Triggers to discomfort is an important thing to learn for our bodies and mental distress. With Tarlov Cysts you will find that simple, everyday actions can set you back a few days. It is learning those activities and how you choose to deal with it/them. Let’s share some examples.
Since my cysts are in my sacrum, any activity that puts undue stress on the area below my hips can send me into a flare. Example is the climbing up and down a step stool or even the ladder. I was trying to put screen on the openings of the cabinet that is a build-in in our new butlers’ pantry. So that required a lot of measuring, thus it required a lot of climbing up the ladder. Not to mention the cleaning up of old paint and tacks that the original screen had. I am assuming, for my body, the action of stepping at the angle a ladder requires is the issue. Oh, there is no issue while I am doing this particular action, but the next day or during the night I will find out that maybe I did too much.
Was it too much doing the ‘action’? Or …. Was it just the ‘action’? Was it the added sitting in a chair to do the gluing and shaping of the screen? A person needs to decide which it is, in order to keep the discomfort level at a manageable one. Me? Yep, too determined to ease off. I kept at it. Thus, the next day and the next, I ended up having to dig into medicine to survive and continue the chore. Was it wise? Depends on your personal attitude.
We can give another example. Painting. I needed a closet and the dry-goods pantry painted. The team doing the sheet-rock would not put up my shelves, unless it was painted. So, last night I once again used a step stool to get close to the ceiling. [I ain’t painting the ceiling; I left that for someone else.] But now the whole back is in discomfort. So…… Was it the climbing or was it the action of trying to roll paint on an un-flat surface.
For those wondering why a wall would be un-flat: think of a home over a hundred years old with what we call “beadboard” on the walls and ceiling. That board is truly just strips of tongue and groove solid wood that was used as walls. Some people plastered over it or just painted it. Mine was stained. Pretty, but after a hundred years there were knots that had popped out of the wood, and some of the tongue and groove had worn off. That lets lots of insects and other fuzzy eight-legged buggers in. So, sheet-rock it was.
From my two examples, you might think that I was just ‘over doing it’. There is a thought that, maybe, “yes I was.” But, I really think it was the ‘action’ of what I was doing. ≈I.E. How those actions were affecting the spine and all the lovely nerves that come from it. Then, we might even consider the spinal fluid getting too active as a result of my actions. Lots and lots of angles to think about. That is why when we start on a journey like this, we need to keep a log of what we do each day with how long we do it.
Therefore, this Cleopatra is spending the day on the couch and trying to figure out what she can get into that my Cysts would tolerate. I could always wipe up the sheet-rock dust, cleaning every surface in my kitchen – again. Or I could just do nothing but watch gardening videos. Maybe search out the perfect toilet? That is, if I ever get the bathroom remodel started.
After typing the above, I did a little of all three. But for today, I hopped into the car and went shopping. I had ‘needed’ items and some ‘just look’ items that I was in search of. I don’t care how many pictures on line that you see of an item, I need to see it in person. Not only did I look at toilets hung well above my head [that gives me no idea of what they would sit like. Much less how the water flows into the bowl ], but I strolled by the refrigerators. Unfortunately, the items I ‘needed’ could not be found. I have my favorite pot scrubbers, and I want only those, so sue me.
After driving myself around town, that is a good 20 minutes away, and making a total of five stops, my bumm was not happy with me. It had been a few weeks since I had driven a car, and I can say that driving is one of those triggers. After getting home something happened that has not been an issue in a long time. My right foot and leg decided to play games with me. The upper part of the leg was numb and then I had a mild case of ‘foot drop’. A girl has to have her freedom and this one is not giving up driving.
I can only surmise that the action of pressing on the gas pedal does something along the spine. There is a nerve that does not like it and it usually just causes the foot to ache. Oh, yes, the foot had mild discomfort along with the middle of the back, but that is a discomfort I can take. What gets ‘iffy’ is the climbing out of the driver’s seat and landing like a graceful dancer when leaving the car. [When I say car, I mean SUV.] What ended the outing was the fact that I could not climb back into the driver’s seat. I had forgotten to drop it back and down when I left the car. So, I was standing at my car door, with my hands full of treasures, and just stared at the seat like it was going to magically place me in it. That didn’t happen. I was just standing there, with my mask completely under my chin, and got several wicked stares from passerby-ers. How rude. If my daughter would have been with me, she would have said something off the wall to those lovely people. Maybe said, “she’s just drunk.” She has done it before. When my brain clicked back into gear, I just walked around to the passenger side. I deposited my goodies in that seat, then went back to the driver’s side and pushed the button to lower the seat. That was my clue to get myself home so I could resume being Cleopatra for the day.
Something I should mention is that during these last few weeks the PGAD has been almost constant. Mild, but constant. Nasty bee stings and waking in the middle of the night with everything hurting has become an almost daily occurrence. I have refrained from taking the Amitriptyline since it causes me to have a full unproductive day. I do know that in a few days I will be forced to take one, or I will not be able to function. Some may wonder why I just do not give in and take one, especially since I know I will have to soon. I have trade persons coming almost daily to work a few hours and when I take the Amitriptyline I need well over 24 hours to be brain alive. In other words, it slows my thinking down to where I have to ‘double-think’ everything and I am never sure if anyone understands what I try to say.
For my readers, try to keep a detailed record of your activities. By doing such you are being your own detective and can come up with answers well before a doctor could.
Let me state the blah-blah-blahs: Nothing in my posts is considered medical advise! ETC!