Tuesday 1 December 2015

the way i walk is just the way i walk

A colleague at work commented on the state of my shoes the other day:

No filters have been applied to this image.

I pointed out that, far from being targeted by persistent and precise bullies with an anti 'box-fresh' specialism, my left leg is the 'draggy one'. The muck on my shoe is just the dust I kick up when i walk.

I'd already noticed the state of my left shoe but it's pretty weird to be made to take a step back and consider the situation anew.

However you cut it, this can't be good, can it? 

It has now been 4 weeks since my last physio appointment. Have I been doing my exercises regularly enough? Probably not. And unsurprisingly my walking has been getting slightly more laboured. 

Could this be to do with the weather? Year-end exhaustion? My age? Or... perhaps... perhaps... perhaps.

As the physio rightly pointed out, I know what I need to do to get strength and control back. So I am trying to do this more regularly but can't seem to find more than a few minutes a day. Usually when I hit the snooze button on my alarm every morning.

On a loosely-work-related tip...

It's that time of year when people around me are dropping like flies - whether it be through some kind of lurgy or exhaustion as we drag our weary bones to the Christmas break. 

Now I'm not saying that I hold all the cards with regards to work-place sickness ("you think you've got a 'bit of a sniffle', do you? Oooh, I know just how you feel. It's just like me with my chronic progressive disabling health condition... *withering glare*").

But I do think there's a bit of a weird double-standard which plays out here (and it's probably in my head). 

It's like I don't want anyone to be able to say that I was playing my disabled card if I have a day away from the office

I very VERY rarely take any time off for illness. Not that I drag myself in unnecessarily if I'm clearly suffering with something contagious. But still, I can't remember the last time I had off sick.

And I certainly can't remember the last time I took a sick day without doing a little bit of work from home.

I don't mean it to sound like I'm doing a job that nobody else could do - it's really not as if I'm talking about brain surgery / rocket science. But there does seem to be something with me - it might not be anything to do with my condition but psychologically I feel like I need to give an extra few percent.

I'd be interested to know if any of you feel the same - whether it's a desire to work as much as you can while you still can or some weird self-flagellating need to prove that you can do it. Or a combination of the two.

I hope I'm right in assuming that we've all pretty much accepted that we're a mess of neuroses, right?

This video is all kinds of amazing however.


  1. I agree completely and have very little tolerance for listening to people's gripes & moans with a common cold... blah...blah...

    I wonder do we work harder, take virtually no time off etc. (can't remember last time either) because we can control our work lives? MS creates so much unpredictability, by giving 110% at work managing 2 kids full time, also is my way of proving to myself & the world that I can carry on regardless in spite of MS! Admittedly to my detriment at times.
    We need to be stubborn and resilient on a daily/hourly basis to beat this MS monster!

    Merry Christmas to you all, hope Santa is good ;)

  2. interestingly, i was talking to a colleague yesterday whose husband had been taught that it's impossible to work at 100% capacity - at that point you'll just burn out. the aim should be to work up to 80% - and the 20% is just for you. I don't know how you'd monitor this in lieu of a personalised fuel gauge. but interesting nonetheless.

    your point about "proving to myself & the world that I can carry on regardless in spite of MS...[and] to my detriment at times" sounds about right to me - what a pair of daft sods we are.

    Merry Christmas to you too but it's not Christmas until after my brother's birthday (on the 13th) - hmmm, try telling my 4yo that...

  3. I try not to factor in my MS at all into my capability to work, and I try not to blame every other little thing on it in the rest of my life, although it is tempting (and I know that it's easier for me than it is for many people with MS). I take time to go to appointments (and no one challenges me over it, but neither do I ask their permission), but the last day I had off sick was in 2002 when I had bacterial food poisoning and lost a stone in a week. I took a solitary day off. Then again, I had a colonoscopy the other day without anaesthetic too (it honestly wasn't that big a deal, but everyone seemed astonished, all the doctors in the theatre included), so maybe I'm just insanely stoical?

    I am, I'm told by my wife, incredibly hard on myself... especially when it comes to exercise.... and if someone enters into my world in that space, then I'm incredibly hard on that person too. When we were training for the London marathon together, I discovered that my wife likes to externalise every little ache or pain or moan that she has on her mind. My job was to suck it up, all the while trying not to broadcast too loudly that she thought she had problems, I'm the one with the chronic, incurable neurological condition!

    I drag my left foot too. All my left shoes are pretty heavily scuffed up. What can you do, eh?

  4. I know we all have bigger things to concern ourselves with this morning but I'd hate anyone to read my post as some kind of whinge at people who are genuinely ill with supposedly "lesser" conditions.

    If anything, I'm a total EMPATH. I'll always try to persuade people to go home if they're under the weather or going through personal stuff which is affecting them. If anything - and I think this has been mirrored in the comments so far - my point was about my attitude to taking time off. I'm in a relatively senior position so I see my role as being to "suck it up", as it were and bloody get on with it.

    If I'm ill I'll take time off. I just don't seem to be ill that often!

    This year I've taken a lot of time off for various appointments and I've mostly taken them out of my annual leave. That's my choice.

    I do think that, as we're relatively young and more or less healthy (ish) we don't want to take the piss and play our Joker too often. Plus we don't want to the SICK PERSON at work. Yes I've got MS but look at what I can do.

    I guess it's like the song says: I'm just a boy whose intentions are good. Oh lord...

  5. and seriously, what is the deal with our LEFT FEET???

  6. Mine's the right!

  7. Great song and amazing video.

    Personally I skive off whenever I can. But I get your point.