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Updates November 1999
November 5, 1999

So here it is ~ another few months gone by and I have been working tons of hours again. My little part-time job went unofficially full-time back in June. Got a promotion and a raise in September, and since then I've been feeling more exhausted than I have in a couple years. It wouldn't be so difficult if I had regular hours, but I've been working very odd hours between the office and home trying to get things done that the systems at work won't let me do. I've been asked to recreate their web site, implement a company Intranet, scan logos, CAD drawings, etc. that should have been camera-ready art to use in flyers/presentations/etc., and a ton of stuff like that. The system I'm using at work has a slow processor with minimal RAM; minimal hard drive space; etc. that won't support the software necessary to do this. If they needed me to do this stuff, the only solution was to take it home where I have a system that will handle it plus I have all the software to do the job. Not to mention the system I'm using at work has no sound card, and by offering my services using my home system I solved another big problem ~ transcription long-distance. Even when the boss is away, he's still been getting that kind of work done using transciption software. That solved an even bigger problem of not having to play catch-up after he's been out of the office several days.

Finally, after weeks of going full throttle, my bod declared war and crashed last week. This has happened three times since I went back to work. I've tried to explain to the people I'm working for that I need some regular hours, but that hasn't worked. I guess I spoiled them by being the "do all at any time you need it" person. So I had to come to some sort of decision about what to do about work. I had to either keep doing what I'm doing, which has included sleeping 10 hours a night and still feeling exhausted, or cut back on the work and maybe have a bit of energy left over for life. Guess what my decision was. I told the company last week that I had to go back to part-time, and if that wasn't acceptable, that I'd understand and they could hire someone else and I'd look for a part-time job where I could work my hours and just be able to go home.

Well, they agreed verbally that I could go back to part-time, but I just have a feeling that won't really happen. They are too use to having me stay until the work is done, many times that's meant 10+ hours in one day and then take some home with me as well. Not to mention that they have also expected me to not put in over time (which is fine with me), except that they still wanted all the work done. So I've been rushing to get 40+ hours of work done in 40 hours. What I've been forced to do Is "call" my hours 40 as if I were on salary, but I'm not. I wonder how they think that amount of work will get done in 32 hours! They're really nice enough about it, but I don't think they actually understand that I want to go to work at the same time and leave at the same time every day and not bring work home with me.

I don't blame them entirely. I've always been a work horse; it's in my heart to do the very best I can. That's what I've been giving them too. How can I expect them to believe that I can't do what I've been doing? What they've seen is my doing all this stuff and then every two or three months calling in sick and then taking it easy for a couple weeks or so, then doing it all again. I've been too willing to give more than I should have given. My fault entirely for not accepting my situation ~ that I am not a well person; I will never be a well person again, not with the energy I had before RAI anyway; and I have not learned to pace myself according to what I can do ~ that day! That's the hardest part. I still want to do it all and be everything all the time.

What a fool I am, yet maybe not. is it really foolish for me to not be able to understand my situation anymore than it's foolish for others to not get it either. How can I blame others for not understanding the same thing I haven't been understanding? I've been fooling myself and in the process fooling others as well. Not just at work, but everywhere. I don't mean that I've chosen to wimp out ~ wimping out means lacking confidence and feeling uncertain ~ I just mean that the time has come for me to face some of the facts head-on and get it through my thick skull that I am not OK! And that it is not OK for me to expect more from myself than I need others to expect from me. If I don't want others to pressure me beyond my limits, where do I get off doing that to myself? See what I mean? It's so much easier to expect others to live up to our ideas of what's "fair" than it is to expect ourselves to do the same. And we can forgive ourselves so much quicker that we can forgive others ~ because we honestly believe we "get it" and they don't! How how untrue and unfair of me ~ to others and to myself. Once you get it, makes you feel like a full-fledged Jack-Ass! As on "DUH"!!!

Anyway, I have little doubt that trying to fulfill my "newly realized" needs is going to go in the equal and opposite direction of fulfilling their absolute needs. Not to say that these people won't try their best, but I have only shown them the best I can be ~ Trouble is that "that" best doesn't hold up and prove true all the time. And I honestly believe that I might have to be looking for a new job in short order ~ one that will let me go to work at the same time and come home at the same time every day and NOT expect me to work at home too and "call" my hours 40. If I had that with these people, I could even work for them full-time! Yes? Like I said, I cannot blame them. Until you have this damn disease and have to deal with, put up with, and live the experience of having all these ups and downs (more downs than ups most of the time), I cannot blame these guys! They don't get it. And they probably won't get it anymore than everyone else who sees the changes in me day by day and still they "think" I should be able to "do it all"! I can only blame myself now that I understand MY part in educating those who don't have this!

Either which way, since I have made this intelligent decision to free my time, I can only hope that I will spend it on trying to keep this web site current. A lot of this stuff is old ~ though it remains helpful to those new to the site. Glad for the semblance of sanity that helped me put this together the way it is! Yet I know that I owe it to everyone who comes here to keep this site updated ~ no matter how boring my life may seem to me. I put this site up to make available the same kind of help, understanding, and, if nothing else, the "just knowing you aren't alone" experience that helped me way back before there were very many Graves' Disease/Thyroid Disease places to go on the Internet. I forgot that what I experience and write about could be just the piece of information that someone out there needs to get on with life and make sense of it all. I've been "too busy" taking care of my tangibles instead of caring about the intangible problems we all are forced to live with. Well, isn't much of what we deal with daily untouchable ~ or rather, no one seems to want to touch it with a ten-foot pole?

Ok - now I am going to conduct a small survey. (Small because very few respond to my updates:) ... but I'm going to try. (Without Java script, mind you, so it will take a little work on your part to answer.) Here are the questions.

Do you find that when you are feeling sluggish, you tend to drink to raise your energy levels?

I know I do! Seems to be the only thing that gives me the energy I need to make it through "the rest of the day" (meaning from the time I get home from work to the time I can go to bed and sleep 10 hours and then get up again to do it all over again?)

Do you find yourself sleeping those tons of hours and still feeling tired?

I know I do! Ragged out is more of an appropriate term.

Then do you find yourself eating just about anything you can get your hands on to fill the "voids" ~ and there are many!? (If you do, then you already know exactly what I mean and your answer is "Yes"!)

I'd rather have diabetes. At least it's popular! Do you feel the same way?

Well, that's the end of the survey! And the end of my day ~ at 20 minutes to six ~ in the evening!!! What a life! I still say we ALL need a hero - just wish I knew where to find one!!! If you do, then speak out! I know I'm fed up with these unnecessary ups and (more likely) downs of having to live with a "simulated thyroid level that doesn't apparently work!" How about you?

I'm hoping to hear from at least a few of you who read this. You never know ~ when you least expect it ~ out of the blue comes the answer you need - we ALL need! Maybe it begins with you........ Sue --{--{@

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