One of my least favorite things about chronic health problems is the unpredictability. There a few reliable factors: if I stop taking certain supplements or medications I will feel significantly worse, if I have something going on every single day/evening for more than a week or so (without significant rest time as well) I WILL get sick, and if I’m around mold for very long at all I’ll feel crummy.
You might notice that all of these involve feeling worse. There’s nothing I can really do to guarantee a good day, though I do have a few tricks that usually work IF I guess right what’s flaring up to make me feel bad at the moment: activated charcoal and epsom salt baths for mold exposure or herxing/detox symptoms, oregano oil for Lyme flare ups, protein and healthy carbs for blood sugar fluctuations.
I’m getting familiar enough with the pitfalls and health boosters that I have a lot of tolerably good days now, and sometimes a string of really good days where I breeze through my normal chores and have energy left over for the projects I rarely get to. I really like those days, and try not to ruin them by wondering how long the energy will last, and whether I should start planning to work on bigger projects.
Then there are days like today where my body suddenly and inexplicably decides that being awake is overrated, and after getting up and eating breakfast on relatively normal schedule I get nothing else done except several hours of naps until mid afternoon. I’m pretty sure I could have napped again after I ate something resembling lunch. (Okay, it wasn’t lunch, it was unsweetened hot chocolate. Call it a gut feeling that I needed nutrients, but that my body didn’t want to digest solid food.)
Sometimes I wonder if I would have gotten better faster if I’d slept more during the worst days of fatigue. Of course, it’s easy to forget how hard it was to sleep during those days–just being exhausted and needing sleep didn’t always mean it was possible. But I do know I pushed too hard and didn’t rest enough in general.
It’s easier to let myself take rest days now, when I have routines that I keep up with most days, and I know that all the important chores have been done recently, and can be caught up on again on a good day. I don’t know for sure when the next good energy day will come along, but it’s nice to be able to expect that it will be sooner rather than later.
Getting better at being tired was never one of my life goals, but weirdly, it is one of the more useful things I’ve achieved in the last decade or so. Life skills, y’all. Maybe in another decade I’ll figure out how to be confident about backing out of parking spaces.