Saturday, 15 August 2009

Another Day

Saturday, another day, another challenge!
I got through yesterday. It wasn't without it's difficulties though.
After spending quite some time writing my blog post, which really did have a negative effect on my hand, I managed to slip on the stairs.
I am consciously trying to take care with all things at the moment, because I know that I am not steady on my feet and also that my hands etc aren't too great. But having said that, no matter how careful we are, it isn't always going to stop the little trips, slips and falls that we have.
My Dad, a few years ago, very kindly, put in a second banister for me. At the time, I protested, saying I didn't need it and that I could manage. These days I am so glad that he went ahead and put it in, because I rely on it heavily, to help get me up and down the stairs!
I was coming down those stairs, at home and I guess I wasn't concentrating as much as I should have been. My leg just gave way and I slipped down a couple of the stairs. I was able to grab the bannister's, which stopped me from sliding all the way down!
No real damage done, apart from bending back a couple of toes, which are bruised this morning. And also wrenching my back and right arm.
These are just the norm when you have MS though eh?!

What are people's thoughts about sleeping tablets?
I was given some by my doctor, because I wasn't sleeping well. I had actually asked for them because I didn't know what else to do. But I found once I had them, I was afraid to take them.
I did take them for a couple of nights and I experienced a couple of much better night's sleep. Then I didn't take them and I really struggled with my sleep again. I then really battled with myself and couldn't bring myself to take them again.
I know it sounds silly, but I was too afraid that I might get hooked on them and come to rely on them too much. So I didn't take any more, but I was still really struggling with my sleep.
I went back to my Doctor and explained the dilemma that I was in. Bear in mind that these were not strong sleeping tablets any way. His initial reaction was to say to me that there are worse things that I could be addicted to. A fair point I guess!
After having a proper conversation with him about my concerns and the fact that I was sleeping better with them, than I was without, he said that he wasn't too concerned about me using them. He said that if they were helping me sleep, then as a doctor he couldn't say not to use them. He said it's much better to get a decent night's sleep, than it is to spend the night, tossing and turning, and not getting enough rest.
So I am using them again. Not every night, because I still have a small niggling doubt about using them. But every time I do use them, I am able to get a decent night. When I choose not to use them, I spend the night tossing and turning, trying to get back to sleep.
One of the hard things that I find is, that I have to get up two or three times a night to go to the bathroom. And it's when I have got up and come back to bed that I have the problem. When I have taken a tablet, I can just get straight back off to sleep, but when I haven't I spend ages trying to get back to sleep.
Anyone else have this problem??

I also want to tell you that I have bitten the bullet!
I have rung work this morning and told the personnel manager, that I want to try and go back on Monday. I explained that things haven't really changed as far as the numbness and pain in my right arm is concerned. So she asked if I was going to be off for the next week. But I explained that I want to see where I am with things. I want to see exactly what I can or can't do.
She was great and said, that is fine. She won't put me on the rota, so that we can see what I can do, without the pressure of needing to be there. She said it doesn't matter then if I only manage a couple of hours of my shift and then have to go home.
I honestly don't know what I will be able to manage when I get there. All I know is that I am at the stage where I have to give it a try.
I have also only got three shifts this week and then I am off for about 10 days, which is why I thought it would be good to try this week, knowing I have got some more time off. I will be able to see what I can do and then talk about it during my time off to decide what I want to do.
I have mixed feelings about it. I worked so hard to get the job and to stay there. I have worked with the store to get my shifts as I need them and I enjoy having a job. I need having a purpose and I enjoy the company and support of all my colleagues. The money is essential too.
But, I suppose I always knew it couldn't last forever. I just didn't realise, I would be thinking about whether I could continue with it, so soon. Don't get me wrong, I am not thinking of leaving, but it is something I will have to confront at some stage and is that stage going to come a lot quicker than I expected???

Anyway, I wish everyone a happy Saturday, whatever you are all doing!


  1. Amelia,
    Thank you for the info. What is the name of the meds he gave you? I just now remembered that the lady at the health food store gave me a bottle of something called Valerain root Capsules. They are all natural. I believe an herb. I feel the same way you do about getting addicted to meds. I will try these tonight. I wish I could take them now but I have my youngest home with me. The other 2 are gone for the night and my husband works second shift. So I would feel terrible if I slept and left him sitting there. Even though I just sat and watched him take a 3 hour nap. Ha Ha!!! I will let you know how that goes. And thanks for the info.

  2. Amelia, over Patti's 19 years of MS she has never used anything except over the counter sleep aids. Currently she uses Melatonin, previously she would simply take one Benadryl at bedtime. Too deep of a sleep has problems as you well point out. ... EXCELLENT move by your Dad to put in the other banister. Over the years handrails just became part of every stairwell, every hall, and every room of our house.

    Caregivingly Yours, Patrick

  3. I can definitely relate to wanting to hold on to ability as long as you can. I don't know if you're Christian but my friend Billy Wilkins has a Biblically-based sleep program that is helping a lot of people:

  4. I've tried prescription sleeping meds - which I find are effective but leave me with a 'hangover' the next day. I also have tried various herbal remedies. I find that Nytol (both the herbal and behind the counter version are very good) and I also recommend a dose of Kalms before sleep. Even lighter are Bach's Rescue Remedy or Badger Sleep Balm - that last is a bit like Vaseline but lavender. All very soothing and helps you relax and drop off.