Survival Mode [en]

[fr] Ça va. Mais je suis fatiguée. Vive le week-end.

Last week-end was my first week-end in a long time where I wasn’t sick, worried sick about a cat, or rushing a cat to the vet.

Quintus is in remission from his diabetes and doing well. If you have a diabetic cat, join FDMB.

Erica had an acute episode of something gastro-intestinal (pancreatitis? tummy bug? something else?) on a background of something chronic. She’s over the acute episode and we are (without urgency) investigating the chronic condition.

I probably still have my unwelcome host but by cutting out dairy completely I can keep the worst of the symptoms at bay and remain functional while we continue our investigations with the specialist doc.

My hip still bothers me a bit but my blocked back is clearly linked to the giardia digestive issues.

I’m tired. Work is going well. I’m trying to regain my balance. My brain needs down time.

I am trying to focus more on me and less on always being there for others above all. The realisation that my urge to help others first and foremost is something I need to learn to channel is becoming more and more acute. This article framing compulsive use of technology as “addiction to social interaction” really rings true for me.

So, more down time. More alone time. More energy invested in things I want to feel more motivated and enthusiastic about. Silly things like making my flat a place I really enjoy spending time in. Cleaning. Tidying. Just doing nothing. I’m looking forward to being able to ski and do judo, I really miss moving.

Two OTM podcast episodes to listen to for you:

  • Blame it on the Alcohol: interesting perspective on alcohol across the ages and borders (France vs. US for example), and a welcome critique of the ubiquitous AA in American culture, how Hollywood promoted it and labeled abstinence the one and only “cure”, despite the 12-step programme being anything but successful by any measure as a solution to excessive drinking. (No disrespect to my meeting-going friends.)
  • The Safety Net Just Got a Little Less Safe: back to the 2016 series busting poverty myths. How the current system pushes people into poverty, and a poignant account of how it can happen, by a mother who got evicted after being a victim of a crime on the property the family were renting.

Happy listening. I’m going to put the tech away and stare out of the train window.

Also published on Medium.

2 thoughts on “Survival Mode [en]

  1. The addiction to social interaction (via mobile devices) strikes me as missing one vital fact. This same thing was brought home to me earlier in the week while watching a program on Swiss TV about young people in psychiatric treatment, and then afterwards. What struck me was the point where someone decided it was time for one of the patients to move into an apartment on her own, … she went into a total funk.

    Throughout history, human beings have never, by choice, lived alone in little cells, the way they often do now – since the “advances” of the 20th century – and it takes someone with a rich and supportive circle of Important Others to do so without going gaga.

    Those of us who have been badly damaged by our early experiences – and dear Reader, this is a much larger population than you probably want to believe! – are NOT those who will thrive alone in an apartment for huge chunks of the evening and night. Evening and night are scary. We evolved to feel this way about it. That’s when the predators come out.

    So you stay in your small apartment, with your tortured thoughts spinning around in your mind until they drive you nuts – and you go out, or self-harm, or drink, or drug, or eat, or all of these.

    Speaking as a comfortably married person, with a fabulous husband, house, garden etc etc, I can affirm that none of these things erases the horror of early neglect or abuse. In solitude and silence, they are always there. Yet I love solitude! Now that it’s a choice, not a life sentence, I like it more than most face-to-face interactions with people. But I often have to admit it’s not the best thing for me.

    For many of us, social media is an important lifeline. Sure, we can come to rely on it too much. But what is “too much”, when many human beings are not getting enough of the basics of human interaction? Our society does not seem to see this, because it’s so convinced it’s the be-all and end-all of human achievement and How Life Should Be.

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