Sunday, April 28, 2013
6 Month Slump
I have been in a slump.
It started with me catching a cold in October. I had a nasty cold, it didn't matter how much I slept, I was beyond exhausted. I couldn't stay awake for the life of me, even driving the 10 miles to work every day was a little sketchy. I chalked it up to depression, a different kind of depression.. a kind I have not had before. I thought the exhaustion was just depression, even though the depression I had before left me suicidal with no will to live. I had just passed the two year mark, so of course it was depression, why wouldn't it be?
I never really got over that cold. After 2 months of having a never ending sore throat, and sleeping 14 (plus) hours a day, I decided it wasn't just a cold anymore. I went to the doctor and had a full physical. They did full blood work, to check all my vitamin levels, hormones levels, even checked for cancer. When my doctor told me she was going to do a blood panel to test for cancer.. my heart broke all over again. Getting cancer after my husband’s death would be the end. I don’t think I would have the will to go on and fight it. I didn't dare tell my mom about the cancer talk my doctor and I had. I just couldn't do that to my mom.. unless it came back positive. (My mom is now just reading this and learning about this, yes mom.. there was serious talk about cancer. I am sorry I didn't tell you!)
After an anxious wait, my doctor called me with my results. Everything came back normal...
Except I tested positive for mono.
I took my doctors advice, and whenever sleep came a knocking, I slept. I slept non stop. I called into work several times, just to sleep. I wish you could have heard my bosses’ voice when I would call in and say “I’m too tired to work today.” He was always like… “Err.. ok??” He didn't get it, and that is okay.
This was the beginning of this slump. I have been exhausted since then. I still have had a never ending sore throat. But now my blood work shows I have an “old” infection of mono, not an active infection.
The last 6 months have been pure exhaustion. Every day is a struggle. I haven’t had the energy to do the “normal” things in life, such as cleaning or grocery shopping. In fact, it has been so bad, I would rather just not eat then go to the grocery store or fast food joint because going to get food took far too much energy. Energy I couldn't afford to waste.
I took this exhaustion phase and just accepted it. I decided to “sit” with it. Not fight it. Unlike in the past, I have fought the depression, anxiety and exhaustion, until I crumble under the pressure. So I decided to just be with it. Just allow myself to be exhausted. Allow myself to sleep as much as my body tells me to. Allow my house to be a mess. Allow my life to be a mess. All to take care of myself.
I started thinking I would never get out of this exhaustion. I started wondering how I would manage life when I don’t have the energy for any of it.
I grieved a lot during this. Because I refused to push my body past its limits, I sat with it. I sat with the grief. Sat with the mono. I had 6 months of a lot of sleep and time on my hands. I had some really bad days. Days where I was sick of being sick, sick of the exhaustion, and sick of the grief. Days where I couldn't see an end to it all.
Today, a day after the 33rd month anniversary, I realized I have come around a curve. I have more energy. I want to do the things I enjoy again. I want to be out in the sun. I want to be out and meet new people and try new things.
How did this curve happen so slightly, that I didn't notice at first? Why can’t I take a very sharp turn, look back, and think, HA! I passed a turning point!
I am pulling out of my 6 month slump.
Maybe it was mono. Maybe it was depression. Maybe it was grief. Maybe just pure exhaustion from the busy life we live. Maybe a combination of all of this.
Or maybe it was meant to be. Meant to make me sit still. To sit with grief and life. Maybe it was to make me slow down, rest, and do the bare minimum… for once in my life.
One thing I learned out of my 6 month slump is.. just to sit with it. Accept it. It’s okay to dwell in it. It’s okay to have a pity party. It’s okay to have my house a mess. It’s okay to be lazy. It’s okay to sleep all day long.
After all, worse things have happened then dirty dishes. The dishes will still be there tomorrow, but if I don’t take care of myself today, I might not be here tomorrow.
I have realized life is too short to dwell in having a spot less house and an empty soul. I choose to do what makes me happy, and not do the things I am “supposed” to do.
The dishes will still be there tomorrow, they aren't going anywhere. But will I do them? Probably not. My soul needs to be outside, working in my garden, and not dwelling in dirty dishes.