Moving 'Till I Can't
Last updated: April 2023
I've spent the last two weeks moving. I’ve left the duplex near the highway to the 1800s log cabin on a farm. I know the move will be totally worth it for my mental and physical well being, but right now...
I can barely move!
Symptoms of pain and stiffness I have never experienced in my 30 years with AS have cropped up. I’ve always been a neck and back kind of Spondy, but now hands and feet have taken the top spot. Writing this hurts, but I am pushing through because I have a story to tell!
So, let’s get to pushin’.
Before the move
My wife and I never take the easy way. No matter where we are going, we always end up doing a lot of work ourselves. This home consists of two parts. A log cabin built around 1860, and a basement/add-on built in the 1950’s. Both parts needed a lot of work!
We hired a guy to do all the stuff above our pay grade. I don’t do wires, pipes, or foundations. But, floors, walls, and demo were all a family project. And, when you are combining self work and professional work, there are always scheduling conflicts.
The floors need to be demoed so the plumber can start. The boxes of supplies need to be moved so the electrician can get to all the walls. The drywall dust needs to be cleaned up before painting can start. Look, all this is great, but I have a full time job and dogs who need to spend time outside. Plus, I need to eat and sleep. Home renovation is not easy. I hate HGTV...it is not completed in an hour!
Oh and did I mention I have ankylosing spondylitis? What do you think scraping wallpaper and crawling around on the floor does? Yeah, IT HURTS! But, the job needs to get done, so I get it done.
My body can recover when I am done.
Pack it all up!
So, I have basically killed myself for a few months while renovating this house with a full time job and furry dependents. And we are not even close to being done!
We have the boxes and crates...Let’s fill them up with everything we own! Easy Peasy! Right?
Of course not!!
During the packing process I tripled my Apple Watch move goal and then some daily. Up the stairs, down the stairs, up and down, and reach for the stuff by my toes. Is this box too heavy? Yes? Too late, I don’t have the spoons to repack. The mental struggle matches the physical struggle. The constant question of “Is this the best way to pack this box?” wears you out! Then brain fog makes you forget where you put everything! I packed my meds and my phone charger a day before the move. Won’t I need those? Yes.. now which box are they in?
Plus we procrastinate, so all organization went out the window!
Makes things so much harder for...
Yes, I said days, because it’s never a simple process like throwing your boxes and furniture into a truck and driving away smiling, ready for your next adventure.
We rented a mobile storage unit to fill and have it delivered to our new place. The 7 previous moves (yes we move a lot) we hired movers and it was 12 hours of madness only to have them dump everything we own in the wrong rooms. This time we wanted to try moving at our own pace. We stuffed as much as we could into this 16 foot crate and plan on removing things only when we have a place for them.
So you are aware, we hired movers for an hour to get all our heavy items into the crate. If I tried to carry a washer, dryer, display cabinet, and my heavier than sin solid wood partners desk, I would not be here today.
But, that was just day one. After we filled the crate, we still had so much to drive the 26 minutes to our new place. I spent hours and hours loading things, driving things, and unloading things. Then we had to clean the old place and take a lot to the donation center.
Just getting out took 5 days of non-stop schlepping!
Now we need to unload the crate and organize.
My hands and feet are broken.
Oddly enough, my back is doing okay.
Moving 'till I can’t
We are hoping this will be our last move. We are older and our bodies just can’t do what they used to. At the time I am writing this, we aren’t even close to done, and yet my body says I am very much done.
We made some changes to make things more simple, and I think they helped, however it still didn't make the experience painless. Far far from it.
So, a few more days of unloading and organizing, then we can start to grow old and raise chickens and goats..
If we have the energy.
Has changing your diet helped manage your pain and flares?