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Henry’s Adventure

Monday, February 21, 2011

Henry was the skinny, pale orange, 6 month old kitten I found last night crying pathetically in the hallway outside my door. After we walked around the hallway together for 10 minutes and I determined (by ringing doorbells) that he didn’t belong to anyone on my floor, I brought him into my apartment.

While Henry was sniffing around, Punky didn’t notice at first. Then I put Henry in the bathroom to wait until his owner showed up. He cried. Punky woke up, alert in a way I haven’t seen in weeks, and bounded off the couch to the bathroom door. I left them there to communicate through the door while I went out to post signs in the elevator and at the entrance to the building.

When I came back, I opened the door a crack to allow them to see and smell each other and make the requisite growling and hissing noises.

At 11:30pm, I was tired of waiting up. I thought maybe no one would come for him. So I gave Henry some food to go with the water I’d given him when he first arrived and an ad hoc litterbox. He loved the food. Little did I realize it was past his dinner…

At 11:45, a girl showed up at my door.

“Do you have my cat?”

“That depends. What color is it?”

“He’s orange and little.”

“I’ve got him. He’s in my bathroom.”

At this point, she burst into tears. I led her into my apartment. She grabbed him and hugged him.

Henry had his happy reunion.

He went home in his favorite pair of arms.

The end.

Yoga

Yup. I’m turning into one of those women I’ve seen in comic strips and on lame greeting cards. I like cats, knitting and yoga. I believe there is a huge internet community I can join.

I took a yoga class today. I like the teacher. He has a very encouraging and respectful style. For each pose, he led us into it step by step so that people like me who couldn’t get all the way into every pose had a place to stop and breathe into the interim or modified pose.

I was pleased that I didn’t try to keep up with what everyone else was doing. When I first started doing yoga, I would try to do every pose perfectly. After being sick so long, I find it easier to notice what I can and can’t handle and to respect my limits. A certain competitive edginess (that word looks funny written out) has dulled.

Even being gentle with myself and not trying to do everything, I could barely stand at the end of the class. I had to sit on a couch in the lobby for about 10 minutes to work up the energy to go down the stairs to the exit.

I kept telling myself I would go home and take a bath, rest for a while and go for a walk. Not a chance. I went home and rested. Coiled a little. Ate lunch. Napped. Took a bath. Rested some more. I couldn’t stay upright. Could be the yoga. Could be yoga plus coiling for Bartonella today.

All my effort

While horizontal, I was thinking about how much effort I’ve put into various projects in my life. Often, once I take on a project, I think about it 24/7 until I have it all figured out and executed. I put other things aside. Hold tight to my top priority. Really get obsessed. And love every minute of it.

This has been an interesting way to tackle projects since I’ve been sick. Everything I do, including thinking things through, takes so much longer. What I used to be able to do in a Saturday can easily take 2 weeks.

Now I’m turning all my effort into the process of getting well. You’d think that’s what I’ve been doing for the last four years. The first year I was interested in getting a diagnosis, and when I was inexplicably doing better (according to the doctors, when actually it was the antibiotics they prescribed for the wrong reason), I was looking for options for how to improve my limited functioning (a million thanks to my acupuncturist) until I got a diagnosis and treatment plan.

On and off over the last 3 years, after I found out I have Lyme disease, I’ve gone through periods of learning everything I can about the disease and its offshoots, or tackling a particular symptom (like when I looked into food allergies and stopped being nauseated all the time), or trying an alternative healing method, or needing to take a break and do something else. That’s how I wrote 97 pages of a memoir  and half a novel and how I planned a party for my dad and a trip for my mom. These things happened in fits and starts. Often I do nothing for a week or a month because I’m too sick. Then I go back to my project and move forward on it.

There is something psychologically disempowering about being on pharmaceutical drugs. Even though I always knew they weren’t going to heal me on their own, I always focused on them too much. Now that my treatment protocol is completely in my hands, I’m finding that I am willing to go all out to make this work. Even in the fall, when Rocephin was making me feel much better, I only went for one colonic. I took my supplements. I didn’t think further about my health. (I picked an art project to spend my spare moments of energy on.)

Now I am dedicating the next several months, maybe 3 or 6 or 9 of them, to putting all my energy into fully healing my body. Everything else is a second priority. Once I’ve got the body routine under control, I can expend energy on things that heal my soul (including my novel and my soon-to-be-born nephew).

It feels yucky to put those things in second place, but I really have to take this health plan on fully if I’m going to finally get my life back.

Coiling

I coiled in two sessions today. I’m starting to break it up a little because the coil gets hot after a while.

  • Candida: abdomen, 5 minutes
  • Bartonella: abdomen, 2.5 minutes (I didn’t do my feet because my legs were done folding into a pretzel after the yoga class.)
  • Lyme: shoulders and knees, 1 minute each; hips, 2 minutes each.
  • Babesia: hands and forearms, 1 minute.

I figured out how to do my hips by lying on my side. Holding a hot coil in my hands while standing for 2 minutes on each side was impossible this time. My thighs hurt to much from the yoga class to stand still for that long.

Detox

Yoga was good exercise for getting my lymph and blood moving. I even ended up sweating (but I was careful not to let my heart rate get too high because that makes me feel faint). I took a hot salted bath preceded by a good skin brushing. I took my homeopathic drops and got back on the juicing wagon (thanks Mom!).

I took a Colestid tonight in the hopes that it clears my headache and some of the fatigue. I’m trying to stay on top of the Herxing from Bartonella, especially on the days prior to Lyme sessions.

Tomorrow, assuming my legs are functioning again, I’ll go out and purchase some kombucha.

Body

You might have noticed that I was completely overtired after the yoga class. My thighs hurt in a way that made them feel swollen, even though they weren’t visibly enlarged.

But let’s backtrack. I had a night sweat last night. A shirt changer, for sure. I was cold when I went to bed so I wasn’t wearing the wicking shirt until I changed into it during the night.

I woke up with the kind of low back pain that signals snow. When I opened my eyes, I discovered my back was correct. I lay there in bed for a while wishing I already had the BioMat to heat my back before I tried to stand up. The funny thing is that the back pain went away during yoga and during my bath, but reappeared both times when I cooled off a little.

I’ve had a headache on the top of my head all day. It just doesn’t go away. My jaws and ears are aching and itching, the right worse than the left. My fingers hurt in the joints, and my wrists also hurt. My hands were cold for a long portion of the day even though I was otherwise comfortable with the temperature in my overheated apartment. I’m dropping things like the keys. The vertebrae in my neck are also aching. My knees have a sharp pain inside them. And my abdomen is a bit distended.

Then there’s the weird stuff. While I was napping today, I was having creepy dreams. Come to think of it, I had some creepy dreams shortly before I woke up this morning. Maybe I’m not keeping on top of the Bartonella detoxing.

I’ve wanted quiet all day. Usually I like to listen to the radio, partly for company, partly for learning about the world. Today I listened for less than an hour spread over the day. Also, I wasn’t interested in talking on the phone. Peace and quiet. That’s probably the headache.

What to write

My final thought is about a link in the back end of the blog where I compose my posts. Apparently there is a “post a day challenge” at WordPress. Someone is offering suggestions on what to write about each day because there are apparently people who want to blog but have nothing to say.

My challenge is to slowly write out the backlog of 3 years dealing with Lyme and 4 years of learning to live with a debilitating chronic illness. Then there are the things I still discover each day. My goal is to say only a little because my body doesn’t like typing out these long posts…

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