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April Showers

Posted Apr 06 2013 7:49pm
Wow, how did it get to be April? I feel like a few weeks ago it was July. I guess that's just as well as I've been "sick" for the past 8 months. At least the time has generally seemed to go by quickly. I have continued to make overall improvement in my health, and now when I have "good days" I feel almost normal. Unfortunately I still have some "bad days" mixed in when I feel pretty shitty. The good thing is that now when  I don't feel good it's generally isolated to general fatigue, and not so many of the more acute, debilitating symptoms that I had most of the first 4 or 5 months. I even just recently put together a stretch of 3 weeks in which I was feeling the best that I've felt since this all started last summer. Unfortunately it hasn't lasted as I feel not so great again this week, but "not so great" now would have been a good week a few months ago. It's been hard sometimes to keep the larger picture perspective and remember how much better I am doing than I was at one point, but when I stop and consider specific markers and symptoms, it's really easy for me to definitely say that I am feeling way better than I was last fall.

I still find it necessary to be very conservative with my physical activity (something that I'm not always able to pull off), but it's been so nice these past couple months to be able to more or less do a little bit of activity everyday. The hard part has been not overdoing it when I do feel good. I think I did this last week. We were out in Utah for spring break, the weather was perfect, I was feeling the best I've felt in 8 months, and I definitely did more physical activity than I have in a long time (mostly in the form of a couple decent length MTB rides). The hard part though has been the reality that my symptoms seem to ebb and flow somewhat independent of anything that I do. Sometimes it seems like I take it really easy for several days and I still feel horrible and other times I feel like I'm on the edge of doing too much, but I continue to feel great for several days. I think what is going on is that there is a lag time of several days between what I do physically and how I feel. In this sense I don't feel good from resting soon enough to totally trust that I need the rest, and I don't feel tired out from physical activity soon enough to back off and let my body catch up with my desire to be outside having fun. Overall though, I'll take this balancing act any day over the big questions of last fall which tended to be more something like: "what is that stabbing pain in my neck?" or "why does my right hand go numb every time I sit down in a chair?" or "why did I piss 35 times yesterday and 3 times today, even though I drank the same amount of water each day?"  These are all somewhat exaggerated examples, but only somewhat.

The point is, I'm getting better, but I still have a ways to go. The great thing is that with the improved health and the beginning of spring like weather my mood has been much better. I always get a little depressed when I don't feel so good, but at least now the depression isn't mixed with so much fear and confusion. I still have no idea if I'll ever be able to run the way that I used to (or if I even want to), but I do know that I am getting better and better with the passing months, and with time my life will be able to return more or less to "normal", in any ways that it hasn't already. It's so nice to finally be able to wake up each day knowing that I will have the health to pretty much do anything that I want to, with the exception of running for several hours. For that I will have to wait several more weeks, months, or longer.
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