There was a time, many years ago, that I didn’t understand what hitting a wall felt like. I had a full deck of cards, and all the energy in the world. Of course, this was before kids. And before my body decided to hit me for six. Again, and again.
Before I got tired.
Just FYI, Chronic Illness Sucks
It’s weird when you are looking out the other side of a really bad time. Life slapped half the cards in my hands away. Then it did it again. Options narrowed. And before I knew it, I had only a small handful left.
Life became a series of difficult questions.
Should I use some to sit up today? There were many days when walking down the driveway was beyond what I could do.
So many things just fell to the side. They had to; I had nothing left to give. That’s why I didn’t write as much as I used to here. Putting one word in front of another was energy I didn’t have. Social media, where I had to make choices, find content to share, was beyond what I could do.
Hell, even talking to people could push me over into burn out. Or texting. That comes with the territory when you have borderline Anxiety. And yes, I have a wonderful therapist who is helping me learn how to live with my own brain.
I am still looking for the silver lining in all of it. Even though now, with a few proper diagnoses, I finally have a better handle on what my body and brain needs.
But I’m Still Tired
But still. Here I am, a few more cards in the deck. And I’m so afraid of crashing again.
When you don’t know why everything fell apart, it’s hard to commit to doing things. Will this activity be the one that puts me in bed for a week? Or a month? How close can I get to the edge, when I don’t know where it is?
What’s important? If I can only do one thing – what do I focus on? How do I keep the plates spinning? Which plates can I let fall?
One of the things that I couldn’t do is talk much about it. How do you marshal your thoughts when your brain is foggy?
Homeschooling is my Rock
Because, one of the things that comes up is often, ‘Hey, you can send your kids to school! That will make it easier.’
Uh, no. Because, through all this, I still volunteered on help lines. And those families with kids like mine? Were under way more stress than I was.
Because, despite it all, the one thing that mattered to me more than anything else, was my kids. And the thing they needed was an education that matched their needs.
So, there were days I dragged my sorry ass across town, so that we could do projects that the kids loved, or just go to the library. Even though I knew I would need days recovering. I invited families into our home, because having people here was easier than travelling even to the local park.
Because, funnily enough, all of that was easier than dealing with my kids’ stress at being in places that they weren’t ready to face, because they couldn’t do neurotypical long enough to be seen as ‘good’.
I actually love our days. Even through all the stress, seeing the kids do things they love, having them info-dump it with eyes twinkling was, and is a joy.
I still have no idea whether I am doing the right thing. I may never know, actually. I’m rolling the dice against fate and statistics and hoping I bet the right way.
Crossing My Fingers and Doing The Things Anyway
I’m crossing my fingers that everything holds together. Out the other side, I have so many stories to tell. I have a book on its way to my awesome publishers, I have another that I am writing with the help of people who get me.
Some days, I do look uber-productive. Wow! How do I do it all?
I don’t. I never did. Today I am writing in my pajamas, and I am homeschooling from the sofa because sitting up hurts. The kitchen is on its way to a disaster (but is mostly OK). The garden is a living testament to what we have dubbed ‘Darwinian Gardening.’
But I am here. And life is not entirely awful.