There are days when you just throw yourself into hell, because there is no other option. Two nights ago I woke totally soaked in sweat, it wasn’t just me but the entire bed that was so wet, that I honestly thought I could ring them out and see the water not just dripping but flowing. I have been on HRT for about 9 months now, so why it happened I have no idea as the house and bed weren’t particularly warm, reason or not the facts were there and all I could do was get up and try to find a way of fixing it. I haven’t had the strength to do a full bed change for a long time, it was actually one of the first things that Adam took over from me, so I decided to put a towel over the mattress and turn the duvet over so the upper part of the cover was over me. I lay in bed for about 15 minutes when I was aware that the towel was now wet and the duvet felt damp on my skin, my night was over. Like the majority of the world, I don’t have a spare duvet and mattress toppers, so the only thing that could be done was a marathon washing of everything on the bed. It actually had been a while since it had all been washed and my night time sweat was in many ways the final straw for me, just changing the sheets wasn’t going to be enough, it really all had to visit the washing machine. Adam kicked it off the next night by washing two of the toppers and I took over yesterday morning with Adams help, with the duvet, when he left the house for work I just had to add all the powders and so on to the machine and set it going, but yesterday was also shopping day.
Just after 11am it arrived and like every Christmas shop there appeared to be more in my hallway than two people could ever use, but I knew it was probably just about right. It took me a whole hour sat on my perching stool to sort through and remove all the excess packaging, repackage in cling film or plastic bags and store in our fridge freezer, in the process filling an entire bin with stuff no one needs. By the time it was done I felt as though I had been to the shops myself and carried it all home as well. The worst offenders where the fish and meat packaging, I don’t really eat much meat and Adam cooks for himself these days as I just can’t eat what he does and not at the time of day he likes to eat either. Christmas and New Year is the only when we eat the same and we eat the foods that I personally would love to eat daily, but we just can’t afford. Not many can afford to eat smoked salmon, pancetta, stuffed trout and so on, yes I have expensive tastes that only get fulfilled in these two weeks of any year. If I am being totally honest it isn’t just the cost, I find meat and so on really difficult to swallow and what they do to my insides, well isn’t worth thinking about. Christmas though is just a few days, days when I say to hell with what my health want’s and hello to all the flavours, texture, colours and smells that set my taste buds alight. Adam prefers the simpler foods, but also enjoys the treats that Christmas bring when they appear in front of him, if I didn’t buy them, he would never even think about eating any of it. The washing machine had stopped just as the shopping arrived, but I didn’t want to shift machines until the fresh and frozen food was stowed, I didn’t think the heat of the tumble dryer would do them any good. Shifting the duvet took a huge effort, despite having given it an extra spin, then having to use my already dead arms to push it into the tumble dryer, left me just wanting to collapse on the floor and stay there. There wasn’t a muscle left that hadn’t died and given up, but it was done and I was at last free to came back through here elated by the fact I knew that all those treats were waiting and leaving the rest of the shopping for Adam to shift when he came home at lunchtime.
There was no covering up how I felt when he did arrive home and he clearly wasn’t impressed that I had pushed myself that hard, but he knew what my answer would be so he said little and just set to shifting the coke bottles and so on to clear the hallway and to put his mind at rest. Regardless of weather he always comes home on shopping day as he has this idea fixed in his head that I will trip over it if he doesn’t shift it first. It doesn’t matter how many times I try to tell him that if I am going to fall, I will fall and it has nothing to do with falling over things. I may not have the greatest memory or eyesight, but I have never fallen over any shopping ever, but he says that he just wouldn’t know what to say to my daughter Teressa if I fell and broke my hip, just because he didn’t come home and make sure the floor was clear or obstetrical, it’s really hard not to love him. I couldn’t cover up being tired, I was beyond that point, but I managed to convince him that I would come round again, all I needed was a rest and a chance for my body to catch up with the world again. But I could as always cover up to a huge degree the pain that had by then started to break through, before he went back to work we together pulled the duvet out, shook it, changed ends and stuffed it back into the machine as one session clearly wasn’t going to be enough. I wasn’t aware of it at the time, but realised later that I had been a little snappy with him when he didn’t click as to the fact I wanted it back in the machine, well what else would I do with a wet duvet, all to often recently there is something that gives me away when I try to pull the wool over his eyes. It took another two runs and as soon as it was done, I started the washing machine again, with the final mattress topper. We have an old fashion pulley on the kitchen ceiling, so I lowered it and spread the duvet over the poles so it could air and the final slight dampness could vanish, yanking the ropes to lift it back to roof level was a real killer and the final straw, I went straight to bed, as I climbed into the odd selection of items I had put together to substitute for bedding I took my second booster pill of the day.
I had been asleep for an hour when the door bell rang, it was a parcel for me from Boots, again. Ironically the parcel was my order of my sleep mask and ear plugs and despite aching from head to toe and wishing I had had another half hours sleep at least, I couldn’t help but have a little laugh to myself. I had pushed myself to the limit yesterday, for a fit person it would have been water off a ducks back, for me it was as though I had stuffed a weeks worth of activity into 7 hours and my body was letting me know what it thought of me. I was so glad that Adam would be home soon and could take over the rest of the work needed to finish off the washing and then to remake the bed, if he hadn’t been, I would have spent last night just as I had my afternoon nap, on but not in a bed. There is nothing on this planet like climbing into a bed where every element of it has been washed and is plumped up and so soft that it feels like lying in a cloud, despite that I new how my body was feeling and I was so tired that I couldn’t bare the idea of being woken by anything, so booster 3 was swallowed and I gave my earplugs and sleep mask their first experimental use.
I woke with the alarm, the earplugs and mask had worked almost perfectly. I did wake for a few seconds before the alarm sounded and had pulled the mask off to check the time, before slipping back into sleep for another 15 minutes. The world may sound muffled and distant when you stuff little cylinders of foam into your ears, but when it comes to sleep, well they are the magic pill. As for the mask, well I managed without issue to sleep with it on, but I think it might be more a day time accessory, at least in the winter, I have had blackout curtains for years, but there is always a strip of light that bounces of the bay ceiling when it is a sunny day, or even dawn, but I would recommend them to anyone, odd looking or not, sleep is important.
This morning, well yes I still ache everywhere and I have a sleepiness that is actually on the pleasant side, tiredness isn’t always draining and deadly, tiredness left from a good night sleep is actually almost nice, as it’s warm and cocooning not flattening and oppressive. I know I did far far too much yesterday and that I will probably physically pay for it for a couple of days, but sometimes we don’t have a choice, the only door open is the one marked hell.
Please read my blog from 2 years ago today – 24/12/12 – Christmas eve
At this point in the year from the first Christmas I remember I would have been over bubbling with excitement, I never quite grew out of that. You have probably noticed that sentence is written in the past tense, I no longer somehow feel that way, another casualty of my health. Christmas was a magic filled…….