Sunday, February 16, 2014

Great While it Lasted

I should've knocked on wood. I should've waited for the other shoe. I should've known better, suspected something was UP.


When I wrote last I was feeling amazingly invincible. Absolutely super-hero-ish! Impossibly painfree. And it was that last part that was probably the most surreal thing about my day. It's hard to explain. Maybe it's that you don't know just how uncomfortable you've been -- for so long -- until suddenly you're not. Then the absence of pain is so monumental that you just go around all day waiting for it to find you again. Because you know it will.

That day -- the day I wrote last -- was one of those days, those 'dipped-in-gold' days. A switch had been thrown and I wanted it to stay that way forever....

I was tempted to write down every little thing I'd done, every change I'd made, just so I could hopefully recreate the circumstances and feel That Dang Good again, whenever I wanted. Was it the way I made my coffee? Was it because I had peanut butter on rice bread instead of wheat? Was it because I went straight to the shower after getting up instead of immediately feeding the Zoo? Nothing I'd done seemed out of the ordinary....

Yet the absence of pain was like being in an impossible dream. I was focused; living in the moment instead of fractured in pieces as usual, a victim of sensory overload. My joints didn't feel like rusty coat hangers. The feet didn't hurt, the side didn't burn, the wrist didn't cramp. There was a pleasant peace inside my head and a silly smile on my face. My bus ride was a joy; the sun beaming through the window onto my face felt like I'd been transported to Paradise. My lunch was sublime; my tummy was so happy for it that I literally danced in my restaurant seat, James laughing at my ridiculousness. No negativity invaded my bubble. My head was quiet, my body weightless, my thoughts serene and sparkly and one-at-a-time instead of all rapid fire.....

I'm sure I've written here before about Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia and being old enough now to feel some arthritis, blahdy blah. And I'm sure I've bored you silly about what it's like to be me, feeling uncomfortable so many days/weeks/months in a row that pain is the new normal. And with that pain comes limitations, and with those limitations comes depression, and it all works together to disturb my sleep and wreck my life and pack on the pounds, etc. Poor me. (Poor YOU, more like it, reading about my aches and pains....)

So when a day dawns that's not normal, it's noticed in spades. James even noticed it. He'd laugh out loud for no reason and when I asked him what was so funny he'd say, "It's nothing. It's just that you're so happy." Was it that unusual? Apparently. All day long I felt like I was stuck in a Disney cartoon, with little bluebirds on my shoulders and everything.

But then later that night? BOOM! Serious sore throat. Sniffles, coughs, chills. Maybe it was all the pre-cold symptoms that had me dancing earlier. Maybe I was drunk with fever.... Or maybe I'd tempted Fate.... All I know is pain had found me again.

And since then it's been doing the Happydance....


Granted, it all could be worse -- I've got some tricks up my sleeve now to deal with things like this that lay me low. And to my credit I've been able to continue the Neverending Studio Overhaul, allbeit in slow little bits.

But it still surprises me how hard it is, how different it is to recover from stuff now that I'm older. Now there are naps involved. Plural. And a lot of plain old shutting-down-and-taking-care-of-myself. It's not like the Old Days when I could just knock back some Dayquil and soldier on.

And just because I stop doesn't mean everything else does. Valentine's Day (one of my fave holidays) came and went and I did my best under the circumstances. And messages continue to pile up and go unanswered. Work remains undone. There are comments to acknowledge and 'belated happy birthdays' to wish. I look around and there are still boxes to unpack and sort. Cages to clean. Dishes to be put away. Olympic games to catch up on.... Bummer.

But all that will have to wait a bit longer. Because for right now it's tea and a book and a quilt and a cat.


  1. delayne, so sorry to hear you suffer from such ugly things as CFS and FM on a daily basis. I remember those days so well, and am so very glad I've recovered. If you're like me, the biggest problem is quality of sleep. Have you tried any of the over the counter sleep meds just to see if consistent deep sleep helps? My dr. said the sleep aids were ok for a limited amount of time (they are not habit forming). Then, if it helps, there are prescription alternatives. I know stress and exercise made my symptoms worse. I also tried acupuncture which was the very first thing that helped. I slept at least 10 years of my life away in addition to the pain, so I know what you're dealing with. I hope you can find relief.
    xoxo Laurel

    1. Thanks, Laurel. I've been studying what I can about both CFS and FM (a person could make it their job, couldn't they?), but I'm a slow learner, and I don't always put into practice what I learn. Or I forget. Or I get used to pain being normal.... I don't see a medical professional about it (still no health insurance), so everything has to be 'kitchen medicine,' if that makes sense. And, like you, I find that stress and exercise just compound the problem. I do try sleep aids, and I've thought that perhaps a sleep study might help someday.... I have to ask: What DID you do to completely recover?? Was it a combination of acupuncture and sleep aids? Do you use a CPAP device?