“When I’m feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don’t feel so bad”
My Favorite Things, The Sound of Music
During the holiday season, people with lupus are often expected to be happy, cheerful, and grateful, but find that difficult because the physical and emotional effects of lupus causes them to feel exhausted, in pain, and generally miserable.
Over the years, I have developed a tried-and-true strategy for myself to insert a note of levity back into the holidays if I become overwhelmed. The Sound of Music is one of my favorite movies and it seems to always be shown around Christmas. One of the best songs in the film is “My Favorite Things.” In it, Maria (the nun) advises the Von Trapp children she supervises that you can battle all sorts of bad things by calling on thoughts of your favorite things. Watch here.
“Cream colored ponies and crisp apple streudels
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings
These are a few of my favorite things”
Like Maria, I have many favorite things, but I have narrowed it down to a few that make me laugh or bring me joy when I think of them.
1. Family trips with my parents. Since I was a teen we traveled the world together. They have always helped me make sure that the trips were lupus-friendly.
The Stapleton Family on vacation in Mexico (Check out the sun hats!)
2. Hot Fudge Cake. 100% wonderful, this should require no explanation, but if you need one: “Hot Fudge cures many ills.”
Pictured: The original Big Boy's Hot Fudge Cake
3. Deep Tissue Massage – I love, love, love massage for my lupus/fibromyalgia. It makes my muscles and aching joints feel so much better.
Massage Therapy is frequently used for people with disabilities
4. Star Trek. This is my guilty pleasure! If Geordi Laforge can conquer space, then I can conquer living with lupus!
Pictured: Geordi La Forge, the blind chief engineer from Star Trek: The Next Generation
#6 Miscelaneous Amusing Objects. Throughout my home and office I keep small funny/amusing objects that I like to look at if I am feeling stressed out or taking myself to seriously. I love to buy “happy pens.” I have all different versions of pens that are pretty useless, but very funny.
A Disney Princess and the Frog "Magic Wand" pen bought for me by a friend
What are some of your favorite things?
Katina Rae Stapleton