Winter, lockdowns and fibroids - keeping spirits up


The challenges presented by the social isolation and lack of sunshine that occur every winter, coupled with repeated lockdowns in various locales due to COVID-19, on top of potential financial and child care concerns, are enough to drive anyone to a dark place. Adding the symptoms of uterine fibroids on top of all that can feel like it’s too much to bear. Heavy bleeding, bloating, chronic pain, frequent urination, constipation and fertility issues all count as stressors and affect quality of life.

Yet we still need to wake up every morning and somehow face the day. It is not only possible, but every tiny step toward positivity and accomplishment gets us just that bit closer to a better mental space.

Reframe goals

It may just be impossible to achieve everything on the to-do list right now. To some extent, that’s okay. The to-do list can turn into a wish list until at least some of our current variables blow over. There are a few ways of re-making a more manageable vision rather than losing the vision entirely:

  • Move deadlines to a more realistic date.
  • Break daunting tasks into smaller pieces with larger rewards.
  • Treat new challenges as goals in and of themselves and reward appropriately.

It is true that currently, that re-think may mean temporarily putting some tasks and goals on hold. It could be that some issues previously considered urgent aren’t as urgent as all that, after all.

Grab opportunities

Has an internet-based course of study piqued your curiosity? What about a work-from-home job that otherwise may not have been of interest but suits your needs? Have you considered learning a new language? The unique new opportunities presented by COVID can mean new successes which generate their own energy, and it’s catching — both within ourselves to propel to new positivity. An enthusiastic, “I did it!” phone call to friends or family makes everyone happier, and YOU can generate that!

Do something different

Type in a few internet searches for hobbies. Maybe you’re the neighborhood’s upcoming flower arranger. Look around your home for DIY opportunities. That old, broken dresser can get a new life today. How about trying a genre of reading you would never have considered. Maybe give Mindful Meditation a try. It’s growing in popularity and can help in chronic pain management. How about switching up the daily workout program. Even with fibroids, exercise is possible.

Create human contact

Reconnect with old friends and family. This doesn’t need to mean planning a grand family reunion. Do it the old fashioned way; pick up the telephone and call a cousin. Swap childhood stories and have a laugh. It’ll feel great. Whatever happened to that old college buddy? This is the time to find out. For the more ambitious among us, how about arranging a Zoom meeting for whichever branch of the family or old pals group is most likely to cooperate.

Do something crazy

Everyone else is stuck in their own homes anyhow. Nobody’s around, so they can’t see you! As long as it won’t anger the neighbors, crank up the music and dance! If you’re up to a more significant challenge, see about arranging a neighborhood-wide no-contact scavenger hunt. Or plan a grand travel escapade. It doesn’t matter if you can’t afford it or the logistics don’t match up, since travel and tourism aren’t on the recommended list of activities these days anyway. However, researching routes, sightseeing stops, hotels and dining can spark the imagination toward adventure.

As if uterine fibroids weren’t enough, add them to dreary winter weather with social distancing and lockdowns in the mix is a surefire recipe for the blues. Only proactive planning and conscientious doing can bring sunshine (even if it’s just figurative) and smiles into the fibroids-winter-COVID combo.

Wishing all our readers health, happiness and success, and the strength to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

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