It seems to be that since the beginning of my life with me/cfs, almost six years ago now, I have made a blog post at the end of each year, as a way of reflection. I don’t think I have a long post in me for 2021, as it was mostly, mercifully, uneventful. My life is mostly what I do on a day to day basis to manage my illness, which I wrote about in this rather long post a few weeks ago.
Facebook popped up a memory in late November, which lent me to reflect on this post I wrote, five years previous, when I’d only been sick for 8 months and was struggling to adjust to the comparative loneliness and boredom of my new, chronically ill, mostly housebound life. (BTW: Only 8 months, haha, who gets sick for a whole 8 months, let alone 5 years and 8 months and counting!?! Anyhow…..). The first year of my illness, which, although I could do more than I can now, and I had more realistic hope of getting better, was probably the worst mentally and emotionally. Plus I hadn’t yet practically arranged my life to be able to live well with at least 95% reduced physical ability, and nor had I learned to recognize the very subtle signals in my body when I reach the edges of my safe-energy-envelope (illustrated in this post) and to pace myself as much as I needed. But since that first year of what was literally, a horrible crash course in me/cfs, I’ve had a softer relationship with emotions like lonely and bored. I had another realization earlier this year that I not only must I accept and not fight these emotions, but I actually need them. Or at least, I need an uneventful life, with plenty of alone time. My body can’t handle much else without getting sicker. Therefore I grateful for a mostly uneventful 2021.
As per custom, here is my yearly steps graph, which happens to correlate pretty well with how well I am feeling, and also 25 nice things that happened, because I don't think you can go wrong with a gratitude practice.
STEPS per day GRAPH
*See notes on how I made this graph at the end of this post
Thank you to all the friends who drove me to, carried the heavy stuff, or otherwise facilitated the out-of-town adventures: Millie, Garth, Kayla, Matty, Lizzie, Yanti, Joy, Gaby, Qug, Sam, Maya, my parents, and my housemates for watering my extensive plant collection when I was away.
It was a pretty reasonable 2021, and I’m also hoping for a mostly boring, but reasonable 2022 too :)
.............................................................................................................................................................EXTRA SECTION FOR THE GRAPH NERDS
*This graph is the 2-week running average of my total number of steps per day, as measured by a wrist band. It doesn't measure the incline of the steps, or my total energy expenditure, or any other exertion, like whether I do purely restorative yoga or try a few very minor strength exercises, whether I go in the water for a snorkle, or if I struggle to take the lid off a jar, or how much social energy I expend, so its not perfect. On the days where I was staying away from my on-a-steep-hill-house, at a flat place (especially when camping with the toilet a far walk away), I have decreased the amount of steps by half. However despite its imperfections, the steps graph is probably the best visual depiction I have of how well I am feeling. Below is a graph of the raw data of the steps just this year. All the spikes are where I was staying somewhere flat away from home for a few days.
Also, for graph-lovers (like me), here is a bonus "number of days I went for a swim" graph, since records started when I started keeping a 10-year diary in 2013.
Ok, bye for now :)