More notes from a Covid-19 Caregiver’s journey…

Boy am I shaky this morning. Fortunately my pulse is okay (which means no arrhythmia) even if my chest is fluttery with free floating anxiety. The last two nights I must confess I have had a fair bit of scotch – perhaps the equivalent of two triples each night. Yesterday morning I woke up feeling pretty good even after watching a dystopian movie with my scotches. Unfortunately, the same medicinal use of alcohol last night has resulted in fluttery anxiety this morning.

I know that alcohol has real, positive, medicinal benefits as it takes the edge off feeling too stressed. But it does not help with the root cause of this stress which in fact continues to build even with the relaxation that comes from a couple of drinks. I also know that alcohol is a poison that has many deleterious effects on your body and therefore on your consciousness. My body is clearly saying to me that I have pretty much reached the end of the road of this particular way of coping with Covishness.

There is a clue to the path forward in a scripture passage I came across yesterday:

… “So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet…”

I am not going to attempt to contextualize Paul’s words to his disciples in the early days of Christianity, but suffice to say that knowing who you are, who has your back and being able to trust our creator with our situations is all part if being awake. However, escaping into entertainment and alcohol is an unconscious behaviour that temporarily dulls the pain but ultimately does nothing to improve oneself or the situation. If that was my only recourse in life I would be in serious trouble, driven by unconscious compulsions in blind misery.

So, I am listening to my body saying no, and I am consciously reducing my alcohol consumption rather than continuing to increase it. I am going to take more time for myself, build in more exercise and get back on Fitness Pal to help me manage my diet. This pandemic is hard on all of us, but particularly for us caregivers who are already more likely to take care of others before ourselves. If we don’t figure it out, we could crash and burn – and then where would everyone be? So, time to figure it out!

Originally written June 12, 2020

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