As I discussed on day 140, Elaine and I spent time once we arrived in Santiago de Compostella last year writing separate lists of what we wanted to do differently on our return home. I found mine just before coming away and overall it made me feel positive about the last year. This year it took a little longer to process lessons learned as we were busy in the aftermath of the walk. Yesterday, on the beach in San Sebastián, I spent time thinking about what changes I want to make following this trip.
Alongside quitting smoking for good, the two other ones that relate to myasthenia are:
1. Find healthy ways to cope with stress
Stress is a trigger to increasing symptoms of myasthenia, and I realised how unhealthy my methods of coping with it have been recently. I have been resorting to drinking, binge eating unhealthy foods and occasionally smoking to cope. These are all further detrimental to my health and the myasthenia. Alcohol especially prevents good quality sleep, which is especially important for someone with MG.
If anyone has useful techniques or any websites/book you would recommend on this subject, please feel free to share. The vast amounts of information available about stress make it hard to know where to start.
2. Better diet
As mentioned above, my diet has been affected by stress of late and I’ve been eating an unhealthy amount of sugar, processed food and gluten/dairy. I’ve also not been making time to cook foods with the nutrients I need. While I don’t think I will return to a full dairy free diet, I plan to completely eradicate gluten, cut out the majority of dairy, significantly cut down on sugar and try to eat low fat protein.
The others, joining the Spanish club at work, beginning weekly dance classes with Elaine and getting out of London more often for walks, are less relevant. They do however focus on quality of life and will only be possible with a better work-life balance.