CRPS, or Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (Type 1), is a change in the nervous system that's usually triggered by a very painful episode. The bad kinds affect the brain, nerves, muscles, skin, metabolism, circulation, and fight-or-flight response. Lucky me; that's what I've got. ... But life is still inherently good (or I don't know when to quit; either way) and, good or not, life still goes on.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Changing the glass, resetting limits

I have to resurrect a set of rules I thought I'd gotten past:
- No internet before noon.
- No more than 2 hours daily for all internet activity: email, FaceBook, Twitter, research, posting and illustrating blogs.
- This includes surfing on the phone.
I will be moving upstairs to a brighter apartment that's arranged better for two. J still plans to move in come September, so I'm grabbing the opportunity while it's there.
For the past several months I've been learning to notice and deal constructively with signals from body and brain. Part of the reality of this is, there's a ton of backlog to sort out.
This is significant, partly due to CRPS and partly to the nature of last year, which was an ongoing festival of upheaval:
- Got SSDI.
- Had to save life of same friend twice in three months.
- Sold my boat/home.
- Moved 3 times.
- Travelled for 6 months at a stretch.
- Started an important romantic relationship.
- Had 2 serious threats hanging over my own life.
It's not good for the ANS, all this excitement.  I'm not personally opposed to eventfulness, it's just really hard on my regulatory systems. Given similar situations, I'd probably have to do similar things, but it's time to chill the h#11 out now.
I'm moving and it makes my lizard brain howl -- if lizards can howl.
I'm moving upstairs,  not far at all. And it'll be safer -- you can't even find it from the road. It'll be brighter and quieter. The paint scheme is far more cheery and pleasant.
But I'm moving, and at some level, that's an absolute... That is, an absolute brain-fogging mess of suppressed fight-or-flight response and irrational despair. It's seriously altering how well and how long I can think... changing the water level in my current glass, so to speak.
Packing my few things is not a physically imposing task,  but moving at all is a brain-crippling one, apparently.
I still have to maintain my care schedule, keep appointments and stay caught up (-ish) on laundry and groceries, none of which is optional.
When my adrenals are under stress, my brain gets quickly exhausted, especially in the morning. According to my old acupuncturist, that's a classic diagnostic indicator. Cognition is linked to adrenal function, he says.
The thing to do is go with it, and not make decisions or try to parse communications until the whole system has had a chance to wake up and get moving. Thoroughly.
So, out of respect for my brain's needs, I'll be spending my mornings playing with the kitten and catching up on my bookshelves, instead of being online.
Oh gee, isn't that tough :-)
And when I've moved in and gotten the new place under control, with no intention of moving again until I've got a "forever home" to go to, I'll find out just how resilient this brain really is and see what parameters make sense then.
Until then, the online world will go on with, at most, 2 hours a day of attention from me -- for research, social networking, web page managing,  and posting & illustrating blogs.
We'll manage just fine.


  1. My dear, you are an absolute inspiration for me.
    So many things you write, I also have to do. Somehow I have to get rid of the "things get in the way of life" syndrome, whatever or wherever they are.
    One day we shall meet in person and I know we'll hit it off as friends.

  2. Awesome about the new apartment, it sounds like it will be so much better for you, and what a rough past year you have had, hopefully things will settle down for you now :)


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