Saturday, 15 January 2011

Wednesday 5th January

Woke up this morning feeling rather confident – achy, but much clearer and determined to have a good day and give my husband,A,  lots of cuddles after his ordeal yesterday. He’s thrown himself back in to work which is his way.
Since stopping tramadol (in hospital on 4th November 2010) my health has been on a bit of a rollercoaster ride. I had terrible side effects at first, frightening body shakes and spasms, a very high temperature which had me placed in the window bay with a fan and open window freezing out any one who visited my bed for several days. On arrival home, these continued, with the addition of panic attacks, mood swings, and either night terrors or no sleep followed by 2-3 hour daytime naps. Great fun.
This last week has left me feeling calmer and more coherent generally, and while the hot flushes and the afternoon knockouts remain, I realise now the fog I’ve lived in for the past two years. Sheer bloody-mindedness on my part and equal measure from those supporting me has got me to this point. Giving up, as someone once said, is not an option.
Today, energised by the promises of the Marks & Spencer sale, I walked on crutches for thirty minutes around the store then stopped for coffee. My undoing was repeating my ordeal for another thirty minutes while refusing the offer of my wheelchair (now full of shopping bags) – too proud to accept my ‘Get out of Jail Free’ card. Accepting my limitations has never been one of my strong points.
Spent the evening having a little ‘us’ time with my husband, A, at the cinema. We quietly shared (rather, sucked) the inappropriate purchase of popcorn for such a film as this - a rather sombre portrayal of real-life climber trapped in a mountain crevice for 127 hours. A life affirming film although incredibly gruelling. A little like the recent years of our marriage. A few disasters rocked our otherwise solid relationship and although neither of us was trapped, we certainly affiliated with the climber crushed with no hope of getting out. Yet, without losing limbs, we could have escaped; I nearly walked out a few months ago, a year after he almost got free of me. Our paths could have gone in very different ways, for good reason, but we’re doing our best. We decided to stick this out together and that’s good enough for us, for now. A chronic illness rocks otherwise strong marriage for many reasons and ours, a love match, was nearly another statistic.

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