I decided to try a positive thought experiment for the following reason:
I am super, super duper depressed today. Tired of people offering me “fixes” like move your bed and look up at the stars and take up knitting and stop all your antidepressants and you’ll be all better and I try to tell them I’ve had this illness for 26 years and they say they have a PhD and I keep telling them that they don’t listen and they keep telling me that they know everything and point me to ineffective solutions. I dunno what’s keeping me here. Maybe it was that giant beaver ass moon three days ago that’s pressing me down. I don’t think that’s how gravity works.
If I woke up tomorrow without CFS, I would look around my room and open my blinds. I’d take a look at everything in my home as if I’d seen it for the first time, bathed in natural light, in vivid detail, devoid of gray. All the things of darkness would be closed up where they belonged from the night before:
I’ve always envied people who sleep easily. Their brains must be cleaner, the floorboards of the skull well swept, all the little monsters closed up in a steamer trunk at the foot of the bed. ~David Benioff, City of Thieves
- Up at 0500h. I would have a shower. A long, hot shower. I would wash my hair twice, blow dry it, and straighten it with a flat iron.
- For kicks, now that I look great, I’ll don my sweats, running shoes, a tank top, and hoodie and go running. Yes, I know there’s snow outside. Who gives a shit. I will find the nearest body of water, even if it is the cooling pond next to the power generating station, strip down, and swim to the other side. And back again, of course, if I want my clothes.
- I’ll come home and have another long, hot shower, singing to my rubber duckies.
- I’ll write 3 blog entries, study for and schedule an examination for tomorrow for my online course.
- I will play with my niece and nephew for 5 hours.
- In the same day, I’ll get my driver’s license back by doing a road test.
- I’ll put on makeup, do my hair – maybe a nice updo this time – and dress in something business casual.
- I’ll go shopping, cook dinner, and invite my entire family over (after cleaning my entire place, of course).
- After my family left, I might have a few friends over for a couple of drinks, light jazzy music playing in the background on my turntable, talking about important socio-political topics.
- Alone and comfortably tired, I’ll fill the tub up with water, light some candles, and have a bath. I’d change my bed linens, hang up all of my clothing, put on some flannel pants and a tank top for sleep, make some tea, and read 5 chapters of that book that my friend gave me 2 years ago as a loaner.
- Not needing any medication to fall asleep, I’d drift comfortably to sleep.
That “never give up” and “you can do anything you set your mind to” motivational crap targeted at the disabled would have at last unfurled itself from the thorny tree of inspirational porn into an achievable reality.
So, I am a bit less depressed, but it was fun to imagine what tomorrow might be like without the constraints and chains of chronic fatigue. I think it is very dangerous to remain in that mindset for too long. I’ve heard that a break from reality isn’t good, like then you start to live in that alternate reality and someone pulls up at your front door and you hear whispering and depending on your situation you are either deemed possessed by the devil or psychotic so you’ll either undergo an exorcism or get medicated so heavily that you’ll have a goofy grin and spit draining out of the corner of your mouth. In either scenario, you also might wet yourself.
I suggest maintaining your sense of humor and go with what you’ve got.