Energy Banking

“The pajamas are right near here,” I say.

“Later, I want to look at shoes now.”

I sigh. We are at the mall, in one of its biggest stores, with lots of acreage. We are there because he wanted more pajamas. There’d been no mention of shoes, and immediately, a thought assails me: the men’s shoe department will makes us walk miles to find.

“You know how I deal with this dis-ease?” I ask, as I chase his long strides. “Like I have an energy bank account. And I can’t spend $100 when I only have $50 in the bank.”

It is his turn to sigh.

We end up skipping the pajamas. He has plenty anyway. Besides, he finds the shoes he’s been wanting. After we pay, he turns to me. “I wanted to go upstairs and eat. Do you think you have enough in your energy bank?”

Wow, maybe after all these years I have finally found a way to get through. To help him visualize how it is sometimes. How the lethargy settles over me, and the energy seeps away. How I’m so tired of being tired.

Now, with no kids underfoot, and no regular job to get in the car and drive to, I should be overflowing with energy.

RA is such a thief.

And this year it seems more greedy than usual. But I try to economize.

Last month our anniversary fell on a Friday and we went out for a nice dinner. We thought we might add a movie to our night out, but the show times were on too late.

It would have been after midnight by time we left the theater. And the next day we had his work picnic and a train ride to go on with our kids and our granddaughters. And I definitely did not want to be tired for that.

So we decided to catch a movie later that same evening, when we could sleep in on Sunday morning. Things are far more enjoyable when I know I can schedule a rest and recovery window.

Though I don’t really “rest.” I occupy myself with things that don’t require much of an expenditure of physical energy, like reading, or writing, or quilting. I make new energy deposits by doing the things I love to do.

I’ve now picked up another activity that takes me away from the tiredness, and the aches and pains, that like to visit me more often than I’d prefer. I’ve taken up coloring. It makes me feel so retro, though I do have my detractors.

“Didn’t you color when you were little?” he says, when I start working on the umpteenth page.

“Nope,” I lie.

I’m pretty sure I got to color in kindergarten. Wasn’t staying within the lines part of the curriculum? But I don’t remember having the luxuries of unlimited crayons and coloring books at home.

Coloring is now being touted as therapy, as it lets you unplug from the day’s trials and tribulations, sort of. I know I can never release the hatch that jettisons RA from my life, but I can allow myself time to forget about my parasitic passenger.

Below: some of my moments of zen. And as Mr. Spock says, “Energize.”



Always dream.


Have faith in you.


Find joy in all the little things.


Live this Eliot quote.


2 thoughts on “Energy Banking

  1. Carla Kienast

    You are so smart to bank your energy and to come up with a way that your husband understands! Love the coloring! And such wonderful quotes. No wonder you gain energy. Sending hugs your way.

  2. phat50chick

    Energize! Great post. Never too late to try educating our men. I have tucked away some dirty words adult coloring books but I haven’t needed one yet. My friend appreciated when I sent her one though. Helped her thru a very dark health time.


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