I don't normally get too excited about an isolated event. MS teaches us, and you've all heard it, that there are good days and bad days. That is totally true when you're relapsing and remitting, but it's somewhat true also when progressive, but not as markedly. So one thing that I constantly test myself with is mowing "the hill". It's a small hill behind my yard that is quite steep. It used to be covered with honeysuckle and lilac and you couldn't even walk in it, but me and my wife cleared it out over the years and I keep it mowed. My daughter has been keeping the yard mowed, but I don't like her on the hill, but she has done it.
This hill was something I could not even do pre procedure, but have done it many times since then. The last 6 or 7 times, it has been the same story. I start with a modicum of energy and about 1/4 of the way through, I'm trashed. Matter of fact, the last two times I did it, my left leg got so bad I was literally dragging it across the ground and when done, I just would sit down right there in the middle of the flippin' yard and have to wait 5-10 minutes to even get back to the house.
A good deal of the problem with the energy drain is heat intolerance. We MS'rs melt in the heat; it actually used to be part of how you get diagnosed I believe. Get 'em hot and watch 'em wither. Well for a few years I've noticed that I don't sweat like I used to. This is a topic that has been talked about a good deal in the MS community and lots of people post CCSVI procedure comment on how they're sweating better. Well I used to sweat like a whore in church and I am one of those guys that can soak a shirt through just being in the sun. It has really gotten difficult to be in the heat and not sweat. Your head gets all over heated and you feel like you're having a heat stroke. Then your vision goes and you just get weak as hell and start stumbling around and it's just a shitty situation.
So today after work I decide to try the hill despite it being 80+ out and very humid. Well I started and it was going pretty well but I was starting to get too hot. Like throwing a switch I went from going "oh great, I'm going to over heat" to "shit, I'm pouring sweat!". It was like something just tripped. I can't explain it. My memorial day camping trip was very taxing as I simply couldn't even be in the shade during the heat of the afternoon as I was not sweating. I've always been heat affected but once the sweat started pouring, I'd only 'go down' so far in terms of function. Lately it has been going down and keep going down until I can't do anything.
I don't know what happened. I was thinking it was maybe high humidity that wasn't there over memorial day, but I was sweating my ass off. When I took a seat when done and bent over to tie my shoes, it was almost a stream pouring off my nose. It felt so damn good you don't even understand. This is giving me some hope that maybe I can enjoy the outside this summer. I never enjoyed it like the healthy days of course, but only going down to a known 'floor' and not getting worse let's you know your limits instead of just not even trying since you don't know that you can do ANYTHING. It was really great. When I was all done, I actually was walking kind of normal. Two weeks ago when I did this, my daughter came out of the house and was very concerned. I went right up the stairs on my deck and sat down and had a glass of ice water. It felt so normal! Doing yard work and sweatin' my ass off was one of my favorite things to do. I love to sweat; I've always thought it was kind of cleansing. But just getting hot and getting a beet red face and ahving your temp. just go up and up sucks.
I didn't have to cool off artificially with ice on my neck or anything; my radiator was doing it. Awesome. Now I'll probably pay the Gods of superstition who control 'jinxing' for spouting off about this, but this was really cool. It was one incident, but one I know the normal outcome of very well, so I don't look at it as just having a good day. To be truthful, it wasn't really all that good of a day physically. The most astounding thing about it is that I could've kept going. All the other times this year, by the end the mower is my walker and there's no possible way I could keep going. I've fallen many times while doing the hill also. This was flippin' great. It is an amazing dynamic that happens when something like this occurs. You know you shouldn't because of the possible let down, but you immediately start thinking about getting more engaged in all kinds of stuff. Doing this, doing that, a little of everything. I guess it really comes down to that. I did this so I could do more 'stuff'; it's pretty much that simple.