Today I took two naps. I would usually feel extremely guilty about this, since even after the accident I’ve felt like my number one goal was to do the “old me” ASAP. My last post shared how my first attempt at diving back into closer (notice how I said “closer”!) to a 25-year old activity level wasn’t working out so well.
Just to recap, within the space of two weeks Ivan had taken me to the Perlman concert, we’d tried go go visit his parents in Concord, we’d watched the cat and the condo while my family were in Europe, I’d gone out with some friends, and I’d still kept up with therapy maintenance and chores at home. Oh, and tried church. I admit that’s not quite up to what you might expect for someone my age, but it’s a whole lot closer than what I’ve attempted so far.
And then I relapsed into the worst seizure frequency since March. Not so good. Since I woke up having seizures one day last week without a light trigger, my doctor decided that fatigue in and of itself was a trigger (we’d just thought that it lowered my resistance to light triggers but wasn’t its own trigger). So, now I’m on an imposed rest streak until we get back to our goal of 1-2 seizures a week.
I hate resting. When I was young, Mom often had to make me lie down and rest when I was sick – especially when violin and school were involved. One time I pushed through soloing with an orchestra and attending the post-concert reception while I was sick…and then was diagnosed with strep throat the next day. I feel like I was born doing things. And I’ve developed this mindset where I have to be doing stuff (usually introverted stuff like reading or writing or music, but still stuff) to be happy. Doing stuff wears out any brain, but now especially mine.
One nap a day has been necessary since I did have two strokes, but two naps a day feels decadent and a waste of time. I mean, I could be hanging with Ivan, reading, playing with Daisy, practicing Spanish. The old me would have been outraged at such a waste of time.
I think God is teaching me two things: 1) is to be kinder to myself and not believe that my worth is solely based on what (or how many whats!) I can produce in a day, and 2) is to be much, much gentler in how I think about other people. I did, and unfortunately do, typically assume other people should be just like me. As in, if I can do this much in a day (especially if the disabled me somehow grinds out this much in a day), so should everyone else. The truth is I don’t know everyone else. I don’t know everything they’re going through right now. I don’t know everything they’ve gone through before. I obviously don’t have a job, and I have no idea what some of those super stressful jobs (or any job with kids!) can take out of a person. I really have no idea.
So if I have to stop and take two naps a day and limit all my other activities to twenty minute chunks, fine. And for everyone else who stops and has “nothing” time occasionally just to take care of yourself, I think that’s fine too.