Monthly Archives: September 2016

Falling – whoopsie workstyle

At a new job orientation (consulting work), I fell. Twice. In front of colleagues. And I don’t mean, oops I stumbled. Oh no, I mean flat out, splay this gorgeous body all across the immediate real estate, duck and roll fall.

This is an issue not specific to lupus or fibro or sjogrens or any specific disease process. I fall. It’s part balance, part klutz, part neuropathy. Funny enough, wearing high heels rather than flats actually help (in flats, I tend to not pick up the front of  my feet and catch them on protrusions).

How do you handle such situations?  Depends on the injury and the surroundings. If I break something…like an ankle, leg, knee, hip – not likely getting back up soon. If I break a wrist, elbow, arm – getting up is not graceful, but generally doable. Not sure about a collarbone or shoulder, but I’m sure I’ll find out at some point. Concussion – that depends on whether it is accompanied by a loss of consciousness.

But it is embarrassing. If in front of strangers – yeah, well. Hopefully, I can walk away and never see them again – and pray that I did not land in water, muck, in front of a car – you know. Keep it simple.

In front of friends, colleagues, customers, business acquaintances – what can you do? It happened. And they always want to know 1) am I okay and 2) was I dizzy, twist an ankle – looking for an explanation of this stellar event. My explanation is “it’s just  me.” and hope that it is a non-injury vs. anything more severe.

This is merely a part of my life. This is what I do. I’m healthy, physically fit, loving, intelligent, and a garden-variety klutz. I hope and pray that it doesn’t impact my professional standing (haha – see what I did there?), but there is always the possibility that someone gains a bad opinion of me. If nothing else, I am memorable, but I’ve long since owned that phenomena.

My big issue is do I get an assistance dog? One for stability and balance. It is a visible sign of being disabled and I have avoided that for a while, other than when I use a wheelchair to enjoy amusement parks and such  (I will sacrifice pride there). But as a professional? Guess I’m getting closer and closer to making a real decision.

The not so fun side of Spooning

my-spoonsA good friend just called (more like the sister I wish I had) and said “Now, I get it. Spoons.” Previously, I had explained to her the theory of spoons – and the need for people with chronic conditions to measure out energy.

She admitted she understood philosophically, but now undergoing a chronic condition, one she is not prepared how to manage and is learning how to restructure her life to incorporate this element….now she gets it.

And I could certainly relate with an example from my own life. Feeling like shit – (let’s be honest, it’s really the best word) – means feeling bad. Not just “oh, I hurt” bad, but “everything in me just refuses to function like humans are meant to function: physically, mentally, emotionally, down to the cells of my heart and the marrow of my bones” bad.

She and I also discussed that this includes the intolerance for being teased. Yes, we know the person loves us. We know they are teasing. But cannot they see that not only do we feel bad, we feel bad about feeling bad and teasing – no matter how good-natured – just makes us feel worse, which we feel worse about and the whole thing just cascades into a pit of horror from there.

But why should we feel guilty about it? We’re the ones who feel bad. However, along with great pain comes great empathy if not great tolerance. We hate that we feel bad and we hate that it impacts our interactions, so we try to bend over backwards to accept that the fault obviously lies with us, because surely our loved ones would not intend to hurt us therefore obviously they don’t understand that they do. Thus, we either martyr along or put on the emotional gloves and go to our respective corners – which also takes energy.

So we choose between the energy to try to get others to understand why we’re in a bad mood and what would help us or hinder us (cause surely they’d want to know) or we put our energy into looking/sounding like a “normal” person or we simply save our energy and not care about any of it (which actually also takes energy, because the emotions naturally want to respond and when this raw and injured, they want to respond really strong).

Or we blog about it.                                           That took a couple of spoons.



- How much do you know?

at the Heart of Privacy

K Royal (@heartofprivacy)