Noise Cancelling Earbuds

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A good few years ago I went ahead and got myself a pair of Bose Quiet Comfort II headphones. These were the top active noise cancelling headphones available (within my price range). I got these right as exam period started up, and I lived in them.

I have aspergers, or autism as they’re now calling it. I come from a long family line of aspies, and we all have our own quirks. For me, noise is hard. When I’m stressed, like during exam time, I can’t filter out noise and I can’t concentrate around that noise. The noise cancelling headphones were an absolute game changer – all of a sudden I could isolate myself from the outside world and hyperfocus on my uni work. It was amazing!

Well then trigeminal neuralgia happened. All of a sudden my one escape from the world was no longer there, and I had to deal with extra pain, extra stress, and noisy life. I haven’t been able to wear anything over my face since. I made do with noise isolating earbuds and bemoaned the loss of my peace and quiet.

Until now. I just splashed out and got myself a pair of Sennheiser’s new Momentum True Wireless 2 earbuds. I quite honestly cried when I put them in and turned on their active noise cancelling function – all of a sudden the world around me just dropped away, and I heard nothing for the first time in over a year.

This is bliss. I’m going to live in these for a while now!

Sometimes You Just Have To Sleep (The Day Away)

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One delightful part of fibromyalgia is having unrestful sleep. For me, that means having vivid nightmarish dreams. Last night involved floating cows, deer crates, and then people infected with rage virus trying to kill each other (including me). It wasn’t a particularly fun night, and as a result, I woke up feeling a little bit like death warmed up.

Had breakfast and coffee, sat around for a bit … still death warmed up. Had second breakfast of cinnamon french toast, courtesy of my Amazing Human, and more coffee, but the excessive fatigue persisted.

Giving in, I curled myself up on the couch and lay down. I was out like a light.

I say ‘sleep’ rather than ‘nap’ because I’m typically out for about 4 hours, and I usually wake up feeling more rested than I do after a ‘good night’s sleep’. Today was no different.

Despite needing to do more cleaning, I slept solidly from midday until 4pm and I woke up feeling so much better. I wouldn’t have achieved a single thing by remaining conscious, but after that nap, I managed to finish off the bathroom and toilet and the cat pooping room / laundry.

With fibromyalgia, or with any other chronic illness, if you’re knackered … you need to sleep. Even if it means sleeping half the day away!

Chronic Illness and Cleaning

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I hate cleaning. I hate it with a burning passion, because it takes time and energy and effort and then you have to do it all over again next week. I like things to be done once and then stay done. Which, sadly, isn’t the case for the dishes, or the dust, or the cat litter trays, or the bathroom, or the toilet, or the carpet, or the cat hair …

I live with two lads who firmly believe that cleaning is a thing you do once every six months when it’s a flat inspection and that’s about it. If anything was cleaned, it was me who did it. Including most of the dishes. A few years ago we decided on a compromise: we’d all pay a bit extra, and each week we would have someone come over and clean the communal areas for an hour, these being the floors of every door that’s open (so my flatmate can leave his office door open if he wants and it’ll get vacuumed), the bathroom, and the toilet. It worked out fantastically for everyone involved – I suddenly had more spoons to spend elsewhere, and we all got a nice clean house.

Unfortunately COVID is a thing and my amazing cleaner is half way up the country at home. I’ve been managing to vaguely keep on top of at least the cat and dog hair, and the bathroom, but the toilet’s gone to the lads. Even more unfortunately we have a flat inspection in three days.

So I get to do all the cleaning.

Now I’m the kind of person who likes to get up, do everything in one hit, and then sit back down again. This sometimes works, and sometimes doesn’t. I’d read somewhere about doing things in bits, and taking rests in between – a concept that fills me with deep unease and no small amount of misdirected anger. Since I have only a few days to get the house to rights, and then a full week ahead of me (with a full day of driving immediately after that), I figured I should probably do the sensible thing and pace myself.

I got up, I cleaned a few more spots of cat puke off the carpet, liberally applied toilet duck (although at this point I’m convinced the toilet requires an exorcism), and sprayed the cleaning product all over the shower stall. Then I lay down for 40 minutes.

It was a bloody challenge to haul myself off the couch again and continue cleaning, but get up I did, and thus I cleaned. I did the shower stall and the sink, and lay back down. Then I got up and went out to the paddock for the first time in days.

And you know what? I think this whole ‘doing a bit at a time and then resting’ has a lot more going for it than my usual ‘DO ALL THE THINGS AT ONE TIME’. And I didn’t combust with misplaced rage while doing it, either. I’ll have to experiment with it more!

Life In Lockdown

Photo by Bruce Tang on Unsplash

Life has changed dramatically. We have been on lockdown for months. It’s affected every area of our lives and things will never quite be the same again.

The added stress of lockdown, a pandemic (a freaking pandemic, how is this reality??), and the second economic crisis I’ve lived through (so far) really knocked me for a number for the first couple of weeks. Well, that and being on my feet for a week solid beforehand. Regardless, I slept for two weeks pretty much solid, and it wasn’t until the fourth week of lockdown that I became a semi responsive human being again.

I haven’t been able to go to for acupuncture for my trigeminal neuralgia, so that’s flaring up a wee bit more than usual, but otherwise this is the healthiest I’ve been in donkeys years, because I’m not surrounded by people. I haven’t had a cold, or the flu, or the snuffles, since lockdown began.

And I’m loving it. I am unashamably loving lockdown. I don’t have to go anywhere, I don’t have to be human, I can study in my PJs lying on my couch with my cat on my stomach … I still take the dog for a walk and get a bit of exercise – social distancing is a thing – but otherwise I stay at home. And I love being a home body.

This won’t be the case for a lot of people – there have been catastrophic job losses and people attempting to survive on unemployment where before they had decent paying full time jobs.

But for me, it’s a little bit of quiet bliss. A bit of down time to rest, relax, and study.

Upgraded!

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I have officially gone Official with the full migration of this blog over to www.thewalktowellness.com!  From here on in, I’ll be updating on the Official Site (YAY).

There will be a few small adverts to help pay for the domain name and hosting (and maybe a coffee?), but nothing else is going to change.  I’m not going to monetise my blog entries.  I’m not going to do affiliated links.  This remains a blog about my journey through various chronic illnesses, in the hopes that some people realise they’re not alone, and it’s shitty but it’s also okay.

I look forward to seeing you on the newfangled site which hopefully doesn’t have too many hiccups.