I awoke this morning feeling just a little edgy. Michael left at the usual time – about 5:45 am – and I tried to sleep a bit more. I’m sure I could’ve, but I felt ready to get on a more normal schedule. And I was having a little internal debate about how to spend my day.
Last time I was at the doctor, she “prescribed” that I work 12 hours a week from home: 4 hours a day, 3 days a week, no consecutive days. Last week that plan went completely out the window, as I was so dragged-out tired that I only mustered 9.5 hours, and no one day’s work was longer than three hours. This week, however, started according to plan. I actually worked almost five hours yesterday, due to some longer conference calls, and I didn’t feel the crazy fatigue I did last week. So today I had a choice: either put in a couple more hours of work, or actually take the day “off” and focus on catching up the household books, doing dishes, sweeping the floor, getting my PT done, and so on?
This is where I confront my guilt thing, my tendency not to feel like what I’m doing is enough or is good enough. My I-can-keep-my-eyes-open-so-I-should-be-working thing. My I-shouldn’t-be-focusing-on-myself thing. This thing has helped me dig myself into some holes thus far in my life, which I’m finally starting to dig out of. In today’s case, I could’ve been driven by worrying that people at work would think that I wasn’t working hard enough. I could’ve used that worry to make myself do a couple hours of work (which didn’t actually need to be done today) and continue to neglect the housework that I both like to do and want to do. Or I could’ve done the housework but worried all the while that I should be doing office work. Either choice would’ve landed me in my Crabby Pants by afternoon.
So I decided to listen to my doctor! Day OFF from work, day ON for recovery! And a fab day it was.
I turned on some podcasts – yeah, I’m amused by NPR podcasts – and got moving in the kitchen. With my newly-unoccupied right hand, I unloaded the dishwasher, reloaded the dishwasher, handwashed a bunch of dishes, cleared off a bunch of counters, and got my bike water bottles (yep, the ones that were on my bike when I crashed and hadn’t been scrubbed since) to stop smelling like death. Found some lunch, and more significantly, found counter space on which to prepare it!
Then settled into the Lazy Boy to chow and then proceed to bill-paying. I decided some tunes would be good, so I fired up Pandora. Balanced checkbooks and paid bills with the help of the Rolling Stones and Aerosmith, which was another refreshing break from my overachiever, can’t-have-too-much-fun tendencies.
Finally to the pool with Michael, for a terrific workout. This was the first cardio workout that actually felt like a workout. We water ran for 15 minutes, which is fantastic for my hip. Then I tried swimming. My first lap was with a kickboard, and it took me 4 minutes! Ha! But at least I didn’t drift into the lane line like last week. Then tried some laps with a pull buoy; when those went well, I tried swimming like normal. FANTASTIC. I don’t get much power from my legs yet, but at least I can get the motion back. And my endurance is, predictably, low; I could only do 2-3 laps at a time. But it felt GREAT, and after the workout I remembered how it feels to be post-workout hungry! Got fed in time, though. Whew.
Anyhow, today I enjoyed today. I didn’t let worries about what other people think take over; I didn’t let the past or future consume the present. Thanks to Coach Mary for a blog post that shoved my thinking in the right direction this morning. Learning to think like this is every bit as important as re-learning to walk. This is another way I get to grow stronger in the broken places.