Self-care rules the day
Yes…I remember that it’s Migraine and Headache Awareness Month.
Yes…I realize you’ve come to expect a new blog post each day every June.
My body had other ideas.
After a whirlwind trip to San Diego, my body rebelled. For a few days I clawed my way through like I’ve always done. Then one afternoon, without any warning, my laptop shut down on its own, never to return. I’d pushed it so hard that even my technology gave out.
Damn the torpedoes, full steam ahead!
A few hours of panic followed by a few more hours of problem-solving with my personal IT guy (i.e. husband) and I had a plan. Completely ignoring the billboard-size warnings in flashing neon lights, I charged forward. It was gracious of my husband to let me borrow his computer, but doing so enabled my workaholism. With the latest cluster cycle ending and migraine strangely absent, there was now very little that would slow me down.
Enter, the flare.
While Migraine and Cluster Headache may have been asleep at the wheel, Fibromyalgia was not about to put up with my reckless behavior. Without access to portable technology (my trusty, but now defunct, laptop), I was forced to walk away from work (now a stationary, very heavy desktop computer) when my body gave out. My hands and feet were swollen, every muscle in my body was screaming, and my internal thermostat couldn’t decide if it was summer or winter.
After nearly a week, I finally started to feel more like myself. Feeling daring, I would sit down at the new-to-me computer only to walk away moments later. It wasn’t writer’s block — ideas were flowing freely. I’d simply lost my motivation. Burnout was creeping in. A self-care break was desperately needed if I were going to write another word before Independence Day.
Finally, I got the message.
For the past three days I have done everything except write.
- vacuumed the living room carpet and spot treated a few random stains
- dusted and polished the TV stand
- made progress on painting the entryway walls
- polished the banister
- sanded and stained the worn-out built-in desk in the kitchen
- ran a few loads of dishes
- cleaned the clutter off my kitchen table and countertops
- reassembled my granddaughter’s Minnie Mouse electric scooter
- mopped the hardwood floors in the entryway
- enjoyed a Star Trek marathon…just finished Insurrection last night
- ate when I was hungry
- slept when I felt tired
- called my daddy on Father’s Day
- chatted with hubby to keep him company on his road trip for work
- rescued granddaughter’s dinner by adding the desired PB&J sandwich that mommy didn’t make fast enough
Why all the cleaning? Well, when I get stressed out, I clean. It’s not work; it’s self-care. It may all sound like work to you, but to me it was relaxing fun…especially the polishing, staining, and painting. For the first time in months, my kitchen desktop is clear and beautiful. The walls around it have a fresh coat of paint. A light taupe replaces the dark “Army green” and now I can’t wait to make the whole kitchen brighter.
There wasn’t a single migraine or cluster attack to contend with all weekend, so I allowed myself the luxury of avoiding the topic entirely. Now I feel refreshed and motivated to finish the month strong.
Have I learned my lesson?
Probably not. At least I will make an effort to stay balanced for a few days. Who knows? Maybe this time the lesson will stick.