Friday, February 10, 2012

It Could Have Ended Much Differently

Well. Here I am, sitting at the airport waiting for my flight home.

I am glad that I made this trip. But I have learned more about myself and my ever evolving disease on this go-around.

And I am not happy to report that what I learned isn't pleasant.

My flight over to my family's home went smoothly, so I was optimistic as I attended all of the services and family gatherings. I was sleeping well, and getting eight plus hours of sleep every night.


My sisters suggested that we go shopping and out to lunch yesterday. I enthusiastically agreed, confident that my energy levels would remain stable. I even offered to drive my mom so she could join us.

Why don't I listen to my body, hm? Why? It never lies to me. It sends me clear signals when a crash is impending. My face becomes ice cold. I begin to perspire. I say and do stupid things.

So as we entered the shopping mall and I attempted to purchase a bottle of water with shaking hands and an ice cold nose and looked blankly at the machine with NO CLUE how to operate it, there was no excuse for my surprise at my catastrophic crash later.

It began in the restaurant and I could feel myself sliding lower and lower in my seat. When I found myself unable to follow the conversation, I excused myself and wobbled off to the bathroom and was grateful that the handicapped stall was large enough that I could flop down on my back and prop my feet up on the wall.

Gross, I know. Eww. Lying on the floor of a public bathroom. I looked at the ceiling and dejectedly berated my judgment. I stayed there for what seemed like forever, trying to forget what pathogens could possibly be occupying the floor along with me, while mopping sweat and breathing deeply.

My sister poked her head into the room and called my name. "Jul? What on earth are you doing on there??"

I quickly sat up and told her that I would be right out, washed my hands and joined our group, feeling only marginally better.

As we left the restaurant and Mom and I got into the car, suddenly I began to cry.

Inbetween sobs, I thought to myself, Well, THIS is new. Stupid, cold, shakey, nauseous, yes. A crybaby? Oh brother.

My mom looked at me with alarm. By this point, my sisters had driven away so I couldn't ask them to drive Mom home. She hugged me as best she could, being a tiny little lady embracing her plus sized daughter while buckled up in my rental car.

Finally I composed myself enough to tell her that this what I do when I crash. She has never seen me crash before and was aghast. "Honey! What can I do for you??!!??"

I didn't know what to tell her, so I sat trying to compose myself.

Poor Mom.

I then thought about driving us home, and still foggy, decided that it would be better if I drove rather than ask Mom.

Oh brother.

But I was able to drop her off at their house safely and then headed over to my sister's home, where I was spending the night.

I saw the driveway appear with relief after the six mile drive through the cold winter afternoon past the enormous flat cornfields, passing only a few houses along the way.

I allowed my concentration to falter as I smugly congratulated myself for my safe arrival when I heard my tires making a loud crunching noise as the car plowed through a snowbank and I drove smack dab across my sister's lawn through pristine snow. Where her driveway had once been located TWENTY YEARS ago.

Luckily, the car rolled on and I was able to park in her driveway with an unscathed car.....but a very prominent set of tire tracks crossing her lawn. Directly in front of their large patio windows. In the room where my sister and her husband spent hours sitting and looking at the pastoral view. Which now sported a fresh deep set of "what the heck was she thinking?!?" car tracks.

I looked at the lawn and briefly thought of grabbing a snow shovel to smooth away the evidence. And instantly realized that had I tried this I would end up sleeping in a snowbank.


So what have we learned from this little adventure, Miss Smartypants?

First of all, as I have told myself repeatedly, I need to be honest in my energy assessments. Dang. When will I learn this?

Secondly, I will never, ever again take stupid chances when I get behind the wheel of a car. I am certain that my guardian angel was riding on my shoulder on this trip but that drive home could have had cost Mom and me our lives had I made an even more stupid mistake than thinking a driveway was still located where it was twenty years ago.


I collapsed into bed after a quick call to Mom and Dad reassuring them that I was fine and slept straight through until the next morning.

I need to make honest assessments of my energy. And get rid of my dumb stupid pride. So hard to do.


Laura said...

Yikes. I am so glad it all ended okay (well, for everyone except the lawn, hehe).

ShEiLa said...

I am glad you are safe...


cargillwitch said...

I think these symptoms are the ones that I fear the most- the physical stuff? I can plow through but when I can sense my judgement/memory/SANITY is going I feel intense fear and anxiety. It does feel like your grip on reality is going.I really wish this was addressed more with our care practioners , it is more disabling than dry eyes and swollen glands.
So very sorry for what must have been a very scary afternoon for you( and your mom!) A huge thank you for sharing it with us- it helps me to hear that I am not alone in dealing with these symptoms too.

annie said...

Julia,what a scary situation, but so glad you made it home safely. All those symptoms coming at you all at once, makes for more confusion as you try to cope with pain,exhaustion and brain fog. Hope you will be better soon.