Tuesday, 22 December 2015

A Spoonie Guide to Moving House

I recently moved house. For most people, moving house is commonly described as one of the most stressful and exhausting things to do. So how do you manage when you are often exhausted by even very little things?!

I am very lucky to have the wonderful and wise Karen (@GleefulKaz) on the other end of a Skype line. She talked and coached me through my thinking about how I was going to manage moving house! I am writing this my new place, totally exhausted, symptoms flaring up but just about functioning! I would be so so much worse if I hadn't planned and been supported by Karen!

Here is my top ten tips for moving house when you have a long term health condition and live with fatigue!

1. List the low/medium and high spoon demanding activities. Then either plan how many low/medium/high spoon activities you can do each day or set a limit - the temptation to overdo it ("just one more coat, just one more wall") is always there!

2. Being excited and happy costs spoons!
I talked about the emotional cost of spoons in a previous blog, and although not a difficult or negative emotion, excitement costs spoons! They are worth it, but still needs to be taken into account!

3. You can never underestimate the number of spoons needed for IKEA flatpack furniture!

4. Divide painting into low and high stuff - I find it hard to paint high as having my arms above my head for a while is hard (blame the POTS for that one!), so I did all the low down stuff like kitchen cabinets and skirting boards, and my brilliant Mum did most of the rest.

5. Always allow an extra spoon for the energy it takes to try and wash dried white paint out of your hair, for fear of looking like you have gone grey overnight.

6. Having a list of 'bad day' activities is great for those days when you are too tired to do much, but really want to do something house related.  For me, it was sitting down with scissors and glue and craft paper to make my 'new address cards'.

7. Unlike my blog, I'm actually rather impatient! That is hard to manage - while knee-deep in dust cloths, I wanted to put up fairy lights and wanted to rush ahead with the painting so that I could start putting cushions, candles and cake stands in. Trying to keep that at bay was important to preserve spoons and expectations.

8. Get the sofa ready first! There is nothing like sitting down after sorting stuff out in a sofa. Camp chairs are no substitute. It was my priority to recharge spoons while continuing to sort everything else out. It must be a nap-proof sofa (one that you can nap on), while there are no other comfy surfaces!

9. Managing that fiercely independent streak is like another wild LTCs with a mind of its own! Its good to give people a specific thing to help with, and I have been amazed and touched by peoples' kindness.

10. Spoons can actually (physically) help with decorating - see Pinterest for inspiration!


  1. Thank-you! This is unbelievably helpful and reassuring. Well done for the move - and enjoy settling into your new home. Hx

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