You would think that after living together in the same house for over a decade, that my husband would be able to see the differences between items that decorate our home and be able to put the right one in the right place. Believe that and you will believe anything, in his defense I have actually come to the conclusion that it isn’t his fault, it just because he is male. Last night when I sat down on the settee, I noticed straight away that there was something wrong with the items in front of me on the coffee table, it was nothing major but it was yet another example of his complete lack of noticing details. I have built up a set of 8 crystal ashtrays, 4 in the living room, one in the bathroom and another 3 in the kitchen. Being crystal although they have the same pattern the thickness varies, something that is totally normal, but the 4 thickest are the living room ones, the next thickest is in the bathroom one and then the kitchen, in front of me was the one I know belonged on the kitchen worktop near the window. I said nothing but laughed inside, another tweak to make in the morning to put things right.
I know most people wouldn’t notice it or think that it mattered but where things are and the way they are placed is something that is important to me, not because I am being picky or obsessive as some might think, but because it is another of my MS monsters. For a long time I really thought I was just obsessive but once I had it explained to me it made sense. Some of the damage that has been done to my brain means that I have to have everything right, nothing can be out of the ordinary I can get really upset and agitated by it. Change is something that throws me totally and I have had many occasions where I have walked through a room and had to stop, look around me and find what is wrong, as I will have noticed it but not registered it. I have to stay there until I find it and it is corrected, as otherwise I will be back a dozen times with the need to correct it, what ever it is. It is hard to explain the fear and agitation that it causes as it sounds totally ridicules to anyone else, but brain damage is a ridicules thing to live with. At it’s worst I can be in tears and shaking, totally tense and unable to think how to sort it, I feel out of control of my surroundings and there fore out of control of myself. Last night I was able to laugh but this morning as soon as Adam was in the shower, I fixed it.
I have mentioned this before as there are a couple of extreme situations in the past, but the reaction from others has always been along the lines of don’t be so silly, and pull yourself together, even from some who are totally aware of my illness. It is clearly something that others find hard to understand and impossible to conceive that anyone adult should react in such a illogical manner. Being a logical person, I even find it hard to understand which actually makes it worse as I have the battle of both sides going on in my head. Fear, because that is what it is, is in itself an illogical thing, unless you are hanging of a cliff, holding only onto a string, life rarely has anything in it we really need to fear. When you body reacts as though that is your position, simply because someone has put the wrong ashtray on the table is nuts!
Adam knows all this and I know that he try’s his hardest to keep everything where it should be, to the extent that he photographed all our ornament so he can return them to their spot once dusted, but mistakes happen. Last night possibly because I was too tired to react in my normal way, was an odd exception, I managed to leave it as it was until this morning. Living with it for him and myself is difficult, and part of my condition few would expect or think about. In it’s own way it is as major a symptom as the pain or lack of mobility. On the recent trips out to the hospital I found that I had to shut my eyes while I was in the ambulance, as I couldn’t cope with the outside world, it had changed or my memory of it had, not seeing was preferable. My world has to be totally ordered, unchanged, calm and in routine, anything less cause me distress which in turn heightens all my other symptoms. Of all the things that MS have done to me this has always been the hardest to talk about. I can tell you anything about my bowels or my bladder, admit that I can’t control either, but to admit I can’t cope with one small change in my life because my brain goes nuts, is hard. Admitting that anything is wrong with our minds, seems to be such a major stigma in this world and it really shouldn’t be, after all our brains are just another pile of cells, just as our livers and hearts are, but those brain cells held within our skulls seem to be taboo. Well I have said it, my brain cells have taken on a life of there own and I have no control of it, they are like much of me defective.