Sunday, March 1, 2009

Slow dancing in the fast lane...

Catching up...

I've been very tired and recuperating since attending a regular monthly get together with a group of friends last Saturday night (2/21). I overdid it some just going and have been dealing with the 'payback' from pushing myself and using more energy than I really had. The payback this time was fever, a 'heavy' chest (fluid), body aches, and fatigue, etc. for the first 4 days or so, then worse than usual fatigue (a very relative concept) since then. The flu-like symptoms were a sure sign that I did way too much.

It's so tricky because with CFS what is 'too much' changes all the can be hard to gauge at the time that it's happening. I left early after dinner and didn't stay for the usual fun of playing Mexican Train dominoes. I tried not to push myself too hard but it was too much. I knew in advance that just going was probably 'too much' but I did it anyway.

I did the crime and did my time dealing with the payback. Grrrrrrrrr, everything is a trade-off these days. It was nice seeing everyone though and getting out. It was a potluck and the food was incredible...we all ate like pigs! I will do it again this month if I'm at all able.


I've been too tired to do much writing so no blog posts this last week. Most of my writing energy has gone into e-mails and occasional IM's staying in touch with friends. Talking on the phone takes a lot of breath support and with my shortness of breath right now is difficult. So I save most of my telephone 'energy' (ha ha) for talking with my mother as she doesn't have a computer. I started a few blog posts and got too tired to finish them. They will eventually get finished or rewritten and incorporated into other posts.

I'm still learning how to pace myself with writing. I'm learning to brainstorm ideas, jot down my thoughts, write snippets then rest or at least change mental activities, save ALL my writing, use some previously written snippets in what I'm writing or as a springboard, and combine various snippets to put together pieces. I'm also learning to be more patient, be satisfied with less (working on 'less is more' concept), share more of my life, enjoy what I can do, and be less of a perfectionist and less demanding of my writing (and myself).

One discovery I made...if I use Google docs I can save and organize all my materials and easily transfer them to Blogger. I can take previously written segments/snippets/notes, plug them in, move them around, rewrite some, and edit without any problems when I post to Blogger. Using some word processing programs to write in (like Microsoft Word) or store writing and notes results in extra 'junk' that messes things up when you try to transfer your writing to Blogger.


I ordered a new home phone with an answering machine built in and a headset from Amazon. I can't do anything that makes me hold my arm(s) up for long. For some reason holding my arm up is extremely fatiguing. Even something I used to take for granted, like applying mascara, can cause devastating fatigue. Using a headset gets around the problem of holding up my arm(s) and leaves me a little more energy to talk. I need to get a new earpiece for my cellphone now...I've had to stop using it completely. Using it is even worse with holding up my arm because it is so small and has to be held just so to hear and be heard.

Of course Murphy's Law kicked in and something was wrong with the phone or the headset. There was a loud hum when I tried to make calls using the headset. I got in touch with Amazon, explained the problem, and they 'overnighted' a new phone to me. I have Amazon Prime so I don't know if the over-night replacement was their usual operating procedure or because I'm a 'premium' customer. There are some kind of scary things in their return policy (one thing about returning things in a resalable condition...they don't say anything about defective goods or else I missed it...and stuff about shipping charges) so I'm waiting to see what happens.

Murphy was really working overtime so when I received the new phone...guess what? You got it...the same problem. Evidently, the problem was the headset not the phone. (I told Amazon I wasn't sure which was not was I supposed to know? The customer service guy was very nice but as is usual in these cases, there was a bit of a language problem complicating things.).

Later, after discovering it wasn't a problem with the phone after all, I went out and rootled around in our old electronics parts stash and found a ratty old headset and tested it. Sure enough it worked like a charm. So now I have to get back with Amazon and tell them it was the headset and not the phone, work everything out, pack it all up, and ship it back to them. Yikes, I really don't have the energy for all that, but I guess I don't really have much choice! .