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OUT OF SPOONS [CC]


[BUZZ/CLICK] Hello, hello! It’s #LetsTalkTuesday so let’s talk about
spoon shortage. If that sounds weird to you.. Um.. maybe because you might not know what
a Spoonie is, I made a longer video about what it means and how I feel about it and I’ll link it here:
but in short a Spoonie is someone with a chronic illness who identifies with The Spoon
Theory, basically that theory uses spoons as the metaphorical measurement for the limited
energy/ability one has with chronic illness. If you’re still having a hard time understanding,
just stick around because I think as I talk about it a bit more, you’ll get it. So last week I was only able to upload two
videos, my goal is always 4-5 videos a week, but what happened was I decided to do the
physical activity of cleaning my room for Wednesday’s video and after about 30 minutes
of trying, I was “out of spoons”. For me, “out of spoons” means I am done! I am in high levels of pain, extreme fatigue,
like to the point of passing out, like the two combined, I don’t even know how I’m
still conscious at that point. Like… wow! I think on an average day, the fact that a
spoonie runs on SPOONS is therefore a constant state of “low spoons”, like compared to everyone else,
at least that’s what I think. A GOOD day is between 50% and 75% on the meter. Like there’s never a moment that I feel
100, I constantly feel a pain and tightness as though I were just in a car accident, to
the point where when I actually did get in a terrible car accident this year, and they
asked me about pain, I said, “I’m in just as much pain as I am any other day, so I can’t
tell if I’m actually injured.” So for me, the activity that triggered the loss of spoons
was physical, whenever I stand I have these sharp pains in my feet; at the beginning of experiencing
symptoms of my illness I thought I had fractures in both my heels, so.. Yeah. I can tolerate standing for a VERY short period
of time usually (sometimes I can’t even stand for a second and sometimes I can last
a surprising 5 minutes, as long as I shift my weight). But I– as I push myself the pain
becomes more and more intolerable. And then [PACMAN DEATH SOUND EFFECT]. #Dead. But being “out of spoons” is going to
mean different things for different spoonies depending on their illness. Like others, I can also experience loss of
spoons in regards to mental illness. Two examples that I can think of is being
in social environments can cost me spoons in regards to anxiety and certain content,
bullying, or circumstantial sadness can trigger my depression, and body dysmorphic disorder, and
then suicidal thoughts. In those situations, one might say, “I don’t
have enough spoons to deal with this right now” and that is self-protection or self-care. On Twitter [DING] I asked fellow spoonies
to tell me what “out of spoons” means to them and answers varied all around, I’ll
link the tweet in the description so you can check out all the responses. Anyway, so I just wanted to talk about that
today, because more often not, when I don’t produce a video, that’s where I’m at;
I’m “out of spoons” or drastically low on spoons. I’m either so fatigued or depressed that
I sleep for days or it’ll be a pain flare that is keeping me in bed or I’m unable to use my hands,
or in the past couple of weeks I’ve been having stomach problems, trouble eating and
keeping it down (aka: vomiting). And it’s really annoying to not be
diagnosed and know what are symptoms of my illness
and what is possibly just a stomach flu, or if it’s something that’s here to stay,
and I have to adjust my diet to… I don’t know. If you’re a spoonie, let me know what “out
of spoons” means to you in the comments below and if you’re not a spoonie, I hope
this helped you understand a little bit about why your spoonie friends and loved ones might
“flake out on you” or be “unreliable”… It’s NOT… because we don’t want to be there, it’s not because
we’re lazy, or because we don’t try hard enough,… It’s because that what chronic illness does, it
can take everything out of you… aka: “out of spoons”. … I’ll see you all eventually. Bye! [OUTRO MUSIC]

42 thoughts on “OUT OF SPOONS [CC]

  1. I never thought I'd need spoons to understand the concept of chronic illness and what it's like to live with it but that actually made so much sense!

  2. I wish I could give you more spoons!… I have Usher sd (retinitis pigmentosa + hard of hearing in both ears) but I'm functional yet and I have very seldom experienced the "out of spoons" feeling. Thank you so much for explaining this concept to us. Hope you'll have better days! Your videos are great!

  3. The physical activity spoons definitely affect and deplete the mental and emotional activity ones. I often have to choose if I'm going to try to do something physical or work on writing/editing, which is more important to me than anything. Social spoons are on there someplace, too, because they can certainly trigger anxiety depending on who I'm around and what's said, but all social activity is draining, and if often involves physically going somewhere so there's that. I can be out of social spoons, but able to write/edit or spend time online in safe social media spaces.

  4. Sunday was a great example of what happens when I run out spoons.
    I have trauma related to Foster Care, that's why I want to be a foster parent. A few weeks ago, my sister in law called CPS on my sisters family. When the search found nothing and my sister wanted to know who did it, my S-I-L blamed me and my sister believed her. Fast forward to Sunday, my sister's twin sons are turning 6, so they host a bbq. I still live at home, as a care taker to my parents so my mother forced me to go to the party/bbq. Anxiety ran high the whole time, and then when that was over, my younger brother wanted to have friends over. Meaning I had to chaperone unknown teenagers. I made it through about an hour before turning into an emotional super nova. I freaked out on my friends via group chat about my ex being able to do well, then I blocked her so I couldn't check up on her anymore. Just, Full meltdown mode, wasting every last spoon that should have been focused on taking care of the guests in my house. I went to bed two hours before they left, my bulging disc agitated, my joints sore, my mind numb, fatigued, I'd given myself a migraine even! Just making more work for in the morning. I am still recovering from that.
    (Sorry this is so long, I thought context was needed)

  5. I didn't know about spoonies, but what I use is the idea of an energy cannister from Monsters Incorporated being depleted

  6. This is so so helpful, thank you <3
    I have chronic fatigue and because I can sometimes get into the swing of doing things and not be stuck in bed, and I've been told it's possible to get rid of my anxiety and get better (because the physical pain is caused by the anxious thoughts and behaviour), I feel I don't have a right to use these terms and identify, and I feel a lot of guilt about not doing things even though I "should" be able to.
    I'm so so sorry you aren't diagnosed. I went from age 7 to 20 not knowing why I had all these symptoms and felt horrible most of the time until finally a doctor believed me and ran all tests they could think of and found out it was IBS and CFS caused by anxiety. That was 4 years ago and I'm slowly finding ways to deal with things, like knowing when something is going to just upset me and cause a spiral of anxiety and deplete all my energy (I like your gas tank and traffic lights metaphors/analogies? as I don't know how much energy I'll have and usually either overexert myself or don't do anything for fear of being so exhausted I go into deep depression, anxiety, worse symptoms etc.) and I'm slowly getting more confidence and acceptance of how I am now and trying to still do the things I've always wanted to do (like write) but in smaller steps so I don't get too exhausted and feel I have to start from scratch again (I get into good routines for a few days or a week at a time but then do a bit too much or sleep in the day as I tend to do and get so anxious and exhausted I have to start from what feels like the beginning.)
    I didn't manage to make it to the cinema today because I had bad symptoms and didn't have much time to get ready so thought I'd be rushing so much I'd be exhausted by the time I got to the cinema and wouldn't be able to concentrate on the film. It's so frustrating.
    Anyway, hope this makes sense and hope so much you find a diagnosis and doctors who care about you more than their pride (I'm so so lucky to have finally found one after years of being told I'm just fat and lazy). Thank you so so much for your videos, they mean a lot. To learn more about others and myself and feel less alone.

  7. I think that the stomach problems might be a part of your chronic illness. I know that Ehlors Danlos can cause problems in the digestive tract, personally I’ve had issues with my lower digestive tract for the past few years. I hope that was helpful in someway, and I wish I could give you more spoons!!! ❀️

  8. yesterday I ran out of spoons. a friend of mine admitted he wanted to take his life during a visit and I tended to him, meanwhile suffering a migraine. after we had talked, we decided to walk to a store, but it was too far for me before I was borderline hyperventilating from pain. my spoons are taken up when I sit down, actually, because of my neck pain. so I couldn't sit through more than 30 minutes of a movie. I dont think I can hang out with him again today, just because I am definitely mentally out of spoons. and yes! I am never 100%. I am always uncomfortable physically and people don't understand that, even after I take pills. "how are you feeling now?" eh! still hurting.

  9. Thanks for this. Ally used it (the phrase) a few weeks ago and it was the first time I had heard of the theory 😘

  10. i have depression & anxiety & probably other unidentified neurodivergences (my brain's a mess, pretty much lol) and for me, out of spoons can mean any combination of these symptoms: i do not have it in me to focus on anything, i feel like my bones are made of lead, dissociation, i feel like there is a constant screaming in my head (more than usually), suicidal ideation, self harm urges, sensory overload, going semi-verbal (i've never gone full-on nonverbal though), & some other things. for some of these things they dont really feel like no/low spoons if they're just on their own (but when combined with other things it's a whole other story), but with others i might experience just one of the things but it's bad enough that it's no spoons for me. Either way, it generally results in me lying in my bed curled up, either staring at the wall or restlessly trying to watch some tv show but not really paying full attention.
    i personally kinda jump between using the terms 'i don't have the spoons for this' and 'i just don't have the mental energy for this' bc sometimes the latter will convey what i feel well enough & i don't feel like Spoon Theory 101-ing people, but sometimes i either know that someone knows abt spoon theory or i just feel like 'not having the mental energy' doesn't quite cover it well enough.

  11. For me, "out of spoons" is something that comes about completely unexpectedly. I could be having a good day, 80% on the meter, doing my thing, and I'll sit down, or stop for a minute, and suddenly it catches me by surprise and the meter plummets to 0 and I can't keep my eyes open. That's why I'm scared to have good productive days, because although I can feel perfectly fine WHILE being productive, it's the moment AFTER that has me bed ridden.

  12. I have EDS, and out of spoons, for me, is basically the same as yours. I can't do anything apart from lay in bed, eyes shut, trying to relax through the pain. I'm unable to form sentences, I cannot get up to do anything, and some of the time I can't even look at my phone. If I'm lucky, I'll fall asleep. It's so frustrating being so unbelievably fatigued/exhausted yet unable to actually sleep. It'll hit completely randomly as well. I could be – as you were – cleaning, or maybe making a sandwich or a cup of tea. Or I could be sitting at my computer scrolling tumblr, and it'll just hit me that I'm done. I start dissociating, not realising what's happening, and if my boyfriend doesn't point out that I need to lie down, the pain gets worse, the sensory overload gets worse, and I become suuuper cranky. I really like the spoons analogy, although it took a long time for me to actually like it. I'm autistic, and for ages just couldn't grasp it. Why spoons? How are spoons a unit of energy?? I still find it confusing if I think about it too much. I prefer a battery analogy, some battieries are bigger than others, you can charge them at points in the day, sometimes they hold less charge than other times, some batteries deplete faster than others, one battery may lose capacity over time, etc, etc. I like to say that my battery can only hold 50% of an abled person's, max. And most days it isn't fully charged. I need regular breaks (recharging) and even then my charging cable might be a bit dodgy. Great video Annie πŸ™‚ You may want to look into Gastroparesis for your stomach and see if you relate to it – it's an EDS comorbid.

  13. I go back and forth on whether or not to identify with spoon theory, largely because I can't tell when I'm losing spoons. Like, today, for example, I made dinner, which involved a lot of chopping and grating and a LOT of stirring. I knew that it hurt my right arm, and that I've been having trouble with that arm a lot in the past few days. I did not know that it hurt it so badly that I would have to give up on cleaning the kitchen and lay in bed with my arms at my sides and try not to move. Like, trying to conserve spoons never works for me because I can't tell when I've done too much until after I've rested (in this case, just by eating dinner) and then tried to do something again.

  14. Out of spoons, for me, means: I am so out of energy and in so much pain/sensory overload I am nonverbal, probably crying, physically unable to participate in activities besides sitting/laying there, and I eventually fall asleep.

    Fortunately for me, I haven't been out of spoons in a long time, however I am often low on spoons.

    I hope your spoons get replenished soon!

  15. i had seen you talk about spoon theory on twitter, but i don't totally get why its a theory if it seems to equate to level of energy no?

  16. I don't get completely out of spoons that often any more but when I do I go into full on zombie mode. I will sleep a lot and won't remember much from the times when I'm awake, I'll have conversations with people and ot remember a thing about them. I will be in a lot of pain in times when I'm awake and I have more POTS episodes including fainting (which then of course steas more spoons).

    I'm sure you'll have seen but just in case you haven't gastroparesis is pretty common in people with EDS so it's worth mentioning the stomach issues to your Dr who is looking at that.

  17. we have the same definition of out of spoons!! definitely means I have absolutely nothing in the tank. btw we have like the same hair in this video haha my hair's lilac atm. πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–

  18. I'm lucky because i can push through doing things while out of spoons its just I loose more functions. for example feeling dizzy to the point of walking into things or not being able to cross roads with out following people. probably sounds silly but if i get tired enough and pain gets to me i forget how to talk. whats more annoying about being out of spoons is I usually don't realise how much of a problem me not being able to communicate at all is for other people… I can't say no i can't do this thing I just do it and get more tired because working out to say or type or sign no would be using spoons i don't have.

  19. Great video!! Love your work. It would be better and Would be kinda cool if in your description/ video info you put a link to my site www.butyoudontlooksick.com or www.thespoontheory.com To allow for people to find the original article, author and community builder. So they can learn and experience for themselves about Christine Miserandino and the community she has built. Especially since her work us TM and copyrighted. πŸ’œ

  20. To me it's like someone has sucked the energy out of me, it's like I'm drunk or hungover my legs are wobbly I feel shaky and sick I get heart palpitations and can't think clearly, earlier I forgot someone's name and had such a memory blank I had to look on Facebook and find her profile via someone else's because I couldn't think

  21. I wish people would understand this. Dx I'll be feeling awful and people will tell me, "You need to use energy to make energy" or that "exercise will help". Noooooooooooo.

  22. Out of spoons to me is an overwhelming fatigue – like jet lag with added shivering and chest pains (without ever getting on a plane).

  23. Thanks so much for this. It makes so much sense. I'd never heard of this term before I started watching your vlog….maybe it's not something people say in the UK where I live now or in South Africa which is my home country. We usually just say "I'm knackered" which means completely wrecked, but most people use that, not just for chronic illness. I have been saying "my batteries are flat", and my family and friends do get that I mean I urgently need to rest or disappear into my bubble for a while to get a grip on my illness-related anxiety, which is huge. Love your vlogs so much! πŸ˜ŠπŸ’–πŸŒˆ xxx

  24. Out of spoons to me is being so fatigued and in pain that I can barely move or make myself get out of bed and do my normal things.

  25. Out of spoons for me is being very fatigued but I am able to walk around a little bit but not a lot then instantly crashing after I'm done with it and experiencing back and leg pain.

  26. I've heard and seen this term a lot, but this entire time thought it only referenced a specific issue. Looking back, I was following several people who knew each other and retweeted/shared from the same community (about that illness) and so I thought it only applied to them. I honestly thought they meant "I am so wiped out that I am in the spoon position" or something.

    Man, our brains fill in a lot of details. Next time I will just ask!

  27. So glad I'm not the only one that needs (NEEDS) a nap after 15-30 minutes of cleaning. But I don't have too much pain. Pain is almost always about a 3, but doesn't ever exceed a 7.

  28. Out of spoons means I've gone to far. Done too much. I've wrecked myself and now I'll be bed ridden for days maybe weeks.

  29. "Out of Spoons" for me: Boy! I'm almost speechless πŸ™ I would have to describe this as being so physically AND mentally exhausted that I can no longer bear the pain of standing, or lifting my arms, or thinking! My body? literally tries to drop me to the ground and shuts OFF!!! My wife and adult "disabled" daughter depend on me every minute of every day so, I barely have any time to "try" and deal with my own chronic health issues. Because of them depending on me, I PUSH myself even harder when I'm in pain (which is 24/7) and suffer the consequences for days and even months afterward.

  30. "Out of spoons" means for me that not even my cane can save me, I just flat out can't walk. It means that I can't bring myself to eat, or get up to get food in the first place, even though I have to a ton.
    (hypoglycemia) it means that if I want literally anything to happen, to move, change, I have to have someone do it for me, because I can't even go from sitting to laying down without my migraine getting worse. ''Out of spoons'' means earplugs and sunglasses in a silent, unlit house at night.

  31. Have you been proven any supplement? My mum has this illness I have some symptoms also as fatigue extreme sometimes, but we take supplements that helps

  32. For me out of spoons means I can't function I can't think, I'll start to break down, I'll get sensory overload, and major panic attacks

  33. I LOVE your videos. God you so remind me of me (in many ways). I have multiple sclerosis and Fibromyalgia and am trying to do videos about living with disabilities. I find you inspirational!

  34. For me low on spoons means all my body is in high pain and i feel fatigued. I had a blood test and drama exam today but yesterday i overdid it so now at the end of the day im out of spoons and its hard to walk or sit up.

  35. I look for spoons under my pillow in the AM. I wake up tired everyday but MS does that, I think my mother who has another autoimmune condition is the only one who gets what this fatigue feels like. Best words I have to describe it is Soul Crushing.

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