Tag Archives: tingling

Getting On My Nerves…

special offerIt’s been a stressful week and stress plus MS equals a spike in symptoms.

I have tried everything to stay serene and in control – deep breathing, chocolate, mindfulness, two episodes of Mad Men.

The deep breathing made me feel a bit silly, the chocolate nudged the scales up,  The ‘Power of Now’ was the ‘Power of Not-Right-Now’ and as for Mad Men, well, two episodes are never enough.

For me, it’s mostly an increase in nerve pain. Ever tried describing nerve pain to the uninitiated? Burning, tingling, numbness, crawling, aching doesn’t even begin to cover it.

Tingling sounds delightful, numbness sounds painless, crawling sounds weird and we all ache, don’t we? Just like we all get tired.

It’s been driving me round the twist all week and as always with MS, it doesn’t come alone. It’s the great MS special offer – ‘get one symptom, get three free’. So, as well as the nerve pain, there’s the fatigue, the wonkier walking, the hands that’d be better suited to a Greek taverna. Smashed plates? Yup, as well as my last proper grown up wine glass and yet another chip in yet another bowl.

I lay awake most of last night listening to Izzy miaow loudly. For a tiny cat, she’s got a huge set of lungs. The Teenager got up and shut his door and I was left to ponder the cobwebs on the ceiling and listen to a group of drunk woman sing ‘Simply The Best’ outside my window at 1.30 am. The pain was excruciating and made even more unbearable as my legs started to jerk and twitch.

I wasn’t sure if it was like being possessed by a malevolent spirit (The Exorcist sprang to mind in the wee small hours) or being stretched on a rack. Only problem was, I couldn’t get up and go downstairs as new cat Izzy would think it was perfectly normal to sit in the kitchen listening to the shipping forecast before sunrise. I was trapped and the women outside moved on to a Tom Jones medley, a tortuous backdrop to insane pain.

Action plan for the weekend – rescue ‘The Power of Now’ book from the corner I flung it in to, lie on the sofa with a huge bag of crisps and a relaxing face-pack on and chant, ‘this too shall pass’ over and over and over again…

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You Can Call Me Al

I’m getting used to my new job as a builder’s mate, but am relieved it’s only for a few months. I like my morning latte at McDonalds, nodding to other builders who look at me with sympathy/amusement/shock. I like being a passenger in the van, bumping along the roads.

We head to Spar before work and I spend five minutes dithering between a pork pie, a Scotch egg, a grotty sausage roll or huge white-bread sandwiches for my lunch. The other day one of the assistants looked up as we entered the store and said a cheery, ‘Morning chaps!’ Huh? What is it with everyone thinking I’m a bloke?

The lovely eccentric woman we are working for right now is still calling me ‘Alan’ and it’s my new builder’s nickname, but at least it’s better than ‘Half-Shift’. Something rather disturbing happened last time I saw her though. She came upstairs holding a book out, saying, ‘I think you might enjoy this, here, take it’ and she thrust it into my hands. I turned it over. Susan Boyle’s autobiography, ‘The Woman I Was Born To Be’. I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Gender-confusion to one side, I think I will enjoy myself until my proper job starts. I’m loving the fresh air, the fact that every day there is something different to do and it’s good to learn new skills. After nine weeks of working from home, it’s a blast to have company again.

MS is always hovering in the background though, like a bad fairy at a christening. One day, it could be my balance playing up, the next my hands might be tingling. We just work round it. It’s part of me, there’s nothing I can do about it, so there’s no point worrying. For now. One thing I have noticed is that my confidence is increasing, after taking a severe bashing last year. This more than makes up for the black dust up my nose, the bits of plaster in my ears and being mistaken for a man…

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