I have done it!
I read 100 pages today, wrote my theology paper, took the quiz, posted in the online forum, did laundry, vacuumed the house, did dishes, and took garbage out. Well, one load of laundry is not put away yet, and the dishes are still in the dishwasher. We will see whether I can get the rest of that done before I leave at 5:30 A.M. The reading and writing is a huge accomplishment, especially considering the fact that I realized around noon that I was complaining to someone that I was hurting and it would perhaps help my fatigue level if I took pain meds. (Of course, it did.) I ended up having to take more later due to a migraine that I waited too long to abort.
I slept for a couple of hours earlier in the evening and am about to do it again. Perhaps I may be able to sleep a bit on the drive. I am afraid of snoring--there is a reason I use CPAP at night. Mom says I don't snore that much. We will see. These trips with people I don't know well are emotionally challenging for me on many levels. My vulnerabilities are laid wide open. That is part of ministry, and I am sure that other people have experienced it anytime they've gone on mission trips, etc. I just don't cope well with it, and I feel a bit more personally vulnerable than the average person. I'm not talking about my nail-biting habit being exposed... I'm talking about people watching me pop 17 little pills in the morning while we drive, trying to find a place to put drops in my eyes and do my inhalers, etc., without disgusting everyone in the process. I have learned to be comfortable doing these things in front of people because sometimes there is no other option; but the question of whether there is a more appropriate place and time to do them so that other people are not uncomfortable is always in my mind. It is an odd part of living with medical conditions... On campus, bathroom stalls make great places for this. On drives, there is no such place unless we stop at the time that my meds are due. I'm also very conscious of the fact that I am likely to slow the group down simply by the fact that my dog needs to relieve as well. This will be her first road trip, and that could prove to be quite an adventure.
I could write a lot more about the issue of disability and vulnerability. I'd like to. It is a bit useful for me to do something that feels like I'm using the feeling in a positive way, talking about what it is like to live with it instead of just living in the fear. This vulnerability feeling is like the elephant in the living room much of the time. Many people feel it, but no one talks about it unless it is to give advice about how to do things correctly, appropriately, etc. The "problem" is that sometimes the feelings don't go away even when you do things well. The feeling of difference is always there, especially when traveling with people you don't know well. So I write about it because perhaps my writing is useful in some way, even if only to make the elephant more tame for someone else.
For now, I need another small bit of sleep.