Birthday Planning the AxSpa Way

My daughter and husband's birthdays are a day apart. My daughter was born on February the 10th, and my husband was born on February the 11th. This year, both of their birthdays fell on the same weekend. If you read my previous articles, events have become the hardest for me as the time goes by. I am feeling ashamed even writing about it. But I want to show how difficult it can be at times to be part of the "normal world." One of the reasons for me is that everything is much harder to do with this disease. I have to find ways that won't make me flare up after, or at least try to prevent one and hope for the best.

The worries in my head become to much to handle

My anxiety starts weeks before. Worrying about so many things. I start to think about all the energy it will take to plan, to be present, to make sure I feel alright the day of the event and how I will feel after. It has become so hard to plan anything. The brain fog that takes over and the anxiety makes everything so much harder to go a head with everything. This is how I keep stalling, and this year before I knew it, both birthdays were coming closer.

I come from a family that has big parties. I feel like the expectations for me are to do the same. I have tried to reach out and explain how hard it's been, or even maybe hope for someone to give a hand to help, but it hasn't worked out. I feel like my disease has become invisible to many. So I rather keep everything to myself and do the best I can the way I know.

What I used to do

I used to do big birthday parties with lots of food. I would prepare everything myself and have all sorts of platters with different foods and desserts. One of my favorite things was to bake. It filled me with pride. I can’t do that anymore. I have to pick one or two things to prepare that are not so demanding on my body, which is left to suffer afterwards.

I used to have my whole family and group of friends over; that would be around 40 to 50 people. I can’t do that anymore. The preparation that would be needed and the cleaning afterwards would be too much. Right now all I can think of is easy. Easy in my head. From the bottom of my heart, I would love to do be able to do something like that, but my anxiety has gotten so bad, it makes it hard to be able to plan, to socialize and be their for my guests. A big part that’s created this anxiety is my disease. As much as I think I have accepted it, it still finds ways to take and control my life. I never know how I will feel.

I still wanted to do my best

I still wanted to see the smiles on both my daughter and my husband’s faces. I did what I was able to do, even if I felt the rest of the family would get mad. For my daughter I booked a place with trampolines where everything was included in the package. From food to even the decorations were included. I also took a day off the day before to take her shopping and made sure to get lots of rest for the following day that was the party. For my husband, we went out for a nice supper together, as we don’t get to do that often. We both enjoyed it so much.

AS is part of me, this is where it gets so hard. It makes everything so hard to do. It takes many breaks in between. It takes energy, and spoons that I may not even have the day of the event. But we have loved ones that are not part of the AS world. This means we have to try our best on these days, to put everything aside, and put that brave smile on to see them happy.

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