The past week has been a valuable exercise in discipline, pushing me to write and learn more frequently. However, I've come to the conclusion that I was devoting too much time to these activities rather than building and experimenting.
This post touches on the above, but it primarily explores what's been happening around and within me.
I plan to write a detailed kitchen repair and remodel post once the remodeling is complete. However, I believe it's important to address this in the current post. About 3 ½ weeks ago, we had a water leak in the kitchen and since that day, we've had less and less access to a working kitchen. The first week felt a bit crazy with a water damage mitigation company being in and out every day to get the place dried but after about a week of that, we got the kitchen demoed which left us with no counters, no sink, and a hollow room with nothing but plastic sheets covering it. With each passing day, it felt more and more like we're camping in our own house than living in it. No running water on the main floor and no sink to easily go rinse your hands or dishes.
Naturally, this led to a depressing feeling of not being at home while being at home. So, part of this post is writing about what a mental strain it is to not have a living space that feels "normal". I've been feeling overwhelmed by it and of course, I'd feel even worse if it wasn't for Kristen's help in pushing through a lot of the planning.
The other thing I want to write about is a holistic overview of what's going on within me, my mind and my body. There are numerous studies showing a relationship between the gut microbiota and mental health [1, 2, 3, 4], and for me this has become a jarring reality I've been dealing with over the last month. Right before I got back home from Idaho last month, I had been feeling an increase need to run to the restroom and I thought it was just a matter of having eaten something bad that was bothering my stomach. Well, over the proceeding weeks, this situation got worse and worse to the point where I had to go to the doctor and get checked.
Over the last 6-7 years, I've gone to the doctor at least once a year to get blood drawn. This all started with a 23andMe genetic marker mentioning that I might have thalassemia, which is an inherited form of anemia caused by faulty synthesis of hemoglobin. The blood results confirmed this and in short, it meant I should definitely not have kids with someone carrying this gene as well. But as the years passed, the anemia started to become more prominent and recently with the gut issues, it has been causing me to feel pretty tired midway through the day. At some point in the afternoon, I will want to just lay down and sleep. The reason this has become even more of an issue is because I've stopped drinking coffee as my morning drink due to the gut issues. According to the doctor, so far, I have nothing serious to worry about with my gut, it might just be my colon trying to heal from stress and bad foods. In an effort to promote gut health, I've decided to reduce unnecessary external or self-imposed stressors.
Being active by walking and exercising is high on my list. Next is watching what I eat, trying to consume whole foods with enough iron to support my body's lowered ability to hold onto it. And of course, getting adequate sleep.
Taking care of my body will hopefully lead me to building some useful and fun things but at the moment, I wanted to write about these two things on my mind because they're affecting me immediately.
Moving on to projects and ideas I have been experimenting with, the last month has been spent in a sort of wandering place within my mind, no real concrete ideas or projects have been done and over the last few days, this reality has become more jarring and scary for me. Not building something, not having an active project always makes me feel like I'm not doing enough. But I think using this break in building has led me to realize that I should narrow my focus onto one specific thing and stick with it longer. Build towards a goal, build over the bumps and roadblocks, and hopefully put something good and useful out there.
Over the next few days (and possibly weeks), I will be cutting down on things that take away my focus and eat away at my time and see where I am at by the time the kitchen is ready to go which won't be until late November.