No Spoons Today

Started the day with no spoons. I was up most of the night in pain. I woke up very fatigued so decided to take a shower. The shower exhausted me to no end. I just wanted to go back to bed but I so wanted a coffee at Starbucks. I timed the shower and the bus schedule correctly. By the time I was done with my shower and got dressed, the bus was approaching. I got to Starbucks and I didn’t think I was going to have a seat but a lady left just after I ordered my coffee and I swooped in to take her seat. I got the Panama coffee today and it was good. I waited patiently for so long that I got a free drink because the barista forgot my drink after the long line of people. I thought about getting another coffee but I didn’t want to be up all night again. I worked, or tried to, on this paper that is going to be the death of me. I am trying to write this comparison paper and one of the assessments that I am comparing is confusing the hell out of me. I might nix it because it is so complicated. I seriously doubt that this tool will ever be used clinically because of its complication and averages and factors! See, even you are confused as I am writing this…
After racking my brain for an hour, I decided to get some cheeseburgers at McDonalds. And to search for Twinkies. My search didn’t yield any. I hope that I can buy them at Stop and Shop before they sell out. I can’t believe a snack that has been around for more than fifty years is out of business. I still think it’s all because of bad management of funds rather than production. But then, what do I know about the economy? Ziltch!

I have been listening to Taylor Swift for the past hour because Voldemort made a reference to her and Snape. He posted a pic of her in the “Story of Us” and it was pretty funny. He called the post Haylor. I am still cracking up over it. I know he has been the center of my delusions but he is slowly fading, even with the text tweeting. I just find some of it hilarious. Course the text about robbing Twihards houses was a little hard for me but some will find it funny. I seriously thought of just robbing my sister’s house because she was going to the movies. Her cookies would be mine for me to take, hehehe and Halloween candy! LOL I think the vicoden is making me feel goofy right now. I’m still in mega pain but as I tell everyone, if my sense of humor goes, commit me because something serious is wrong with me.

OSU is tied right now. I couldn’t sit watching the game because my ankle pain flared up. I am glad because I would have been swearing at the TV. I have planted seeds to my sisters that I want an OSU and NE hoodies for Christmas. I hope I get them, but if not I will just have to get them myself! I had my cousin get me a Georgetown hoodie. Love it so much. I am a big college football fan. My interest stems from having to watch it every Sat for two and a half months while I was inpatient for depression. That was eighteen years ago. I did not want to make it to see my nineteenth birthday and was determined not to But my plans were foiled after I overdosed. That landed me in the hospital from the beginning of November to the middle of January. I never have spent the holidays in the hospital before. Not a pleasant experience, especially being on a psychiatric unit. But once my birthday had passed, things got easier. I wanted to live and go to college. I applied and got into a medical assisting program. Course today I wish I had decided to go to a university rather than a two year school, but live and learn I guess. I am still only 9 courses short of my bachelor’s degree.

Out of Spoons

“I asked her to list off the tasks of her day, including the most simple. As, she rattled off daily chores, or just fun things to do; I explained how each one would cost her a spoon. When she jumped right into getting ready for work as her first task of the morning, I cut her off and took away a spoon. I practically jumped down her throat. I said ” No! You don’t just get up. You have to crack open your eyes, and then realize you are late. You didn’t sleep well the night before. You have to crawl out of bed, and then you have to make your self something to eat before you can do anything else, because if you don’t, you can’t take your medicine, and if you don’t take your medicine you might as well give up all your spoons for today and tomorrow too.” I quickly took away a spoon and she realized she hasn’t even gotten dressed yet. Showering cost her spoon, just for washing her hair and shaving her legs. Reaching high and low that early in the morning could actually cost more than one spoon, but I figured I would give her a break; I didn’t want to scare her right away. Getting dressed was worth another spoon. I stopped her and broke down every task to show her how every little detail needs to be thought about. You cannot simply just throw clothes on when you are sick. I explained that I have to see what clothes I can physically put on, if my hands hurt that day buttons are out of the question. If I have bruises that day, I need to wear long sleeves, and if I have a fever I need a sweater to stay warm and so on. If my hair is falling out I need to spend more time to look presentable, and then you need to factor in another 5 minutes for feeling badly that it took you 2 hours to do all this.”
This paragraph is taken from
I wanted to best demonstrate the issue of the spoon theory. Her friend started out with 12 spoons, much like I did today. And before she even took a shower she was down to 3 spoons.
I decided to change my bedding today and it took all the energy I had to do this. My depression, pain, and the weather has kept me inside the past few days. I was tired of sleeping in sheets that haven’t been changed in months. So I cleared off what was on my bed and slowly took the blankets off, then the sheets and pillow cases. There was 5 spoons in this effort alone and I still haven’t gotten through the day yet or put the clean sheets on my bed. After I struggled with my full sized mattress, I just laid on top of the bed and realized I had to get up again to get my laptop which was on my desk. Another spoon. I was mentally and physically exhausted and I hadn’t done anything but change my sheets. I had to rest. It sucks having pain and exhaustion all the time. I still hadn’t brushed my teeth or made myself something to eat and I was starving. I decided to order pizza and wings. I checked email and rested while the order came. After the food came, I really have no idea where time went. I know I saw my niece, ate, and what happened after that I guess no one will know. I don’t know if I watched TV or played more on the computer. To really put myself back some spoons, I decided to brush my teeth and take a shower. Now I am all out of spoons for the night and I still have not taken my night meds or emailed my doctor. My ankle is throbbing from standing in the shower for the ten minutes it takes for me to wash up. Ten minutes of agony. Another five minutes to brush my teeth and then I am out of the shower. I’m now up in my room under my clean sheets writing this blog and feeling like I am going to pass out. I didn’t do too much today. But it was a lot. Tomorrow I probably am going to pay for it like I usually do. Hopefully I will start off with at least 10 spoons for the day.

Spoon Theory Explained

I had someone in my support group share  Christine Miserandino’s story of her “Spoon Theory”( and I have then passed on this theory to my countless friends and support groups to pass on the message, “but you don’t look sick”. I have shared this with my therapist and for the past three years, she has given me a starbucks mug filled with spoons because she knows there are days that I do not have enough.

The story that Christine portrays is simple. Every time you do a task that a healthy person that does not suffer from chronic pain or major illness, such as arthritis or mental illness, such as depression, a spoon is taken away. You are given 10 spoons I believe. So taking a shower, lose a spoon, getting dressed, lose a spoon, etc until by the time you have done your daily living activities, you should have a spoon or two left, sometimes not if you are in pain.  For me, just waking up requires a spoon. I wake up most mornings and the first thought I have is to kill myself. The next thing I do is I have to stand and then go down the stairs to the bathroom. These days this would require 2 spoons as just standing causes me pain. I often have no choice but to bear it and go down the flight of stairs to the bathroom to do my bodily functional duties. So this requires another spoon. Going back up the stairs to my room requires another spoon. So before I have even brushed my teeth, made breakfast, or showered/dressed for the day, I have used three spoons. I think you know where this is going. By the time I have my sneakers on and am ready to leave the house, I barely have any spoons left and you cannot borrow anymore for the day.

My days are mostly grin and bare it. I am currently out of work so that takes the trouble out of getting dressed out most days I do not leave the house unless I am really in the mood for a coffee at my Starbucks.  But even on the days I am just lying in the house I am bored and like I have said, even before I get back to my room after going to the bathroom, I am already 3 spoons down for the day.  Getting dressed and deciding what to wear takes extra effort. What normally took me 10 mins now takes me 20 mins to do. Twenty minutes to decide what to wear when looking at a pile of clothes. All I need to do is pick one pair of shorts or jeans and put them on but that decision is agonizing.  After choosing which one I will wear, I then struggle to put them on. I think that is the reason why it is so difficult to decide because some jeans are easier than others to put on and others you just have to struggle with but when you have a foot that doesn’t have normal range of motion, you are often balancing on your good foot for a while struggling to place the bad foot into the damn pant leg. While this might be seen as funny it is not. The potential for a fall is great and that would not be funny. I am glad I only have two pairs of sneakers to wear, those for my brace and those without.  The pair without I sometimes have to give my ankle a rest as the brace irritates me and walking consecutive days can lead to ulcers or other irritations on my already numb sore ankle.

So now I am dressed and all I want to do is go back to bed but I want my coffee so it’s off to the bus stop. I make sure I have my phone, headphones, watch, journal, pen, and keys which makes up another spoon for remembering all this because if I forget, it is multiple trips up and downstairs until I have these four items.  Walking to the bus stop is another spoon. Waiting doesn’t really count as I can usually sit and wait as there is a bench there or stairs on the neighboring house I can sit at. Provided the bus isn’t late, the latest I am waiting is twenty minutes as I usually get there early to make sure I don’t miss the bus should it leave early or be on time.  I’m usually listening to my music, what ever I am in the mood to listen to which is usually country, unless I need something a little bit with an edge, then it is rock.

When I arrive at my destination, another spoon is taken as I need to walk to my coffee house. By this time I am really tired and need a nap but you have coffee to wake you up so I go. If I am really restless, I go back to the bus stop to go home. I might go to CVS to get something like powerade or something to eat. If I’m not restless, I will stay while I drink my coffee and write in my journal or write something about how my day is going so far. If it has been more than a few days I try to give a recap of my activities so that I know what transpired.

By the time I am on my way back to the bus stop, my ankle is usually really hurting by now. If I have a pain pill I usually take it but most often I forget to bring it with me and have to wait till I get home to take it. Another spoon. Then it’s the walk home and by the time I reach my door, I am beyond tired and need a nap and meds. Yet I haven’t done anything except get a cup of coffee. This is what I go through on a daily basis. This is what my life has come down to, to use my energy to get a cup of coffee or stay home and do nothing but play my facebook games and maybe write something in my journal. I keep two. I don’t know why I do. One stays in my room and the other travels with me to the places I go. I used to write all the time but now my writing is limited by how much energy I can put into it. And by the time I am back up in my room, I think I am in the minus category of spoons…