Hidden Limits

I am grateful for friends. 

Yesterday, my friend B came over and helped my get the outside of the house set up with Christmas lights, and gave me a hand bringing the indoor decorations upstairs. Lynn and I both appreciate his help, because with shoulder still being out of commission, and Lynn’s foot still being rehabbed, we were in no shape to do it ourselves. 

Being injured is not pleasant. I don’t like the limitations it puts on me. I should not have needed help to get that stuff done last night, and it bothers me that I needed the help. 

The thing is, the pain hurts. It does limit me, and my range of motion, and as much as I grumble, I do accept it. I don’t like it, but accept. 

So why are physical limitations so much easier to accept than psychological ones?

The emotional pain I have dealt with in my life can be equated to a third-degree burn (Thank you for that vivid description Dr. Marsha Linehan). That is a description that I feel is accurate, because even when I’m stable, my emotional trigger point can be just under the surface, and when I’m not….well that’s when bad things start happening.

The psychological limitations can be as frustrating as the physical, if not more so. The psychological ones cannot be seen. 

What are my limitations?

I have several. I have learned over time that as much as I need some stress to function in my life, I cannot handle high stress environments long term. They will chew me up and spit me out. 

I need my sleep, and I need a predictable sleep schedule. Working nights is totally out the window. They will impact my emotional stability in short order. The last job I had where I worked nights, I lasted less than two months before I was cooked. 

According to the WCB, I need a low-stress daytime job, that’s essentially a 9 to 5er. Problem with low-stress is it’s usually boring, and for me boring is as troubling than too stressful. I get bored, I withdraw and spend way too much time inside my head, focusing on every fuck-up I’ve ever made. 

Even my psychologist agrees with me on this point. 

I think I’ve landed on a good compromise with my freelance writing. It’s definitely not boring. It keeps my mind active and gives me a reason to get out of bed, while still allowing me to take the time I need to work on myself, and keep myself healthy. 

It’s frustrating have to work within limits, especially when they are invisible, and you have to explain them to people who don’t get it. It’s frustrating, but I know what happens if I push past those limits. 

Kevin

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