The flu and cold bug camps out - lupus fatigue crisis averted!

To say that the winter cold and flu bug made a pit stop at our house this Christmas is a bit of an understatement. He more or less camped out at the Gorman household for the past 4 weeks, causing at least someone in the house much pain and sickness every night of his stay. I estimate we've been through more than 30 boxes of Kleenex since the week before Christmas. With five family members all fighting off coughs and colds, we definitely had our own little pharmacy going here. I'm finishing up my antibiotic now, and the girls are finally finishing up those runny noses. I won't say we're completely in the clear just yet...but there is light at the end of the tunnel.

That said, two weekends back, the tunnel was looking pretty dark. I'd been fighting off my cold for about two weeks, but had been recovering nicely. You know how it is - the itchy nose and scratchy throat begin, then the cold comes on, and there are a couple of days where you're just really down and out...and then the tide turns and you know the cold will be ending within a few more days. Well - that's just what happened, and I was coming out of it just fine. And then, one Sunday midday- my old friend fatigue hit, and I thought I'd taken a turn for the worse. A lupus turn, in fact.

I started feeling the fatigue that morning during Mass, and quickly realized I was running out of gas, and fast. It was just Deirdre and me, as we'd left Johnny and Bernadette home to nurse her runny nose, so we  headed home immediately. By the time we arrived home, I knew I needed to deal with the fatigue immediately.

I laid down on the couch, and Johnny immediately took over. The girls were playing all around me, but I fell asleep within minutes. It was just like my old lupus days - where I could fall asleep anywhere and at the drop of a hat. Good news, is that when I woke up over an hour later, I felt rested...which gave me hope. We put the girls down for their naps, and then I laid down again, and caught another 2 1/2 hours of sleep. And after that - I was good as new. I took it a little slow that evening, making sure that my perfectly rested body wasn't playing tricks on me, but that fatigue was gone, and with it, my concerns of a lupus flare. Guess I just needed to do a little catching up from the cold. So crisis averted...and I've never been so relieved.

Between my naps, my mind definitely went into hibernation mode. I made a mental list of all of the things I was going to have to offload - knowing that if a lupus flare was upon me, all those things that just "had" to get done weren't even going to make it onto a to-do list.  It was a good reminder that all of those "shoulds" aren't as pressing as I make them out to be. And it reminds me that should I be tempted to skimp on my nap, run myself ragged during the day, or stay up way too late at night - there are consequences to my actions. Nothing like a little fatigue fire drill to keep you honest and on the path to living well!


Montana Lupie said…
Sara I have an off the subject question! I am currently considering trying the new drug Benlysta and am looking for information on people who have tried it or are currently on it. I would also love your opinion on it! I am currently taking methotrexate injections and taking Celebrex to try and manage things but I feel that they are starting to not be as affective. I also have Hashimoto's disease along with my lupus.
I am just looking for some import from others out there and thought maybe you could help! Anything will be appreciated :-)
Montana Lupie said…
*Looking for input.....sigh :)
Unknown said…
The holidays did a number on my whole family--and sent me into a flare. Hope you start feeling better. I've just been diagnosed, and have appreciated your stories. Thanks.
Sara Gorman said…
Montana - Although I have no personal experience with Benlysta, I've met a handful of people across the country who swear by it. (Granted - it's not for everyone, and it's not a cure-all...but it's a very viable option!) The best place may be to check out - there's a ton of info there that's very patient friendly. Also, I recently posted about the "Benlysta connects" program, which you can sign up for on that site. It might be really helpful to get periodic updates on the drug - administration, side-effects, etc. Best of luck!!
Sara Gorman said…
Carie - Those holidays can be a real killer! I'll be sure to check out your blog - thanks so much for stopping by, and I hope your flare subsides soon!

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