Friday, August 1, 2014

Overachieving body

“ As long as you are breathing there is more right with you than wrong

no matter how ill or hopeless you may feel.” (Kabat-Zinn)


The unfortunate fact of living with a chronic illness is that from time to time you will get 'normal person sick'. Of course my body seems to strive to out do itself and wont be happy with just the flu it needs added complications on top of it!

For the last three weeks now I have been battling a nasty virus that has invaded our family.When my family gets sick its a tiny insight for them into my world; the extreme exhaustion, body aches, headaches, nausea etc but the reality for them is they will get better. A tiny part of me feels slightly envious that after a week or two they will bounce back and life will continue on. Don't get me wrong I would NEVER wish illness upon my family but it does highlight for me how different my life is. Sickness is my normal!

The dreaded tickle in my throat turned into pounding headaches, blocked nose, sore ears, hot and cold sweats, body aches and a horrible cough. For two weeks this battle went on inside my body. Finally I thought my body had cleared it and I was free however things changed early this week.

On Monday I awoke unable to hear out of one ear. Great ear infection I thought! I struggled through the day with a lot of "pardons" and frustrated tears but mainly I hoped to avoid having to go to the doctors. That night I awoke at 3am with an unusual tightness and pain in my lungs. On a positive note my ear did feel better though! I managed to fall back  asleep and the realization kicked in that this was no longer something my body could battle by itself. A trip to the doctors was my next move!

 My doctor took one look at me and asked what was going on? I really feel for her as I am one complicated case. I explained how I was 'normal person sick' but its advanced into something else. No surprise my ear that was sore was filled with fluid but it was my chest that was more of a worry. Wheezing, rattling and spasming as I attempted to breathe in and out. Now normally my doctor would have put me on a nebuliser to open up my airways however due to me being on beta blockers and having trouble with a high heart rate it would have caused more problems. Instead she decided to try me on an inhaler and get the nurse to watch me and make sure my heart was okay. Thankfully my heart decided to behave itself and I tolerated the inhaler. I felt I could breathe a bit easier but my chest still sounded awful. So I was loaded up with an inhaler and spacer to take home as well as a increase of my steroids to 20mg to fight the inflammation.

It is now Friday and I am still feeling miserable. I struggled through last night with terrible wheezing but thankfully my inhalers offers some relief. At times it feels like I am breathing through a straw and cant get enough oxygen in which is an unsettling feeling. I feel for my poor body but I have to keep reminding myself it is doing its best and it is not purposely punishing me. Its fighting so hard so my job is to give it as much rest, fluids, medicine and love as it needs. Things will get better but for now its one wheezy breath at a time.