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How I Plan to Kick Ass After a Restless Night With POTS

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When I’m lying in my bed I’m ready to kick ass and take on the world.

After a restless night I take my medication and I set my goals for the day – shower, dress, make the bed, do a load of washing, five minutes on the exercise bike…And maybe I could even cook dinner tonight.

I decide I’ll go for a walk, take the kids out for lunch, or maybe even run a small errand.

I daydream about going back to work and the amazing holidays we could afford or the renovations we could complete with the additional income. I know this would alleviate the financial stress that my husband is currently carrying as he supports us all. I picture getting dressed and going to my workplace where I enjoy the people, the culture, the values and the purpose, as I know I can still contribute and learn so much.

From the comfort of my bed I can imagine fulfilling all the goals and dreams my husband and I have worked so hard for, of enjoying these last few precious years with our teenagers before they become fully fledged adults.

I wonder if I might be able to read a book, paint a piece of furniture, sort a cupboard or even sit in the glorious sunshine today.

I tell myself that I am refreshed, I am doing better, I am alive and I am grateful. Then, I stand up and reality sets in as the blood pools to my feet, my blood pressure drops so suddenly that I have to adjust and steady myself, the dizziness and the headache start, along with the heart palpitations, the chest tightening and the heavy breathlessness.

Showering and dressing can happen these days, but hair and make up are wasted energy saved only for special occasions. I push myself to make the bed for my own self satisfaction and prepare to go out by doing things efficiently and by breaking it down into small tasks.

I am excited to drive the five minutes to the shops. I am feeling better, but decide to head straight to lunch as fuel is definitely needed. Just standing and ordering my lunch prompts my symptoms again and a few bites in and my condition worsens and I can’t eat anymore.

There is no time for wandering or lingering. I go to three shops in a hurry, with complete focus on what we are there for, as I have no time or energy to spare to go off track. I scope all areas for seats so I know at all times where I can head if the dizziness becomes too much.

Within 10 minutes of shopping I can feel my face is pale as the blood has left my head. I’m confused and forget what I’m looking for. I start feeling clammy and sweaty as my body is going into shock from the loss of pressure. I keep moving and hope it will pass.

We separate tactically to speed up the shopping and delegate tasks with the precision of a military team with its zombie leader.

I lean on the counter hoping it will hold me up as the sales assistant keeps making register errors at the last shop of the day. I’m just hoping that I don’t faint in public. All I want to do is get home!

We get to the car and I feel some relief from sitting but my heading is pounding from the exertion and loss of blood flow. I get home and quickly unpack, grab water and anything I may need before I sit down as I know that I’ll be on the lounge for a while to recover from my one hour out of the house.

Slowly, my thoughts of painting, walking, and returning to work in two weeks all disappear. Maybe if I rest for a couple of hours now the headache might subside enough so I can cook dinner tonight and enjoy some TV with my family.

But tomorrow is another day and I look forward to when I wake up ready to kick ass and take on the world again!

Getty Image by cherrybeans

Originally published: July 13, 2018
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