Skip to main content

Check! Check! and Double Check!

 When I set my mind to achieving something, I have almost always succeeded.  At my core, I believe that it is just a matter of knowing what the expectation is and working hard. So it is only natural that I would apply this same philosophy my recovery.
 
Me at home: How can I be this sick after all this bed rest? What is going ON with my breathing and where is this pain coming from? I can't afford to be away from work --there is so much going on and these e-mails just keep coming so it is good I am answering them from home.  The laundry is piling up and there is no milk and geeze the toilet needs a good scrub.  I didn't get the muffins made and I didn't take those items to the donation box and I was going to clean out the fridge and pantry today --OMG I am such a loser! I can't do anything right even when I have all day?  I can't even GET BETTER. I feel like I would rather just pack it all in..what's the use anyway....
 
Expectation of doctor: Go to hospital because nerve pain will not cease after 3 weeks and mental status has deteriorated. CHECK!
Message to myself - I will be fixed!
 
Learned and followed: "Handbook of Expectations for Patients in Adult Mental Health 'Gen B'".  (ie. do not: have pointy things, ropey things or drugs --do: attend and participate in all groups/meals/exercise, take all meds, be considerate of others, see your psychiatrist ever day, etc.) CHECK!
Message to myself - I will be fixed!
 
Attend 8 week adult day treatment program from 9-2 or 3 every day and see therapist once a week and psychiatrist when requested! Participate! Take notes! Learn! CHECK, CHECK, CHECK, CHECK!
Message to myself - Wow I have a lot more issues than I thought ....but I have 8 weeks to get my shit together. Who wouldn't kill for 8 weeks of self-reflection?  Don't waste it! FOCUS!!!  Tick-Tock for goodness sake!!!
 
Attend 8 week aftercare program once a week and see therapist every other week. CHECK! 
Message to myself:  Sheesh really? This once a week thing is really getting in the way of my housecleaning, gardening, knitting, more cleaning, painting, grocery shopping, relaxing, baking, cooking, running errands, checking my e-mail, making lunches---how did I ever have a job and do all this stuff?  I can't have a job and do all this stuff!!! I can barely get all this stuff done as it is???  And I am not really even doing any of it all that well--I mean after all I didn't get the muffins made and I didn't take those items to the donation box and I was going to clean out the fridge and pantry today --OMG I am such a loser! I can't do anything right even when I have all day?  I can't even GET BETTER ---even with all the help I have had I feel like I would rather just pack it all in..what's the use anyway....
 
So here I am.  I have overscheduled my "recovery time" in an attempt to appear: successful (after all you don't want to look like a failure after all that time and help); valuable (my spouse goes to work each day--I "should" be able to handle absolutely everything else --along with new projects without any hiccups); useful (when I was working I had a purpose---what exactly is my purpose now?  what am I supposed to be doing each day? There has to be a "right" answer!
 
And this Monday, when I saw for the first time since November, the psychiatrist who treated me while in hospital five months earlier, I acknowledged my "failure" to be "fixed" between bouts of sobbing and hyperventilating.  Six weeks ago I thought this was going to be an appointment where I set my "back to work" schedule.....
 
I will spend some time trying to understand the high expectations I put on myself and read some from the books on my nightstand.  I still find it very difficult to take in and retain anything I read (including fiction and simple instructions) so it will be slow going. (There it is again, that belief that if I just this is just a matter of applying myself---but I have to apply myself right? I'm not magically going to wake up being able to balance it all?)    
 
Maybe the concept of  balance is the real problem.  Maybe it is like a  juggling act---a small--non-professional juggling act where you only have 2 or 3 balls going...not my usual 12 or 14. 
Is balance realistic today or is it a bygone concept? 
 
 
 
 
 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Shame is A Full-Contact Emotion (Brené Brown)

It is a cool outside this morning and I have on my fluffy red robe as I sit outside and watch the birds flit back and forth from the fence to the feeder----arrogantly tossing aside imperfect sunflower seeds to get to the good ones.

The discarded seeds, some empty, some full, punctuate my deck, waiting for the squirrels, who will later claim this easy buffet.
I am still reading Brené and The Gifts of Imperfection.

Feels a bit like learning a new language ---I see the words---I hear the words---but the meaning is so diffuse...I need to read and reread and sometimes, even read out loud to make the words stick

It is hard work.

And while the smooth cover of her book lies balanced on my palm, seemingly weightless, many of the concepts have a density that knocks me flat on my ass ---like a large medicine ball.
CATCH THIS ONE!Oooooooof!I am down.

Eyes wide, trying to catch my breath, wrestling with the weight of hefty concepts like shame, authenticity, wholeheartedness, courage, compassion, connect…

Taking a Lesson from Work

Maybe it's because I am on this spiritual journey, or maybe it is because I have time to read blogs and cruise the web, but 2014 seems a bit obnoxious so far.  
Really IN YOUR FACE. Ok so it is not quite like this, but...... ....picture in your mind a saloon type town in the old west. 

Got it? 

Ok so now add a slick looking guy standing up on a wooden crate, surrounded by a crowd of people.  Beside the crate is a table, and on it are dozens bottles.
He clears his throat, throws out his arms, and announces:

It's a new year folks! New year.....new YOU! How would you like to tackle your SPENDING/DRINKING/SELFSABOTAGING/PROCRASTINATING/UNDEREDUCATED/OVERACHIEVING/UNORGANIZED/OVERWEIGHT/GREYINGHAIR/DULL SMILE/SMOKING/BOUNDRYSETTING/DEPRESSED/ANXIOUS/EATINGDISORDER/OBSESSING/INTERNET-DEVICE ADDICTION problems....
RIGHT NOW!!!
AND IF NOT, WHY NOT? OMG you think!!! (well OMG probably wasn't around then but...)  

OMG I think I heard a few things in there that I need to fix!!!!  Actually, I KNO…

Getting to Know My Neighbor in Type B

As a self identified "Type A" behavior "enthusiast", getting to know my neighbor in "Type B" might help me get a handle on why I too often feel like I am banging my head against a wall at work.   
But before I get too far, after all, there are a bazillion "self assessment" tests out there from, "What potato chip flavor are you?" to "Which Prince outfit are you?"
In the 1950's, two cardiologists, Friedman and Rosenman used Type A and Type B as a way to describe behavioral responses associated with how male patients with heard conditions responded to stress in their waiting room.   
They observed that some of the men actually wore down the edges of the seats from sitting poised on the edges of the seat and jumping up frequently, (labelled Type A) while others were able to relax in their seats and the wear on the chairs was focused more evenly (labelled Type B).  
They went on to investigate further, testing and proving at that …