Image by MASolari via Flickr Friday I had lunch with a very good friend who is back in town for a few short months. We got together for a late lunch (breakfast for me) and spent a total three hours catching up.
It was wonderful! When our time together came to an end I hated to say goodbye, but she promised to get together with me again before she returned to her adventures in Africa helping people living with HIV/AIDS.
Then I got into my car and everything hit me.
I had been sitting for three hours in an uncomfortable chair. I had been sitting outside on a patio on a warm summer day. I had been using energy to stay plugged into a riveting conversation, during which I felt a lot of different emotions. And this was a day when, amidst a change in my medications, my diabetes was causing me more problems in the form of higher than normal blood sugar levels.
I checked in with myself and I felt horrible. I was dizzy, exhausted and worried I wasn't going to be able to drive myself home. But I heard my couch calling me, so I turned the key and started on my way. Several times I thought to myself 'Pull over and get yourself together.' But I somehow convinced myself that it was better to keep going and get myself home.
It was the longest 3 miles I have ever driven in my life.
Now don't get me wrong, it was totally worth it. At least that is what I can say today. The white-knuckle ride home was a nightmare, but I survived it and promptly plopped myself on the couch and recuperated for several hours afterwards.
What I have discovered is that, if I am really diligent about taking care of myself most of the time, I can get away with a special event every once in a while. That diligence pays off afterwards too. Staying within my energy limits most of the time means I have an energy reserve I can tap into, which means I can make a quicker recovery if I do flare myself up.
My big adventure on Friday got me wondering: what people, events and activities are worth risking a flare-up of your chronic illness symptoms?