15 Memes That Nail What It's Like to Have Limited Energy With Chronic Illness


If you live with chronic illness, your energy levels probably don’t work the same as they do for your healthy friends. Those with chronic illness often have limited amounts of energy – and once that energy runs out, there’s no “pushing through.” Your energy reserves are 100 percent depleted until they can be replenished with plenty of rest.

This experience of having limited energy due to a health condition is what inspired Christine Miserandino to create the “spoon theory” – and why so many in the chronic illness community may refer to themselves as “spoonies.” You start each day with a certain number of spoons (or a certain amount of energy), but once you have used up all your spoons, there is nothing more you can do.

Having limited energy can not only be exhausting physically, but it can be taxing mentally as well to be constantly planning ahead and trying to “calculate” what you will and won’t be able to do. But humor can be a powerful coping mechanism for many dealing with these struggles, so we rounded up some memes that nail what it’s like to be a spoonie. Hopefully some of these will bring a smile to your face or, at the very least, remind you that you’re not alone.

1.

when i run out of spoons: (dog sitting on couch wrapped in blanket)
via @myillnessmythoughts Instagram

2.

when you run out of spoons: If you need me I'll be down here on the floor, dying
via painmanagementprincess Tumblr

3.

when you push your limits and end up worse
via @chronicillnessmemes Instagram

4.

when I overdo it and feel a flare coming on... what have I done
via disabilityhealth Tumblr

5.

trying to decide what you want to do vs. what your body needs you to do... life's full of tough choices, isn't it?
via @chronicillnessmemes Instagram

6.

when I run out of spoons: give me a pillow, give me some snacks, because I'm not going anywhere
via disabilityhealth Tumblr

7.

when I end up having a bad flare-up due to overexerting myself... my body is like, go in the corner and think about what you've done
via @xxhaloxkittyxx Instagram

8.

upside nike sign on shirt that says "I just can't"
via @chronicallycari Instagram

9.

sorry, I can't hang out tonight because I want to do something a few days from now
via @migraineloretta Instagram

10.

when you've been enjoying that pain free life for a few days and the fatigue hits
via @aspoonfulofrara Instagram

11.

want to do something today? can't. I did a thing yesterday.
via beatingcowdens.com

12.

when I run out of spoons in the middle of the day... "help"
via tinyspooniechick Tumblr

13.

when you are working on negative spoons
via @mychronicillnessdiary Instagram

14.

when I'm out of spoons, but decide to go out anyway: I immediately regret this decision
via thegirlwhocriedlyme Tumblr

15.

getting home with spoons to spare
via disabilityhealth Tumblr

Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.


Related to Chronic Illness

A picture of the clouds in the sky, tinted with darkness and orange from a sunset or sunrise.

Why Chronic Illness Complicates My Answer When I'm Asked, 'What Do You Need?'

One of this month’s Mighty writing prompts focuses on the question, “What do I need?” This seems to be a simple enough question, but possibly with a complex, multi-layered answer. One way in which we have come to know about human needs is through “Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs,” usually neatly depicted as layers of a [...]
A woman holding a coffee mug, with tea inside it - as well as thyme herb, and lemon slices.

6 Coping Mechanisms That Help My Mental and Physical Illnesses

I sit at my desk before work, eyes locked on the wallpaper of Rivendell from “The Lord of the Rings,” my idea of an exotic island getaway, on the computer screen. Being the first one of the department at work has many benefits; one being time to do my cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) exercises. I [...]
A teacher helping a group of students.

The Prominent Reason I Want to Go to School While Sick

Isn’t it odd how we don’t appreciate what we have until it’s taken away? For me it was like the carpet was ripped from underneath me and I was forced to lie flat on my back as my body went into fight mode. OK, not that dramatic, but reality is I lie in bed as [...]
"you know nothing, jon snow"

17 Memes That Nail What It's Like to Receive Unsolicited Medical Advice

When you live with chronic illness, hearing advice or recommendations from others can often be part of the territory. Sometimes it’s friends or family members who mean well and genuinely want to do whatever they can to help, but other times it may just be someone trying to sell you something. Either way, it can [...]