I’ve been out a few times in the last three weeks, and I’ve been further each time. On Monday I went into Gateshead to change my address with the bank, and also looked around the shops and bought a few items, including some long stripey socks On Wednesday I was feeling really well for me (no payback!) so we went into Newcastle, looked around some shops (hunting for some Pony hair accessories, but we went into the wrong H&M and the right one was closed a couple of hours early) and then went to get some food at TGI Fridays in the Gate. It was brilliant, especially since I got to go on the Metro on the way home and see all the bridges lit up
In my last post (if you could understand it ) I complained that I couldn’t sit upright as I was too floppy, but otherwise was well enough to do stuff. We discovered that if we tied me upright in my wheelchair, I could go out The first time we used a scarf, then when that worked we bought a proper torso harness which does an even better job. Because I no longer have to put all my energy into remaining upright, being outside, travelling and stuff is doable.
I’m loving how much I’ve improved in the last few weeks. I can go on my computer for as long as I want (was 7 hours yesterday, which may have been a bit too long as my bottom was very sore by the end of it ).I can cope with noise and light even better than Johan a lot of the time. I’ve been able to reduce my painkillers as pain is mostly at a bearable level now and I can use distractions such as computer games to deal with it. I’ve gotten out of bed every day for a few weeks now I think. I can watch some television.
There are a couple of things that are frustrating me though. The first is that cognitively, I’m still not doing great. Conversations, reading lots of text, remembering things, concentrating on stuff- all are now more difficult than going outside. I got frustrated while in Newcastle because I wasn’t able to direct Johan where I wanted to go. The CFS clinic people came out a week and a bit ago, and the half hour conversation (with me lying in bed) absolutely exhausted me, and I got payback from it. Johan talks to me but half the time I don’t know what about, or don’t hear him because I wasn’t able to concentrate on what he said. I can’t keep up with Facebook and even struggle with Twitter. It’s frustrating as I feel like I’m not aware of what is going on because it requires more brain power than I seem to have. I even suck at playing World of Warcraft, and other people are noticing that I’m making stupid mistakes or losing concentration.
The second is that I still can’t care for myself. My hands are stupid- I can’t reliably hold things as they either cramp and spasm or they just drop things. This means I can’t wash myself, get dressed by myself, use cutlery properly, hold a cup most of the time, write, or do anything else that requires the ability to hold things reliably. I’m also really weak so repetitive movements such as those required to feed myself (holding things in my hands is easier than cutlery, though I still drop stuff) exhausts me to the point where Johan still has to take over at times. There’s a part of me that’s saying what’s the point in being able to go out if I can’t even look after myself.
Earlier I was on the computer playing World of Warcraft, doing Raid Finder with some guildies. Johan went to the shop to get some fish and chips (compulsory on Good Friday) and I was eating them when suddenly my body decided it had enough and I almost fainted. Johan got me on the sofa and I spent about 15 minutes struggling to stay conscious while my body jerked and spasmed, then it stopped and I was “okay” again, apart from being extra tired. It was as if it was saying no to sitting upright (not wearing the harness as the seat reclines and that’s normally enough for me), eating and concentrating at the same time. We initially thought it might be payback from Wednesday but as I recovered so quickly that didn’t seem to be the case. Was odd, but it’s not the first time my body has suddenly protested like that.
I want to read and comment on blogs more but that’s too much for my brain. In the meantime, this is the song I’ve been listening to lots (which is the inspiration for the post title)