Fair warning: woman at work

I’m still suffering the tail end of this effing ‘flu, but I can’t defer my entire life because of it, so for the foreseeable future I’m just going to have to accept that every day I am very tired the virus will flare back up again, and in the meantime I constantly have a very painful lymph system (yes, I’m brushing. Yes, I’m moving as much as possible. Yes, I’m drinking water. I know the drill: the problem is, it doesn’t), and feel fairly depleted all the time.

It’s not like “depleted all the time” is significantly different from “normal”, for me, so chocks away. You can’t live your life inside the envelope, that thing was made for pushing.

Since – ‘flu notwithstanding – I seem to now be clear of stupid relapse, I am back on the cross-trainer again, trying to remind my heart what it’s there for. I’ve managed to get my maximum from 125 to 166 in the last fortnight, which is nice progress, but as ever with M.E., it’s one step forward, three back. A good exercise session increases my heart’s ability to beat fast and increases its efficiency when it does. But that only applies on a day when my body lets me stand up and walk about. It doesn’t make those days more frequent. It doesn’t improve my situation on bad days. And the consequence of that exercise session is exhaustion which hits me at some point in the following three days and lasts for however-long.

With exhaustion comes emotional fragility. So this is the fair warning #1: while I’m doing this exercise thing – and I am going to continue to do it until it either changes my life, or it becomes apparent that it is doing more LONG TERM harm than good – I am going to be alternately very thrilled with life, or glum as fuck. There won’t be much middle ground. As ever, I will attempt to shut up when I feel glum (it passes, it’s tiredness, I know this, but when you’re occupying that emotional reality the temptation is to blurt it out). But if I’m occasionally less than Little Miss Sunshine, bear with me please. I am probably hurting a lot.

Fair warning #2: this is my top priority now. It is hard work and it takes all I’ve got. I am not going to be being very social, as a consequence. I will do my best, but if I’m even more absent than usual, this is why – a night out with you will require me to shelve my exercise plan for a week beforehand and at least half a week after. I don’t want to do that, because ultimately I would like my life back, and that requires consistency of effort from me. Please try to view this in the long term: if this works, I should be able to see more of you. If it doesn’t – well. We’re no worse off. Please don’t forget me or write me off.

Wish me luck. I love you. x

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About chiller

Rachel Coldbreath spent 20 years working internationally as a technical specialist on large data collections for law firms, before becoming disabled. She blogs on a variety of topics from the news and politics to gardening and how very annoying it is, being disabled. Habits include drilling holes about 1mm away from where they ought to be, and embarking with great enthusiasm on tasks for which she is neither physically nor intellectually equipped.
This entry was posted in all about ME, life, this year and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Fair warning: woman at work

  1. Alan Mimms says:

    We haven’t forgotten you, my friend. Theresa and I read your posts every time, and we speak of you quite a bit. We wish there were something we could do to help.

  2. Daisy says:

    I had no idea. You carry yourself [on Twitter at least] as one who suffers no hindrance and asks for no grace… Golly! I am in awe. :)

    • chiller says:

      Oh, thank you. I definitely don’t ask for much grace (other than that people don’t forget about me if they don’t see me from one month/year to the next). I’m quite open about telling people I have M.E., but I can’t bear the “poor little me” card and try hard not to play it. I get furious with myself when I whine. And sometimes I do. x

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