Bugger!

Well I didn’t think I could hate 2020 anymore than I did last week and bugger me it had some more treats in store for me. Sometimes even I find it hard to believe the stunts my body pulls.

I managed to have my first migraine with a proper full blown aura in 6 years on Friday morning which takes some beating. I was reading the newspaper online when I became aware of the fact that my left eye was struggling to see the words on the screen, in fact words were missing and the screen seemed ultra bright. I knew straight away that it was probably a migraine but I thought, it has been so long. Maybe it is the sun shining through the window hitting the screen and that’s why I can’t see? I struggled on for a few more minutes the weird thing was when I was looking at the screen my vision was fine. Then I looked across at Mr Myasthenia Kid and half his face was missing. At that point there was no mistaking this was a good old fashioned migraine. The last one of this type I had on my 40th Birthday how’s that for timing?

Hubby immediately sprang into action and got my migraine grab bag so I could take all my meds and then go back to bed. I absolutely hate the aura stage of a migraine which for me can last up to an hour before the headache begins. During that hour the visual disturbance just gets worse and worse, even with my eyes closed in a dark room. There is no escape from it and it leaves me feeling terribly disorientated. I am so grateful to have finally been prescribed sumatriptan, it is my wonder drug as it really does just halt the migraine in its tracks. Some days I feel as rough as a badgers arse, for those of you outside the UK this is what a badgers arse looks like. Other days I may feel a wee bit groggy but after a few hours I can do some bits and pieces and I am not totally wiping out a day. It really has been life changing. However the number of migraines I have been having lately has been averaging around 2 a week and I am heartily sick of having them. Of course it is now leading up to the window that always means migraine time the 18-22nd of each month. I am hoping ( god loves my optimism) that this month I wont get it but who knows? I have had more than my fair share these last 4 weeks.

So that was Friday, which was then followed by an eventful Saturday. About an hour after I got up on Saturday a nice bout of Vertigo started. The room did one spin every so often and when I walked / stumbled really anywhere it felt like I was on a boat. Thankfully I always have a stash of meds nearby for this and to be fair it has been quite a while since I had the spins. I sat down with a coffee and tried to relax and let the medication do its thing. After a while I was bored so I decided to go and sit out in the garden. Big mistake as I went arse over tit over a plant pot ( concrete ) that Mr Myasthenia Kid has so helpfully left in the middle of the patio. Had it been a normal day I may have been able to right myself but with vertigo? Not a fucking hope – apologies for the language today it is just happening. So I tumbled across the patio all the time trying to right myself without success. I realised at this point that I was going to end up crashing through the fence and falling 4ft down onto the patio in front of our shed if I didn’t stop staggering, so with the fake turf on top of the gravel I aimed my dive onto that figuring it would hurt a lot less than landing on the gravel.

Gracefully I hit the deck and if you believe that, you will believe anything. Immediately I was in a world of pain, both wrists, my left shoulder, my left knee, my left buttock and all along the left side of my back.

The only reason I didn’t scream obscenities out loud was because the neighbours children were playing in the garden and I didn’t want to teach them anymore bad language than I had already. Most of it was aimed at Mr Myasthenia Kid for being so stupid as to leave a bloody plant pot right in front of the patio doors! When he knows my vision is a bit dodgy and I can lose the sight in one eye if my ptosis strikes and I can’t open my right eye.

So all my plans of sewing etc went out the window. Instead I spent the day dosing myself up on pain killers and sitting on hot water bottles. My ankle blew up like a balloon, i had to take my slipper boots off because it got so large it was starting to feel constricted. I was bloody furious because I needn’t have fallen and I hate feeling vulnerable like that. I forgot to say the minute I landed on the artificial grass Dembe came rushing over showering me in kisses checking I was ok. Initially he wouldn’t let me get up until he had checked that I wasn’t seriously hurt.

Sunday was spent doing crochet very slowly as my wrists were still throbbing from the fall and my left leg was elevated all day due to the swelling. I still hurt all over but at least nothing was broken. 

Thankfully the vertigo was gone by Sunday morning, my leak is still causing me problems. It is still there and some days the head pain is worse than ever. I am still attempting to pace myself by lying down every few hours but it is difficult when I get absorbed in something to remember to. I only remember when my head starts feeling like it is crushed in a vice and all screens seem to be burning the back of my retinas.

As I am the worlds worst person at pacing myself due to the fact that giving up work due to my disabilities has made me feel like I contribute nothing at all to society, I push myself constantly beyond what is sensible and then end up paying for my stupidity. I feel that everything I do has to be better than everyone else so that people don’t feel sorry for me and that I don’t look weak or vulnerable. The fact that the falls and faints have become much more regular occurrences is making me feel very vulnerable and it is doing a number on my mental health. I have always struggled with never ever feeling anything I do is good enough and probably also a bit of impostor syndrome (find out more here. ) People can tell me that what I have sewn or embroidered is the best thing ever, my blog could be awarded a Nobel prize for literature but I would still be waiting for one person to say that my work is shit. It is hard to live with the constant fear that people will discover that what you do is actually crap. Add in physical disabilities and you have a wonderful mixture of weird ideas running through your head, not only are you not good enough creatively but you can’t even do the stuff normal people do. It makes you feel less than. Which is why I probably do push myself too hard to prove I am worthy of my place within society.

Word for this week is Bugger!

A lovely photo of Dembe to lift your spirits

 

 

The Best Dog

One of my favourite sayings about dogs is,

Everyone thinks they have the best dog.

And none of them are wrong.

W.R Purche 

Dembe since coming home with us on 11th January 2019 has proven time and time again that he is not just the best dog but an exceptional dog. Highly intelligent and intuitive especially when it comes to matters of my health. It started when he was very tiny. He would some how know that I had a migraine and would lie quietly beside me with his face pressing against the side of my face that was hurting due to the migraine. He wouldn’t leave my side unless dragged away. I just put it down to him being impossibly cute but there are so many instances over the last 12 months that have made me realise that his behaviour isn’t just a fluke but something very real.

Around 3 weeks after we brought Dembe home I came down with a chest and sinus infection. I was floored by it, it was probably the closest I have come to feeling like I had the flu without having it in a few years. Dembe would have been around 10-11 weeks old and full of beans. Due to the fact we were still toilet training him I couldn’t go to bed, I simply didn’t have the energy to be going up and down the stairs every 30 minutes ( I couldn’t have done that on a normal day let alone this). So I would lie on the sofa counting down the hours until Jay would be back home so that I could crawl into bed.

A pup of this age is normally a live wire, yes they sleep quite a bit but when they are awake they are into everything. Normally Dembe would have been, however he seemed to know that I was poorly. Instead of running around playing with his toys, for 4 days straight he would lie on my feet or chest up on the sofa and sleep, as I slept. At the time I thought it was odd that such a young pup would alter his behaviour so radically. As soon as I started to be on the mend the crazy pup came back and yes sometimes it was a little too much for me as I was still feeling pretty rough but to contain all that energy for 4 days whilst I waited for the antibiotics to kick in was pretty weird.

 At the time I just put it down to a fluke, that I was projecting and seeing what I wanted to see after losing my beloved nurse Frankie. 

There have been a couple more instances over the year, where it was clear that Dembe was picking up on health stuff to deal with me. We have had a couple of dog training sessions where Dembe has wanted to just get back to me where normally he will quite happily ignore me. One night I was sat quietly on the sidelines when I suddenly lost the vision in my right eye, I knew I had a migraine brewing but as there was only 30 minutes left in the lesson I didn’t see the point in making a fuss. In the end I did have to speak up though as Jay and the trainer couldn’t understand why Dembe wasn’t focusing on the lesson like he normally would and all he kept doing was looking back at me or attempting to get back to me.

We had the same thing happen a few weeks ago during an agility training session. Out of nowhere earlier that morning I had been hit by vertigo. I had taken my medicatiom to attempt to stop it in its tracks but my head was still spinning. I was having to be careful how quickly I turned my head. Dembe again was really unsettled, every time he was off the leash he was back at my side. One of the fellow spectators commented on it and I just said “It is because he knows I am not feeling well, he gets very protective of me if he senses something isn’t right.” I then went onto explain something that had happened just a week or so earlier.

To the uniformed observer this way look like a cute photo of me and Dembe having a cuddle. Although it was cute and comforting it couldn’t have been any further from the truth. I had been feeling not quite right all day. Jay had just gone back to work after coming home for lunch when I had the strongest feeling that I was going to pass out ( even though I was sat down, you see I can pass out in any position it is my super power). Initially I tried to fight it by clenching my buttocks and calf muscles in the hope that this would get the blood circulating. However when I started yawning ( this is a key indicator that my blood pressure is dropping rapidly) I knew I was going to have to get myself to the floor as quickly as possible and then get my legs raised. Dembe was asleep beside me on the sofa.

I quickly got myself down on the floor and got my feet up on the coffee table. I expected Dembe to sleep through this. Instead he got up and then curled up beside my head resting his face against my face. Normally when I lie on the floor this signifies play time. I was fully expecting to be licked, trampled on and toys dropped on me as he would think this would be part of the game. However he didn’t move he just snuggled beside me, I took the photos after I had been down on the floor for ten minutes as I couldn’t believe that he was doing this. I tried to get up but he wouldn’t let me, he had me pinned to the floor for a good 30 minutes. If his face wasn’t against my face he was lying on my arm making it almost impossible for me to move.

What I find incredible is this is not something I have ever taught him to do, this is something he has done on his own. He was also just 14 months old when he did this, he is now 15 months old.

I still find it hard to believe that he is so in tune with me that for whatever reason he knew that I was very unwell at that time and needed him to look after me. Feeling that ill, whilst alone is scary. Thankfully I had my mobile phone on me as the top I was wearing has  what I call a kangaroo pouch pocket. I always try to wear clothes with pockets so that I always have my phone. I managed to get in touch with Mr Myasthenia Kid and explain what had happened I got really tearful when I explained what a wonder Dembe had been. He asked if I wanted him to come home but I said until I knew if I could sit up or not unaided there wasn’t any point. Around 30 minutes after I first hit the deck I was able to sit up, resting my back against the dresser. Another ten minutes later and I made my way up to bed and spent a few hours lying down . Again Dembe behaved beautifully, he just came up to bed with me and slept beside me.

Which if you had ever met Dembe you would know what a normal active, annoying pup he can be. Who regularly crawls onto my lap and knocks the chromebook from my hands because it has been at least 15 seconds since I gave him a cuddle. Who throws his crocodile toy, well any toy of his choosing that day around the lounge and to hell with the consequences. So to adapt his behaviour on his own accord is really quite amazing to me.

This is what I am battling against at the moment trying to write the blog post

 He is not a quiet pup, he isn’t massively high energy but if he wants your attention he has ways and means of ensuring he gets it. Who could resist that face peering around the computer screen.

I thank my lucky stars everyday that we were lucky enough to have Dembe choose us to be his human parents.

I do feel like I need to point out that just because of Dembe’s unique ability doesn’t mean I love our previous dogs Travis, Mollie, Willow and Frankie any differently. Life will always be marked in sections before the Weims, after the Weims. Life goes on but it goes on around a huge Weimaraner shaped hole. And it always will. Dembe is not a replacement but our boy and the beginning of a new chapter. He is currently our best dog, same as Frankie, Travis, Mollie and Willow were when they were with us.