|Life is very different since lupus.|
You might have noticed that there's a little sports carnival going on over in England at the moment. Lots of people seem to be interested in following it on television and radio. Me? I'm avoiding it.
To be honest, I was never really big on watching sport. But there was a time when I really loved taking part in it.
As a kid I did judo. And in my 30s I discovered taekwondo. That was lots of fun. The medal collection in the picture includes some from state, and national championships, and the Asia Pacific Masters games.
I wasn't good at sparring (too afraid of getting hurt) but I was fairly good at technical events: patterns and breaking boards. Training a couple of nights a week helped me keep my weight under control as well.
But that was before lupus. That was when my joints didn't hurt when I moved, when I had the strength to do something like breaking a board with my foot or fist. It was when my joints could actually bend and I could kick at head height.
After lupus? Now my workout is hydrotherapy. I get in a warm pool and walk up and down the pool several times, bend and stretch bits as far as they will go (and they do bend and stretch further in the warm water). Everything's very, very gentle.
I'll never get to win a medal for hydrotherapy. It might be as hard, or even harder, than training for the nationals years ago, but there's no recognition for the work. At least I'm moving, and doing something that's good for my body. It's worth celebrating the little I can do.