So in my newly clean yet lupus tinted world I am rediscovering my love of creating. I love to draw, doodle, write, paint, sew, knit and crochet. Whether it is just making scarves for everyone I know or painting 4×4″ canvases or just journaling, I love it and now I have my lupus card to play so I can stay home more often and do these things and not be called anti social.
I thought about what I just wrote, “lupus card.” It struck me for a moment that it was in bad taste, but then I realized that it’s not at all. You see, I am a people pleaser to the core. I am compassionate, caring, generous and often altruistic. I might sound like I am bragging, but really I’m not, because these are not assets, they are character defects. I am nice and accomodating to a fault. Through working 12 steps I am learning to not be a pushover and to speak up for myself and to not give in when I really, truly and honestly, legitimately and often obviously am not up to doing so. I am learning to say “no” and to allow that to be a complete sentence that does not require an explanation. But if you press for an explanation, I will pull out my credentials, a.k.a. my Lupus Card.
I have to remember how many spoons I have at any given point in the day (look up ‘spoon theory’ if this makes you scratch your head). I have to remember, “oh wait, I have lupus. I’m fucking tired and I don’t have to do this if I’m not feeling up to it” (unless I’m getting paid, then I kind of have to). I am also learning how to ask for help with things. When I first got clean, I learned to ask for help with the bigger things, things like financial help, advice on big decisions, all the fun grown-up stuff. Since I found out about the lupus and the limited supply of energy, strength and sporadic fuzziness of thought that comes with it, I have had to humble myself and ask for help with the little things, like fixing a cup of tea, or running an errand I don’t have the energy for, or running a bath, or doing the dishes. It sucks. I hate it. I feel like I am being lazy and I feel like an asshole. Although I confess there are fleeting moments when it’s just so nice and I can exhale in restful comfort as I let someone else take care of things, when I just let it go.
Im just glad that with all of this learning, I am getting plenty of time to hone my old lady skills with yarn. My husband makes fun of me and says I’m trying to be old-ladyish with all the cats and crocheting that goes on in this house. I guess I need to start writing him five dollar checks for his birthday. Just over the past two weeks I’ve made a scarf for myself, my husband, my mom, my sister, my sister’s dog Monster, my friend Crystal and her two daughters. Wow, that’s eight scarfs! And I enjoyed every restful minute and definitely said “no” to a request or two in the process. Baby steps. Baby steps. By the time I’m an old woman I’ll have a PhD in crafts. I’m gonna be so good at it that my 12 cats will be wearing crocheted scarves and booties. Old-lady-land here I come!