women of a certain age are like sunflowers; they know how to turn their faces to the sun.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Trying Times

"These are the times that try men's souls."
- Thomas Paine

I am not a good multi-tasker. I tend to focus intently upon one thing at a time.

To the exclusion of some things

To the exclusion of many things

To the exclusion of everything, I'm afraid.

truth in advertising

This ability to focus has played a big role in the large number of patterns I have
been able to release over the course of the past year.

It also has resulted in a small pile

A large grocery bag

A huge avalanche...

of receipts.

more truth in advertising

And on my laptop?

An Orders folder with over 2000 order delivery messages in it. Have to get organized. Either that or start another folder.

It would seem I can only organize one thing at a time:

  • The coat closet or the Ravelry page?
  • The laundry or the knitting?
  • The taxes or the newsletter?
  • The diabetes or the design biz?
  • The menus or the stitch count?

Of all the changes diabetes will bring to my life, this is probably the most challenging to me.

Paying attention to two things at the same time - me and Sunflower Designs.

And family...

And housecleaning (what housecleaning? my dust bunnies have built permanent hutches in the corners and aren't going away anytime soon. I am considering tying bows around them and calling them Easter decorations)

And dental health (yesterday's activity. my dentist wants to see me every 3 mos. now that I am diabetic. he also tried to sell me a $150 toothbrush to help with gum inflammation. EEK!)

And exercise...

And regular mealtimes...

And testing strips...

And all the other things that go into a full (and hopefully long) diabetic life.

Did I mention how bad I am at multi-tasking?

Yesterday, after my dental appointment, I picked up my glucose meter at the drugstore. I figure that's part of acceptance. And I dutifully read several pages in my new diabetes travel guide (can't tell the players without a program)

Last night I did some internet errands, ordering waterproof mascara (my eyes alternate between gummed up and tears overflowing. waterproof would be good)
special gel bed socks to soften my heels while I sleep (pedicures and shaving my heels are no longer an option) and a new lipstick, hairspray and an inexpensive pair of earrings (because I needed to remind myself I'm still a woman.)

Today, I returned to my knitting. And before I knew it, the clock read 1:00 and I had still not eaten lunch.

Or breakfast.

This regular eating business is going to take some practice.

But I'm trying.

I set aside my knitting and tried to refocus.

I ate something, unwrapped my meter, and took a reading.

At least I tried to take a reading.

Several times...


If at first you don't succeed,throw the meter across the room in a fit of pique, utter a few
choice expletives and sulk try, try again.

Finally, seven wasted lancets and two testing strips later, I had figured out how to set the time so it didn't blink 12:00.

Now I was really getting somewhere...

All kidding aside, I did finally figure it out and took a decent reading.

Now, if I could just shake off my inertia enough to go to the grocery, figure out what to buy and cook dinner tonight.

Good thing I am better at lace than I am at finger lancing, glucose monitoring, and me
nu planning...

Speaking of which...

I spent the last several days (when I wasn't obsessing over the diabetes)immersed in Pampas design.

As with diabetes, the hardest part is getting started. A new design always involves some fits and starts. You know...I start. I rip. I throw a fit. I start again.

Yep. Ol' fits n' starts - that's me!

This was my first try:

Close, but not quite there yet (sort of like me)

I went down a needle size and redistributed the placement of various elements of the design.

Only got this far, before withdrawing my focus, and rethinking my goals for the day.

Now it is 3:00 and I have eaten. I have tested. I have poked myself in the finger with no scars to show for it. And it didn't hurt.

NOW, can I go back to my knitting?

Trying times, my friends, trying times...


PNWBookGirl said...

Would a timer of some sort help you while you're knitting? Set it for an hour and eat a snack or a meal and go back to knitting. You can also use it to bit of exercise before going back to knitting.

As for the dust bunnies, is it possible someone coming in once a week to take care of them for you is in the budget?

Anonymous said...

A timer is a good choice, but they also make pill containers that have multiple alarms (so you can set it for every 4 hours if you have medication you need to take every 4 hours) and lots of them have more than one alarm so you can set for different meds. Perhaps one of those would be a good choice as you can set them in advance instead of having to reset a regular kitchen-type timer so often. They are small enough to be carried around in your pocket or purse, so you would have it while out shopping, etc.
Good luck with your multi-tasking!

Anonymous said...

Can you knit and walk at the same time? Seriously - if you can do that, maybe with one of those yarn bags that hangs from your wrist or belt - you can get your exercise while you're knitting. It may only work for stockinette or garter stitch, and on relatively flat terrain, but now that spring is here/coming, maybe it's worth a try.

Marigold said...

The good thing, the thing to keep in mind, is that eventually all this new stuff will become a habit, and you won't have to multitask it anymore. Take care of yourself!

Ash said...

I'm sorry you have to go through this struggle right now. I'm also very glad the pokes don't hurt.

Elizabeth said...

For those who focus intently, establishing a new habit can be hugely distracting and unsettling. (Attention must be paid.) But Marigold is right. It will get better. You will find a new and deeper rhythm.
And your designs are great *because* you aren't a natural multitasker.

teabird said...

Elizabeth is right about your designs - their single focus is part of their beauty. (The other part? simple beauty.) I'm sure the diabetes **stuff** will develop a rhythm -

Susanne said...

""pedicures and shaving my heels are no longer an option"" Au contraire my dear. Pedicures should be a REGULAR part of your routine, no shaving of the heels but there are tons of options. Foot care is a HUGE and very IMPORTANT part of being diabetic and should become a regular thing for you. I provide (as my way of paying the rent and for groceries) mobile, inhome footcare to clients, many of whom have diabetes. As you continue on your journey with diabetes, it is very important that you perform a daily check of your feet particularly the soles. (a mirror works well for this). Any cut or scrape should be cared for consistently and aggressively in order to have it heal cleanly. You heels can be smoothed with an emery, a smoothing paddle or I often pick up at the $1 store, a set of drywall sanders (sponges) and use those on my clients.They each get their own and I wash between appointments. Socks should be worn all the time and also shoes or some sort of footwear even in the house.

Keep your feet healthy, moisurize daily and CHECK your FEET EVERY DAY!!!

Linda said...

You seem to be a little freaked out by the diagnosis of diabetes. May I suggest you get hold of the book "Type 2 Diabetes - The First Year" by Gretchen Becker. It gives a lot of calm, helpful information.