Thursday, April 26, 2012

Regular, Premium or Diesel

Have you noticed that gas prices are out of sight?! When I was young, gas was priced under a dollar a gallon!  We are lucky to find it under four dollars a gallon these days.
It is a shame that science has not found a way to refuel us when we are running low on energy.  Most of us with MS have a problem with fatigue.  In fact, one of the biggest issues with MS is not having the energy to do much of anything.  The smallest exertion  causes us to have to rest and hope that we will re-charge enough to do something else.
According to Web MD, 80% of people with MS have fatigue. MS-related fatigue tends to get worse as the day goes on, is often aggravated by heat and humidity, and comes on more easily and suddenly than normal fatigue.  Medically speaking, fatigue is not the same thing as tiredness. Tiredness happens to everyone -- it is an expected feeling after certain activities or at the end of the day. Usually you know why you are tired and a good night's sleep solves the problem.  Fatigue is a daily lack of energy; unusual or excessive whole-body tiredness not relieved by sleep. It can be acute (lasting a month or less) or chronic (lasting from one to six months or longer). Fatigue can prevent a person from functioning normally and affects a person's quality of life.
Hey, we didn’t need a website to tell us that, did we?!!
Many people with MS (as well as many other diseases/ailments) are called lazy and given grief by those who don’t understand the disease.  It can make us feel very unproductive and useless, even without all the comments that those around us may be giving us.  Many in MS groups have a terrible problem with depression because not only do THEY feel useless, but they are told this by the ones they love and cherish.
I know that most people have no clue what we go through with fatigue.  It is so far beyond “being tired” all the time.  Every step is a challenge and every movement is a challenge during the times when fatigue is at its worst. 
Many people fall during these times trying to overextend themselves to either please others or to make themselves feel useful.  Believe me, it is not worth it.  I have fallen and broken my leg……and it WAS NOT fun!!
Low self esteem can cause us to do things that we normally would not try to do.  Encouraging others on MS sites is a wonderful goal to set for ourselves.  Letting other MSers know that it is OK to let their bodies tell them when and when not to do things can help someone make the right choices.  When those Msers that have no one but us to encourage them and love them hear these things from us, it often means the difference in them making “smart” decisions or making dangerous decisions.  Make a point in your daily activities to go on one of these sites and befriend someone who is lonely and struggling.  There are many out there and often a kind word from someone who shares their problems is all they need to go on with their life.
Also, if you know any scientist or physician interested in developing a substitute fuel for energy, send them our way……….I prefer some premium octane if you please……….but most days would gladly settle for regular!!!


Muffie said...

This has been one of the hardest symptoms to explain to others. MS Fatigue only makes sense when you HAVE it. As you said, people say, "Oh, I get tired, too," but they don't have a clue how debilitating this exhaustion can be. When you can't lift your hand, or move your foot, or even hold your head steady -- that constitutes our type of fatigue.

Janie said...

Funny.........I usually try to write these a few days in advance so on days I have the fatigue, I will not have to skip posting a blog. Today was "one of those days" and I was sure glad I had already written this....funny it happened on the day it did!! :)