One of the symptoms of my still-not-finally-diagnosed-but-most-likely-rheumatoid inflammatory arthritis is fatigue. I find it particularly frustrating because after working so hard over the past year to get in better shape, and being so much lighter, it stinks to be exhausted by doing almost nothing.
Because I spent a large portion of my mid-thirties experiencing and recovering from a major depression, I associate time on the couch with that period of hopelessness, so just lying down to take a nap sometimes feels like an echo of despair.
I have a hard time understanding self-care unless it involves *doing* something for myself. I'm great at making appointments for therapy or massage or foot reflexology or coffee with a friend. I'm not so great at just sitting quietly and smelling the flowers.
I tried doing a little knitting earlier in the week.
I may need to explain about the knitting. It means a lot to me. It's creative and useful. It's soothing and meditative.
I own a lot of yarn: maybe not as much as some people, I won't claim to have a stash of Yarn Harlot proportions, but I do own a lot of yarn, some of it purchased with particular projects in mind that now seem impossibly far away.
That's when I know despair is getting the better of me.
So, as I was saying, I tried to do a little knitting earlier in the week. There is a pair of socks, you see, that a parishioner at Main Street Church bid on and won in an auction last fall, and she agreed they could wait until I had finished my Christmas projects, and I began them in the winter and was just past turning the heel of the second sock when the pain in my fingers grew to be too much and besides that they began to swell.
Those socks went on the cruise with me at the end of March, and I could not work on them then, and until this week, the socks sat in their Ziploc bag, unchanged. Last weekend I picked up the unfinished sock and discovered, to my horror, that stitches had fallen off the needle. I put them back where they belonged, and that fifteen minutes of effort felt like hours. Monday evening, I picked up the sock again, and eventually accomplished two rounds of knitting.
If you're not a knitter, let's just say that is a pretty lame amount of progress, a quarter of an inch at best.
I'm under no pressure from anyone else, I'm very clear about that. The pressure all comes from me. I like to be in the middle of the ring, not under the cork tree.
But that is where I find myself.