Monday, June 7, 2010

Appliance woes, as they relate to lupus, of course

When we moved into our current home almost 5 years ago, we inherited a 10 to 15-year old washer and dryer. They were, by no means, new appliances, but they were Maytag, seemed like good eggs, and I overlooked the fact that they weren't big and bold and beautiful.

However, all of that has changed recently, as I just scheduled an appliance repair man to come out next week and fix, not only the washer, but the dryer, too. In this post, I'd like to focus on the washer, as I can only dwell on our broken down appliances one at a time, for my own sanity.

So this washer, having been a work horse and fairly reliable up to this point, has become terribly inefficient. The problem? The water won't drain during the wash cycle. You run the wash through once, the timer goes off, you open the lid, and the clothes are knee-deep in water. It's as though the washer just skipped the spin cycle. So you run just the spin cycle a second time. Less water, but the clothes are still sopping wet. You run it a third time, and then, and only then, is the water drained enough to swap the clothes over to the dryer. But oh, how annoying it is to have watch over that washer! Not only does it take time to keep running the cycles over and over, it takes supervision. It would be one thing if I could just run the clothes again (not that that would be a great solution), but in this case, I have to hang around, doting over that silly washer for an extra 20-30 minutes. It's the worst use of my time EVER!

And not only does it not rinse, it's just started leaking a bit, squeaks when it spins, and bounces all over the place during the final, final, final rinse cycle. It needs to go - or else I go. Or so I told Johnny. (He would, of course, want me to note that he encouraged me to call the repairman a week earlier. But I was trying to tough it out, you know, just "make do", "suffer silently", "ignore the damage"...which is so like me to just push through. Why do we do that? And for so long? Ugh!)

But now that the repairman has been called (note that it was only after the dryer stopped working that I called), I can rationally expound on the ineffectiveness of forcing and/or expecting the washer to do its job (which is my problem, not the washer's) when it's not working at 100%, or more aptly put, broken.

As I alluded to above, that was me to a "T" when I used to push myself too long or too hard with lupus. I'd force myself to perform, even when I wasn't at my best. It would be the most fruitless effort to call upon myself to execute when I was basically incapable of doing so. And not just when I was feeling sick. It currently happens when I cut into my nap time to work, do errands, or do house stuff, or when I chose to work late into the evening. Whenever I get tired - the exhaustion sets in, I begin to lose focus, have trouble thinking straight, and have a tough time making sense. So how efficient (or effective) am I when I push myself past my prime? Not very! (Note that the washer is definitely past its prime!)

It makes no sense to do that - particularly because the time I'm "gaining" isn't really productive. I'm working at half mast - and it probably takes me an hour to accomplish what I could normally do in 20 minutes.

That said - I'm much better than I used to be at tackling and scheduling my daily tasks and to-do's during my most efficient time of the day, which very clearly does NOT include the hour before my nap time or the last hour of my day. If I'm attempting to accomplish anything that requires any degree of critical thinking or decision-making skill, it's best if I put it off until after my nap or the following morning, when I can efficiently and effectively tackle the job.

So what's the moral of the story? I need to get a new washer (or at least get this one fixed), and I need to respect my nap time, instead of expecting miracles out of both entities - when they're expired, spent, and working beyond their capabilities. It's not productive, it's inefficient, and it's a waste of time to do otherwise, on both accounts.

Thus, it's decided...there will be no more spinning the truth or wringing out an extra ounce of work from either party! (Sorry - I just couldn't help myself!)

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