Energy is relative. We all know this, but sometimes it takes a little blip in the radar to remind us of this.
My blip came in the form of my recently having surgery, followed by a week (this week!) of homebound recuperating.
Doctor’s orders meant no driving, no working, no lifting…pretty much no nothing. Expend no energy.
This initially seemed way too restrictive to me. I was warned by friends and family to go with it and not attempt to run around like a maniac as I usually do. As it turns out, their warnings were unnecessary. I don’t have the energy to do much of anything even if I wanted to.
Getting back to the relativity of energy, all of us do seem to have energy enough to do what we enjoy.
I have enough energy right now, for example, to write this.
If you were in my shoes, what would you choose to do and not do?
I doubt you’d have the energy (doctor’s orders aside) to dust or vacuum. Or to do paperwork. Would you really exhaust yourself by gathering together tax documents, organizing or paying bills, reviewing do-at-home work files?
What else do I seem to have energy for right now? I have just about enough to get up and find the remote, to watch countless hours of crime and cooking shows, to text a friend or two, to play a little Letterpress on my iPhone, and of course to take my pain medication.
I fully expected to include in my ‘can do’ list opening the refrigerator and eating whatever junk food I could find. Luckily, however, my pre-surgery appetite has not returned.
That brings us to another form of energy. Calories.
Officially, a calorie is the amount of energy needed to increase the temperature of one gram of water by one Kelvin at standard atmospheric pressure (approximately 4.2 joules).
Since America never converted to the Metric system and I paid zero attention in chemistry class in high school, this definition escapes me (although I do like the sound of the term joule).
What I do know is that I am burning very little energy doing very little. So, it’s good that I am also eating very little.