Patience. It's about the only thing in this house that's been getting any exercise lately, by human or canine. Long gone are the days of 6 mile hikes and bike rides with the dogs replaced with 1-2 mile barely-manageable walks and long days spent on the sofa.
In November, my health started to decline and I found myself constantly borrowing matches from each future day's energy just to get by, until finally all I could find were empty matchbooks. As my Lyme medication changed, so did my physical stamina and mental health. I won't lie Internet. For two weeks straight, I felt like I was being tortured. Intense fatigue, brain pain and migraines plagued me 24/7. When I finally couldn't take it another day, I lowered my dose and things grew bearable. We didn't make plans for the holidays but it didn't matter, I couldn't leave the house except to drag myself to the grocery store, walk the dogs or bring Juno to her PT session. (She's doing great by the way.)
The lower dose of medicine helped keep the migraines at bay but I woke up and went to bed each day with headaches, or "brain pain" as I like to call them, and chronic fatigued continued to plague me. In December, mood swings were the theme. I'm lucky Mr. Wild Dingo hasn't divorced me by now. Chronic pain has that charming side effect of unbridled rage.
It's easy to understand where all the rage comes from. Like the proverbial rug beneath my feet, Lyme ripped away any coping mechanism imaginable. All my hobbies, physically or mentally stimulating, are unavailable. Too painful to walk. Too weak to practice yoga. Too tired to stand in the kitchen to cook. Too brain dead to understand recipes. Too foggy to write the silly dog stories or play amateur photographer. Too drained to play games with the dogs---even for 5 minutes. It's sad to watch my dogs lead much less interesting lives now. I wake up each day and the only thing I can think of is how fast I can get the bare minimum done so I can lay down again. It's frustrating and incomprehensible to be so incapable of doing anything, of being useful, for so long without reprieve. And it's hard to watch life go by while other people are doing.
Lyme is an ugly disease. It doesn't just affect the single host, but everyone connected. I'm grateful for having a husband and two dogs who know how to exercise their patience. It looks like patience, along with the 48 pills I take daily for Lyme, is the only thing left I have to fight it.
That Irritating Virtue