Monday, 25 February 2013

Ennui. (Because it's sounds classier than 'Ugh').


When I was working, I'd watch the old ladies with dementia plucking aimlessly at their blankets with small scowls on their faces. Fragile fingers pulling threads from their blankets and the hems of their sleeves. Pulling on the various items around them, they'd spend their days making small noises of discomfort or discontent. They'd be fractious when I went in to say hello or when the nursing staff would try to check their IVs or take their vitals. By virtue of their advancing dementia they were unable to communicate what was wrong, yet all around them were left in no doubt of their displeasure. The advanced nature of their impairment meant that even should they still be able to vocalise their fractured thoughts, they would still be unable to identify the subject of their agitation beyond a vague feeling of restlessness. As I sit here typing I understand them only too well. Just call me Beryl and pass me a boiled lolly. Because this is me today, in all my discontented glory.

Summer has been exhausting this year. More humidity than usual, combined with day after-day of soul sapping 30+C and a broken AC, does not a Dysautonomia-friendly environment make. My body is beyond exhausted and truth be told, I can't exactly pinpoint what is making me feel so out of sorts at this point.

I know the physiological explanations, the dilating blood vessels, the tendency towards rapid dehydration, the effects of barometric changes. I know about heat intolerance and how my anhidrosis contributes to my inability to cool down. But this general malaise is not clearly explained by the realms of science. My fatigue has fatigue at this point and my ability to deal, is nearly non-existent.

I grew up in an area of country Victoria that had Summer's filled with 40+C days. I lived in the top of Australia, smack bang in the tropics, for 7 years, where humidity was part and parcel of my everyday existence and Winter days a lovely 28C. But now, since Bob came into my life, I simply can't cope with the smallest increase in heat.

It gets to the point where there are so many competing sources of feeling unwell that you can't pick where to start, or what to do. It's like some omnipresent fog of malaise where all the various aspects of illness coalesce into one giant super-storm of feeling foul.

I couldn't tell you what is wrong today with any true clarity. I am at the point where it's a case of do I want to throw up, pass out, fall over, have my head explode to finally relieve the building pressure? Do I go sit on the loo, lie on the tiles, drink yet another litre of water, camp out in the fridge? Is it my building migraine or my low bp which is worse today? Or my bradycardia? Or the pain radiating up my legs? Or maybe it's Jeff, my stenosed jugular, who seems intent on sending excruciating pain up my neck and behind my ear? Or perhaps my lower back which I seem to have tweaked yet again as I tossed and turned in the heat of last night? What to pick and where to start? Some days I wish I could just do a reverse hibernation and sleep through the worst of Summer to awake in the more temperate days of Autumn.

The accompanying overwhelming physical weakness makes me want to pick aimlessly at the cushions of the couch and make incomprehensible mumbles of discontent like my old patients. I could fit right in, right about now. A bag of barley sugars, a crocheted blanket and a tube of Ben-Gay, and I'm there.

I am over Summer. I am over the unrelenting heat. The constant oppressive-pressure of the Summer storms. I have always been an Autumn girl and now I am even more so.

Come on Autumn weather and be-gone foul Summer. I'd really like to feel semi-human again sometime this year.

Cheers
Michelle

I've spoken a lot about Heat Intolerance here on the blog but this probably explains my experience best Hot blooded, plus it has a shout out to 80's rockers Foreigner, who can you go wrong with that?

Time like this, Henri the cat says it all.

12 comments:

  1. I hate the feeling of not knowing why I feel so rubbish. If I know I can deal with it but the rubbish feeling for no apparent reason is the most frustrating. I tell my partner I may cry but please don't ask why coz I don't know. just feel so crap but not sure which symptom is causing it. You explain me so much better than I do these days. Caroline xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So true Caroline. Some days you just don't know why and you want to cry because you feel so horrid. I hate the term general malaise but that's what it is. On days like that I hate being asked how I am, it's so frustrating when there are no words and no clarity. xx

      Delete
  2. But it's not even Spring yet.

    I checked the daytime temperature predicted for Melbourne and for where I live, slap bang in the middle of the UK. 28C for you; 5C for me. We had snow flurries last week.

    Since my dysautonomia has me intolerant to cold as well as heat, wouldn't it be so nice if we could trade a few degrees and average out?

    Of course, with climate change leading to more extreme weather patterns, I'm starting to wonder if winter isn't just going to flip straight over into summer without even giving me a spring break...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like your thinking. I'll happily post you a few of our degrees as we are due for a week of 30+C (so ridiculous in Autumn)and I'll definitely take some of your snow flurries. At least for me Winter is good as I am constantly hot. Not that we get much snow or the low temps you do. xx

      Delete
  3. Hmm... now can I blame forgetting that you live in a different hemisphere on a brain fog moment? :D

    ReplyDelete
  4. Michelle, you have all my sympathies, this is a side of Bob I am 'enjoying' at the moment too, and it won't make you feel any cooler or better I know, but over here in Essex, UK it's b'oody cold and despite this I have constant urges through night to throw off duvet when I wake up because I am turning into a human steamer. The constantly cold feet 'p' me off especially when the rest of me feels like a certain brand of boil in bag fish! I wish you some relief from the heat - cool bath an option, or are you somewhere water is at a premium? Plus, the downside, you'll look like a prune if you lay in there to long (no offence!).
    Wishing you some relief soon,
    Kind regards

    Tricia

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I get the cold feet but hot body thing too. Winter time Mr Grumpy sleeps under the covers with the electric blanket and I spend the night on top of covers.

      Water is okay at the moment with the droughts over so baths are in. So far I haven't managed to do a cool bath thanks to the effort involved, but there are lots of ice packs and icypoles. Can't wait till it's over. As I said to Sparkly, maybe we can post some of our weather to each other and even it out a bit ;)

      Delete
  5. At present I too feel like Henri.... you do, I do. As Tricia says its cold here in the UK, a bitter wind that chills the bones. I sat watching nothing in particular on the TV tonight and my hair was lank and wet with a cold sweat. Yuck.. drowning in cammomile tea for gastritis that has gone on for over two weeks now along with the EDS I am having an attack of ennui also. Except tonight I told my OH out of the blue that I couldn't cope with it all. Normally I pretend. He was reading something obviously funny on his ipad and not listening really, looked up and said 'yes you can'. Oh so I can that's alright then! Hot, cold... you, me, the rest... its good sometimes just to be able to say I bloody hate this s$%^. Thank you for saying how it is, so that I could too. Roll on Autumn for you, Spring for me.
    x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh babe I hear you on that one. I usually pretend to, though I am getting worse at it. I think it leaves Mr Grumpy and the kids a bit perplexed as to what to do or say. I usually hate TLC but at the moment I must admit I could use with a bit. Sorry to hear the gastritis is continuing. I hope it clears up really soon and you get some relief. Bring on Spring and Autumn xx

      Delete
  6. loved the writing, but honestly hated the video....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HA! That's okay Casey. Henri isn't for everyone :)

      Delete

All who are lovely enough to comment should be showered with cup cakes, glitter and macarons. I promise to use my spoon bending mind powers to try and get that happening for all who are lovely enough to share their words. Those who go the extra step to share posts should really get a free unicorn. Or at least the gift of finding the shortest and quickest line at the supermarket on a regular basis. xx