Well, all the activity caught up with me, and I’ve been pretty flat the last couple of days. Which is why I wasn’t up to posting yesterday.
I felt a little crummy Thursday night. I woke up too early on Friday, meaning I didn’t get enough sleep. So I spent the first couple hours of the day dizzy and having a hard time focusing my eyes. Not great in my line of work. A nap made that go away, but I was still weary. And at one point in the evening I was nearing that fun point where breathing feels like effort.
I managed to avoid the full-on effect, mainly by doing as little as possible for the rest of the night. Saturday I still felt pretty weak, so Tim drove me to the one appointment I had. I watched TV in the room for a bit while lying on the bed. Then I came out to the living room to watch TV with Tim… lying on the couch. When you have muscle fatigue it’s shocking what a difference there is between even sitting in a chair versus lying down.
Today I’m a bit better, despite the cats deciding to meow me awake at 7:30ish. (Their cuteness is, at this point, the only reason they’re still alive.) I took a two-hour nap and feel practically human.
I knew all of this was coming. I’ve mentioned the spoon theory before. You have just so many spoons. You have to spend them wisely. And if you go over your limit — and not everyone even has that option — you’re borrowing against the future.
But I needed to make sure things got done. And that they got done before I had any random mood swing that might make me feel overwhelmed. (Turns out that was a good idea because, with all the contractor drama, I feel practically immobilized.) So I chose to hurt my future self to get done what needed to be done.
At least this time it was a conscious choice. I spent years battling the fatigue by trying to push through. As though there were a limitless reserve of energy once I burst through the barrier. I think that I really believed that somehow. I guess I just couldn’t fully accept how powerless I am in the face of all this.
Now I know better. Fatigue has circumscribed my life. If I push too hard, I don’t get a reward. I end up with a deficit.
With that realization, I’ve gotten better at rationing my energy. If I start to feel tired, I lie down and mentally cross off the other errands I wanted to do. Or whittle them down to one really important one. And only if Tim can’t run it for me. If I know I want to go out to a movie, I try not to do much during the day. Going out to a party means laying low for a couple of days beforehand.
So while it is always aggravating to be extra hemmed in by fatigue, this time I was able to prepare mentally and physically. Except getting the litter boxes done. Some things don’t give a damn how much energy you have.
To those of you with fatigue, how do you handle this kind of thing? Do you ever (assuming you’re able to) borrow against the future? To those of you without fatigue (because everyone has some limits) how do you spend your energy?