be experienced more often, and before you know it, happiness is not as elusive.
As a once full time caregiver, for my mom, I can tell you that yes, I expect your husband feels the isolation as well, along with the whole range of emotions that you experience, he is in this with you! MS and disability affects all the whole family, not just the person with the disease.
Thanks for the reminders!
It might be fleeting, Nicole, but at least you experienced it in that moment. Certainly, a less transitory happiness would be great, but I’ll take all the moments of joy I can get. This illness certainly provides me with plenty of opportunities to experience non-happiness.
You are so right. I didn’t really think about it like that. I was just focusing on the transitory nature of it.
Don’t discount momentary happyness, especially if it brings recurring happyness. Even better is to feel happy doing something needed. All too often what is needed is not what we would otherwise chose to do.
As for the going down the stairs instead of taking the lift, I always think it’s good to push at the boundaries of what we can do. In sports, this is a regular part of conditioning. Beside which, it’s always good to know you what you can do if needed. Of course I say this as the crazy guy who always takes the stairs at work. When asked why, my answer is always the same, “Because I can and beecause I don’t know for how long I will be able.” I leave off the “I don’t take it for granted like many in the building who could have once but can’t now because they never did.” I look at my daily trips up the stairs as one of the few things MS has given to me because before MS I was another one who never did.
That was beautiful. I remember using that same sentiment, “Because I can.”
nicole, i have another word for ‘aggravated’…”peeved”? lol!…remember, i’m taking 20 mgs/pred a day, & for me, that’s a total antidepressant…follow me on this fun journey on my blog…& on FB…but after having ms for 17 yrs (was dx’d the week of thanksgiving 1994), it’s way better to laugh than cry…life’s more fun, anyway…i had no control over whether i got ms, the only choice i have now is my attitude…peeved…maybe that’s where i came up with that word!!
Peeved…can’t wait to use it!