I had a bad night last night, mainly down to my breathing, but I was also up twice for reasons that I couldn’t pin down. It started during the day, once again I was in pain right around my diaphragm just as I am right now, but around midday it was joined by an area of my intercostal muscles that I rarely have problems with, from arm pit to arm pit is probably the best way of pinpointing it. As you know intercostal pain isn’t something new, it has been around for a couple of years now, but it does mainly occur from my breast level down and yes I still have the collection of bruises to prove it’s intensity. I had in the last few weeks had the odd occasion when my breathing was tight, I also had an area behind my breast bone along the same line where I could actually feel the air entering my lungs on every breath. It wasn’t painful, or even did it come with that well-known pressure that the spasm in my upper body seems to cause, it was just this strange feeling of being able to really feel the air entering and leaving me, just as I would fell the process of swallowing any liquid. I put it down to an overactive imagination, when you have spent as many years as I have trying to listen to my bodies every action, you actually do start to feel things, or at least think you do. When you concentrate too much on something, that very concentration means you can trick yourself into believing that you feel things that just aren’t there. I reckon that what I am probably really feeling is the muscles reacting to the message of breath in or out, rather than the actual air. Anyway, at times I know there is no imagination, as I have clearly felt it getting slightly tight and almost rasping as I force myself to breath using my diaphragm as little as possible. Last night though was different, for the first time ever there was a clear pressure, an area that was in spasm and I was struggling against it just as I do with all mild spasms. Ever since I was put onto Morphine, I have found that for me to feel pain from a spasm it has to really work hard. Most spasms fall below that level and what I feel is the pressure that occurs in the muscle and that was what had arrived the other day in my throat and last night in my bronchi. Five inches below my neck I had a ball of pressure, not acid reflux or anything like it, it was clearly the pressure I know as a spasm. I feel as though I am caught in some kind of sick game of dot to dot, my body is slowly bringing all the different areas that were clear on the journey of my vagus nerve into one complete picture.
This morning I am sat here feeling all the area of pressure in my abdomen and chest that two or three years ago I had to lie down to be aware of them and right now I am not just aware of them. In some ways, it sounds like a really slow process, but on the other hand it has felt really fast to me. I can think of no other thing, other than pregnancy that has changed me physically so quickly. It kind of feels as though it has all happened in the last few months, when in fact I know it has taken years, it is just in the last few months that it has gone mad and started to stomp all over me, with no regard as to how essential that function might actually be to life. I think it was about 10 years ago that I first became aware of the vagus nerve, I kept passing out, at worst I passed out and in the process knocking myself unconscious. Most of the time though it was just this sudden realisation that I was going to pass out, after I knocked myself unconscious I took to lying down where ever I was, as I had collapsed due to trying to make it the living room. I discovered slowly that there were triggers, if I lifted my arms above head height, say to shut the curtains, I would feel terrible. Actually that was the very first job I handed over to Adam, it was that much of a danger to me. I was sent to see a heart consultant and after running tests, I was diagnosed with Vassal Vega, once again though the consultant said it was atypical and he believed that my PRMS was playing with the Vagus nerve, something I knew nothing about. It wasn’t until two years ago I discovered just what the Vagus nerve did and how much of our bodies it controls. I had lost control over my bladder years ago and to this day that hasn’t really changed, my cupboard has plenty of catheters that I don’t use. When the issue grew with my bowels, then my lungs and the more consultants I saw, the more this Vagus nerve seemed to be involved in. I now know it controls nearly every organ in our bodies, it is essential to life itself in far more ways than I even like to think of.
In just four months my body has taken all those vague odd things that happened and vanished and turned them into the focus of my life, in that regard, it has been really fast, but from one clear problem, to where I am now, 10 years, well that’s slow. Progression is an odd thing, I don’t have the slightest doubt that all the things that are driving me nuts have actually also been behind many other phases over the years, I just wasn’t feeling their action, just their results. Progression now means that I feel the action as well and what I feel is opening up the truth of what has slowly been happening all along. This morning I am tired, not the fatigued, just incredibly tired. I didn’t want to wake up or get up and when I did, I was yawning so much that tears kept rolling down my face, why do they do that? I have a collection of spasm, not the painful type, but they are there either for a few seconds, a few minutes or like my diaphragm and the arm pit to arm pit intercostal spasm, permanently since I woke. 3 years ago they would have been vague shadows, discomfort that I wouldn’t have been able to explain or pinpoint as belonging to anything and nearly always the appeared when I lay down. 2 years ago, they had formed into those lines or areas of pressure, but with no other knock on effects, just annoying and uncomfortable and appearing whenever they wanted but worst in bed. 1 year ago, the pressure learned how to change itself into pain and bruising, my position still played its role and horizontal was still the worst. Today not much different in their split between pressure and pain, but now there are more of them, spreading from my pelvis up to my throat, progression in action, what will I be able to add to this one year from now.
Read my blog from 2 years ago today – 14/05/13 – Responsibility for NHS costs
Well, I may have found a clue and possible reason to these totally annoying headaches but I am still lost with so many other things. That is for me the most annoying thing about an illness like MS, if you don’t know where the attack zones are, it is almost impossible to work out what is causing what, or if there is no connection at all. I remember clearly the day………