Archives for category: health

Well. Shit. And, in some senses of the word, I guess I mean that literally. lol Omg – being a human primate can be so distressingly gross sometimes.

The tickle in my throat night before last wasn’t a thing, I guess, although my throat was a bit raw by the end of the day yesterday… it could have been because I talk too damned much. lol Just as I was forming a “hey, I guess I feel okay…” sort of thought, “other symptoms” hit me and I was making my exit by way of the restroom before I could get to the parking lot and get in the car. (Frankly, that was a good call, and I don’t think I’d have been able to make the drive home without that detour to the restroom!)

I don’t like being sick.

I felt lethargic and drained (lol) all evening. I went to bed very early, and apparently slept deeply through the night. I woke drenched in sweat, hair tangled and knotted, and feeling sort of shaky and weak, but aside from that, sort of mostly okay-ish… I think… So far…

I get through the morning routine pretty easily. That first sip of coffee isn’t treating me very well, though, and I uncomfortably wonder what to do about that?

What strange fragile vessels these meat suits are. My enthusiastic loose plan to hike on the weekend is taking on the shape of a gentle walk along an accessible path. lol My eagerness to see my Traveling Partner becomes a hope that whatever this is does not get shared. I reconsider my plans and place my focus on self-care, wellness, and “recovering”, tacitly admitting to myself that I feel unwell. Ah. Well, there it is, then. Apparently, I’m not well. lol Thanks, Brain, I wasn’t sure where I stood on that topic. Got it. Thanks for clearing up any confusion on that.

My coffee is of no interest; I’m not feeling wholly well this morning. I’d definitely work from home, but didn’t bring my laptop home with me last night – I’m feeling a little stupid over that poor choice – so I at least have to go into the office to get it. lol Fucking hell. Two more work shifts, and then a weekend.

I’m really over being sick on weekends. Damn.

I take a breath, then another; being annoyed over being sick can so easily turn into some bullshit emotional storm of frustration and volatility, and that’s really a pretty pointless waste of time. We are mortal creatures of flesh and emotion, and sometimes being sick is a thing we go through. Beating myself about being ill is fairly foolish, and I am not up to it this morning. I shrug and let it go. The work week is almost over. It makes sense that weekends are as much about recovering from exhaustion or illness as they are about leisure-time recreations.

I notice the time… yeah. I work at resetting my expectations of the day, and finding my way to a new beginning. It’s definitely time to begin again. 😉

What’s leaning on you? What are you doing to get some relief? (It’s just a question.)

This morning I woke so slowly and so deliciously at ease that I didn’t really notice the transition from dreaming to thinking, from sleeping to waking; I simply realized at some point that I was, indeed, actually awake, and had been for some unnoticed, unmeasured time. I got up with more than usual ease and freedom of movement, too. I moved gently through the usual details of mornings: a shower, yoga, that first delicious hot cup of coffee, and catching up on the world a bit.

I feel… “relieved”.

I followed up with meditation, sitting contentedly in the open patio doorway, gazing out into the trees and my small container garden, as a soft rain fell. It’s hard to imagine a more delightfully contented moment.

I enjoy the soft rain after the scorching days of summer.

Much of the day, today, is being spent writing letters and calling legislators about issues that matter to me, mostly labor and wage stuff, quality of life concerns, universal healthcare, and judicial reform. I take some time for me, too; this right here and now me, the woman in the mirror – I’ve got some needs of my own, that are on my mind (wellness and quality of life concerns). I check out a Tai Chi studio online… I plan my weekend hikes.

Sometimes it is hard to really relax and completely recharge with just two days of weekend. This weekend I’ve got 4 days to work with. It’s quite wonderful.

I take a sip of what is left of my now cold coffee. There’s definitely time to enjoy another cup. I smile at the thought of my sparkling clean kitchen, and think happy thoughts about how supportive and helpful my Traveling Partner is, and how wonderful love is, just generally. Having a little help now and then can make so much difference! I remind myself gently that it is also helpful to ask for it when I need it, instead of letting myself fall behind.

Self-care takes a lot of forms. Like yoga, dance, flow practices, or martial arts, self-care has so many varied forms and combinations of supportive practices, it would seem possible that any one of us could assemble a system of practices that work ideally well for this one particular singular unique human primate that we are… It’s a damned big menu, though, and the variety itself can overwhelm and confuse. One thing at a time then? Why not? Pick up a practice. Practice it “awhile” – days, weeks, months, whatever it takes to determine with reliable certainty whether it is “for you” – let it go, if it isn’t. Keep it up, if it is. Either way, there’s no avoiding those verbs. We become what we practice. Incremental change over time can be so damned slow, but… it does happen. With practice. With repetition. With study. Each day a new beginning, and ample opportunity to fail, to be mistaken, to get it wrong, to re-do something, to try again – to become the human being we most want to be.

There are no short cuts.

It’s time. Make the most of the opportunity. ❤

Are you rushing to get to work? Rushing through waking up, showering, dressing? Rushing to be out the door “on time”? Breathless with anxiety before you even start the car? Already thinking about the day ahead in such specific detail that you’ve “borrowed trouble” to fret about before you even have any in the moment?

I used to do that. I don’t now. It was a good change to make, to slow down in the mornings. 🙂 Maybe not life-saving, but certainly life-changing. I went from a fairly tightly timed morning routine that took 17 minutes from the alarm clock to the click of the front door closing behind me, and reliably got me on the bus heading into town 3 minutes later (the stop was just across the street from my apartment). Any deviation from my routine put me at risk of being late to work, and I had huge issues with time, timeliness, and time management, at that time in my life (I wasn’t bad at it, just really tense and weird about it on this whole unnecessary level). Being late – or thinking I might be – was a fast track to temper tantrums and treating people poorly (myself included). It was a shitty way to live, and it didn’t make me more efficient, or even on time more often.

What do I do now? It’s pretty low tech, honestly; I get up earlier. Like, I get up a lot earlier. I get up “earlier than I need to” by quite a bit. Most variations in desired arrival time at work don’t require me to change when I get up in the morning, that’s how much earlier I get up. Right now, it’s easily 90 minutes after my alarm goes off before I need to leave, and I could as easily leave the house fully 3 hours after I wake up and still be “on time” from the perspective of a salaried employee, and I sometimes do. It’s lovely, really, to be genuinely awake when I leave for work, to be able to write at leisure even on work days, to have adequate time to dress, shower, do some yoga, and even meditate before work – and still have time to write. It puts me on the path to being my best self each day.

I got home last night tired and frustrated by feeling the cold I thought I was over trying to make a comeback. I really don’t need the hassle or inconvenience, and I sat quietly frustrated, tears of exhausted aggravation coursing down my face for some minutes. Just… tired. I skipped the company summer block party over it, too. Came directly home. No chores. No video entertainment. No music. Hell, I didn’t even pick up a book. Just sat, staring rather blankly, sipping chicken broth or tea, until I was “sleepy enough” to just go lay the fuck down and rest. I was asleep early. I slept hard. Deeply. Uninterrupted. I was irritated by the weird repetitive noise that woke me – my alarm. It took nearly a full minute to figure that out and shut it off. I turned the lamp on and off a couple times, puzzled why the noise was not stopping. lol Usually I am awakened by the subtle “click” sound that immediately precedes the alarm actually going off. lol

I definitely needed the restful night. I woke feeling more myself. Still cross about this cold trying to come back – and of course, immediately as the fucking weekend begins. That’s becoming a source of real frustration for me, lately; the weekend is my one real opportunity each week to get some legit downtime, and it’s so rare any more to just enjoy one. I’m sick. Or traveling. Or moving. Or I’m sick. Or I have tons of shit that just must get done, non-negotiable. Or I’m doing something for someone. Or I’m sick again. Or I’ve gotten injured. Or I’m traveling. Or… I need to slow down. Again. And maybe not just in the mornings. Mornings? I’ve got those down at this point. 🙂

It’s a journey. No single change, no one practice, solves for X in every one of life’s equations. There are more verbs. More opportunity to do more/better, while also practicing skillful self-care, and figuring out what is actually worth doing well and more often. Being and becoming are a massively challenging jigsaw puzzle, and the pieces not yet fit into the puzzle are all jumbled up together in an untidy pile; sometimes it isn’t clear which pieces are most valuable in any particular moment. I’m still such a beginner at this being human thing!

I finish my coffee. Take a deep breath, look at the clock, and exhale slowly. It’s time to begin again. 🙂

There are now open boxes of tissues in every room of this place, one on each side table, near each place I sit, on every counter top, and next to each of those, small bottles of hand sanitizer – which I don’t use unless I am down with some sort of contagious ailment. Which I am. Down with a contagious ailment. By which I mean, I’m sick. With a cold.

In spite of a fair bit of misery, I managed to get my Friday managed decently well, and the day even ended with a car in my driveway, again. I’m fairly pleased with all of that. I crashed out almost as soon as I got home, got up a couple times for soup, tea, to pee, or to attempt to ease my symptoms. All very human. I slept through the night, I think. I at least don’t recall waking. 3:38 am, my lack of ability to breath woke me. I’d planned to go directly back to bed, feeling woozy and uncoordinated. I ended up here, instead. 🙂

I spent an hour conversing online with a friend having a rough time at the moment. Quality conversation is too often built on someone’s suffering, which is shame, but nonetheless it is good to spend time chatting with a friend to ease the boredom and ennui of being sick. I’m sleepy again, and it’s back to bed to continue to work on getting over this latest bit of ick. (Fucking call centers. They are often disease incubators every bit as much as they are places to work. Don’t get me started about public transit.) Conveniently, from a work perspective, I am sick over the weekend. Inconveniently, from my own perspective, I am sick over the weekend. Balance in all things, I suppose. 0_o

Time to go back to bed. I can try a new beginning a little later. 😉

I am sitting here with my coffee, grateful to be out of the office today. My coffee is still untouched, though I’ve been sitting here with it for half an hour. I have a cold and feel fairly listless and awful. It could be worse, of course, it’s really just a cold.

Having a head cold was not in my plan for today. I am volunteering some of my time… and I am so glad that’s a little later. I take a sip of my insipid, possibly terrible, coffee (is this head cold why it tasted “off” yesterday morning, too?). It was my plan to spend the remainder of my weekend shopping for a car. It’s time. I don’t much feel at all interested in that, at the moment, and I suspect it would be a colossal dick move to go car shopping while contagious. I’m definitely certain it would be grossly inconsiderate to spread this shit around knowing I am ill.

It’s weird to me that many businesses strike a pose of actively discouraging employees from calling out when they are sick, in some cases even penalizing actual sick people for not getting over being sick fast enough. Many do, though, and the effort is leveraged primarily at entry-level workers, and lower paying middle management jobs; humans involved in the day-to-day work of keeping business going. You know, “the working class” folks. I’ve not ever seen anyone in the executive class actively discouraged from being out of the office… at all. Ever. I have reached an understanding that the amount of energy put into “attendance policies” (again, those are rarely applied to senior managers or executives at all) and convincing sick people to show up for work (in spite of potential risk of contagion, or delaying a person’s recovery) says a lot about the high value of their labor – and if those employees cave to that pressure, and work while sick or develop a tolerant acceptance of their exploitation, it says a lot about how poorly they value themselves. There’s definitely profit to be made in human beings undervaluing themselves – they cost so much less! It’s an understanding that, over time, moved me further and further left on the political spectrum as a human being, as a worker, and as a manager. “Who actually benefits from this policy?” became a question I learned to ask – a lot. It is heartbreaking how rarely, in most places, the answer is ever “everyone who works here benefits equally”.

Enough about things to do with working. Bleh. Actually, “bleh” is a good descriptor of where I am with my whole experience, just at the moment. I’m not quite sick enough to give up on everything and just go back to bed (although my coffee is really not the experience I’ve grown to love, and I feel fairly crappy, generally)… and I’m definitely not well enough to pull on my hiking boots and get a couple of miles in before I head to the VA.

…Just thinking about going back to bed, and looking at the clock… I don’t know… bed sounds okay… even if I didn’t sleep… I could just lay there being miserable so gently…

…I can begin again… later…