So, I haven’t been around much in the past year. Sure, the haiku, the quotes, the tweet-sized fiction and the occasional story have been getting posted. But I haven’t made myself known to my readers in ways that I used to. It’s just been pretty mechanical.
And September was the first month since I started Catsignal that I haven’t had at least one story up for you to read. I don’t know how you felt about that, but it makes me sad. On the other hand, the caliber of stories I’ve been writing has made me sad, too. I just don’t have the energy to put into my writing … or anything else, either.
Years ago, I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia syndrome / chronic fatigue syndrome. What that’s meant is that every waking moment I’ve been in pain (and lucky that it’s only my waking moments), and I’ve had less energy to do things than a normal person does.
The fibromyalgia doesn’t actively bother me like it used to; I think I’ve simply become accustomed to a certain level of pain. Sometimes it’s worse, but then it goes back to normal for me. But this past year, the chronic fatigue syndrome has been kicking my ass. I’ve often slept 12 of 24 hours and have been so tired in the time I’ve been awake that I couldn’t focus on anything. Cats have nothing on me for naps. It’s like those last 10 minutes before you go to sleep at night. Think about how you feel then and how productive you are.
I’m not abandoning Catsignal or going on hiatus. As Jonny Geller tells us, “The only thing worse than a deadline for a writer is no deadline.” I still need something to strive for, and I want this place to be active if this problem happens to ease up. I’m working with my doctor on this, but the simple fact is that there is no cure. I keep looking for palliatives but haven’t found any.
I wanted to tell you what the deal with me is and why the site has been so dull (to my eyes, at least). I want to educate more people about FMS/CFS. It’s a real thing that screws up real lives. Like the bride with CFS who was able to attend her wedding but had to skip her reception because she was just too fatigued. It’s not boredom. It’s not laziness. It’s an illness.
Well, anyway, that’s me. How are you doing?