[nutrasine & me]
My name is ms.annegirl and this is my brain:
Neurologist say it’s “abnormal” because it has scars on it. Brain scars act like road blocks, so if my brain sends a messenger to my eye, the messenger may get cut off on the way and my eye will never receive the message to receive light. But, the brain is mysterious and miraculous and is constantly building “new roads”, or pathways; so sometimes, when the messenger meets a road block, it can take a detour and create a new pathway. In fact, everyone’s brains are creating pathways everyday. These unique pathways are part of what make you who you are and me who I am. I’m Annie McCready; this my brain, and here are few things we’ve done together….
We’ve made LOTS of friends:
We’ve even done some extraordinary things:
And we’ve played pretend:
I don’t share these things to brag or to commend myself, I share them because they’re miracles. I share because most of the experiences captured above I had strength to do, and I don’t anymore. I’ve taken Nutrasine since I was six years old and was allowed to live a remarkably full life--not without consequence--but I was passably normal. Now I can’t even pretend.
Growing up, whenever I was in strenuous situations, the voice of caution said to me, “Just make it home.” Home meant bed, sleep, air conditioning, ice, etc. Home meant healing, rest, and escape because when I was on Nutrasine there was always somewhere to escape my symptoms. I may have had to push through or hang tight through a show or two (heat exacerbation), a long essay (hand cramps & spasms), or just headaches (dizziness, disorientation), but I knew there was place to make them stop. I just had to get there.
I’ve been off Nutrasine since it was discontinued about a year ago and I am weak, weaker than I have ever known weakness. On a scale from 1-10, in my Nutrasine fueled life, I could function at a 7 without feeling overwhelmed; 8 made me grunt; 9 made me cry; 10 made me sleep. Now, I function at a 3; 4 disorients me: I stop hearing people's voices because I’m busy hearing my symptoms’ complaints; 5 makes me cry; 6 and on I’m fighting for consciousness. Not everyday. These are the worst ones and I can have them 2-4 days of the week. On good days, I walk for 30 minutes up and down and road in front of my house; I eat meals and watch shows with my family; sometimes, I have an outing or friend over for an hour or so; but most days, good or bad, I stay in my room because sometimes there isn’t a discernible trigger for a symptomatic ambush. In fact, I’ve personally stopped counting good days and bad days and have been collecting good moments and bad moments because most days have a bit of both. Like the Doctor (yeah, I watch Doctor Who--sue me) said,
“The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don’t soften the bad things, but vice versa, the bad things don’t always spoil the good things and make them unimportant.”
I know that the scariest monsters are the ones we can’t see and, oddly enough, they are the ones I’m most well acquainted, so allow me paint to one more picture: In my experience, I relate to my body like it is a monster. It gets very angry and lashes out with burning sensations, muscle spasms, selective deafness, numbness, exaggerated pain, heat intolerance, headaches, vertigo...I can go on, but what I’ve been taught is that hurting people hurt people. The monster, my monster, is wounded and I’m the only one who can speak for it because it’s MY MONSTER and it only talks to me. I’m the only one who hears it. I’m the only one who knows what it’s like when it’s not angry and when it’s strong. I want to keep it strong because the monster is my friend (have grace for the analogy--I don’t have Stockholm syndrome), so I don’t listen to loud music anymore; I’m on the “no-sugar, no gluten, no dairy, no food, no fun” diet; I sleep when I’m not tired; I take too many vitamins, and walk and walk and walk when I want to run and swim and dance because I know that is what my monster is capable of, but not today. Today it is sick and I need to make it better; Nutrasine makes it better.
(P.S. please don’t sue me--I got a LOAD of medical expenses and am currently unemployed)
scream’n in your corner, “Keep swing’n, champ!”