This past week has been really fantastic for me, in the grand scheme of things. In spite of having caught a cold last weekend, I’ve had significantly less pain, and more energy than I’ve had in, well, possibly months. My doctor and I decided together that I should be able to go back to work after one more week of recuperation. My appetite has gotten better. My sleep is … getting there, after tweaking some med dosages. Generally, I’m feeling more lining than cloud these days.
This is fantastic, but I find myself in a state of self-warning tonight: feeling better does not mean feeling well, and I do not have the capacity to do everything I’d like to. I have to be really careful now about budgeting my energy like I would time or money, because there quite simply isn’t enough to go around. Christine Miserandino’s Spoon Theory captures this energy economy really effectively for me.
Earlier this week, because I was feeling so well, I was motivated to find a sitter so I could go out tonight. My regular sitter was unavailable, so I put out a few verging-on-frantic requests through Facebook and Twitter, hoping that something would click: either a friend who likes my kids would be available, or had the number of a sitter, or something. Alas, my network was already overtaxed this weekend, and no magical sitter materialized for me.
Was I disappointed? You bet. Definitely past tense though, as I lie here feeling the inflammation grow in my knee and ankle joints. All that running around, hoping beyond hope that I could find childcare so I could go out, and I’d probably just have cancelled anyway, out of pain and fatigue. Today was a day I ran out of spoons very early on.
I had an errand to run this afternoon. It required that I take ELEVEN different transit vehicles round trip. Yes. Eleven. An eighteen-minute errand took 5.5 hours to complete. By the time I finally got home, I was still hoping there’d be a message in my inbox giving me permission to see other adults tonight, but most of me was just screaming for a nap.
I’m experiencing a lot more denial about my capacity than I should be. I’m raging against my own body, which isn’t helping me at all. I find myself still taking for granted that I can do things in the same way as I have done them previously, and that’s probably unwise. I think I need to give myself some time to sit down and do an inventory of just how many spoons I have left right now, because something tells me the number’s a lot lower than I’d like it to be.