From the top of the mountain, you cannot see the mountain

Today was a pretty average day as days go. I spent it lying down for the most part, attempting to sit up every hour which didn’t feel like a very good idea. The lowest my pulse dropped was 103 and the highest my blood pressure rose was 70/40. I have had my rib kicked out of place enough times now that it’s pretty loose, unstable enough that coughing, sneezing, yawning or just breathing too deeply pops it out with a nice crunchy sound. I’m bruised and tired and that’s before I even start on the pregnancy related symptoms that hit me a lot harder than it would if I didn’t already have a myriad of issues and complications. My pillow is splattered with blood when I wake up in the morning, sometimes due to gums that are bleeding too much despite meticulous dental care and other times because the ulcers in my digestive tract has been left untreated for months and are now bleeding enough to spill into my mouth when I lie down. I’m having between two and ten asthma attacks a day despite being on 2000 mcg of a steroid inhaler and now need the wheelchair almost all the time just to get a few steps across a room. There’s a laundry list more, but the details become depressing when you list it off one by one and the full impact begin to dawn.

As a result of this, my daily routine is pretty sendentary. I spend most of my day dealing with issues; putting joints back in, putting ice on strains and sprains, putting disinfectant on cuts and scrapes picked up from occasionally wheeling myself around a house with narrow doors and limited space and stuff like that. I spend quite a bit of time squeezing in five small meals in what feels like a short day, two naps and an eight hour in bed night. Most of my time I spend recovering; from getting up, moving around, getting hurt, exhausting myself by brushing my teeth or showering and the little bit of time I have left, I try to spend with the people that I care about, hopefully doing things that I enjoy.

It’s the little things that bother me most. Joints at this point in pregnancy are fragile things. I dislocate my jaw chewing after a few bites and so we’re trying to stick to soft foods as much as possible and small, small portions. I’m stuck lying down on my side with my feet raised, sweating into compression stockings that I strongly dislike and wondering what the point is if after all this, I’m still struggling to regulate my pulse. I know life is never going to be perfect and my health has been this bad and worse in the past and so it’s nothing new to cope with, but I miss being just a little better. I miss a lot of things, but mostly, I miss the things that I never really had. Health, well being, not being in pain all the time. I think the image in my mind is one that does not exist for anybody. The elusive average. I’m tired of spending my days being sick and missing out on the stuff that seem insignificant but really isn’t. I want to put my own toothpaste on my toothbrush, wash my own hair, put on my shoes, go for a long walk, stand up without thinking about it. I want my pulse to go down and my blood pressure up and I want to sleep at night. And I want my clothes to fit again. One can hope.

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