A Handful of Spoons…………

A few months ago, I was honored to be a judge in the WEGO Health Activist competition.. A Health Activist may be a caregiver, a patient, a medical professional, a family member, a friend, Relay for Life participants – anyone who promotes awareness, or cares about those with various illnesses, diseases,  health conditions, or disabilities.

There were so many illnesses and diseases of which I had been unaware, until my participation in this online event. The competition, and awards, recognized individuals taking extra steps to promote awareness and provide information through many different avenues, both in person and online in blogs or web pages.

Christine Miserandino, afflicted with Lupus,  and the originator of ‘The Spoon Theory’ was the winner in her category of Best Affirmation Post.  This young woman has been very creative in her use  of spoons to explain her illness and how it affected her and her abilities.  Healthy individuals are able to go about a daily routine  without a need for medications. People with illness or disabilities have to plan their day, and most often aren’t able to accomplish the most minimal of tasks either because of pain or a disability.  Those of us, living a normal life – without illness, have an unlimited number of “spoons” to get us through our days. 

What a brilliant idea! Why hadn’t I thought of something like this! 

I began to think of ways to use the Spoon Theory to define Bob’s Multiple
Myeloma.


Christine’s Lupus is painful and debilitating and requires her to plan her days, much the same as Bob.  Each morning, he picks up an imaginary handful of spoons when he awakens.  Just to get out of bed he must give up a spoon. Standing up straight, and waiting so he won’t be dizzy, uses another spoon. The spoons he has left must take him through the day and all the things he needs to do.

He slowly walks to the bathroom – using another spoon. Each activity – washing his face or brushing his teeth, uses a spoon.  If he feels well enough to take a shower, and get dressed, it uses more spoons.

A trip to the kitchen, eating breakfast, taking his meds – each must use one of the spoons he is holding.  Every activity that we take for granted, uses a spoon for someone who is ill, or disabled. Some days, there just aren’t enough spoons to make it through the day……but on other, better days there may be spoons left over. Those are the good days!

Christine’s ‘Spoon Theory’ actually helped me to realize, and understand, what my honey must be going through. If I were given a handful of spoons to allot to each activity of my day – I’m sure
there would probably be days when I’d be sitting, in my chair. Days much like those that fill the “new normal” of my honey’s life.

I’m thankful that lately, he seems to have spoons left over. These days, he isn’t using his handful of spoons. I’m thankful for Christine and her analogy of spoons and how they can relate to illness and pain, not just for my honey – but for anyone with an illness or disease.

Strangely enough, Christine’s blog is entitled ‘But You Don’t Look Sick’. Often, my honey is told how good he looks………but nobody knows how many spoons he’s had to use that day!

You can read Christine’s ‘Spoon Theory’ at http://www.butyoudontlooksick.com/articles/written-by-christine/the-spoon-theory-written-by-christine-miserandino/