16 Months with Guillain Barre Syndrome

Month two of returning to work was much easier than month one—at least from a Guillain-Barre perspective. Since my office building is undergoing renovations, I was only required to make the trip into the city twice a week instead of four times a week. That saved me a ton of energy, and allowed my body to recover from the exertions of the first month.

Unfortunately, I also came down with a very annoying sinus infection a week into the month, and spent two weeks recovering from that. That dragged a lot more energy out of me than I had planned. I’m pretty much recovered from that now, and back to gaining strength instead of slowly losing it.

Last week was a fairly good gauge of how I’m doing. Monday was a holiday here in the US, but since I’m a contractor, I don’t get paid for holidays, so I had to make up the hours on other days. I worked a couple of hours on Sunday, three hours on Monday, then did a nine hour day on Tuesday (from home), into work on Wednesday and Thursday, and a ten hour day on Friday. Thursday was the day I felt my symptoms the most. I didn’t sleep well the night before, and had a cup of Chamomile tea at work. That’s supposed to be good for the nerves, but within a couple of hours, I had a pretty good case of the numbs on my face, arms and left leg. Not sure if the lack of sleep caused in, or the tea, but it’s not the first time I’ve had that tea and had worsened symptoms that day. But it could also be that I tend to drink that kind of tea more when I’m not feeling great in the first place. I’m going to bring a supply of my decaf Red Rose tea in to work from now on, since I know that doesn’t mess with me, and see if I can disprove the link.

On the whole, my energy level has been up this month—especially since getting over the sinus issues. I’ve started working out again—something I had been doing prior to going back to work, but had paused as I fought through those early weeks. I’ve been able to take my son down to the baseball field to play ball a few times. Pitching a hundred balls, even underhanded, takes a lot more energy than you’d think. This morning, I took the kids up to Home Depot for a kid’s project class, then out for smoothies, and in a few minutes, I’m taking them to the pool for a swim. That would have qualified for a busy Saturday before I had GBS.

I’ve also started writing again. I’ve got major edits to get done on my book Nowhere Wild, and while I don’t have a deadline for this edit (because my editor is super-understanding about my health issues), I still want to get it done this summer so I can get my writing career back on track. I had a 1000 word day last Sunday, and that felt really good.

I’m also slowly re-introducing reading back into my daily activities. If I have few spare moments, I pick up the book I’ve been working my way through for at least the last six months, and read a chapter or two. I can’t do the marathon-book-a-day sessions I used to do, but it definitely feels better than it did six months ago. My eyes aren’t perfect, but they’re getting stronger.

I wish I had more time and energy to blog on a regular basis, but with work, writing, and trying to get back into shape, blogging is still something I only have time to do on the weekend. Please forgive me for my inconsistent attendance. At some point, I’ll be back. Stay tuned.

One Comment on “16 Months with Guillain Barre Syndrome

  1. Glad to see your doing ok Joe,keep up the good work and put the kettle on and get drinking that tea Happy Days

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