I’ve had some extended vacation time recently and shortly I’m probably going to get questions about how I enjoyed it. It would be tempting to nod and smile and quickly change the subject since the answer I’d truthfully give is hard to understand and not what people would want to hear or expect, I’ve actually found it rather like a form of torture.

Its an open secret that for whatever reason I seem to suffer from some kind of fatigue. There is no known medical explanation for it, the catch all “we don’t know” of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) being the “diagnosis” once you rule out everything else. So what does that mean in practise? Imagine having a finite store of energy which replenishes at a fixed rate. As long as I use it carefully at a rate approximating the replenishment rate I’m perfectly fine. If I do something strenuous, I need to go easier for a while to allow the store to replenish and for example with the motorcycle trail riding, there will be a mild price to pay (say approximating flu like symptoms the following day). The real problems start if you use up a large amount of the store, I’ve experimented to varying degrees and near involuntary collapse followed by a week of feeling like you were badly beaten in a boxing ring is a possible outcome. I’ve carefully improved my general health and fitness over the past few years in the hope it would help. Sadly the size of the store or rate of replenishment doesn’t seem to change, even if I’ve noticed significant other improvements in my general fitness.

A colleague recently posted about being unable to do nothing and I had to smile since I share this “problem”. Combine this with the fatigue and you can see where this is going. There are a ton of things I want to do yet I know that if I try and do them, there will be a price to pay. The availability of extra time puts temptation in place and to be honest, I’ve totally overdone the activities and physically feel like a wreak now, yet I haven’t used the time as fully as I’d have liked either.

So if you ask me if I enjoyed my vacation and I laugh you might better understand why. That isn’t to say I haven’t done some things I’ve wanted to do for a while or enjoyed. I also appreciate things could be much worse too!