Monday, July 28, 2014

pooptasia or what it takes to keep me from being a brave little soldier

no pretty way to say this. I've been shitting my brains out for the last 48+ hours.

Yesterday I lay in bed the entire day sipping drinks intended to keep my hydrated and immediately losing anything that had more substance than an ice cube. The house was hot. While we have good insulation, fans etc, heat has a way of accumulating in our little home when the temperatures are over 90. Miss Keri went out on a mission of mercy to find a small AC unit so we could both sleep better and also to keep me from losing even more fluids from sweating.

I felt really guilty. The afternoon was really hot and Miss Keri is so sensitive to heat she usually ends up sick herself if she is out too much. Meanwhile this is the first Sunday since my brother's passing that Mom has been alone--we usually all got together on Sunday to have lunch and visit. Steve called it his favorite part of the week. Mom and I planned a little drive out to the ocean to cool off and to take a little sting out of what the day meant. Instead I was flat on my back only stirring to dash to the bathroom and Mom stayed home instead--no lunch and no break from her day to day.

I didn't have much mental or emotional bandwidth yesterday so my guilt is here with me today--guilt that I wasn't there for my Mom and my parter was out in the sweltering heat doing work to make me comfortable.

Here is the stupid thing. Keri showed up fresh faced and triumphant with lime popsicles, really fluffy TP and a giant fan that worked great to cool our room off. She nimbly assembled the fan while I sat immobile in a chair by the window with a popsicle. I couldn't move so I couldn't help. She was ok.

Mom was ok too. The world didn't collapse.

And honestly, I've been dead tired. I've been aggressively going for "normalcy"-- keeping my grief in a little box and going on with life. I managing most things well but my paper thin qualities show up in the damndest places. Such as...

1. The dog has learned to remove his diaper. Beside leaving a puddle the size of a small inland sea he also lifted his leg on the freshly laundered comforter. This is a particular issue because

2. The dryer needs to run 3-4 times to dry a load which means

3. We need to buy a new dryer. Like now.

4. The crematorium called and said I could "pick up everything" (everything????)

5. And then planning the scattering of the ashes.

6. And dealing with people...the adage that you can always trust people to act like themselves is totally true.

7. And the world isn't keyed into the fact that you aren't running on all cylinders and wonder what's up just because they don't know or don't know what to say or do. You try to be gracious, make sure people are comfortable, not make waves, and above all care for their feelings...because that's what you do!

Dead tired + normalcy act = physical crash

See, cause and effect.

So, I'm here at home near the toilet. The world is turning. The lesson I still haven't quite learned is how little my world runs like a train on schedule. Even eating well, trying to get my sleep in, trying to do less...well, even doing these righteous and sane things, my life is imperfect and my normalcy is far more tenuous than I care to acknowledge.

I can't fix everything with a perfect plan.

If I were going to have one big lesson from pooptasia it would be to remember how messy life is in general for everyone. I have hang ups and judgements about what my life is supposed to look like and how I'm supposed to "be" for the world. In the spectrum of normalcy, I see quite clearly my view of what "should" be in my life is a very narrow band. Being more gracious with myself would be a good starting point. If I were a guest walking into the home of my real life, would I be so unkind as I am sitting in the middle of it? Would I think the things I do or would I cut me some slack?

I don't know that I could have avoided dancing the "pooptasia ballet". My sense is that I could have done things differently including letting some other folks step in to do things--especially the items I think I "have to do".

In the meantime I just got a call from my Mom asking me if I need to have some things picked up at the store. I already have everything but it was nice to know she wanted to take care of me too. Maybe I should let her.


  1. Honestly -- as always, the things you don't have control over are the absolute hardest. ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY ARE YOUR BOWELS. Dagnabbit.

    I suspect both you and your mom are aching to take care of each other, and struggle with guilt that you aren't Superwomen but instead simply ("SIMPLY"? it's never simple and it is rare) super women. It's okay to lean back a little. It might help your mom feel better. And I really hope you get physically better very soon, because I can only imagine how overwhelming all of this is, even for someone as amazing and strong as you. *big love*

    1. Dear Valerie, this little episode has taught me a whole lot of compassion for people who live with IBS or other chronic inflammation--the importance of poofy soft toilet paper cannot be overstressed. It really has been hard to ask for help during this time. Not knowing what else to do I just wanted to "get back to it". And then crash and burn. Another dumb thing is that my boss offered me "get out of jail" days to just go cool my heels with Keri--you know, a mini vacation? NOPE! I thought it would be FAR BETTER to come down with a virus that literally kept me from doing stuff. (but I have my lap top...heh heh heh). Thank you for keeping an eye on me through the webs. It means so much to me.