Although I enjoy getting together with my family during the holidays, some things make the holidays hard for me to deal with. Here are my tips for how to cope with cerebral palsy during the holidays.
1. Remain positive during activities. I understand that sometimes cerebral palsy can be a pain in the butt to deal with especially when you’ve been out doing activities that require you to move around, but do your best to have a positive attitude about your situation.
2. Spend time with friends. Having cerebral palsy can make you feel lonely at times, so spend time with friends that understand what you’re dealing with. I know from experience that hanging out with my friends with cerebral palsy helps me out a lot.
3. Have a plan in place for when you get overwhelmed and feel anxious. The holidays can be a stressful time for me, especially with having to go on vacation and get out of the day-to-day routine. When I travel, I pack all the things that help me when I’m getting anxious, like my favorite movies, to keep me calm.
4. Express your emotions. If you’re feeling overwhelmed about your disability, express that to your family so you can come up with a game plan to address the issues. You’re all in this together.
5. Listen to your favorite type of music to relax your mind. Listening to country music has always been my go-to when it comes to coping with situations with my cerebral palsy. Listening to Blake Shelton’s Christmas album helps me escape from reality and also helps me relax my muscles from the possible triggers I might face.
6. Find activities you can do. Even if you can’t go skiing or snowboarding, there are many activities you can do with your friends and family that won’t cause you to feel left out. My favorite activities to do with my family is dancing to Spanish music.
Although having cerebral palsy may not be easy, I’m thankful for the experiences it has given me. Those experiences are the best gift I could ever receive this holiday season.