Okay well, that time is here, it is time for me to start sharing my experience in the hospital battling my second major Multiple Sclerosis exacerbation… Now I need to make one point very clear, my memory was greatly affected by this exacerbation, mostly my short-term, but I am also having difficulty recalling a lot of what happened while I was in the hospital and rehab… So I am going to do my best to get this right but I will probably leave things out that will come up later so bare with me. I do plan on writing a book still, I think it’s just about time for that as well, so a lot of the details will probably end up along those pages but no worries, I will not rob you of a good story! It will take me some time to write about everything that I want to write about (regarding this exacerbation) here on my blog because A) I am trying to remember a lot of this still and B) because I am using voice recognition software to write this instead of typing… I hate having to use this voice recognition software because it makes so many mistakes but I really don’t have a choice right now, I can’t wait forever and ever for my hands to return to normal because, well, that may never happen….
So let’s start from the beginning, an exacerbation has to have a beginning right? Wrong. You see I quickly learned that when it comes to issues regarding health, especially with MS, you can’t always pin everything to an exact date. We as people want everything to have a beginning and an end, it makes the events in our lives easier to understand, to to hold onto, to maintain control over, but we cannot be in control of everything, to follow, not as much as we would like to be at least. So what I can tell you is that sometime around the very beginning of February I started experiencing a flareup of symptoms.
- Could not feel heat very well on skin
- EXTREMELY sensitive to cold touching skin – it burns.
- Tender skin on back of neck/head, very painful, hurt inside ear as well
- Occasional ringing in the left ear
- Balance (bumping into walls)
- Occasional spasms in fingers (mostly mornings)
- Pain in fingers and top of hands
- Pain in forearms and elbows
- Cognitive fog was the same
- Vertigo when I moved my head too quickly
- Drunk sensation
- Lhermite’s Sign (Felt it in my lower right ribs)
- Minor depression (Situational)
- Horrible Restless Leg Syndrome
- Waking up with headaches
- Vision was a tad fuzzy
- Blind spot had been up and down in severity
I am pretty sure that I tried to play the denial card at first and act like I was just having a few bad days. My family was planning on going to the zoo and they asked me if I wanted to come. I knew I probably should have stayed home but I wanted to go and I was playing the denial card so of course I went. I don’t remember much but I do remember being very tired and having to use a cane to get around the zoo. In retrospect I do not regret going because honestly I do not feel like this was the trigger of my exacerbation, it was going to happen either way, it was coming, so at least I had some fun before I had to go. Although, I’m still rather disappointed that I did not get to see any monkeys!
Other than that I am not sure what could have triggered this previous exacerbation, in fact, I am not sure what could have even triggered that flare up of symptoms before my actual exacerbation… It was not hot outside and I was not feeling stressed in the least bit. School was coming up but I was excited for that and hardly thinking of it in terms of work… I did not exert myself nor did I eat a bunch of junk food or stay out late. Really I have no idea what could have honestly triggered my flare up of symptoms or this last exacerbation, it was just on a schedule of its own, it was all going to happen either way, or so it felt…
Over the next day or so my walking grew weaker, my balance fell apart, my symptoms flared up stronger, my pain levels increased, and I started experiencing some bladder retention issues which prompted me to visit the ER. Did not need anything backing up into my kidneys and killing me you know? At this point I still didn’t think much of what I was experiencing… “It will pass” “It’s nothing” but once again I was wrong… The fact that I had to borrow a hospital wheelchair at the ER to replace my cane should have gave that away but maybe the poker face I had assigned to my deck of denial cards was just too good to even be caught by myself. Maybe it was because it all was happening so fast? Who knows…