One of my dear friends has been struggling with a string of low spoons days lately, which inspired me to create this spoons meter so they could quickly and wordlessly convey how they were feeling that day. It works on a scale of 0 to 5, where five spoons means: “Hey, I’m feeling good! Let’s go out and see people and kick ass and crush the patriarchy!” and zero spoons means: “Spoon levels critically low - DO NOT ENGAGE”
I figured this might be useful for other spoonies struggling with chronic illness or disability, so I’m making it freely available! The meter itself is small enough to fit nicely in a blog description or anywhere else you may wish to conspicuously display your current spoons level.
You can download the full set here. It’s totally free to use (although, of course, credit and a note to let me know would be lovely!) Even if you don’t need this, please consider reblogging in case one of your followers might find it useful.
May all your spoons be polished and your silverware drawer be full! =3
[text: So your friend has a chronic illness or disability…]
- expect them to be able to go out on a whim
- expect them to have lives just like yours
- expect them to always be available
- demand details of their illness that they haven’t volunteered, ask them nicely and don’t badger
- offer help or assistance to make yourself feel like a better person
- act as though the disease is catching, repugnant, or disgusting
- challenge them to do things they have already told you were impossible
- baby them or treat them as though they’re less competent mentally
- tell other people about their illness(es)
- suggest cures/treatments/holistic practices (since, you know, they probably have already tried it)
- Try to relate their problem to your experience - your sprained ankle is nothing like chronic pain, your bout with stomach flu is nothing like IBS, your inability to focus before coffee is nothing like the mental fog that comes with illnesses like fibromyalgia or MS
- ever, ever, ever accuse them of faking. ever.
- understand that some chronic illnesses have good days and bad days, and that there’s no way to predict what’ll happen
- be supportive and understand their limitations
- ask about dietary or physical restrictions if you are making plans with them
- ask about anything that might make things worse for them, and take it into account
- tell them that if they need to tell you they can’t do something that you won’t be angry at them for not being able to, and don’t be passive-aggressive about it
- remember that they are a person, not an illness
- listen to them, ask them questions if you don’t understand something, and remember what they say
I’m sure I’m forgetting something, but this seems like a decent start. Please add your own.
A 2007 Rhode Island study looked at 30 men and 30 women who had just had coronary-artery bypass surgery and tracked the medications they were given. The researchers were astonished to find that men got pain medications, while women got sedatives. With chronic pain problems, women’s symptoms are often minimized.
Judy Foreman, author of A Nation in Pain: Healing our Biggest Health Problem, looks at the prevalence of chronic pain and how we treat it differently in men and women. (via oupacademic)
I’m horrified but not astonished.
Yeah if the researchers were astonished, that… says a lot about them.
The choice is yours.
This is a shit ton of bullshit and shaming. People are born with health problems and perfectly healthy people develop health problems. There isn’t always a choice.
are your eyes red, itchy, and inflamed? don’t reach for those eyedrops, just grab a fucking red pepper and shove that into your eyes instead, just fucking jam all the vegetables you can into your eyes you fucking animal just do it
Inject V8 directly into your veins you miserable bag of trash. Get a giant syringe full of vegetable juice and stab right through your fucking arm in a wild attempt to cure your heart condition.
Wow, and here I could have saved all the time and discomfort of fucking brain surgery by eating a leek or something. WHO KNEW?!
The comments here are kinda hilarious and also make some good points, but…
The original intent of this image is to point out that even with preexisting conditions, a healthful / preventative diet can only help.
Pharmaceutical medicine and surgery have their place - in treating emergencies or in treating conditions that have gone so far or are so bad that they cannot be remedied another way. But even in tandem with pharmaceutical meds, it’s never a bad idea to eat healthy. And there are so many natural alternatives out there with better benefits and fewer side effects that it’s outright silly to be dependent on pills for every little thing.
Obviously, eating sunflower seeds, tuna and pineapples will not remove a brain tumor. But sunflower seeds and tuna contain nutrients (omegas, B6) that will help mitigate some of the damage and help you retain better nerve and cognitive function. And pineapples contain an enzyme (bromelain) that fights inflammation and helps heal tissues and is particularly helpful for people recovering from surgery.
One can use the best of both worlds.
Also a healthful diet can help keep you from spending a ton on medical bills later on preventable illness.
Unless you’re allergic to those specific foods, in which case you’re fucked apparently. ;P
I know this is meant well. But also, it’s important to note that stress can also have a detrimental effect on health, even to the point of being as detrimental to health as a poor diet if not more.And a big cause of stress? Policing other people’s bodies. Policing other people’s food choices.
That’s a really good point, and I hope I didn’t come off as policing what people choose to eat. I’m just trying to say “don’t knock it ‘tlll you’ve given it a shot” more or less.
By all means, eat whatever you like, but being armed with this information could help some people fight off health problems they might be suffering from.
I’m just trying to say that the science of nutrition is not total bullshit, but that receiving the benefits of healthy food is not an instantaneous effect like with pharmaceuticals.
And if you’re allergic to certain foods, that’s one of the situations where pharma medicine would be more helpful to you.
I don’t eat like a health nut, myself, I just had boxed Velveeta noodles for dinner :P
Unfortunately food policing has become rampant in the U.S. beyond the point of ridiculousness. :( I’ve literally had people (who I’ve never even met before) take items out of my grocery cart while I’m shopping in the grocery store. When confronted about it, they tell me they’re doing it for my own good. Really?
And too many people, when they actually eat well, get told they can’t be eating well and are obviously lying because they don’t look the part, well. Especially from doctors. Just…
I think information is good, unfortunately too many people have poisoned the well for it to come across as helpful instead of food policing. :(
(I’ve actually been eating much healthier since moving from Florida to the midwest. Go figure, right? I’ve always loved brocolli and green beans and carrots, but I’ve since discovered spinach, hummus, salmon, etc… But I did just straight up eat some microwaved chef boyarde’ ravioli for lunch earlier today, because sometimes it’s all about convenience. *grin* But I’ve got chicken breasts (that have been cooking all day in the crockpot with lemon pepper, garlic and a dash of cinnamon, and HOLY MOLY the smell is HEAVENLY), green beans and bismati rice for dinner, so it all evens out.)