Just a short post this week because I am here:
On the west coast of Vancouver Island, this is my favourite place in the world. Like many people, any beach immediately relieves my stress and clears my head. It can be difficult for people with mobility issues to enjoy the beach or get out in nature, but a daily dose of connection with our natural world is what’s missing from many people’s lives as we become more isolated in our screen-centred world. The increase in depression and anxiety, especially in teens, is not a coincidence.
Meditation is a buzzword these days, for good reason. The world is busy and hyper-connected in a mostly superficial way through social media. Studies have shown that daily meditation can help with depression, and depression is a common symptom of MS. There are some great meditation apps out there but for me, the easiest form of meditation is staring at nature.
Often I’ll drive to the beach and just sit in my car, windows down, to hear the soothing rhythm of the waves. In my backyard, just watching the bees bumble from flower to flower stills my mind and lifts my spirits. On bed-bound days, I look out the window and watch the leaves rustling in the wind, imagining the energy of nature infusing my body. Still waiting for that one to work. 😏 SimplyWendi shared a fantastic list of live webcams over at Simply Chronically Ill; https://simplychronicallyill.com/2018/06/15/some-of-my-favorite-live-webcams/ Thanks, Wendi! When all else fails, there is Google Earth!
Meditation doesn’t have to be a structured event, unless that’s how you groove. The important thing is to give your mind a break from worrying about the infinite details of daily life. Obviously chronic pain and illness adds a whole other element to the equation. It’s difficult to focus on something else when your nervous system is lit up like the tree at Rockefeller Center, but that’s why it’s even more important to train your mind to focus on the beauty of nature.
Happily, I’m on an upward swing on the roller coaster at the moment so I’m really looking forward to camping for four days. I was nervous to camp for a couple of years after diagnosis, worried that something would happen when I was in the middle of nowhere. Three years on and I’m more familiar with the daily onslaught of varying symptoms. I can’t live my life in fear of a relapse, time marches on regardless and I have adventures calling me.
Have a wonderful week!