Pacing in the Real World

I did not get things ‘right’ today.

I used up more of my energy allowance than is ever sensible or advisable.

But you know what? That’s life.

That’s the real world. We aren’t in some Pacing Paradise where the outside world knows not to trouble us once we’ve passed a certain point with our energy expenditure. If only.

And you know what else? It’s okay that I might have got it ‘wrong’ today. Things were required of me and I was able to do them. Whether it was sensible to do them was besides the point on this occasion. And the choice to do them was mine.

Opting to use more energy than is safe or sensible today does not mean that:

• I don’t want to get better (I’m looking at you Pacing Police)
• I could do this every day (I’m looking at you, those who assume I have chosen a life more limited)
• I should berate myself for it (I’m looking at myself on this one!)

So often we are shown this ideal that to live well with chronic illness we must always strive to get it right; that progress and the act of recovering is something that must come above all else. That if we aren’t always acting in the best interests of our poorly bodies then we are almost deserving of our suffering. I see it both inside and outside of the Chronic Illness Community.

Well bollocks to that. (Really sorry Mum!)

For clarification: if the things that were required of me were needed after a certain point, I of course would not have been able to do them. I have a finite amount of energy/concentration/cognitive ability.

I’m not sharing this because I need to explain or excuse the decisions I make. I am sharing it because, as people living a different life with chronic illness, we can often be judged for not constantly trying to better our sad little sick lives. And I’m kicking against that right now.

Allow us to live a little without the fear that you’ll say our suffering is our own fault because we weren’t quite as regimented and sensible as you apparently would be if it were you. Bless your ignorance and optimism on that one!

Published by Anna Redshaw

Blogging about life in the slow lane with an invisible, chronic illness. I wasn't always a sick chick so this is somewhat of a life changing experience!

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