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Borrowing Spoons

Here's the background reading.

I've been beyond tired this week. And it's all because I've been out of spoons. I have been out of spoons this week. Why? Because I used some of this week's spoons last week.

Last week, as you know, was Thanksgiving week. I planned appropriately. I had a list to get things done early and so that Lydia and Patrick could finish making Thanksgiving dinner if I got a migraine. And the list worked.

Tuesday, I made desserts. Wednesday, I prepped the side dishes and the turkey. (But, the way that our kitchen is set up, we can't completely open the fridge door, so Patrick had to do some magic to get a turkey in a roasting pan back into the fridge for the night!) There went a few extra spoons.

Wednesday night was our small group night, but it appeared that only one couple could make it. As it turned out, only the husband came. And, he came to say that his wife, who had congenital heart disease and had been quite ill, had died that morning in the hospital in Milwaukee. We were a new small group and had just met in the previous week or so, but, nonetheless, Patrick and I were stunned. Jeff, the husband, spent the evening with us. The small group was just us three that night. That was more than a few extra spoons used up.

Thanksgiving Day was the usual watching of the parade and cooking lots of food. Jeff came over for Thanksgiving dinner at our invitation. He didn't know many people in the area and was feeling the need to be with people. We were happy to have him around. And, of course, with the kids around, things got loud and rambunctious and happy! Well, of course, I borrowed some spoons for Thanksgiving!

Friday and Saturday were generally busy days with hanging out with kids and generally being together. Saturday, Lydia and I went Christmas ornament shopping together. That night, LSU beat Texas A&M; Jeff had joined us again for some football fun. I probably borrowed an extra spoon or two to manage shopping and football.

And Sunday was Christmas tree decorating! We had finally found a time when all the kids were going to be here at the same time: Sunday after church. So, we brought up all the Christmas stuff and put up the tree, put on ornaments, and put up the lights.

And Monday, I crashed. The headache wasn't too bad, but the fatigue has been horrible. It's not just physical fatigue. It's mental and emotional fatigue. It's hard to think. It's hard to meditate. My brain is fried.

It's like I got up Monday morning expecting my usual 20 spoons and my body just laughed. It said, "Why do you think you have 20 spoons today? You've been borrowing spoons for a week. Maybe I'll give you 15 today. If you're lucky." I got the same speech on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Today is a little better. I was still kind of headachey when I got up and I'm rather tired, but it's not the bone tiredness.

The moral of this whole story, though, is that when I borrow spoons for one event, I have to be prepared to pay for it later. When I borrow spoons for a week, I need to have a very quiet week planned to recover. Being busy is hard but fun. Losing a new friend and being there for her husband is not fun, but it's the right thing to do.

More than ten years into chronic migraine and I'm still learning how to cope. If you have a chronic illness, I hope this gives you some insight into how to deal with it. Let me know any ideas you have!


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