Revitalized Spirit: May in Retrospect

Though I am still quite ill, I am beginning to feel like myself again. I have been intentionally carving out space for my soul to expand. I am less worried about complex meals and clean laundry and more focus on making time for a good book and a warm bath. I’ve become very accustomed to saying “no” to everyone else, but now in the last month I’ve started doing the same with my boyfriend. If I don’t feel like cooking dinner, running errands or going on a walk, I have no problem saying, “I don’t want to push myself.” Where I am in life at this moment, I have limitations; acceptance is challenging, but I’m getting there.

May Wins

  • Have replaced about half of my meditation time with reading, whether spiritual, scientific or fiction, as it feels like what I need right now
  • In doing so, I read three books: The Atomic Weight of Love, Little Fires Everywhere and The River of Consciousness
  • Posted 16 blog posts on this little corner of the internet
  • Have been on several two-mile walks around the local park with my boyfriend, about once per week
  • I’ve finally accepted that I need 14-16 hours of sleep to function decently, so I’ve been building my schedule around my sleep needs; this shift was catalyzed by an amazing interview with Dr. Matthew Walker, author of Why We Sleep, on the Found My Fitness Podcast
  • At my job, we have a peer-to-peer acknowledgement program and I received praise twice within the last month. While there’s no “reward” aside from the acknowledgement, it means a lot to me because it’s been a struggle to push through the fatigue and do good work. I’m proud of myself.
  • I’ve worked with a few great and several not-to-great doctors. They’ve been retesting ongoing abnormalities in my labs and scans (pituitary MRI, muscle biopsy, dozens of vials of lab work ups)
  • My neurologist officially diagnosed me with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and HPA-axis dysfunction; while this sounds bad, it’s a lot easier to face a nebulous illness when it has a label (he highly suspects a few other conditions, so I have more lab work, scans and a biopsy scheduled to confirm or rule out
  • My boyfriend has been reaching out his friends in Seattle and making plans to meet up, which I’m extremely excited about
  • My boyfriend has been in the hospital for about a week and, though tired, I’ve been supplying him with good food (apparently the hospital thinks beef wellington is vegetarian?!) and company, and seeing him smile when he sees me is the best feeling in the world
  • My boyfriend and I have been putting any $5 bills we acquire into a jar have already accumulated $970, which is going towards ten days in the Pacific Northwest this summer
  • The stock market was not very forgiving, with an over 2% loss. But, hey, dollar-cost averaging means that I also bought low. Beside, I’m still young and I’m playing the long game. Though my net worth dropped by nearly $1,500 in May (to $66,584), my cash assets are up over $500.
  • I saw Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal for the first time, which was one of my boyfriend’s favorite childhood movies
  • The three adult ground squirrels living outside had twelve babies and I’ve loved watching them stumble around, exploring their new world

9 thoughts on “Revitalized Spirit: May in Retrospect

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    1. Thankfully, my commute is just seven minutes each way and I’m allowed to work through lunch. 😉 While I’m not a fan of sleeping away two-thirds of the day, my new job allows me to do so pretty easily when my body needs it.

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      1. Yes, so true! Commuting is truly the worst. Up until seven months ago, I was commuting 50 mins each way and forced to take an hours of lunch. I took a decent pay cut, but those extra eight hours a week are completely worth it! 🙂

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  1. I like your win list. When I was diagnosed with CFS I started a list of ‘things I achieved since getting CFS’ for big wins. It was slow going at first, but there’s quite a few things on it now and it’s nice to look back at from time to time. It’s easy to forget achievements.

    I’d say welcome to the CFS club, only I’ve very late to this post and I read the one about the IUD just a few minutes (hours?) ago, and hopefully that’s the solution and you’re not one of us after all.

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    1. That “things I achieved” list sounds like a great tool for self-acknowledgment. It’s a hard transition from Super Achiever to Accomplishing Practically Nothing, and I’m also finding that those little pats on the back add up.

      I’m hoping things get better quickly, thought a significant amount of damage has already been done to my endocrine, reproductive and parasympathetic nervous systems (hopefully not permanent). Since my doctors now have tangible numbers regarding my hormone imbalances and heavy metal burden, maybe a few small tweaks and some time will make all the difference. ❤

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