I arose at 5:30 AM today so that I am tired enough to be asleep by 11 PM tonight as I have to be up at 2 AM for tomorrow’s dog show.
Once my drugs have kicked in I will be bathing Mary-Grace. I am also going to groom and or bath Ada. I am very pleased that the drugs enable me to do this. Much to my surprise, however, although the drugs give me the mobility I need, they do not prevent the after affects of whatever activity I choose to do. Meaning once they wear off I feel the effects of the activity. No pill deals with fatigue!
My day had not started very well at all because I had an e-mail from one of my groups that praised Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, and Bill O’Reilly. And this on an empty stomach too. I was severely traumatised! However, my pills have now kicked in and I find I can cope with the fact that there are such people in the universe.
I have to say that I have been feeling mentally and spiritually good recently. Much of this has to do with the fact that I am getting sleep now. As I have mentioned before it is very easy to get used to something and completely lose awareness of it. For years I have had very disturbed sleep and very little in the way of deep sleep. This greatly affected my mood, my diet, and my general disposition. Since I have been taking the gabapentin in I have slept well most nights and have discovered that I am not naturally a grumpy old git! Everyone I know from acquaintances to friends have all noticed the difference in me. The fact that I feel so different is quite amazing to me because as I said I had got so used to my sleeping pattern that I was unaware of its negative effects. The lack of sleep was caused by pain. Having to wake up in order to change position or waking up because of spasm. I barely slept for more than an hour and a half at a time. Thankfully for now the gabapentin works at 1200 mg a day and I can go to was much as 3000 mg a day although I do not have any need for that right now. I still take the morphine, tramadol and paracetamol.
I still have yet to find the right home for Waldo. I know the right home will come as it always does I am just surprised it has taken so long as he is almost 6 months old. It is not that I have had a lack of phone calls from interested parties I just have not found any of them suitable. One couple who got here included a wife who was frightened of dogs!
I have also decided to part with Winston. Unfortunately he has not fulfilled his early promise as regards his skeletal structure. His forelegs are bent and whilst this of course does not harm him in any way is not what I want in my dogs. It is a fault that is very difficult to get rid of proven by this litter where of three puppies all three of them have a bent front. The mother also had this and I know that dogs behind her did. The father of these puppies was unable to correct this fault. Mated to other bitches I have only had straight legs. Dogs with dodgy fronts do win at the shows but it is still not acceptable to me. These are the first bent legs I have had for years and hopefully they will be the last. I am very disappointed with regard to Winston. He has the most beautiful head and rear end and he is the most sweet natured dog. He will make somebody a lovely pet.
On the knitting front I am knitting a pair of socks for John in a new yarn that I now dye. It is a four ply/fingering weight sock yarn that is a combination of two strands of Merino and one strand of super wash Merino. This results in a tweed affect when it is dyed. I like it very much and it is knitting up well.
I have not been knitting my Aran sweater for quite some time as I have been knitting socks and working on the knitting machines. I just don’t seem to have enough hours in the day. I have learned not to knit my Aran sweater at dog shows because I really have to think as I knit and it is far too easy to make mistakes when people come and talk to me. If this were not so I would probably have finished the sweater by now!
After tomorrow show, I do not have a show until the last Monday of May. I have quite a number of shows during June, July in fact all the way through until Christmas.
Olga is proving a very easy ride for me. Her automatic transmission is such a bonus.I cannot believe that no-one ever pointed out to me that an automatic transmission would be far less painful for me to drive. Just because I am disabled does not mean that I know or understand my needs. Being disabled is new to me so I am as ignorant of my needs as the able-bodied are of the needs of disabled people. I think it would be a good idea to have somebody who understands our needs who I could have gone to speak to. Had I had this available to me I would never have bought the previous car, the Ford Mondeo.It was completely unsuitable for me. It was a beautiful car to look at. I did however find it too long and I found it very difficult to park it because I could not see past the front and reversing in her was equally difficult. This Ford Galaxy has a much blunter shorter front but she has very much more room. I had a wheelchair hoist fitted in the back that will lift up to 100 kg. This has given me back my freedom. I am now able to go out where I want and when I want as I no longer have to have anybody with me. When I run out of an item in the house I can just go to Tesco and get it.
Although I am of course preparing for tomorrow, I do not think about how tomorrow will be.I only think about today and the period between now and me going to bed. I only have to deal with now. To the best of my ability I do not let yesterday or tomorrow ruin my today. Living one day at a time is so ingrained in me now but I well remember what it was like when I did not and I did not understand the concept. Having this attitude has certainly improved my life greatly. Imagine if I allowed myself to think of my future and the progression of my disease. Even as I write that, my stomach lurches. I do not know what will happen. I could stay as I am until I am 80 odd, or in six months time I may not be able to walk at all. All sorts of things could happen. However, I do not entertain these possibilities because they are apt to ruin my day. Even in times of great distress, knowing that I only had to deal with now lessened the ordeal. There is not a day that goes by that I am not grateful for what I have. Counting one’s blessings may sound trite but it is so necessary for us to have quality of life. If we only concentrate on what we do not have how can we have any piece? Of course I am a very fortunate person. I used to think that I was not because I was so weighed down by my past and the lack of a loving family. Now I see things very differently. This was no magic conversion.I could only let go of the past once I had exposed it and experienced the feelings that I had repressed. I also learned that I could choose what to think and what believe and that I could ditch the belief system that my childhood instilled in me. That belief system was killing me. to a very great extent we really are we think. Everything in my life changed because of the change in my thought patterns and belief system. My worldview changed dramatically. This is not at all an easy ride. Nervous breakdowns or as I prefer to call them breakthroughs, are the result of our belief system/worldview collapsing. It takes time to rebuild. Unfortunately there is much ignorance even within the profession of psychiatry and many people rebuild the same system and thus never truly recover. My experience was that every time my repressed feelings came to the surface it was reason to hospitalise me and medicate me heavily until the late was screwed on tight again. I was never helped and in fact was seriously harmed. I was very lucky in that I found the right help and I was allowed feel what I needed to feel and I was not classed as crazy. I was deeply disturbed emotionally and it would be very strange indeed if I were not considering the experiences I have lived through. The person who helped me understood that there was nothing wrong with me but that I was stuck in a self-defeating belief system and also full of unexpressed grief and anger and fear. He guided me to the understanding that I could think differently and he gave me the space to feel. It was a long and painful process that took five years. I did not need him after that but did have two more periods of several months where more repressed emotions were released.
I am indeed a fortunate man.