***I took a nap this morning, trying to recover from a day of outings that included a lunch, some grocery shopping, and a movie with my husband yesterday. But somehow I overslept my wake-up-for-lunch alarm, and instead woke up at almost 1pm. I sat up, taking less than the usual amount of time to let my brain prepare for standing because time was potentially of the essence: oversleeping could mean my blood sugar would be dangerously low, and also I had an even more urgent need to use the bathroom. So I stood up pretty quick, hoped I wouldn't lose my balance, put my crocs on because walking barefoot is a no-no (what if I stub my toe and it doesn't heal properly because I'm diabetic?), and went down the hall to the bathroom. Yes, there is an en suite in my bedroom, but that is my husband's bathroom, because the toilet is next to the shower stall, with nothing to lean on to stand up from it, and so the hall bathroom with its toilet next to the counter has always been my preference. There is even a designated corner of the counter that my daughters, who share that bathroom, are not allowed to clutter up, because it is the Corner For Mom's Hand to Push On.
I did what people do in bathrooms, and then got up and washed my hands. Time was still ticking, but hopefully my sugar would not be too low, since I had not started to feel cold sweat symptoms yet. I reached my living room and greeted the dog, feeling guilty that I had slept two hours longer than planned and she had been bored and stuck inside that whole time. So before I sat down I let her outside with a toy to finally do her own business and some running around playing. Then I plopped into my recliner, and grabbed my blood glucose test kit. With great relief I tested at 100, still around 15-20 points above where I would really start to have problematic hypoglycemic symptoms. Food would certainly have to be my next priority, though. Time to get back up again.
I had planned to try these new crackers and cheese we picked up yesterday for lunch, so I went to the cereal/cracker/pop tart/cookie storage area and found the flatbread crackers. Then I grabbed a kiddie plate (they have edges that keep stuff from sliding off), a butter knife from the dining room table, and then the package of cranberry white cheddar out of the fridge. I loaded up all of this in my arms and took it to my recliner, where my back is happiest, thinking I would eat it there using my lap table. But I had mistaken the cranberry white cheddar for being something creamy and spreadable, whereas it was actually a true white cheddar (very solid) with pieces of cranberry in it, so eating that in my lap turned into quite a challenge. And the dog was starting to bark outside, which I never like to let her do for more than two minutes at a time to avoid upsetting the neighborhood.
With a sigh, I gathered up all my lunchings and took them to the dining room table. I opened the door and talked to the dog for a minute, telling her to shush and be easy since I couldn't convince her to come back inside when the outdoors was so gloriously and unseasonably mild and sunny and fascinating. The sparse cranberries in my cheddar were not very satisfactory, so I grabbed some Thanksgiving cranberry sauce out of the fridge and spread it on the flatbread to supplement the moisture and flavor of the cheddar. That was better but still not a stellar lunch. I was still hungry, so I got back up, went to the island, opened up some English muffins, and put one in the toaster. Then I went back to the back door, to ask the dog, again, to either come inside or be quiet. She promised to be quiet, again. Walking back to the toaster from the back door, the entire width of the kitchen and dining room, was starting to feel like half a city block instead of the 15 or so feet it probably really is, but I made it, and found that my toaster setting had been too low and the muffin wasn't ready. I put it back down for another round. Then I walked over to the back of the couch, and bent over it until my head almost touched the cushions. I do this several times a day. It stretches my lumber spine without unduly bending my fused thoracic spine because my thoracic is supported by the width of the backrest and back cushions of the couch. Exhaling slowly, I felt some of the pent up lumbar tension that grows and grows all the while I'm standing start to ease, imagining the disc spaces between those vertebrae expanding and revitalizing with improved blood flow and being plump and fluid and healthy, because hell, maybe visualization can help stave off disc disease, who knows? And then, using arm strength not upper back strength (that would be another no-no), I did a sort of push-up off the back of the couch to stand up again, and returned to the kitchen to tackle the fridge search.
I had to rearrange a few things in the fridge to liberate some jam, which I set at the dining room table because it was becoming very clear that my back would not stand for letting me stand at the island to spread jam. (See what I did there? Haha.) Then I got out a sandwich baggie to put my cranberry cheddar into because it didn't come in resealable plastic. I got one for the flatbread crackers for the same reason, but they turned out to be too big, so I went back to the island and got a bigger baggie and got the crackers sealed up and put the cheese and the leftover cranberry sauce back into the fridge. The toaster popped back up, thankfully with done but not burned muffins this time. I went to the table for the plate I'd been using, back to the toaster, got the muffins out, and finally sat down at the table again. It took all of about 2 minutes to put jam on those muffin halves and eat them, after all that effort, but at least when that was done I wasn't hungry anymore.
The dog was barking again, probably because all over the neighborhood trash trucks and recycling trucks and package delivery trucks have been bustling all day, typical Monday traffic that tends to set the neighborhood dogs on edge. I went out onto the back porch and tried to play with her, sitting on the step and letting her tease me by bringing her toy almost within my reach but not quite letting me have it to throw for her. I know, sometimes it's hard to tell which one of us is the pet. She still wouldn't come inside, but at least she was once again quiet, so I took a deep breath, stood up off the step, climbed up the two stairs to the deck itself and came back inside. I put away the jam, and collected a package of holiday surprises I had purchased this weekend on Amazon from the front porch, which was probably why the dog had barked this time. Then at last I sat down in my recliner to inject my lunch insulin and catch my breath, and relax.
Lunch had taken me at least an hour and a half. I feel wiped out. I have a couple more hours to recover from this before I get the kids and I fed dinner and ready to go out to the town Christmas tree lighting ceremony, where my daughters will be performing with their school choir. After this day, I will probably need another nap again tomorrow morning. Maybe I'll try a simpler lunch tomorrow, like fried eggs and one of those English muffins. Surely that will be easier, right? Or more likely, I'll opt to take the easiest way out of all, and have a bowl of the least-sugary cereal we have, off-set with insulin and a pre-packaged cheese stick, which takes not even a tenth of the effort of today's ever-so-simple-sounding crackers and cheese. We'll see.
***And that's how the days go rolling by, with little variations and occasional adventures, their fair share of high points and low pits, managing the energy bar and juggling what needs to be done each day, each week, with the help of my husband and my children, each of them a crucial pillar holding me up. I hope that you, too, have your pillars and your high points, that you carry onward and upward, that when you fall it is with grace and the resolve to get back up, and that your lunches are always worth your effort. ;)