Friday, February 13, 2015

Exercising my good lupus decision making skills - by skipping the exercise, et al!

I never regret a good, healthy decision. So when I made three of them in a row earlier this week, I couldn't help but feel proud.

When I woke up on Wednesday morning, I was tired. Like, really tired. I'd been up the night before with Deirdre who had a coughing fit around midnight, and I had trouble falling asleep to begin with. Doing the math, I simply hadn't logged enough hours of shut eye. Thankfully, the girls were both off to school that day, so I knew I had some peace and quiet coming.

But because they were going to school, I'd scheduled every moment of my free morning: I had product shots to edit, blogs to write, calls to make, and prep to do for Bernadette's 1pm ENT appointment. In addition, I wanted to work out, shower, and make lunches for Bernie and myself for the road - all before 11:50am, when I leave to pick up Bernie from school. I knew I was pushing it with all of my tasks, but if I got right to work, at least I'd get through the majority of my list.

But when I got home around 9:15 from dropping Bernie off at school, I still couldn't shake my fatigue. I thought long and hard about my options:

First on my to do list was editing the product shots.
I needed to clean up the background of a few pillbag photos so I could post on Amazon.
But I was really tired.
And when I'm really tired, projects on the computer (like photo editing) take a lot longer than they are supposed to.
Should I waste an hour of time editing under fatigued conditions, only to end up frustrated, unfinished, and still tired?
Or should I put off the editing to take a quick nap? I'd be refreshed, and the editing would take half the time it would otherwise. I'd still have time for a run, and a quick shower.

Good decision #1: Take quick nap.

I switched on the fire place, set my phone alarm for 10am, curled up on the couch with Darwin and snoozed.

Sleep, sleep, sleep.

Alarm goes off at 10 am.

I turn off the alarm, but I'm still tired.

I think, again, about my options.

I still don't feel up to doing the editing, but I could knock out a blog post. That would require getting up off the couch, going upstairs to get my computer, and getting in compose mode.
But when I'm tired, compose mode doesn't come very easily. In fact, when I'm tired, blog posts take...drumroll, please...a lot longer to write then normal.
Maybe I should just skip the post, and lie here a little longer.

What could I do from this couch?

Ahhhh! I have to prep for Bernadette's ENT appointment today!

That would require very little critical thinking or exertion on my part, and I could do it right from the couch.

Good decision #2: Continue relaxing by the fire while prepping for doctor.

I grabbed my phone, set my alarm for 11am (so I could move on to my workout and shower), and did what I had to do: mapped out questions, listened to 20 minutes of Bernie's sleep recordings so I could share bits with the doctor (which I could do with my eyes closed), and sorted out where my notes and videos resided on my phone so I could pull them up at a moment's notice during the appointment. (Yes...for those of you wondering at home...THIS is what I mean by prepping for a doctor's appointment in my book, Despite Lupus. You have to go in prepared. You have to go in with ammo. You have to go in ready to contribute in an efficient and timely manner.)

Relax, Listen. Relax, Listen.

Alarm goes off at 11am.

Hmmm. Still kind of in relax mode. Actually feel like I could almost fall asleep.

I consider my options:

I could hustle up stairs, change into my work out gear, and run on the treadmill.
I could make a mad dash for the shower, get ready in a flurry, leaving my hair wet and throwing on an outfit.
I could slap the lunches together, and be out the door by 11:50am. I'd be a frantic mess, but at least I would have exercised.
But I would still be tired. In fact, I'd be even MORE tired, because it would be an hour later. And I would have to drive 45 minutes with Bernie to the appointment. And then be "on" during the appointment. And then drive home 45 minutes.
And when I'm tired, the LAST thing I want to be doing is driving.
So do I actually skip my run, and sleep a little more? Do I actually choose safety and fall back asleep?

Good Decision #3: Yes! Skip the run. Sleep some more. Ensure your own safety, and the safety of those around you! I set my alarm one last time for 11:25am. I fall right alseep, and have an even better rest than I did earlier.

Sleep, sleep, sleep.

Alarm goes off 11:25am.

I wake up rested. I feel great. I'm ready to rock.

I hop upstairs, shower, dry my hair, and dress, all at a normal pace. I make lunches, I get out the door right on time, pick up Bernie, and off we go to the doctor's appointment. I don't have an ounce of fatigue during the entire appointment, which actually goes an hour longer than I thought it would.

As I'm driving home at 3 o'clock (which I thought would have been 2 o'clock when I scheduled the appt.), I think about how essential my decision making was that morning. Had I not made those good decisions, I would have been a crumpled, exhausted mess by that point. As it was, I was rested, and feeling great. The drive home went smoothly, and I got a mini - nap eventually, once we arrived home.

Almost all to-do's remained on my list that day, and yet it was successful by my standards. My, how far this Type-A lupus lady has come!

3 comments:

Keren O'Brownsville said...

Oh, I love this post! It's only been since Lupus that I've allowed myself to get Nothing done in a day and feel good about it. In fact, I try to allow one day a week in which to do Nothing. Without it, I creak crumble and fall into a new week, burnt out at the beginning and going down from there. My Google calendar now has at least one weekend day that is blocked out, labeled "MUST Rest. Seriously!" Thanks for the companionship.

Sara Gorman said...

I LOVE the idea of setting aside a day of Nothing. Thanks so much sharing - will keep your comments in mind this week!!

Lipstick LupusMommy said...

I can relate to the sleeping in lately. We homeschool and I'm so thankful that we can take breaks, sleep in, and allow for adjustments in our schedule. Who knew how stressful all the doctor appointments could be though? I have a love/hate relationship with them trying to get out the door on time, but you need them to find out what else needs fixed, lol! Thank you for the inspiration!