Three Reasons why Cleaning is Dangerous

Circular picture of leg in cast with book titled "Find the Cat Challenge" with a skull and crossbones peaking out from behind. Text reads: New Blog Three reasons Cleaning is Dangerous. and Cat 1: Human 0
Cat 1: Human 0 – or –

3 reasons why cleaning is dangerous:
  1. If you clean off all the crap on the edge of your dangerous porch that has no railing, you might fall off of it.
  2. Your cats are probably trying to kill you. 
  3. Your cats could care less if you broke your ankle, so long as they had fun while you were doing it and you continue to make sure they are fed and cared for.  
What does that have to do with ADHD, you ask?  
  1. We have been living with a cluttered and dirty back porch since the late last year
  2. We FINALLY cleaned it off 3 days before the event… (hint, it didn’t pay off- as I said, cleaning is dangerous)
  3. People with ADHD often have poor balance and are subject to many accidents
  4. Having a sense of humor helps me when times are hard
  5. And there’s more, but my brain is scrambled and I’m not going to push it today

My blog this week was actually supposed to be about how to get back into the swing of things when your routines change.  Sadly, I cannot bear to write about that right now, so instead you get this somewhat disjointed, hopefully a little humorous, and as per usual, extremely vulnerable post. 

Where we’re coming from:

As you know, if you read my last blog a couple of weeks ago, my family and I went on an epic quest to southern CA to see a concert.  It was indeed epic, driving nearly 2000 miles with two very chatty teenagers who are totally into punk and heavy metal.  It was epic, and it was not quiet.  

I needed at least a week to recover my sensibilities.  You see, I’m a sensitive person and several days with my wonderful husband and two loud teenagers in a very small and fast-moving container really left my nerves raw.  

Finally back on track!

We got back on the 11th, I had a very busy 4 days of work, a slightly restful weekend full of house projects (including cleaning off the deck mentioned above), and then we were all set to start our new summer schedules.  

Oops!

We were off to a good start and getting things done.  Come Wednesday, day three of getting our shit together, the dogs managed to open up the back door and let one of the cats out.  This chonk of a cat… she is soft and fluffy and spoiled and will lie down and roll over for any dog (or coyote) that she meets. 

Chubby cat sitting indelicately on a sofa
Lyra, the soft, fluffy, chonk, will roll over for any dog, or probably coyote, she meets.

Rob, cat-dad extraordinaire, was very worried.  Of course he went out looking…for the cat.  Sadly, he forgot to also look at the ground, fell off the porch, and broke his ankle in three places.  Had we not cleaned off the porch, I’m quite sure this would not have happened (cleaning is dangerous!).  

Ta ta, getting back into the swing of things…

Shit happened and life moved forward
 

One ER trip down and the orthopedic doctor scheduled in seven days, we focus on making sure Rob gets plenty of rest while the rest of the family tries to keep Lyra (renamed Shithead), out of my sight.  We limp along (sorry), to the ortho appointment where the surgeon walks in and says, “Hi, you need surgery.  How about tomorrow?”

And here I am, writing this blog post in an empty hospital room while some Dr. rivets my husband’s ankle back together.  I’m exhausted, worried about Rob, and dreading a long road to recovery.  We’re looking at 2 weeks of mostly bed rest, 6 weeks with no weight bearing, and 12 weeks with at least some sort of assistive device needed.  It could definitely be worse.  Shithead (a.k.a. Lyra) could have been eaten by coyotes (she showed up demanding food a few minutes after Rob’s fall), Rob’s could have broken his neck instead of his ankle, and we could not have ADHD.

ADHDers, crisis, and resiliency

There are studies out there that suggest that ADHD is an evolutionary adaptation giving us brains that can be creative and find resources when times are tough.  There is much anecdotal evidence that many ADHDers are good in a crisis, and thrive in high-stress environments (for example, our nurse at the hospital had ADHD and was both a surgical nurse and an ER nurse).  Additionally, Some folks also think ADHDers are just more resilient because we’ve faced so much adversity in our lives.  

I know, ADHD isn’t always a gift, but I’m really great in a crisis, am resilient and can pivot when needed, and I’m creative.  I was calm and collected during the initial urgency of the broken ankle.  For the past week, I’ve made sure everyone in the house remained comfortable and cared for and have tried to keep some normalcy in my work schedule.  

I can stay resilient, remain calm in a crisis, handle change after change and pivot after pivot, and I can keep this going, blindly doing everything I need to do without a thought.  But if I do that, life around the edges starts to crumble, both my sleep and my health deteriorate, and eventually I burn out.    

It’s hard to stop, step back, and take care of myself.

It is difficult, especially in a crisis, for me to pay attention to my needs.  In order to stay resilient, flexible, healthy, and capable, I need to take a long soak in the tub now and then, and get out in the garden and get my hands in the dirt.  I need to play and laugh with my kiddo and my doggos.  I need to write.  I need to coach. I need to keep building my business.  Most importantly, and possibly most challenging, I need to ask for some help.  

Needless to say, we’re now two weeks into summer vacation and we are NOT back into the swing of things.  But that’s ok!  Shit happens, life is hard, and we can handle it. 

I’m not going to promise an article on getting into the swing of things in my next blog post, but I will promise to share whatever I find that helps me on this journey I’m going through with Rob.  Fingers crossed that the next two weeks are less eventful!

Update
Long haired tuxedo cat with yellow eyes and airplane ears, unabashedly staring in an ornery fashion.
Olive, the ornery cat-burglar who kept me up all night after a very long day and week…

I was a complete disaster yesterday (day after surgery).  I’d been in crisis mode for 9 days and the full day in the hospital, topped by a terrible night’s sleep (thanks, Olive who kept breaking into our bedroom all night!) had taken a toll.  I chose not to fight it, though I’m not sure I had a choice.  I did have a long soak in the tub, a two hour nap, and was asleep again by 9 pm. 

Family got my back.  Rob’s parents came by with a very well timed dinner last night.  Today Alex is being amazing; helping out around the house and doing a lot of cooking (we had home made biscuits with home made fresh strawberry jam for breakfast this morning!), and I’m working, I certainly still lack focus.  The cats are still tormenting me, though I did thwart any more break-ins by Olive (ornery cat burglar pictured here).  The dogs are being the best beasties that they are (best doggos pictured here).  Things are seeming a little bit more normal.

Two dogs, snuggled up together and snoozing peacefully, looking like the angels they are.
The best doggos, Amiea (white and brown) and Gwem (black and white).

Maybe we’ll start getting into the swing of things after all…unless the cats have more tricks up their sleeves…  

And always remember: Cleaning is dangerous!

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