The learning process

Thank you for all the tweet answers and comments left yesterday. The result is very much what I thought it would be, that I should gently stretch but not try to over stretch the tendons. Even those with MS or similar conditions agree despite the balance of causing pain in the muscles, it seems that it is the price for maintaining as much mobility as possible. One of the problems of MS is that the muscles slowly wither away, exercise of the muscles doesn’t and can’t change that, they waste slowly, some of which is now visible but also as they waste they seem to go stiff almost a permanent spasm that can’t be or ever releases. I am like everyone else though, if I don’t need to have extra pain I avoid it, stretching the tendons is extra pain. I often think the should put in brackets next to the name Multiple Sclerosis (pain), there doesn’t seem to be much that it causes that doesn’t include either or both physical on psychological pain. I have set up under my desk already a rolled up sleeping bag with a book on top of it and to release mild spams I find putting my feet on to the book and gently rocking then like an old fashion treadle does slowly help, so I am going to try and use it even when not in spasm as a gentle stretch on my tendons, then in the evening when I have my feet up a more extreme full stretch to the tendon running all the way down my leg and see in a month if it is helping at all.

I always find myself in these dilemmas as I know exercise is good for Fibro but it isn’t really for MS, with MS all you actually achieve is faster fatigue and more pain, if it were possible to know exactly what is causing the problem actions would be easier to decide on, as I also said I have an added problem of osteoarthritis so I have to consider the impact on that as well, which is why I prefer the option of doing stretches while sat rather than standing, of course standing has other dangers, so seated really is the safest option. There are days when I sit and write this and I know I am painting a really pathetic image of myself, I don’t feel pathetic until I read it back. In many ways that is also useful though as I spot when I am slumping into a slight self pity mode. Self pity has never achieved anything for me or anyone else on this planet, so I kick myself and move on.

I would highly recommend to anyone out there who is housebound that you set aside even just half an hour each day to write out your feelings and progress it is great therapy even if you don’t post it to the world. For me the posting bit is probably why I keep doing it, I know daily, people out there read and they learn or empathize from their own experiences, it has turning into an unpaid replacement job in some ways, a purpose to my day. It is strange though how words run out of me onto the page and I don’t realise until I read it back what I have really said, hidden often within straight forward words a lot more feeling and far more depth than I thought I was actually writing. On occasion I don’t realise just what is there until someone mentions it to me, it amuses me at times when I am told I am positive when I think I have written the opposite, I read it back with new eyes and I see what they are reading. Too much of me at times is poured out here and I take a risk daily that someone will take exception to what I say, or read into it that something that isn’t there behind my words. I think the bravest thing I do is not live with my illness but letting the entire world, should they choose to, into my deepest thoughts and my deepest feelings. I write everything as you may have noticed, there are no walls here in print, but they often still exist when talking. That is why I recommend you all try it, without those boundaries you learn so much about yourself it is amazing. Yes, just like you, I too am learning about myself.

When things change rapidly in your life it takes time for you to understand exactly what the impact is or will be, so I can in a matter of a fact way that something has happened, let say the pain in my leg. I am not going to sit and tell Adam in detail how the pain is, I don’t do that in my head either, as I think I know. When I write it here I have to allow for the fact that you don’t know, I have to find a way of telling you the detail, by doing that I am analyzing it and looking into myself for all the different reactions that that then causes, then I write them. All these processes have led me to understand my illness to a far greater extent than I did before I wrote, that is why I recommend everyone does this, even if you don’t want to share it as I do, it will help you I am sure. I know I still have a lot to learn, there are still many things I am not ready to write yet, but I know that I will, because, I now know I have to.