Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I Know I Don't Look Sick!

But as Jen pointed out a few months back, that doesn't always enter into it. Herewith, The Spoon Theory. Be glad if it doesn't apply to you. I'm going to have to work out with a graph or something how to function from now on. (My note for today: "Write while eating lunch to maximize "up" time.") I just don't have enough spoons, and as Pirate Boy incessantly reminds me, the Blue and Gold Banquet is tomorrow. I was saving up my spoons for it, I really was, but they're gone now.

Reason #1: My kids steal them, constantly. Yesterday and today they stole a whole week's worth, between potty accidents and sassing and distracting each other and sassing and forgetting to come home from school and sassing...

Reason #2: Bullies. I hate school bullies, I have since I was a kid on the receiving end of their attention. I hate them way more now that my sweet son is the target. I'm terrified for him because a) small, emotional boys get worse treatment even than fat, ugly girls, and b) he knows no fear. ("Oh, sure, I can beat your whole gang in a fight..." No, honey, you can't. Just between you and me and the fire hydrant.)

Reason #3: Opium dependence. As distinct from addiction, which is (thankfully) recognized as a psychological phenomenon, dependence is when your body goes through physical withdrawal symptoms when it doesn't get enough of the drug. Unfortunately, "enough" isn't enough after a while, and the body demands more. Stupid thing. So sometimes I just deal with the burning nerves.

Reason #4: Migraines. I get them especially when my hormonal balance is upset, like when I have to take antibiotics, which negates my birth control pills, or when (as recently) I have to take steroid pills. (Explanation: No, I'm not going out for the major leagues; I had a violent allergic reaction to something unknown, and cortisone helps. Within a week, apparently.)

In fact, I started one series of migraines in January, about the time I became The Man's fantasy girl, "Scone the Librarian." (It's a long story, which I would have posted a month ago if, y'know, the migraine thing hadn't happened.) It was an unpaid internship that I worked for two part-days and was so completely wiped out I couldn't work again. Even on my paying job. So you know how that's going to turn out.

I might venture to add a Reason #5: Depression, but people in my family (even though half of them are on Prozac and its sister drugs) don't seem to think that's a valid excuse for anything, like having no energy. Let me say it for them, so they don't have to: "Whatever! Snap out of it! Get over it! Get off your lazy..." OK, that's enough.

So here I am, trying, albeit imperceptibly, to get the medical records and other documentation that I need for my SS Disability hearing, which is (hallelujah!) scheduled for next Wednesday, worrying constantly about the things I don't feel I can do anymore, and none the better off for it.

None of that will help my status as a mom, however, if I miss the banquet tomorrow, so I've got to go lie down. Enjoy the spoon I've given you.*

*Note to self: Ask Jen where she gets her spoons...


Renee said...

I'm no expert on spoons but being a friend of Jen I know the theory. I believe that she gets her spoons from God.

I'll pray that you get more spoons. Hugs!

Scone said...

Dangit! I was hoping for an easier answer, like K-Mart or the Oneida store or something. ;-)

Jack said...

K-Mart. lol . . . It's good to see you post again. I mean, not to pressure you to post more or anything . . . just . . . it's good.

Bullies. Man that's tough. I know what you mean. I don't think I've ever felt more impotent anger than the day Sam came home and told me some kids had shoved him off his bike, chased him away, ridden the bike around a few minutes then thrown down the hill. And I wasn't there to protect him. I can't be with him all the time.

Good luck at the B&G banquet.

Jen said...

I think we all get our spoons from God :-)

I already posted this over at FB, but I'll post it here, too!


First of all, hugs to you! And thanks for sharing a spoon with everyone, I totally "get" that. I wish everyone could understand how something seemingly small like thinking out and writing a post can take the life right out of you at times. Especially one as emotional as this one. I appreciate it, Scone :-)

Where do I get my spoons? I have access to a lot more now that the kids are older and fairly self-reliant. So, I can get more sleep if I need to, or lay in a dark room when the migraines hit. When I was on diaper duty, diapers and feeding were all I could finish in a day. I love my children, and I love babies, but I have to be honest and say that my life is much better now that those early days are gone.

Even though I've made managing my fibro a full time job over the last few years, I routinely run out of spoons. Not every day any more, but still several times a week.

So, don't look to me for much, just remember that the only time you catch me is on the internet when I'm "up" and I have a little energy, or had some energy earlier and I'm now reporting what I did with it. A lot of the time I'm pretty quiet any more, and that's usually when I'm burning through my spoons on stupid, unenjoyable, unreportable stuff! I can tell you what I've found that works for me, but I don't know if any of it will work in your situation, or with the way your body works. So, take what you can use and toss the rest, we're all so different!

So much of what works for Spoon Preservation for me is to take control of as much of my schedule as I can. I've found that if I can eliminate the rushing around, I can save a lot of spoons, so I try to take time limits off wherever possible. If we don't get to math until 2:30 in the afternoon, that takes fewer spoons than doing it at 10am with all the requisite hurrying.

And I've learned not to schedule anything in the morning if I can avoid it, it's easier for me to take complete control of the kids' education than it would be to get them all up and out the door by 8am or whatever. That's just what works for me, though, and even then it's pretty inexact.

A lot of articles on fibro say that exercise helps, but I can tell you that the full scale attack that I did walking last year was extremely counter productive. To get ready for the big walk, I had to push way too hard, way too fast, for way too long. I'm glad I did it, but it was at the cost of just about everything else I wanted to accomplish for ten months. I'd like to start walking again, but much shorter distances. Unfortunately, without the stress of the upcoming walk, it's too easy not to get out there. Especially since it HURTS, and I didn't lose any weight at all. I'm very good at talking myself out of stuff, and times like these, that's a bad thing...

I take a lot of breaks during the day. Not necessarily physical ones, although those are important, but mental ones, too. My kids know to give me some space when my "brain power" is all used up, because I do reach several points during the day where I just can't deal with one. more. thing. So, I take a shower then, or lay down for 15 minutes with a book, or something similar. When I was working, I used to sneak out to my car for breaks and hide from people and listen to music or eat a snack.

Church takes a LOT of my spoons. Just attending for the full three hours is about all I can hope to accomplish on Sunday, but a lot of times Sunday is when we have Cub Committee meetings and the Home Teachers come (ack, hurry up and clean!) and all that. I'm not sure I understand where the "rest" is supposed to come in on Sunday, so I do a lot praying for strength. ;-) And I don't make it nearly as often as I'd like to.

Davin helps a lot, and picks up a lot of my slack. I don't know how he has so dang many spoons, maybe that's what it means to be essentially healthy? I don't remember ever being like he is. Anyway, without him, most of my spoons would go towards survival issues.

So, like I said, I don't know if that's at all helpful. You're in my thoughts and prayers.

Scone said...

(((( H U G )))) for Jen. Thanks so much for that long and thoughtful comment.

I've just started really thinking about the scheduling thing. Until recently, I'd pretty much take what anyone would give me that didn't conflict with my kids' school pickups and dropoffs, but lately (and I mean within the past week or so) I've started calculating "OK, if I get up at 8, that means my first rest break runs from about 10 till 11:30..." and so on. And then factor in when the pain pills will wear off...

Church is a huge thing, you're right. All I managed last Sunday was Sacrament meeting because I went shopping with my sister for her birthday the day before. Tomorrow I might make it two hours or more, depending if I get to bed by midnight or so.