Coping Ideas

I thought I'd add a page about stress relief, anxiety relief, staying sane through this madness ... well, you get the idea.  Here goes --

08/08/15 -- My iPad

I want to begin this blog section by talking about my iPad in general, as I lost use of it for a few days, and that really caused some anxiety.  (Someone hacked into my icloud account, changed the passcode on the iPad itself, and demanded $50 for the new passcode.  Good news is my son's iPhone was unaffected, even though it's on the same icloud account.  Not so good news is that I ended up having to restore the iPad to factory settings.  Good news is that I was able to restore the iPad to factory settings.  It was an annoyance, yes, but just another bump in the road.)  While not having the use of it for a few days, I realized how dependent I had become on it.  Here's the story:

After my diagnosis, a dear friend gifted to me an iPad mini.  She happened to have an extra one laying around the house, and knew that I could use it for various things while going through my chemo treatments.  Boy did I ever.  My usual go-to stress reliever is knitting and/or reading.  Let me tell you how there were many a day when I did not have the energy to pick up the knitting needles.  I could, from anywhere with WiFi now, browse knitting patterns on, which is doable on my phone, but much better on the bigger screen.  Next best thing to actual knitting, browsing ravelry is.

I think the most used app on my iPad is Overdrive.  Overdrive gives me access to our local library, and tons of books.  I read constantly.  Sometimes more than one book at a time. I've learned to pack light, and although I still do enjoy turning pages in a real book, it's unbelievably nice to have one thing to carry that has an unlimited number of books.  I also have the Kindle app installed, but I use Overdrive more, because, let's face it, borrowing books from the library is much cheaper than buying them from amazon.

Also better on the iPad mini than on the phone is Netflix.  I started watching MacGyver from the very first episode.  So cool!   Yes, there are televisions in each cubicle at the infusion center, but sometimes the sound from the next cubicle drowns out yours, or there's nothing on that interests you.  Netflix to the rescue.  Two episodes of MacGyver watched, session done, or close to done.

Guided meditation --  I'll go in to this topic more in depth in it's own blog post, but in regards to having a guided meditation app on the iPad.  It's wonderful, let me tell you.  It's great for when I feel an anxiety attack coming on, or for unexpected stressful situations.  An example -- A few weeks ago, at the infusion center, the poor woman next to me had an allergic reaction.  She was retching.  I felt so bad for her.  I also felt the beginnings of some sympathy retching, so I stopped knitting, plugged the earphones into the iPad, closed my eyes and listened to some soothing music.  Worked like a charm.  I can also access other guided meditation videos via youtube.  More details about guided meditation to come soon.

Of course, I can't talk about using the iPad without mentioning Facebook.  If you don't know, I do have a Facebook page associated with this blog (link is to the right). I do post some things on the Facebook page that I don't think need a whole blog post about.  Now that it's on my mind, I think I'll do a more in-depth blog entry about social media.  Hmm....

In addition to the above, I of course check my email (personal and work), as well as play games, and utilize the puzzle apps.  I love puzzles.

The iPad is not just for taking to treatment, though.  I take it everywhere.  It's great for when I'm at home resting and am tired of the endless episodes of Bones and Castle (and more recently, Diagnosis Murder and Murder, She Wrote; I think I sense a theme here....).  I can read on it, I can browse knitting patterns on it, I can watch Netflix on it.  Heck, now I can watch people knitting on Netflix on it!  I can play games on it, I can relax to it.  I can sit outside on a gorgeous day and do all of these things.  It's absolutely wonderful.

To my friend who gifted it to me:  If I am mistaken and it was intended as a loan instead of a gift, I will gladly give it back.  Please know that it was a godsend and helped me through the worst year of my life.  You have no idea how much I appreciate your thoughtfulness.


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