I consider myself a fairly responsible person. I juggle tasks reasonably and have been a passably acceptable multitasker. However, when routines and unexpected moments burst open like a popped bubble, all bets are off. In fact, in just one such occasion, I almost caught my house on fire.
August was an ugly month. Ugly. My level of stress was nigh well astronomical (but not quite so astronomical as the extraordinary total eclipse). I’ve come home from work more ready to quit than not almost every day, and graduate classes started amid a complete failure of my ability to get documentation to have services for students with disabilities. I’ve had more luck being a professional with a disability than a student with one, so the beginning of classes was inordinately stressful too as I deliberated and met with professors about my concerns for class. Also, the beginning of school when you’re a parent of two teenage foster kiddos is more than a touch nutty. Given my stressors, I’m surprised by how much I managed to accomplish this month. Go me.
When our lives change, even for the better, our stress increases. When you have fibromyalgia, that usually means your pain and your fatigue change… and not for the better. As I wrote about earlier, I’m facing some a proverbial barrel of the gun in terms of changes: I’ve been promoted, and I’m starting a graduate school program. Yeah, I think I’m crazy too.
So, I’m really glad that July is behind me. The month was mostly an awful slog fest and a vacation that really wasn’t one. Heck, I knew I wasn’t going to meet goals my first week in July, so this month’s review is going to be particularly challenging with goals left unmet all over the place. I’m ready for summer to be over and to just hibernate away the winter months. I’m also, however, quite tired, so that may have something to do with the desire to hibernate. Still, maybe this review will show me that I did better than I thought I did!
I have fibromyalgia. Some of my days are good days, and I feel as strong as I ever was, stronger even, in some ways. I can climb all the metaphorical and literal mountains that I used to climb. Other days, I feel so fatigued, it’s as if the weight of all my former aspirations and dreams and losses have manifested into 10-pound weights that are hanging all over my body. I fantasize about lying down on the floor and resting. I never know which day I am going to have, but I have more good days than I used to have.
When my friend asked me if I would be her bridesmaid, I wanted, wanted, wanted to say yes. I wanted to scream yes! I wanted to dance around in the street shouting, “she’s getting married!” because I was that stupidly happy for my friend. She deserves much happiness and much success, so the making-it-official day was definitely something I wanted to help her celebrate. Marriage is about more than the wedding, the ups and downs of a relationship, but the wedding ceremony itself is a time to come together with the people closest to you and celebrate the commitment to those ups and downs with a big hoopla. Except, I have fibromyalgia and a gazillion medical bills, so I couldn’t let the “yes!” escape my lips without considerations. I had to ask questions first. I had to plan for success around my illness; I did not want to let my friend down. I am hopeful that my own preparations and decisions about managing my chronic illness may help someone else think about how to tackle participating in such a significant event in his or her life.
May, much like the preceding months, absolutely has flown by. I loved being able to honor and celebrate my friend’s wedding, and I particularly liked introducing my parents to our foster kiddo. With their distance in South Carolina, she’s the first kiddo that they’ve been able to meet. The garden is coming together nicely, and I can almost imagine how wonderful it will all look in another month when I check in on goal progress again.