The calm after the storm

Yesterday was a really difficult day. Emotions all over the place. Feeling better today but then my period has started so the hormones have changed and I'm not in that 'rabbits in headlights' place that I hate so much I just want to cry.

Its funny - the day before is often a day when I get to the point of feeling that I'm going to cry over nothing ... and any sort of stress just sets me off completely but I never actually manage to twig to the fact that it is the day before until the period actually starts. That might possibly because the cycle seems to be a bit short at the moment ... though that could be indicative that the menopause is on its way ... one can but hope :)

Yesterday really wasn't helped by an appointment with Financial Adviser about pension - just something that I really don't want to think about and a lot of me is feeling it is a waste of time because I probably won't live that long ... especially as it seems to get further away with each passing year as retirement age gets put back and back. I'm also thinking about looking for another job - not something I mentioned yesterday but probably should have - which could throw everything totally up into the air. Getting a bit stressed now just thinking about it but not as stressed as I was yesterday :)

Carpel tunnel syndrome was really bad this morning - texting on the mobile was almost impossible because the fingers just would not move properly ... but that will start to clear - probably tomorrow when all the retained water clears through the system ... and that is even taking diuretics so probably would have been a lot worse without them. Most of the time I can manage to keep it under control just by making sure that I don't bend my wrists so I'm not trapping the relevant nerve.

Bit headachy this morning but haven't had a migraine this month (touch wood) ... and not sure I really had one last month - which co-incides with starting to take the diuretics. Month before that was horrendous - lost 3 days to one! which is bad even by my standards. However, that might be more down to the fact that the diuretics have stopped the ankle swelling and getting so sore (recovery from a broken ankle) so I manage to keep up with a daily run ... and have even been supplementing that with a bit of up-hill in the evening on the ramps of a sustrans route onto an old railway embankment ... though the running has been a bit less than it should as its the location of a small blue (butterfly) colony so I get distracted by the sight of one perched on the grass and then it's slowing down to do a count - it's probably about 30-40m long and I managed to count 85 yesterday evening so colony is obviously doing quite well.

No bowls today - there is a match but its away and I'm tending to avoid the away matches because balancing is such a drain on the grey matter at the moment - usually fall over as I'm delivering the bowl but most of the time I catch myself - it's very occasional that I end up crawling around on my knees. Everyone is very understanding and helpful - the worst time was about 2 weeks ago when my back was bad following a bone density scan. [The scan came out normal, as I would have expected.] I'm playing tomorrow but don't know if I'll be able to socialise during the tea or in the bar afterwards - bit anxious about a bout of disassociation - but definitely not as anxious as I was yesterday.

Noticed on the run this morning that it was a lot easier to interact with people and talk to them.

Going to have a quiet day - will go out to see what butterflies (other than the small blues) are around though may not be that many as it is quite blowy ... but other than that it is the crossword, catching up on some TV from the week, and some episodes of farscape.


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5 Replies

  • Hi

    Interesting blog! I hope you have an enjoyable day. I'm sitting at my computer and would LOVE to be out in the countryside but there's no-one to go with and I just don't enjoy it on my own... Never mind, we're off to a concert this evening, Handel at Chester Cathedral which should be great!

    I was interested to read about your carpet tunnel syndrome as I'm getting it really badly at the moment - in BOTh wrists, although the right one is a lot worse - probably because I use the computer quite a lot. The GP is arranging for a nerve conduction test as CTS is apparently quite simple to treat - I wondered whether you realised?


  • I have had carpel tunnel since my 20s - used to get pins and needs when I was cycling that I put down to being the hands getting cold but now realise it was just bad wrist position on the handlebars. It may even have been longer than that as I can remember one of the reasons why I didn't like playing the violin was because I found it painful.

    It was diagnosed by the OT at my then employer after I found myself waking up in the morning and the only way I could open my hand was to prize it open with the other hand. They told me to go to the GP and ask for a test - which I did and I remember the idiot of a GP telling me that there wasn't a test for carpel tunnel and just thinking if you are that much of an idiot then I really can't be bothered with you so have never gone back specifically about it :) GPs really can be so hit and miss even with physical symptoms. Mine is aggravated by water retention. When it is bad I will use wrist braces whilst sleeping but most of the time I can manage to get through without using them. If it is really bad then I will use them during the day as well. There aren't really that many things that required you to have a bent wrist - play the cello now but limit the time to about 10 minutes so is within the tolerance for the fingers starting to go numb. Don't knit any more and tend to use an ergonomic key board - drove me mad to start off with because I'd originally learnt to use the right hand for the b but they are all set up to use the left hand for the b - probably another example of the little differences between us and the other side of the pond (US). However, it's all second nature now. The key board problem was the side-ways movement across the key-board which is why the ergonomic keyboard helps me ... makes it really difficult if you are trying to use someone else's pc or a lap-top - how do they manage with everything so close together and at such stupid angles :)

    I've known several people who have had operations because of it - which included my grandmother ... but hers recurred later in life so possible that mine would too. At the end one hand was clenched so tight that her nails would dig into the skin.

    Sad :(. Pretty sure my aunt suffers a bit but that's because she is forever resting her head on her wrists and dozing off. Do try to gently tell her that she needs to keep her wrists straight if she can. I don't really have a problem most of the time as keeping the wrist in the right position is more or less natural now (after 10 years) and if I forget - or it happens whilst I am asleep I know that I just have to put the wrist in the right position and wait a few mintues. Little bit of pain possibly as the feeling comes back - like pins and needles at its worst.

    If they have a treatment that doesn't involve surgery then I'd possibly be interested but as it stands at the moment it isn't enough of a problem to warrant the inconvenience ... or the effort of fighting with GPs :)

  • Hi,

    Thanks for your lovely long reply. I'll let you know what they say after my nerve conduction test! A friend said it's a really simple procedure but my guess is it must be an op. I might seen a private physio I go to when I need to for other joint/soft tissue problems as she's good with acupuncture. At the moment I have permanent carpet tunnel and two fingers are permanently really cold so the blood supply must be cut off. Sometimes sensation comes back for a while but then disappears again, also lots of tingling there all the time. It's sometimes really painful, other times just frustrating trying to pick things up with hardly any sensation in the fingers. I have sciatica as well ait can be similar when driving although I won't tell medics that in case they take it upon themselves to consider whether I'm safe to drive - I make sure myself that I don't drive if it's bad.

    How lovely that you play the cello! We went last week to a concert by soloists from the Halle and the cellist was superb! I love the instrument. I play the piano, am self-taught, but don't practice much although I know I should.

    It's interesting that you say about the carpel tunnel problem first starting as a result of riding a bike as that's how my sciatica and arthritis in the knees began - I'm naturally not at all sporty, even as a child I couldn't run or climb like other kids, I always said my knees hurt - but in my early 40s I decided I SHOULD be fit and so rode a bike for a few years and in the process damaged my knees, ankles and wrists! It obviously wasn't the right thing for me at all. Then I was teaching and carrying around a rucksack full of very heavy books with damaged my neck and shoulders and THAT'S where the carpel tunnel damage comes from now, from the neck which is constantly swollen and inflamed. Oh well, we learn from experience.

    Take care, nice hearing from you. Keep writing as I do.


  • I wouldn't say that the carpel tunnel was caused by the cycling - just that that's the first thing that I can remember that would be a manifestation.

    Its unlikely that the carpel tunnel syndrome would be anything to do with your neck as the tunnel is actually a ring of cariledge and bone in the wrist that the nerves to the hands pass through. If something happens to make the ring narrow so the nerve is constricted that's when you lose the nerve sensation in the hand - so that's one reason why it gets worse and more noticeable for me when I've got the pre-menstral water retention.

    If the source of the problem is the neck then it's more likely to be a 'degeneracy' [damage to the vertebrae] - have a couple of friends - both born in 1940 rather oddly - who have that [think they both find it amusing to consider themselves 'degenerate' :)]. My mother also has it - for her wearing a neck-brace at night helps. With the two friends they find that the hand starts to go numb if they have had their arm slightly raised so shifting the position helps and the feeling comes out.

    Anyway, hope the test helps pinpoint where the problem is and what it is and provides some solutions. Not good if you have basically lost the feeling in two fingers ... though that is consistent with carpel - tends to be the third and fourth finger that suffer first.

  • Im going through the change, but before wasnt sure, because no person has the same, but I missed 7 periods, and went off tea, didnt crave pizza and chocolate,,,and suddenly, Ive missed another one (without experianceing,that very down, mood) yippy!!! all might be over,,,, we should celibrate, !!!! Free at last, my concentration, I get pulled up with, but hey,,, Im on the change,,, well thats my excuse and Im sticking too it.

    Do what is going to make you happy,,, you only have one life!!!!

    lots of hugs, Linda