Friday, May 27, 2011

Project overload

I am not really very good at blogging... I keep forgetting to do it.  And then I'm never really sure what to talk about when I click "new post"... which is unusual for me!

This week has really been about two things: crafting and sleeping, or lack of sleeping actually.

I have started multiple craft projects which I intend to finish before I go home to Scotland -  a quilt, many cushion covers, pillow cases (to match the quilt), handmade cards, multiple jewellery projects, my gardening... and I'm sure I have a few more on my list as well.  I think I may have been a little over-ambitious although I am making progress.

My main obstacle is actually my complete and total inability to use a sewing machine - although I am improving each day.  However I have not gone back to it since it attacked my finger a couple of days ago... that was momentarily terrifying as I felt a pain in my finger, instinctively shut my eyes, took my foot off the pedal and pulled my hand away before tentatively opening my eyes to view the carnage.  Thankfully there wasn't really any carnage - and more thankfully no blood all over my nice new quilt! - the damage seemed to have been contained inside the lovely blood blister that had formed, decorated by a nice purple bruise.  It was definitely sorer than it looks.  I'm really sure the machine hates me.

All of last week I was tortured by insomnia.  After putting my light out around midnight each night I tossed and turned for several hours, feeling so tired and wanting nothing more than to fall into a deep sleep but it just didn't happen (despite trying every sleeping tablet/ herb - and combination - that I could think of).  It was at least 7am several nights (/ mornings) in a row before I managed to fall asleep.  I kept thinking I should just get up at 7am but I was SO tired, and I did manage to sleep for several hours after that. It's easy to think then that was messing up my sleeping pattern, but after sleeping until about 2pm, it would get to 9pm and I was just SO tired again so every night I thought, I have to sleep tonight.  

It just didn't happen, so on Saturday night I stayed up all night.  Fuelled by several cups of coffee I stayed up and worked on craft projects all night (I avoided the sewing machine, sleepiness and that machine would definitely be a disaster).  The hardest part was actually staying awake all day Sunday, but I (barely) managed and was asleep by 8.30pm Sunday night.  I slept until 4am and then - still feeling tired - tossed and turned for several hours before falling asleep again around 8am for a few hours. I still didn't really feel rested when I woke.  Then the next night it was 1am, then 2am, last night 3am and I am really hoping I fall asleep before that tonight (it's already almost 1am).

My body clock seems to be on a totally different time zone.  My doctor reckons somewhere in Alaska.  I do kind of wonder if I went there, would it stay on its current time zone, or mess me up even more?!

Ultimately, I think this is all connected to the fact I have been off the antibiotics for a month.  My stomach is feeling much better, but I think the optimistic idea that perhaps I would be finished with the antibiotics for good was a little, well, optimistic.

I do feel this month has been kind of horrendous.  I think the insomnia has really exacerbated everything, but my energy levels have been quite low again and lots of aches and pains and odd sensations are back.  In one way I'm just really annoyed, I can't believe I can just drop this quickly with no antibiotics... however, the good thing is that I have now tried to stop them while I am here, with my Lyme doctor close by and that it is easy to start them up again (and hopefully easy to get back to where I was a few weeks ago as well).  It would have been much worse to be dealing with this when I am back home and have far more to be dealing with then.

Fingers crossed the next few weeks see some massive re-improvement.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

An ongoing battle

A couple of weeks ago my stomach started objecting to my antibiotics again and I have had to take a month off - lots of good tummy supplements and probiotics and it is feeling much better already.  I am a little disheartened by the reappearance of some older symptoms and also seemingly unbeatable insomnia (it is currently 4.25am).  My sleep - when I manage to scrape a few hours - feels unrefreshing again and during the day I am so tired.  I head to bed early, thinking surely I will sleep tonight and then.... here I am sitting typing this at 4.26am.

I see my Dr again at the end of the month and I do know that this is another blip in my long journey and that I will get over it and things will improve again but it just feels like such an ongoing battle at the moment.  Dealing with a bad week after feeling so much better is very difficult for me.  I have to reel in my thoughts before they run away from me. Sometimes keeping myself from getting carried away with worst-case scenarios seems as difficult as dealing with the healing process itself.

But, thinking rationally, I know that my journey has been more of a rollercoaster and dealing with the bad bits is a part of it.  The improvements will come again, and each time they are (usually) better.  And on the optimistic side, my bad weeks now are nothing like they were a few years ago, although it will be good when there are no bad weeks at all.... but really, does anyone get that?!

Thinking philosophically leads me to some appropriate quotes:

It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness
      - Seneca

To get through the hardest journey we need take only one step at a time, but we must keep on stepping
      - Chinese Proverb

And I think perhaps my mantra for life:

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.  The important thing is not to stop questioning
     -  Albert Einstein

Monday, May 16, 2011

A reassuring article

I have just read an article on the Telegraph's website: Deadly Lyme disease on increase

While the topic is not in any way reassuring, the article itself is the most factual, accurate article I have read on Lyme in the mainstream British media.  The comments under the article suggest there is a need for more, similar articles which share information about Lyme disease in the UK.  

When I first got ill and had no idea what was wrong with me I searched online through lots of information and do not remember coming across Lyme and certainly didn't consider it as a possibility.  (If I did come across it, I probably discounted it on the basis that I didn't have the bullseye rash, often wrongly reported as a necessary symptom for diagnosis.)  I really do think that I would come across a lot more information on Lyme disease now than I did six years ago.

However, I would really like to see more articles like this one but I really want to share this article and hope many other people do too.