Down along my restless palms

Apology of an entry: to say that I can’t, just now. I’m in the midst of yet another snow-storm of new symptoms which are now taking away my remaining chances of keeping in touch with people: clusters of new, odd migraine-like but more severe neurological symptoms; some blurred vision in one eye; and sudden onset tingles/pain in fingers and hands. The latter show up most when using my laptop, which again proves that something hates me enough to take away my only link with friends, via email and this place. I’d put it down to RSI/carpal tunnel syndrome if it wasn’t that it occurred in my right hand and then within 24 hours my left too. I’ll have to stop typing this soon as it feels too dangerous and the jabs of “ouch” too jarring.

My pay goes to zilch on Tuesday: I have to enter the mire of incapacity benefit, and David Blunkett’s proposed schemes to use lie detectors to determine if I’m a fraud, examine my water, gas and tv bills to see if I’m a fraud, and reams of assessors who nothing about ME to see if I’m a… fraud. Hey, maybe I’m a fraud.

The predominant feeling is, honestly, a return of despair. At these clusters of symptoms, at the poker-faces of my GPs, at the lack of action, at the fear of what all these seemingly neuro symptoms could be on top of the gastric onset, loss of hearing, tinnitus. Surely there’s a clinical picture here someone could see? I’ve suggested TIA’s/mini strokes, viral infections, bacterial infections: but they want to call everything I could conceivably get “chronic fatigue” (I have to add the “… syndrome”, increasingly sharply, and suggest they read the World Health Org’s classification of disease). I don’t believe for a second that what’s happened to me in the last 12 months is “chronic fatigue”: I believe and have told them that I believe I’m under attack by some infectious agent or other, or a neurological condition. No investigation ensues, my GP suggests the ludicrous “reverse therapy” (you’ll have to Google I’m afraid), and I withdraw, foetal and in exhaustion, to hope I will fight on another day.

I hope those friends who don’t hear from me get here to see this as my christmas letter to explain my email silence, and I hope you don’t stop thinking of me as a friend. I can read your mails and comments but not reply for now, mostly. Maybe my hands will get better; maybe my eye less blurred; maybe my weight, strength, white blood cell count and hope return. I remember all those maybe’s in that entry here months ago, where I tried to turn them back into hope of renewal. But it’s autumn now. There’s a million things to suggest and I and my partner have probably only tried a thousand of them – but right now I feel like someone half way up a mountain, in a blizzard, deciding maybe now’s the time to let sleep and snow take over.