Monday 26 February 2024

Concussion reflections

Life's continuing to be challenging at the moment, and I've found myself often feeling trapped. With the concussion, I can't walk far without nausea and I certainly can't ride my bike or swim; I'm also basically not seeing anyone. I'm trying to put into practise what I've been learning about 'active recovery' from concussion, but it's hard as my CFS-related limits have all been disrupted, and figuring out how to do what's needed for the concussion without over-doing it from a CFS perspective is hard.

Yesterday I decided to go to a close friend's 50th birthday afternoon tea. I knew I'd pay for it, but if felt important.

Today has been a real struggle, with lancing pain through my head and eyes through much of the day; although I did manage a 15 minute walk with minimal nausea, which was lovely.

And I've been mulling over two thoughts through the day:

Sunday 28 January 2024

I have concussion :-(

I fell out of bed on the night of January 16th - or rather, forcefully shoved myself out of bed, as I was was trying to move up higher in the bed but misjudged the direction and moved out of it instead.  I fell on my back, hitting my head and upper back hard.

Initially I thought all I had was a scraped and swollen ankle, as well as a sore right side to my body; it wasn't till later that I started to wonder about concussion.

The first thing was a couple of bouts of intense nausea and blotchy/blurry vision - that happened on the Wednesday when I was getting ready to go camping, and again on Thursday en route to camping.  I initially put it down to a migraine aura, but eventually realised the visual disturbance was quite different.

I wondered about trying to see a doctor in Māngere Bridge, but nothing seemed seriously wrong and, with my complex medical history, waiting till I could see my own GP seemed better.  We Googled concussion and found that the main treatment seems to be rest, which we were doing anyway :-)

image credit: Mayo clinic

I was also basically fine - I had a few specific symptoms, but biked home from Ambury Park comfortably; I was also able to bike to Blockhouse Bay on Thursday and swim for 45 minutes with no problems.

Tuesday 23 January 2024

Back at Ambury Park

Last April Martin and I camped at Ambury Park, the only council campsite we can get to solely by bike :-)  We'd thought it'd be a good place to bring people who hadn't been camping before: it's a fairly flat site, has non-smelly toilets and even hot showers(!), is pretty affordable, and is only a 20 minute drive from where we live, so very accessible for many of our friends.

We tried to get a group from church to join us camping there this past weekend. Various things came up that meant we ended up camping on our own, but friends from church came out to join us on both the Friday and Saturday mornings :-) 

Bird-watching walk with our Saturday visitors:

Wednesday 17 January 2024

A Covidian Christmas

On the Tuesday before Christmas I was a bit congested in the evening and had a sore throat - both things that often happen when I'm a bit run down.  However, in the morning I woke up noticeably worse, so did a Covid test.

I initially thought: "gosh, that control line came up fast", before realising it was no control line...  So I cancelled my plans for the day, told Martin and Sarah, and went straight to bed.

Sunday 14 January 2024

New Year's Examen

At New Year's we're often encouraged to make resolutions - to look to the year ahead and think about what we'd like to do differently.  However, inspired by the daily "Examen" (a Jesuit practise of praying about/reflecting on your day) which I've found so helpful this year, last week I decided to follow a similar process to reflect on the past year instead.

the beach where I often go when I want to take time and reflect

Guided by these thoughts and questions I prayed about the good things that had happened this year and where I'd seen God in those.  That included:

Thursday 5 October 2023

Camping at Pae o te Rangi

Last weekend, Martin and I had a 5-day break at the Pae o te Rangi campground in the Cascades area of the Waitakere Ranges, near-ish to Te Henga/Bethell's Beach.

We caught the train to Swanson then got on our bikes - as you can see, it had some steep bits!

Biking up the first steep bit, to Waitakere township.  I forgot to take my asthma inhaler when I first got on the train (it takes 30 minutes or so to kick in), so I was struggling with asthma up this bit and Martin had to take over my bike a little before the top.

the gradient of the route as a whole

Friday 18 August 2023

Waiheke with Anna

Last week I spent five days on Waiheke with my friend Anna.  It was fantastic to have extended time together, especially in such a lovely location :-)

I was pretty nervous beforehand.  Normally when I go away with Martin, he carries well over half the luggage, as well as doing all the cooking.  This time, Anna and I split the cooking, and I needed to carry all my stuff.  Would I manage?!