I will blog a lot about Lyme as I have been housebound for over 7 years with Late Stage Chronic Lyme and underlying MS (which are basically the same thing once you read enough about the diseases.) This is just about me, my Lyme and the snow the past two days.
Where I live in Massachusetts, we have been blessed with almost another two feet of snow that the weathermen did not see coming. Four to eight inches was the best estimate. WRONG. This storm is still hanging around 36 hours after it started. Not blizzard conditions, no power loss, just a lot of wet, heavy snow to shovel. How would I know that, you ask? Well, let me tell you………..
Yesterday, Dave shoveled before he went to work at 7 am. I am home as I have mentioned before with my ancient dog, Madge. Madge is not shy about using the kitchen floor, in the middle of the night, to pee – lovely, I know, but she’s 15 1/2. The rest of the time she needs to go outside. By 10 am, Madge needed to go out. I went to the back door and could barely push the storm door open as the snow was blowing in at the back of the house. Madge weighs maybe 12 pounds, so as tempted as I was to toss her out into the snow, I knew I could not. I grabbed my dusty snow boots, snow jacket, grabbed a shovel from the front steps and started digging my way out the back onto the wooden deck and Madge followed behind me waiting to get down the stairs. Stairs are not my friend, wet wooden steps are just begging for me to fall down them. I cautiously cleared the steps to make a passage for the dog. There was pure joy as she relieved her full bladder and happily ran back in. No worse for the wear, I headed to the front steps to see what I could do to get the lazy ass mailman to stop and deliver my mail. I don’t like my stairs, no one likes the stairs to this house as they are awkwardly spaced in length, width and height and could cause an injury if you misstep.
I cleared as much as I could before I started hearing my heartbeat in my ears and could feel some rumbling in my chest when I drew a breath. This was in less that half and hour! In I came and as I was taking off my boots, I heard that mailman (bastard) drive right by! Just like putting salt on a wound. I sipped water, took deep, slow breaths and had a cool cloth for all the sweat that was now pouring off me – YEAH, DETOX. My brain is yelling at me that I know better than to do any type of cardio work as last time I did, I ended up relapsing and am still coming back from that a year later. When Dave came home, I played it down like it was no big deal, I didn’t do much, etc. He worries enough.
Yep, there is more. Today dawns with an unexpected dumping of overnight snow and Dave is out there again trying to shovel out to go to work. He was concerned about his Dad, who lives close by, as at 85 he still goes out to shovel. I knew Dave would drive by the house as he headed to work and sure enough his Dad was out there with a shovel. Dave came home as the driving was lousy and he redressed in the snow clothes I had thrown in the dryer and headed over to his Dad’s house.
While he was gone, the snow continued to pile up here at a rapid rate and again the back door was blocked. Okay, I can do this. I will just go slowly. I will wear gloves this time. I will put the house phone and my cell phone in my coat pockets. Out I go, with Madge right behind me. This snow was heavier, throwing it over the railing was difficult. Using my right side more as my PICC line is in my left arm was causing pain in my lower back. I didn’t clear the steps this time, just pushed the snow down so it was like a slide. This was fine with Madge and she was right back in the house. Hmmmm – should I?
I decide to go back to the front steps again as I was expecting medication in the mail and the jerk didn’t stop yesterday. I had heard the mail truck making it’s run down the opposite side of the street, so out I went. I could only go so far on one set of steps, but the ones that run right along the front of the house, I cleared all the way down. I am just going to go back up them when I hear the truck coming and then I see it passing by – WTF? I hollered, “HEY, gotta any mail for me?” He stopped, backed up and said that they are not supposed to stop if the stairs aren’t cleared. I said, “I’m not supposed to shovel because I am disabled, but I am looking for medication that was supposed to come in the mail yesterday.” He checks and lo and behold, there is my medication. Did I say he was a lazy ass. I grab my mail and medication and head into the house feeling successful. Now inside, I am dizzy, wheezing and my heart is pounding. I repeated yesterday’s process to calm down. After a good five minutes, I check my heart rate and it’s 148 – that’s like an aerobics class. Great, Kath, just great. Am I trying to set myself back? Absolutely not! I am trying to do what I thought I needed to do for me. So I accomplished that as I got my medication I needed, but now my back hurts and my forearms are tight. I joke that at least I still have muscle somewhere, but the heating pad is calling me. Dave comes home about 15 minutes later and says, “you are beet red – did you just come in?”. Yes, yes I did. He worries enough.
Lyme will be with me always and I am just trying to do what needs to be done when I have to and sometimes I will pay a price for it. Hopefully, muscle fatigue and a little pain is the worst of it this time.