getting better is hard


I’m feeling crazy. It’s been a year of handing over responsibilities to other people - to Zarina for work, and to my boyfriend for life-things. But now that I am starting to regain energy to do those things myself (my Long Covid has now been identified as POTS and I’m on beta blockers that are making a world of difference), I feel immediately at max capacity even though I’ve only taken back a few tasks back off them. Head and hands feel full. It’s too much. I feel shivery or jumpy, like I’m trying to recite the alphabet backwards while someone shoots the ground below me so my legs keep moving in this scared, reflexive way.

I’m choosing to do too much so I am partly to blame - - - I know I should be pacing: doing things and taking breaks before I even need them, so that I’m careful about my energy. But people are just assuming I’m well now, and everything is speeding up. I had my first IRL meeting yesterday. I had 3 Zoom calls the day before and 2 others the day before that. I have more meetings next week that I feel are tugging at my attention already with a sticky demanding pull. I also need to: wash my hair, pick up my prescription, do an online food order, decide what food we’ll be eating before ordering, write a text, edit other texts, keep an eye on emails, speak to friends, do Wordle, do Quordle - - -

And on top of these things, I need to manage my symptoms, which is a whole job in and of itself. That one’s new! I feel like the Open sign is back on in the door, and people are knocking. Sometimes I feel good because it’s a novelty to have a meeting again or just deeply important to be visiting a friend. But together, it’s all happening too fast. I’m caught between enjoying this little dance I’m doing to avoid the bullets, and how it feels to scream the alphabet out of a mouth that has been whispering for a year / / / and going back to my couch, with my blanket on top of me, with the cat on top of the blanket, phone on my chest, TV on, and absolutely nothing on the calendar because everyone knows I’m busy dealing my body, fully booked.

I feel strange that I’m having to deal with my body on top of all the other things: there was something intensely still and open about just being sick full time. It wasn’t nice but it became comfortable and familiar very quickly, like the shape a sleeping body makes in memory foam; like the way it feels to sink into the shape you made, the one that’s just for you.

My boyfriend suggested we start the new season of Russian Doll tonight and when he said it, I felt like I was going to implode. idk idk, that’s one thing too many with its newness and the story I’d have to try to remember from season 1, never mind the new story I’d have to follow. I can’t do it. I would rather stare at a wall. No, I think I need to stare at a wall, is what I’m saying.

Getting better is weird because it’s doesn’t all feel better - it isn’t clean. All I wanted was to feel better so that I could do more but now I feel ill in a different way. When I do things, I feel like I’m going behind my body’s back. I feel a bit naughty. I feel mad.


I’m going to go and lie down on the couch. I’m leaving my phone upstairs. I’m going to zone out while I look up at the spot on the ceiling that I looked at all last year. When the cat realises where I am and climbs on top of me, I’ll have to stay. I think she misses the fact I’m not horizontal all day now; when I sit at my desk to write, she leans up and puts her claws along my arm as if to tell me to stop. It’s been really annoying and my arm is a mess but I get it.

Once the cat is back on top of me, I will have no choice but to rest.

I just time need to find my balance.