This year has been tough for me, health-wise. As I've mentioned, my MS started going crazy a couple months after Maisie and I made the big move from Chicago and it hasn't let up. I've had two major flare ups thus far. The first rendered my left arm and hand useless, the second gave me horrible vertigo followed by loss of hearing in one ear. While there have been major improvements, some symptoms still linger and may be with me forever. And there's always the fear of another flare up coming on at any time.
I was admitted to the hospital for the vertigo and was so grateful that the owner of Maisie's daycare was willing to come pick her up and also drop me off at the ER. I was an inpatient for five days (one of which was the 4th of July), and being there without my usual support network of family and friends was very difficult. Luckily, my brother had already planned a visit and was here for a few days right after I was released. Hard to say who was happier to see him, me or Maisie. She made sure to get in as much cuddle time with him as possible.
After my brother left, I was on short term disability for a week. Although the vertigo was somewhat better once a week of resting at home had passed, I was still too dizzy to drive so I had to hire a driver to take me to/from the office and Maisie back and forth to daycare for a few days. Two weeks later, I went on a vacation that I'd planned months ago with a group of friends from Chicago. Even though it meant leaving Maisie again, I really needed to get away and relax...and the gorgeous view of the Atlantic we had in Maine certainly helped!
I will actually be leaving Maisie once again this week, as I am going back to Chicago for a few days. It will be my first visit home since moving to MA and I'm super excited to see my friends and family. I am feeling better now, but I know that this unpredictable disease can always surprise me with another episode without warning. So I'm working really hard to reduce my stress and accept the fact that some things are beyond my control.
Maisie gave me a purpose when I felt helpless and hopeless. There were days when I might not have gotten out of bed if I didn't have to feed her or let her out in the yard. She kissed me when I was sad, snuggled up to me when I was afraid and stayed close to me when I couldn't do much more than wait for my brain to heal itself. I value her companionship now even more than I did before.
"is this close enough? want me closer?"
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