Adjustments and Modifications and Doing What Has to Be Done Leave a comment


I’m three weeks and a day past my hysterectomy, and it hasn’t been fun.

On day three, I realized I wasn’t going to be like the people who said they never even had to take a pain pill.

On day 8, I realized I wasn’t going to be like the people who said they felt great after the first week.

On day 15, I had to accept that the “magical two week mark” wasn’t so magical for  me.

I’m hoping that on Day 22, I’ve figured out what I have to do.

I am in a time of what I’m calling “aggressive rest.” I’m making myself lay flat in my bed BEFORE I feel tired. BEFORE I start hurting so much that I can’t stand up straight.

And even though my living room is now pretty, I brought in a little ugly.

That black chair is one I borrowed from the youth room at my church. I sat in it on Sunday night and realized it was the only time I’d been comfortable in a seated position since my surgery.

So I asked if I could borrow it.

Here’s the thing.

Through this experience, I’m being reminded of my project brain, and how it isn’t always a good thing. My project brain is what makes me believe so strongly that the answer to this (and all) my problem(s) is to push through. To get to the finish line so I can be done.

I’ve learned over the years that treating my house like a project doesn’t work. Waiting until I have time to clean from top to bottom means I let things go that shouldn’t be left until I have time and energy to clean from top to bottom. Dishes aren’t a project. They’re something that needs to be done daily. Not doing them daily sends my house down a very bad path.

My recovery isn’t a project. I can’t push my body to heal. When I push, I make things worse and end up flat on my back, unable to do anything.

But the point of this post is that adjustments are okay.

Physical adjustments like ugly black chairs are okay. They’re not what I want in my newly decorated living room, but being there means I can sit comfortably to work on my computer instead of standing for hours while my computer sits on the kitchen counter.

Expectation adjustments like deciding that it’s okay to read a book in bed before exhaustion hits, specifically in order to avoid exhaustion, is okay. Exhaustion, in my present post-surgery circumstances, causes harm.

Home routine adjustments like embracing the return of the Clean Laundry Chair, because I’m not the one doing laundry, is okay. We can all survive wearing wrinkled clothes for a while.

Here’s the thing.

Wishing I’d had an easier recovery doesn’t help. Wishing I’d bounced back faster doesn’t help me bounce back any faster.

While I wish I could do things the right way, the ideal way, I have to do them the way that works. In reality. Inside my real life.

Sometimes that’s temporary, like with this surgery.

Sometimes it’s forever. Like living under my Clutter Threshold even though I’d sure like to have more stuff.

I’m not sure there’s a major point to this post. I’ve just been thinking a lot lately about how resisting my reality does more harm than good.

And how slower-than-it-would-be-if-everything-was-perfect progress is better than making things worse by trying to force things to happen in a way that’s actually impossible.

Slow progress is better than no progress.

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