“It’s Out Of My Hands”

“And so I stand here
Looking at all that I have made
Fallen in ruins
And it would seem that

It’s out of my hands
There’s nothing I can do
The best laid plans
Again have fallen through
I thought my world
Was under my command
Now I can’t believe
Just how glad I am
It’s out of my hands”

That is a song (by Carolyn Arends) I have loved and related to for many years. But the phrase “It’s Out Of My Hands” has taken on a more literal meaning for me lately.

The osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia, carpal tunnel, and tendonitis in my hands have taken their toll and my grip is not what it used to be. I am continually dropping things. The worst part is that much of the time my restricted movement in my back and legs stops me from being able to pick up or clean up whatever falls.

Last night I was going to the fridge to put something away and the rest of my morning smoothie was sitting on the top shelf with no lid. Sure enough, when I went to put something on that shelf the cup moved. As I tried to grab the handle my fingers stiffened and it literally flew out of the fridge and centrifuged all over the kitchen! The cup didn’t break, but there was berry smoothie all over everything, including me. The worst of it was our brother was over for dinner – not one of my finer moments LOL (one of those times if you don’t laugh you will cry)!

I was able to start the clean-up process but Hubby had to take over because my back and knees just wouldn’t take that much bending. I just get so frustrated. I know I am not the only one to have misshaped hands, but it is happening to me and I have to deal with that.

My stamina for cleaning house and doing meal prep is deteriorating as well. Last night I was able to pull together wings, potato wedges and salad for three, but sometimes I can’t manage soup for one! Hubby has been telling me to get some help in for quite awhile now but the thought of someone seeing my place (and me) this way is somewhere my OCD mind can’t go.

Until now.

10 years ago we cooked at a camp on Vancouver Island for the summer. We met a lot of wonderful young people during our few months there (cut short by two emotional melt-downs on my part). One person that we have stayed in touch with over the years is a young woman who has had a rough start but is one of the strongest people I know. She certainly would not agree but that is just part of her strength – she owns her weaknesses.

She recently noted on Facebook that she needed to find a second job because she wasn’t making enough for all her expenses and any luxuries like food. Her first job? She is a licensed care aid. For me, that is a blessing from God.

Here is someone familiar and is trained to help me with what I need personally and around the house. She worked with us in the kitchen at camp (and worked in a care home kitchen before going to school.

I spoke to hubby and also to her because I wanted to know what she was looking for. After consideration and prayer, we worked out a deal that she will come in one day a week for 6 hours and help me with what I need. I can’t tell you how relieved and blessed I feel that I am going to get help and it is someone I feel totally comfortable with.

I remember when a new person would come to look after Dad in the mornings I would usually be up to see who they were and make sure everything was okay. When it was someone we had for a while I would allow myself that hour to sleep in.

One thing is I am realizing is that I am feeling empowered by the fact I am getting some help rather than feeling weak or dependent. And I know that it takes some pressure off of Hubby as well as he wonders if I am okay and needs to do so much more around here that I can’t.

Another way I took things out of my hands in a good way is regarding one of my review clients. I was given access to 6 months of the “Zero to Hero” program by Megan Densmore. I will be doing my review soon so won’t say much about the program itself; however, when I finally realized I was failing on my own trying to do the workouts I finally reached out to Megan and she is amazing! She gave workarounds for exercises I (and others) have difficulty with and also told me to not put pressure on myself to do things perfectly or worry so much about the review. I am now able to attempt the workouts and feel good about it and I feel I am close to being able to write a review as well.

Finally, the song I quoted above goes on to attribute all the “letting go” to God. While this is my mindset, it doesn’t have to be yours. You could have someone like our young friend or Megan come alongside you and be encouraging and uplifting.

Another song that fits here is “Let It Go” from Frozen. I just have to change one line “the pain never bothered me anyway”. Well, it does, but not when I let it go out of my hands.

Lydia!

21 Replies to ““It’s Out Of My Hands””

  1. Good to read, that you get some help, where you need it Lydia.
    When I came home from the hospital this summer, I also found a young woman, who would come and help me keeping the house clean, until I felt, that I was able to take over for myself again. I don’t have her here any longer, but I do have the possibility to call her, if I need her help again. This is gold worth.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s funny I was just reading in my muscle disease group that someone did not want to get a motorized wheelchair because they didn’t want to admit they needed the help and I thought shoot girl the only person you are hurting is yourself by NOT getting one!!!! But sometimes we don’t realize just how MUCH help we need until we get it then realize wow I was exhausted doing that all by myself!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Too true! I realized yesterday that my “good” leg has deteriorated enough that I need to use two canes or the walker more often. I have elected to go with the walker because at least I have a place to store things and my own seat. With two canes I have no hands! I have a portable cane that I can use when I have the walker – it folds up and fits inside and takes seconds to unfold!

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      3. The walker is a great idea especially with the seat. My good leg is still holding out. I just keep praying it hangs in there!!! I don’t have the strength in my arms to use a walker or canes since my entire body is affected so when either limb gives out then I am kind of done for the day. Thankfully i have the motorized scooter. Now to JUST get a lift for the car!!!!
        I am really sorry to hear your good leg is not doing well though. I know it is very disheartening and discouraging

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I understand about not having the strength. that is another reason that the seat is essential. I have been using my cane to go to stores like Costco, grocery stores, etc. and then using a cart to hang onto. But we got to Walmart last night and there were no carts available and I walked through the store. Thankfully we didn’t go in that far and knew exactly what we wanted, but I was pretty tired when we got to the tills. Then I had to walk to the car. I was exhausted and both legs were weak. Thankfully besides the walker, I have my Dad’s wheelchair waiting in the wings. I will probably not have replacement surgery on my left knee or either hip just because of how I develop scar tissue so I will need to be prepared for what is ahead. I am glad your leg is holding out. and that you have the motorized scooter. I pray I won’t need it but you never know.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Oh i used the motorized scooter or the electric wheelchair every day. I cannot walk far. Just around the house and i have bar stools placed so i can sit immediately if i need to. I can walk on hard surfaces. Sometimes i try to walk in the grass to see a bird or take a picture of a flower but that is brief and always has consequences. I hope they find a cure for this muscle disease before there is nothing left of me. I hope every day for an answer

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  2. Interesting! My blog post was in many ways similar. I have been losing function lately, especially in my hands, and mentioned dropping things on the floor also.

    I live alone and when I first got to the point that I needed help it was a very scary situatoin because I had to go through the state Medicaid waiver program and there was a several month wait. Many times things just didn’t get done because it was only me here. The state programs are not what they’re cracked up to be and the workers are low paid, not very well screened by the agencies and often really don’t want to be doing the job, so I went through several assistants some of whom really weren’t good until I finally found one that is decent. It’s not like hiring someone you already have a friendship with, but this one overall is working out.

    I was really overdoing it and on the weekends sometimes still do when I’m here alone, but it helps the pain and fatigue not to have to overdo it everyday like it was before.

    It took quite a bit of adjustment to have someone I didn’t know in here but I’m glad I went ahead and did it because honestly I don’t know what I would have done if I didn’t have this help.

    I’m so glad you found someone you feel comfortable with.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for sharing a part of your story. Yes, it can be better with someone you know; but if personal care is involved, sometimes it is better with a stranger (sometimes). But neither she nor I are like that and there probably won’t be much need for it. She will be around when I shower and will only come in if I am feeling faint or need other help. I look forward to checking out your blog.

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