Friday, January 28, 2011
This is more often than not, a common scene in the kitchen of my apartment. This isn't an actual photo, because my mother would literally take my head off for posting an actual photo, but it's a very close replica to the real thing. As the pile of dishes grow, I feel like I'm in an episode of "Hoarders" walking through an organized (in my mind anyway) cacophony of dishes stacked up on both sides of our U-shaped kitchen, ready to fall causing a terrific crash at the slightest bump. Why do our dishes pile up like this, you ask? Well, although being raised in a household where dishes were not allowed to remain in the kitchen sink over night, I have obviously deviated from my good home training, but not entirely on purpose.
Pain and fatigue are the usual culprits that prevent me from keeping the dishes under better control. After I've expended energy making a meal, I rinse the used dishes and always plan to come back later, after resting, to wash them. "Later" never seems to happen and the pile grows exponentially day by day. I always tell myself, after the pile has been completely conquered with the help of my sister, that I will never let the dishes pile up again and that I will wash them as I use them. Rinse, soak, wash and all in the same day! Yet, I'm always shocked to find an overwhelming pile of dishes stacked to the hilt in what seems like only a couple of days! I mean, I'm no Martha Stewart, so who is cooking 7-course meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner using a crazy amount of dishes? I'm not! Okay, so I'm the only one doing the cooking but I'm shocked everytime I notice that the curse of the pile 'o dishes is back!
So, I've resigned myself to soaking and stacking. I leave the especially cruddy dishes and utensils to "soak" for what I tell myself will only be a day. Then that "day" turns into an indefinite period of time and I find that the most interesting things come to life on those dishes. So evidently, I've become a great soaker and a breeder of moldy goodness. Fuzzy, fluffy bunnies seem to grow from nowhere and their color varies from white to green to black. Isn't creation wonderful? Okay, so the smell isn't all that wonderful (I mean how can something so cute emit an odor so foul?) but once I can smell it, its time to dump the old water and replace it with new.
Are you judging me? I feel like you're judging me! Look, I judge myself pretty hard everytime I find the kitchen in that state yet again. After berating myself with names like "lazy" and "bum", and stringing those two names together and adding a few more adjectives, I remember something. I remember that living with a chronic illness, I have to negotiate the cost (aka energy) that various acts of daily living will take from me and determine what has to be taken care of now and what can wait til later. Usually the dishes can wait til later.
Mom is a Crate and Barrel and Martha Stewart fiend and over the years she has accumulated some serious amounts of dishware so we can go quite a while without running out of plates and bowls to use before things become desperate and unusal (like using a small glass bowl to drink water out of). I bet you more than anything that you're thinking if we had a dishwasher that would solve the problem completely. I'd wholeheartedly agree with you, except that we once lived in an apartment with a dishwasher and still had the very same problem! Crazy, I know. If I could explain the whys to you better without complaining about the complexities of my invisible illness, I would. I live with it and the last thing I want to do is complain about it!
So, in an effort to solve these lapses into hoaderism, I purchase paper products to cut down on the amount of dishes that require washing. The end result, has been a trash can full of paper and plastic and a slight twinge of my conscious that pricks me when I think about the contribution I am making to the local landfill. Now, I'm no tree hugger but I can't help but to think that it's such a waste when our kitchen cabinets are so full of re-washable dishes. So, what do I do? What would you do? I'll tell you what I will ultimately continue to do:
I'll rinse, stack, pile and let it soak!
Monday, January 10, 2011
Friday, January 7, 2011
Sunday, January 2, 2011
That's a spoonies mantra isn't it? If its not sharp-shooting or dull-aching pain, or migraines, or insomnia, its fatigue. And sometimes, for good measure, all of those things at ONCE! As of right now, my pain is minimal, the migraines are in the background, and once the insomnia lifted, the fatigue took up residence.
Strangely enough, after not being able to sleep well for days, I welcomed the fatigue. I was finally able to sleep deeply and for as long as I needed to. Well, after a week or so of that, I feel I've slept enough and would really appreciate it if the fatigue would kindly take its leave, like, NOW!!
MedLine Plus defines fatigue this way:
"Fatigue is different from drowsiness. In general, drowsiness is feeling the need to sleep, while fatigue is a lack of energy and motivation. Drowsiness and apathy (a feeling of indifference or not caring about what happens) can be symptoms that go along with fatigue.
Fatigue can be a normal and important response to physical exertion, emotional stress, boredom, or lack of sleep. However, it can also be a non specific sign of a more serious psychological or physical disorder. When fatigue is not relieved by enough sleep, good nutrition, or a low-stress environment, it should be evaluated by your doctor."
I've been evaluated by a few doctors and the fatigue I suffer with is as a result of the civil war being raged within my members aka auto-immune diseases: Lupus and Fibromyalgia.
In the beginning, I used to say, "I'm just so tired." And people would respond, "I know what you mean, I'm tired too." And that would annoy me because the type of "tired" I was talking about was NOTHING like the type of "tired" they were talking about. I remember what their type of "tired" felt like. Tired, I still worked full time. Tired, I could still straightened up the house. Tired, I would still visit with friends. I still regularly made it to the meetings, conventions, assemblies, and out in the field ministry. A great nap and a re adjustment in my sleeping pattern, relieved that type of "tired". However, what I was talking about left me feeling like a limp rag; where just the mere IDEA of getting up to perform some activity of daily living would involve a massive undertaking. With my kind of "tired", showers weren't had, my face wasn't getting washed, my teeth weren't being brushed and whatever clothes I had on stayed on until I had the energy to change them. So you see, there was a vast difference between my "tired" and theirs.
Then I realized that I couldn't fault others for their response to me, because I wasn't being specific enough. So I now call it what it is, fatigue. For some reason, most people understand that that word is different from your regular, garden variety of tired and I rarely get the response, "Me too" anymore unless that person really does understand what I'm talking about. And even if they don't (I mean how am I to know. Fatigue isn't exclusive to auto-immune disorders; fatigue goes along w/the flu and depression), I simply sympathize with them, because if fatigue is anywhere on their radar, I feel their pain.
Today is a Gift~Live Thankfully
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- ▼ 2011 (19)