Multiple sclerosis fatigue. Fact or fiction?

I’ve been trying to make a lot of big decisions recently and it feels like I’m going round in circles. But this afternoon and tonight might be the final push that I needed.

I’ve read about fatigue in MS and I wasn’t sure if I’d experienced it. I never used to nap and over the past few months if I stop for too long then I’ll probably fall asleep. But today I’m sure what I’m experiencing is the extreme fatigue I’ve read about.

It’s disappointing to say the least when the people around you don’t understand, don’t try to understand and are just generally dismissive of what your feeling. Saying you’ve done too much or you need to take it easy. Or my favorite, your a single parent to two kids and a full time job, don’t you expect to be tired?

But this is unbelievable today. This afternoon I just started very tired. I felt I could go to sleep. But I didn’t have time and work wasn’t really the place. As I’m parking the car in the afternoon I reversed the car into a wall. My mind was just so distracted and tired! I have sensors on the car that bleep when I’m getting too close, but I’m not sure I even registered what the noise was until I felt the jolt of hitting the wall. (And I was watching the wall as I reversed too).

I tried to ignore it but this annoyed me. I’m now on a medical driving license so it needs to be reviewed every 3 years. Receiving that news in the post was like another blow that MS was taking something else from me. But if I can’t even reverse into a space with parking sensors then I think they have a fair point and I’m ready to admit defeat.

When I got home from work and got the kids home it was time to make dinner. This has never felt like such an effort. My whole body felt exhausted and lifting the spoon to stir what was in the pot was a huge effort. I found myself holding onto the worktops for support. Dinner was made… I was hoping this would give me some more energy. But no the effort involved in lifting the fork up to my mouth was exhausting. I was going to have to sleep from the strain of eating! I’m starting to wonder how I can do this on my own anymore. But I don’t ask for help very well, but I’m going to have to learn. Everytime the kids make a noise it’s like there is a loud ringing in my ear. Really my sight isn’t what it used to be. My memory is non existent and now my hearing is going to be effected too.

My mum phones to ask if I can bring the kids round for their great grandfather to see them as he’s dropped by for a visit. I explain that I am so tired I can’t drive the less than 5 mile round trip, it would be irresponsible at best. I’m advised that it must have been the long drive I did this morning that did it to me and she would phone back soon if she was going to pick them up instead.

20 min later I hear the kids are going to get picked up and about 15min later they are. It’s almost their bedtime, but all I can think is that it will let me rest for at least half an hour.

I come back in the house after they’ve gone and realise I’m now struggling to put one foot in front of the other. I feel unsteady and I don’t trust my body anymore. I sit down and phone my partner, just to hear him will make me feel better. He doesn’t answer.

I guess I’m doing this on my own, I should be used to that by now. It feels like the ground is trying to suck me up and I’ve no fight to stop it anymore.

Maybe a bath will make me feel better, I don’t think about it until I’m nearly up the stairs that this maybe wasn’t such a good idea. I’m exhausted by the time I get a few stairs from the top. I feel weak and out of balance. I’m scared I might fall back down. I hold on tight just in case. I get to my room and I realise that I don’t have a choice anymore I need to move house. I need to have a room and a bathroom on the ground floor just in case. This is probably still mild for MS, but it’s the worst I’ve had. I can’t risk being stuck upstairs or downstairs in this house. But at the same time I definitely don’t have the energy I need to get this house ready to sell. I have time off work soon so hopefully I’ll feel a bit better then.

After my bath the ringing in my ear has stopped… until I cough and it’s back. I think it’s any noise that sets it off. Then I realise the kids will be back soon and I’ll have to listen to the ringing again. As I look at the time I realise their grandparents (my parents) have disregarded the time I requested them home by. So now I know tomorrow morning is going to be difficult and a rush as the kids won’t be able to get up and I have the school run to do.