Dear Diary: Exhaustion That Defies Description

I am tired. The exhaustion is so overwhelming, I am not sure I can put it into words. We all get it: brain fog, dead-weight limbs, boredom without the ability to do anything about it. Sometimes it is worse than others. This time seems like the worst.

Maybe it is because I’ve been mostly homebound for close to a year. I am frustrated. Nothing interests me right now. I do not want to read a book. Magazines are blurring together. Politics frustrates me and upsets me. I cannot sit at my piano long enough to play through an entire piece. I spent most of the last week sleeping, partially as an escape from this mind-numbing lethargy.

It is a trap in a cycle of despair. The more I sleep, the less energy I have, the more I want to sleep. The more this happens, the less clearly I can think, the less interest I have in most anything. I cannot concentrate. Even this post feels forced, like I am saying the same thing over and over again. I know I need to break the cycle somehow; I just do not know how to do it this time. Nothing I have tried has worked so far.

I couldn’t get interested in a crafting project. Going shopping with my wheelchair was not enough, although it helped for that one day. I am so sick of the television, I have not even turned it on for days. People probably can somewhat understand the physical struggles we face, especially what they see. But the emotional turmoil, the fatigue and despair, has no comparison. We get stuck in deep ruts that feel impenetrable, and it seems nothing short of a miracle can rescue us.

I know this is a short-term problem. My husband and doctor will collaborate and find a way to help me out, as they always have. Mostly I am tired of not being able to help myself at times like these. I hate getting to this point and knowing there is nothing else I can do. Why must my body take so long to heal? Must I be stuck at home so much? What did I do to deserve this? All questions I ask myself with regularity, as I am sure most chronically ill people do.

I know I am not alone in this. I also know this is a temporary problem. The great thing about a cycle is that it can be broken. Fatigue and exhaustion can be dealt with…somehow. In the meantime, I will feel better, because I have a community of support.

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