Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Living With The Spoon Theory

I'm starting to understand the spoon theory. The theory created by one girl trying to describe to a friend how she only has limited reserves of energy a day as she lives with a life long medical condition. Full details can be found here.

I knew I was feeling more fatigued this past year but this week it's actually dawning on me how it works, in practical terms for me living with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome.

Today I did an nine hour shift at work. There was an hours drive each side of that, so I was out the house eleven hours. When I got in I wanted to head straight into my home office before sitting down and getting too comfortable, and do some work on my WIP. Tea had been sorted by my wonderful other half. But my little man had come in upset after a disagreement with his friends and he wanted to watch a film with me we had recorded last week.

That's where the spoon theory and choice came in. I didn't have enough spoons (energy) to watch the film and spend quality snuggle time with little man, and then get up and do some work. I chose the main priority. Little man. There are plenty of days he plays out and doesn't want his mum but I felt a little frustrated as I have self imposed deadlines for work I'm doing and I have to accept I can't do everything.

I do actually have to spread out the things I want to do and work hard as hell on the novel when I get chance. Today wasn't that day. I will make it up at some other point though.

It's about living and recognising and planning. I can do everything, just maybe not all at the same time.


  1. I remember when you first introduced me to the spoon theory. It made things so much easier to understand.

    I hope you enjoyed the film and that can catch up with the novel another time. Just don't forget to take care of yo :-)

  2. Wow, I am much debilitated by my EDS so the things I achieve in a day are miniscule compared to your opening gambit of .... after a nine hour day at work!

    It only occured to me lately that I think I use spoons in my sleep, dislocating & subluxing whilst I sleep means it is non restorative. I had not previously thought that I may have been robbed of a few spoons here and there before I had even started the day. So no wonder by the end of the day I constantly feel my spoon discaclulia is winning. A reason perhaps why when it comes to making a post on my blog my brain is fugged, my body screaming far too much for my fingers to type!

    I wish mine were the age yours is, the thought of snuggling on the sofa watching a childs film is a blissful memory. A 19 year old son who is obsessed with The Inbetweeners is not my idea of fun. Although I will say daughter aged 21 (also with EDS) is not adverse to watching Narnia when her spoons are low. Although we are far too wriggly pained EDSers to share a sofa!

    I hope the watching of the film and the snuggling gave you a rest and number one sons troubles melted away.

    Is it greedy to want more spoons in a day......

  3. This is the way I've been feeling of late, but I think it has to do with something different.

    Tossing It Out

  4. I was first introduced to the spoon theory a few years ago by an aquantance who has Lupus. It makes alot of sense. I can imagine that it must be discouraging, but remember how much you've already accomplished by completing your first novel! You've done alot more than most people who don't even have to deal with things like the spoon theory. :)

  5. Sarah - It's a great concept for helping people understand how it can be living day to day life. Luckily I'm having quite a good burst and I'm fully making the most of it! :)

    Rachel - It's not greedy at all. I wish I could give you some. Unlike you, my EDS is not so severe. I don't dislocate in the night, though there may be the odd minor shift of a subluxation easily wriggled back into place. I'm having a good run at the minute and am making the most of it while I can.

    Lee - Our bodies tend to start feeling the strain of our day to day living as we age and we start to notice nothing is as easy as it used to be. There are all sorts that can go wrong, but some are just things we need to live with. Keep an eye on yourself and if you need to, make sure you get yourself checked out.

    Ranae - Thanks Ranae. I know I have it fairly minorly compared to some sufferers. I know Lupus is incredibly difficult to live with. I'm making the most of a good run at the minute and holding on to the hope that I don't have a massive crash to compensate. I know I'm fairly active still and I'm loving the writing :)