Oh, snap!

natalieburrows-pop-art-oops-ladyIf the meaning of my name was ‘a special kind of stupid’, I would carry mine with pride.

Last week, anything that resembled buttons, knobs or handles could be regarded as hazardous material. Alternatively, I could be perceived as such, and if something didn’t have a button or handle already, I could destroy imaginary ones also if I tried hard enough.

My button squabble was an ongoing, actual comedy of errors, Willeke’s style.

I looked like a burlesque version of whom I used to be. While wearing ballerina shoes, I twisted my ankles and lost my balance as if I was wearing stiletto heels on cobblestones. My concentration went from splendid to are-you-kidding-me in less than a couple of minutes. I watched episodes of my favourite shows three or four times because I fell asleep after less than ten minutes. And if that wasn’t bad enough, I entered The War of the Buttons by breaking buttons on my remote controls, on my laptop, another button on one of my nightstands, and a handle on a handbag.

More worryingly, two incidents involving MS-medication that looked like buttons caused further trouble.

First, after preparing five weeks of daily medicine intake, I failed to recall if I had already taken the necessary tablets to get me through that night. Since I cannot get through 8 hours without, I was in a quite a predicament.

If I hadn’t taken them yet, appalling neuropathic pain would take over my face and left side of my body soon, and it would take at least twelve hours to dissipate the pain.

“Take them again, just to be sure,” I hear you think. Now, therein lies the problem. If I already took my nighttime medicines and took them again, I would spend the night in the emergency room because of over-medicating myself.

To take or not to take, that was the question. Neither are happy occasions. Neither an option I would choose voluntarily.

Been there, done that, you see.

The second incident arrived in the late realisation that I received the wrong quantity of medicine to treat my MS fatigue. I tried to obtain the correct formula, but four days after the initial request, I am still without. Between waking up at 7.30 am and 11 am, I fall asleep twice if not more, and any amount of coffee, exercise, a decent diet and whatnot only render short-term fixes.

Oh… Absolute and utter snap!

Naturally, all this had me reeling. All this would not have happened if my memory were more enthusiastic than usual, and I would be able to supply a more robust answer to why incident number one happened.

Also, because of the long, warm summer days, Uhthoff’s Symptoms, also referred to as Phenomenon or heat sensitivity, means that I am rather slow in the upstairs department, which eventually lead to predicament B. My days are unquestionably not dull nor tranquil, so.

Nobody ever said it would be tranquil, anyhow.

Nah, I can live with it.

It is just dreadfully irritating, and it nearly always leads to the-being-diagnosed-with-a-neurodegenerative-illness and an old fact that states that “The illness is mine, but the tragedy theirs.” By this, I mean that while I am the one with the disease, my family and friends often live with the consequences as they would hear or see what causes slip-ups.

It is also annoying because I don’t want every day to be about MS. When I’m with friends or family, it’s great talking about anything but MS. If I’m unwell, so be it, but analysing the illness (or me) will not get anyone anywhere. Like I said, so, annoying. Thankfully, I’ve learnt to disassociate myself from the “having MS fact”, even when I’m writing about my own experiences.

Any MS diagnosis is an overwhelming experience, and after a few diagnoses of varying descriptions and severities, MS truly knocked some sense into me. Buttons, knobs and handles excluded, of course. It was an eye opener, a test that is still ongoing. So, as long as there is no cure, that test will try to trick me into making mistakes.

©Willeke Van Eeckhoutte and Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis & Me, 2011-2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner are strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Willeke Van Eeckhoutte and Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis & Me with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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