If patience is a virtue I am seriously lacking in the virtue stakes. It can be so easy to get carried away with, well living, that I sometimes don’t realise my pain is back in the front seat. There are a few indicators that pull me back to reality and one of those is patience. Or, more accurately, the lack thereof.
I noticed during this past week that my patience had taken a hike and left me annoyed at everything. Literally, every little thing. There’s the usual slow drivers, dogs off lead while I’m taking my boy for a walk, government ministers announcing new policy. You know, things that would cause any sane person to feel ticked off. But then comes the, some might say, unreasonable annoyances.
The highlight this week was the laundry basket. I walked into the laundry with a dirty towel and there, right in front of me, were clothes in the designated ‘dirty towel laundry basket’. The horror! Who would do this? Why would they do this? Don’t they know… okay, hang on a minute. Stop. Breathe. This is not a big deal. This is not a reason to freak out. Take a look at yourself, your muscles have tensed up, your legs are tight, your shoulders are up around your neck all because there is a t-shirt in a laundry basket.
Thankfully, this realisation that I was not managing came while I was alone. Not after I had taken my unjustified anger out on someone else. Which can, and does, happen.
When your entire body is in pain every minute of every day, you’re constantly exhausted but can’t sleep, your brain is so foggy you can’t remember the simplest of words, you feel like you’re always on the verge of the flu…. When all of this, plus a variety of other fun things are happening in your body all at the same time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week AND you have to complete every day tasks like everyone else (get out of bed, shower, dress, eat, clean up, go to work….. ) With all of this happening, is it any wonder the slightest of changes to routine, the slightest of annoyances can take you over the edge? Maybe a t-shirt in the wrong laundry basket isn’t a big deal. But sometimes it’s enough to break the already unstable back.
I’m not really sure how to end this post as I’m not sure if you can learn patience. But simply recognising that I’m allowing little things get to me makes me reflect. It puts a big neon sign flashing “not coping” right in front of my face. It makes me reflect on what’s happening in my body, my mind and what I’m doing or not doing to help manage all of these things. Reflection is good thing. It may not give me patience but it sure can help me to forget about the t-shirt… Okay, maybe not forget but recognise that sometimes it’s okay to have a t-shirt in the otherwise towel designated laundry basket.