I have always believed that Mondayitis is a real thing. It starts on a Sunday night – that nagging feeling that you’ve forgotten something, the inability to concentrate, the sudden onset of pervasive negativity. Even if you love your work, even if you’ve had a very restful weekend, the inexorable close of the weekend seems to bring on a change in you and when, finally, your alarm wakes you on that most important and most difficult of mornings, you can’t help but feel a little hard done by and less than willing to get up and go.
I am the first to admit that I am not a morning person, so this can hardly help. I’ve always envied those who wake up alert and purposeful. Resisting the siren-call of my warm duvet and the pile of books I keep on the bedside table is sometimes enough to put me in a foul mood until at least my first coffee of the day. On Monday, however, general waspishness brought on by feeling cheated of rest and relaxation can last well past lunch. Avoid me at all costs before midday, as a general rule.
And because I’m only human I would much rather blame Mondayitis than my own struggle to balance the needs of my body, both physical and mental. For this is what the problem really is, and it is a problem faced by everyone, but more especially by those with MS, whose bodies are undergoing constant change and whose needs are therefore, similarly, changing. But this Monday is a different Monday.
Happy MS Awareness Week to you!
I am new to Revive, so you will have to forgive my overexcitement as I begin to learn more about the work we do and the people with whom we have the pleasure of working. What I have learnt already is that before you can meet your physical and mental needs, you have to know what they are. Front and centre, the yin and yang, the bread and butter of human health and wellbeing are (you guessed it) movement and rest.
Simple, physical activity is more potent than anything you can pop out of a packet and swallow with water. It encourages your blood to flow, your brain to fire off impulses around your nervous system, your digestive system to tick over more efficiently and your lungs to fill and empty, oxygenating the blood and releasing some of the some of my favourite chemicals (yay, endorphins!). The effects of movement are wide ranging and certainly more complex than I am qualified to understand so it is fortunate that there are professionals at Revive capable of helping you feel these effects and understanding why they’re important. Physiotherapy and exercise classes are two key aspects of Revive’s work and today there is a special “Keep Active” Exercise Class at the Maryhill Centre as part of the MS Awareness Week schedule.
On the other hand, you have to know your limits. Part of the difficulty is that your own personal limitations and concerns are unique and it is sometimes harder to be honest with yourself than with anyone else. Recognising them becomes even trickier when they continue to change, as they do with MS. Fatigue is often at the heart of the problem as a common and troublesome symptom. Revive’s Allan McIntyre has developed the ingenious Fatigue Self-Management Programme – a set of group-led sessions where you learn to recognise what your needs are and develop your own methods of managing them. Meditation and relaxation classes have proven a very helpful and popular complementary therapy at Revive as part of this process.
However, before you embark on your journey of self-discovery, learning when to stop and when to go, you need to muster your get up and go. Whether you subscribe to Mondayitis or not, whether you have a condition that limits you or not, the first step in any venture is always the most difficult. This week, MS Awareness Week, the focus will be on mobility – of both the individual and, because change is afoot, of Revive. Raising awareness is an important step in funding, research and, ultimately, working towards the improvement of treatments and it relies on shared information and experience. If you’ve got something to say this week, please write to us and we’ll do our best to get your message across.
Happy Monday, one and all! Now, it’s off in search of coffee…
Hello and welcome to a very special MS Awareness Week! This is the first in a series of guest blogs, with which the author hopes to entertain or, at the very least, spark such lively debate that it breaks the Internet.
Our theme: mobility. Our aim: to raise awareness of the challenges of living with MS and managing its symptoms. These pieces will tie in with the various events Revive is running throughout the week so make sure you check out the Group and Classes Schedule as well. The author invites any and all contributions, and wishes you a very happy, active week.