I WOULD RATHER SAY I’M WRITING REGULARLY
but the reality is different: and I have a temporary good excuse.
BTW, WordPress is giving me a hard time here, but the photo above is a picture of one of the coffee bean plants I’ve managed to keep alive since they were given to us by one of our new neighbors (as babies). I guess you could call them toddlers now.
I’ve named them Castor and Pollox. One of these days I will figure out which is which, but they came out of the two halves of a single coffee bean, so they will always be twins.
Our new place faces north (we picked it that way so I can sit by the window every day), but there is an indentation, and there is a window ledge which gets sun in the morning. The plants have been much happier (How does a plant display ‘happy’? It grows.) since they get some morning sun, even though coffee plants grow best in shade.
They get the same treatment my houseplants did in New Jersey: if they live, I water them once a week or so, and they are allowed to continue living.
This is true of the twig that came with a flower arrangement a while back – because it had perky green leaves, I continued to water it, and I think it’s still alive, probably with some rooting going on in the block of florist foam that holds it. One of these days I’ll plant it. If it’s still with us.
Something has changed since the move.
There are a lot more people here, and trying for a minimalist experience – having dinner several times a week with new friends, is challenging for someone like me who used to try to limit leaving the house to twice a week.
Because I now have the pools (have to use them on these hot summer days) and the adult trike I just bought from a resident who is 91, and isn’t planning on riding it any more.
And an occasional concert. And a Mass/communion service twice a month. And a very occasional resident’s meeting or management/resident meeting or…
It isn’t the time commitments
And the occasions are all pleasant, not too taxing (for the normal person) and something to do.
Plus the many decisions (we bought new mattresses!) involved in having a new home (I got the new doctor, after about a HUNDRED hours over four weeks, to give me the exact SAME pain prescription I’ve been using for fifteen or more years).
I still don’t have a California driver’s license; it’s next on the list. I think.
But the time commitments have been far more than I had before.
And I’m trying to keep up with a few friends back home, and my family in Mexico.
What I’m trying to say is the brain isn’t reaching writing strength
as frequently as I need it to.
For as long as I need it to.
I sit at this computer every day, doing all the things that usually worked in the past – blocking the internet, taking B-1 and B-12 (I’ve now added a Vitamin C pill), pacing and taking naps as needed, trying not to eat carbs (they mess with my mind – but I had dessert last night).
But the creative brain isn’t clicking on, and when it does, it doesn’t stay on for long.
I think it’s tired of me diverting its output to mail, doctors, phone calls (necessary), minor new things, major new things, and legacy stuff.
To give the ol’ brain some help
I’m trying the last ME/CFS managing trick I had saved for a time like this: Low-dose naltrexone (LDN).
It has helped many people with ME (and other things) function.
I want less brain fog.
But it may eventually help with pain and sleep and possibly some of the exercise intolerance, and maybe the orthostatic intolerance. I dunno.
I’m taking it for less brain fog – and there are no guarantees.
It was prescribed to me by a neighbor/doctor who used it with his patients.
But back in New Jersey I could still manage to write
Most of the time. Slowly. By not leaving the house. By doing almost nothing.
And you don’t mess with what works.
So I’ve had the capsules for two years without trying them.
Brain creativity doesn’t seem to be coming back, or not fast enough, or strongly enough.
Thing is, there’s a ramp up period for LDN
To avoid side effects, and overdosing, the recommendation (I have a nice FB group with supportive knowledgeable people) is to start very low (0.3mg for me), and not increase the dose more often than about every two weeks IF you aren’t having continuing bad side effects.
Because I AM having (minor) side effects – when I change the dose (so far twice). And one of those is disturbed sleep – until you get used to the dose!
All I can say so far, after a month, and two steps on the dosing schedule, is that I’m tolerating the LDN.
And that there seems to be a positive effect on several areas, small, but I can’t REALLY tell yet, and, though I can work a bit longer at a time (‘work’ defined as ‘butt in chair’), I haven’t gotten enough better yet in achieving the level of brain functioning that I need to write reliably.
Something extra: it may help with walking, some, by diminishing the pain walking now causes.
What does the future hold?
Dunno. And LDN is NOT a cure for CFS or POTS or any of the other symptoms. Especially it is not known to be a cure for fatigue or exercise intolerance.
I have plenty of time – the move was the correct solution for so many things: social isolation, shedding the requirement for house and yard and vehicle maintenance, being prepared for when we need higher levels of care (it’s downstairs, and people there are still part of the community), better weather, exercise facilities (for my poor joints and muscles)…
My best hope is that these hours on the computer will start being my happy time again, my functional time, my ‘she has a brain’ time, and NETHERWORLD will get finished and published.
I’m spending a small amount of this current time in promotion – getting more reviews – and hand-selling. I will tell later if anything comes of any of it.
But there has been a LOT of change, and it takes time to absorb change and to adjust to a new system of everything.
I’m on it.
It’s slow – but I hope it will speed up soon.
And I’m still writing every day – yesterday I watched Bollywood wedding dance videos. For NETHERWORLD.
And how are you?