Thursday, August 14, 2014

On Cooking Chicken and Accepting Limitations

We have no food cooked in the house and I was feeling great after a productive morning, so at the grocery store today, I bought a chicken. A whole chicken.

Because I was feeling great, and I had all of this time today, and we have no food. I was going to easily make a chicken and even cook stuff to go with it! Like those butternut squash that have been sitting around forever on the kitchen counter and I hope have not sprouted inside.

My son and I got home from the grocery store, I cooked up the sausage I had bought us, and we ate lunch together. He went to his room to play on the computer, and I sat in front of my computer. Now its 3pm, and I still have that chicken and those butternut squash.

All of this seemed so accessible earlier in the day. I thought I had all this time, and cooking a chicken and squash is easy for most people. I was so excited because we were going to have food! I was going to have dinner ready when my husband got home. We were going to have leftovers so we actually had breakfast tomorrow, whereas today all my son got to eat for breakfast was beef jerky and dried cherries.

It is 3pm, and I have at least 3 hours to cook this chicken and I just don't know if it will happen. This is what it is like when you have limited hours with which to function each day. You have no idea what each day will bring, how much time you will have, and if today is the day you can figure out how to cook a chicken, or not.

I am getting better at not feeling bad about these days because, what good would that do? I don't really care that other people find it easy to cook a chicken and squash for dinner. I don't really care that we may all be eating jerky and dried fruit for dinner tonight. I am exhausted and overwhelmed, and just not functioning. If I push myself over what I can handle, I risk triggering bipolar cycling which will end up with me either a crying mess or a screaming lady by the time dinner roles around. So, even if I push myself and cook the chicken, I doubt my husband or son would enjoy who they were eating the chicken with.

The chicken is taunting me from the fridge. In a while I may have rested enough to actually get that chicken into the oven. If not, that is ok.

It is hard to accept your limits, especially in our world of competition and shaming. Where parents shame other parents for how many fun places they took their kids, or did not take their kids, in the summer. Where those who have an easy time cooking chickens, taking care of dogs and kids, and working, look down on those of us who are lucky if we got out of our pajamas.

Everyone has different limits. I choose to be grateful for the things I can do, instead of hate myself for what I can't.

Here is what I did do today:
  • I got up at a normal time today! (Shocking)
  • I got to CrossFit and did a workout that was awesome.
  • I bought groceries so at least we have food should any of us figure out how to cook it. 
  • I got through the grocery store without a panic attack! 
  • The dogs have been taken outside, so I have not had to clean up anything off the floor. (Win!)
  • I took a shower, brushed my teeth, and got dressed.
  • I had a therapy appointment.
  • I watched a TV show with my son.
  • My son laughed at me while I sang a song about Baba Ganoush, which he won't eat. 
  • I am neither depressed or manic. (Also a win.)
  • I wrote this blog post, after zoning out on the interwebs for a while. 

That's a pretty good day, even if the chicken never gets cooked.

UPDATE: The chicken is in the oven, plus one butternut squash because I did not have the energy to peel and cut two of them. But, OMG!! You have to clean up after the chicken and squash get into the oven. And then clean up after you eat it all. See, that is why one "simple" task is not so simple.
...And, it is now 8:30pm and I just realized that the only reason I was able to cook the chicken is because I had a parenting fail and completely forgot that my son had CrossFit Kids tonight. See, again, this is why it's a bad idea to overextend yourself. You end up getting everything out of whack.

What are the great things you did today that you should be proud of?


Rev. Katie

1 comment:

  1. Every part about this resonates with me. I'm depressive-depressive not bipolar but still, I feel you with every fiber of my mental being. Thank you for your blog!