C’mon, sing it along with me,
♫ ♪ ♫ You can sound the alarm
You can call out your guards
You can fence in your yard
You can hold all the cards
But I won’t back down
Oh no I won’t back down ♫ ♪ ♫
I have been sitting here all afternoon, channelling Tom Petty with his mad-at-the-record-company attitude problem mantra, “Won’t back down”, and trying to figure out the books from this past weekend’s show.
Frustrating in the extreme, since I’m very aware that loss of cognitive abilities or short-term impairment can happen with COPD.
Since my job involves reading contracts, assessing risk and developing strategic goals to accomplish my employer’s agenda, it’s this loss of consistent ability to think clearly that worries me. Profoundly worries me. Especially since tiredness aggravates my ability to function with lack of oxygen.
It’s also one of the things that took me out of work – my fear of being unable to do my job consistently, and be a top performer with reliable skills to deliver results.
Yesterday and today have been one of those days where my cognitive abilities are just not on target or reliable. Physically, it took me an hour to unload the car and get it all into the show. I did ok physically, despite being tired and headachy.
We got through two days of the show in Morgan Hill, but one of my key duties is balancing the books. I always put off balancing the books until dinner after the end of any show. Last night, my fried brain just could not make sense of what I was reading. I could SEE the numbers. I could double-check my work. But, I could not see the errors, or do the necessary calculations to determine profit, fees, expenses and tally up who got paid what. Or, who owes whom when tracking credit transitions vs. cash, fees, etc.
My scary reality. I’m used to pushing through challenges and bulling my way to solutions. However, my body has betrayed me, and no amount of stubbornness works reliably any more.
So, despite sleeping more than 12 hours last night, I took another 3-hour map this afternoon, and that’s helped to enable me to find the problems and balance the books. I’m not done yet, and I won’t back down until it’s done, but I didn’t make my key deliverable to drop by my business partner’s and drop off the booth properties, as well as the money she’s owed. Especially since I’m already a day late, being unable to handle this last night.
But, my new reality.
One of the most frustrating issues I’m dealing with is trying to figure out how to survive and cope if I just don’t have the mental acuity to manage my affairs. I think I’m on top of most everything, but when I get to the meltdown stage (as I was last night and again this afternoon), it’s not depression and it’s not laziness to take a nap. In my case, it appears to be part of necessary survival. Learning to accept that is one of my toughest challenges.
Everyone handles this disease differently, so this is not a situation where we will all have the same challenges and failings. Trial and error for figuring out what might work for ourselves is key to keeping one’s sanity. Because, as Tom says, ♫ ♪ ♫ Oh no, I won’t back down ♫ ♪ ♫