MS is weird. I went for a 7 mile run on Sunday and it was a real slog. Probably as a direct result of all that extra effort - dragging leg, sore knee and all - I was wiped out on Sunday afternoon, and woke up tired on Monday.
It’s kind of hard to explain, and is doubly frustrating because it's a symptom that is invisible to everyone else, but MS related fatigue feels distinctly different to your common-or-garden tiredness: with me, it feels like an invisible force is pushing me back into the mattress when I wake up and makes it twice as hard to get out of bed. I then have to carefully feel my way for the first few steps across the floor as I don’t have full control over my legs or full sensation in my feet as they touch the ground: I've actually fallen over a few times doing this, so it pays to take it slowly and carefully. As the day goes on, I’ll also often start to feel a creeping tiredness across my arms and shoulders, eventually making it feel like a real effort to lift them up at all, to the point that they’re almost shaking with the effort. On top of all this is a feeling of general lassitude, where every little action seems to take more effort than it should. I nearly went to bed at 7pm last night, but decided that would be ridiculous.
In spite of a good, full night’s sleep, I woke up tired again this morning, and spent my morning’s meetings feeling as though I was carrying around twice my own body weight. In spite of this, I still dragged myself out for a run at lunchtime…..
It was only 3.25 miles, but I won’t lie to you: it was a struggle…. my pace was okay, but it seems to be as much a battle with my mind as it is with my body, and I have to set myself little targets in order to resist the temptation to give up and walk. Just to the end of the next song; just as far as the next bridge; just round the next corner.... before you know where you are - almost - you're home. Still, I got it done and that's what matters. It wasn’t amazingly quick, but it was done.
And what do you know: all afternoon I’ve had more energy and feel much more myself..
How on earth does that work? Go figure. It's as counter intuitive as hell and I’m just rolling with it.
Mind you, it's injection night tonight...so all bets are still off until I wake up tomorrow morning. Ask me how I feel then.
Meh. MS sucks.
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