Running Tired

I am tired.

All.the.time.

And probably will be the rest of my life.

So I need to just fucking deal with it.

(Sorry if language offends you. I try to minimize it. But it’s my blog.)

I’ve been talking with my husband about my lack of…doing….anything. Anything at all.

I feel purposeless. And it’s because I’m doing nothing. Or at least, nothing I can really be proud of. I’m not bringing in much money at all. I’m not a mom. I’m not being a good homekeeper. Those are about the three ways a woman can contribute to a family that I see. I feel like I’m not earning my keep (in addition to a bunch of other feelings).

I quit my job a few months ago. I did it so I could get healthy and be happier. Part of the deal was I’d keep working a little to bring in some money, and that I’d clean the house better.

I’ve more or less kept up with the first part of that deal. But the second part? Not so much.

I just don’t care. It’s always dirty. Before long I’ll have kids, and it’ll be always dirty again, because they’ll be making a mess of everything! If I clean, it just gets dirty again the next day. Or week. Or hour. Why bother?

It’s like making the bed. When I got married, I really wanted to keep our bed  made. It just felt good to me to have it made, and I loved coming back to it each night. But we have a giant king bed that is a pain to walk around and make alone. And I was trying to get out the door to work. And hubby was still in the bed when I left half the time. So I just gave up on it. Why keep doing it? It’s not worth the time and energy when it’s just gonna get unmade 14 hours later. So I stopped making it. And I stopped caring.

I think the stopping-caring has spread. It’s just not worth the energy to clean the house, until it gets really bad. So I don’t do it.

And yes, I’ve heard the “if you clean every day, it’s like no work at all!” Bullshit. It’s still work. It’s just work every effing day! And wiping out your sink when it’s clean does not take much less time than wiping out your sink when it’s dirty. Etc. So don’t try that with me.

Anyway.

It was part of the deal that I’d clean more. And…I haven’t. I feel like I’m still busy all the time, and just grabbing relaxation where I can find it…….but then I also feel like I’m getting nothing done.

I quit my job. I should have lots more time on my hands. So why don’t I spend a small portion of that time cleaning?

I think it’s like a time from my school, in reverse.

It was my sophomore year. I had a big, giant sophomore engineering design project due in a few days. I was in the computer lab, stressing about how on earth I would be able to get it done. Finish my presentation and my report. Do all my other homework. I felt like there was no way I could get it all done. I was worrying I’d have to pull an all-nighter.

Then I got a call that my hubby (then boyfriend) was in the ER, because he’d vomited up blood and had major abdominal pain all day.

Suddenly, the homework was nothing.

I spent the next couple days at the hospital, waiting with him for a diagnosis, running home during his emergency apendectomy to finish my report/presentation in 20 minutes, grab a change of clothes and toothbrush and hitching a ride back to the hospital (no car, you see, travel was not easy), and waiting with him while he recovered. I got a ride back to school in time to give my presentation, and promptly left to return to the hospital to accompany him when he was discharged.

And it all turned out fine. I got a good enough grade. The world did not end.

A few days previous, I’d been wondering how on earth I would ever finish all I had to do, thinking I’d be pulling an all-nighter. Then something came up, and all my time disappeared. And somehow, it all still got done, and done well enough.

I’m living that in reverse, now. Working at my old job, for me, was like going through my insane school schedule with my hubby in the hospital. I didn’t have enough time for anything but that one main thing, and kind of crammed in everything else on the side.

Then I left my job, and it was life as if my hubby wasn’t in the hospital. But I still have my “insane school schedule,” which keeps me feeling busy and wondering how I can get it all done, and if I’ll have to pull an all-nighter to keep up.

In short, I left my job. So I have more time. But that doesn’t mean that life is now easy and full of time. It just means I’m out of minimum-necessary-for-survival-and-not-totally-screwing-my-future mode. I’m still in that place where I don’t know how I’ll get it all done. I just have a lot more time to feel that way.

But I feel awful for that! Because I DO have more time! So why can’t I get it done?

In part it may be that I don’t have enough spoons. But in part, it may just be that I’m lazy.

I mean, the biggest thorn in our side is the lack of housework getting done. It still looks bad around here. I’m getting better. I recently spent an hour scrubbing out our shower, with a brush, on my hands and knees. Thanks to my roomba, the floor is regularly vacuumed. But it’s still bad.

As I said above, I don’t like doing housework. If it was bothering me more, I’m sure I’d be more likely to do it. But, partly as a survival mechanism, I stopped caring.

And that’s the kicker.

How do I separate the chronic fatigue from the plain-ol’ not wanting to?

How can I tell if it’s a lack of spoons, or a still-crazy “school schedule,” or simple irresponsibility?

The former is a valid excuse. The latter is no excuse.

How the hell do I tell? What is fair to ask of myself? How hard should I be pushing?

I hate invisible illnesses. Give me a broken leg any day.

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1 Comment

Filed under Invisible Illnesses, Life

One response to “Running Tired

  1. Stephanie

    I just read that spoons article. Great insight. Sorry you are struggling with it. I am tired enough as it is, I can’t imagine feeling even more tired. I know that isn’t very comforting, but still. :) I’m glad you are doing what you need to for yourself!

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