I was feeling so much better for my hot weather induced slow down that I got overconfident on Tuesday and did two strenuous (by my standards) activities in one morning. A classic ME/CFS mistake – you feel a bit better and think you can do normal things. Like going to the shops and library AND hoovering the carpets in the space of three hours.
I had no premonition that I was being unwise. The day was somewhat cooler than previous days and I enjoyed going out in the car for the first time since the heatwave began. I could have left the hoovering until later, but I felt OK and wanted to get it out of the way. I was more than a little bit pleased to be feeling so well. The thought of repercussions didn’t cross my mind.
My plan for Wednesday was to have a shower and wash my hair before the letting agent arrived to do the regular inspection and then have the rest of the day to get on with my drawing exercises. What actually happened was that I woke up feeling as though I’d been trampled by herd of wildebeest. Every joint and muscle was sore and I had that old familiar toxic ‘flu feeling.
I did the basic necessities to prepare for the letting agent and summoned up enough energy to put on a display of being a normal person while he was here. Then I went back to bed to recover from my exertions with the hoover. I still feel yuk today, though the pain has gone and I’m “just” very low on energy.
Was it the hoovering? I don’t really know. Maybe I would have been ill yesterday even if I hadn’t done it. Or if I hadn’t gone out as well. Or if I’d rested after going out and before doing the hoovering… I can’t know and it doesn’t really matter, but it was yet another reminder that careful slow pacing and lots of rest are essential for me.
It’s a bugger though – believe it or not I really enjoyed that bit of vigorous housework. I’m not in the least bit sporty, but I used to love hard physical work – digging the garden, doing weights at the gym, swimming lengths, long brisk walks, helping a friend move house – and the feeling of well-being that comes afterwards. I really miss that.