I feel I’ve had a lifetime of sleep deficit, because I’m always trying to catch up. Sleep! Sleep! Sleep! Never enough, but it’s also somewhere (bed, anyway) where you think it’s the most comfortable place to be. Except if your only disability is depression. (Not discrediting the darkness is depression, however) Get up, move around.
So, for me going to bed to sleep is pure heaven, until, but wait.
For those older (I didn’t say old) I said older and more traditional stroke, it might require two people (cheers) to roll them over partway through the night. I can’t comment too much about that, as thankfully it hasn’t been my experience.
Early day’s I gave up my flannelette sheets, I think the first winter. HARSH. But necessary as I refused to give up my flannel PJ’s because when I rollover it’s like Velcro. The top sheet would get stuck to my PJ’s and covers would just go with me and a cool breeze would go down my back.
There was a lesson I learned pretty early on and I have only had to be reminded another two times. Try this, lie on your back and roll over to one side, as you do it, try to single out and remember all the parts of your body you utilize to roll over.
Now, what happens with your arms?
Allow me to tell you what happens with my left arm when I roll over, say to my right side, my left arm will fall behind my back, which is more than a little unpleasant. Because I can’t reach behind me to grab my left arm to pull it to the front. I literally have to roll back over onto my back, onto my arm even and I almost have to keep rolling to sit up over the edge of the bed to get my arm back in front of me.
Are you feeling my pain yet? No? Ok, let me next level it for you. In the early days of my disability, I fell over at the front of my house. My left foot got caught behind a post (a supporting post) of my front fence at the terrace house I was renting. I went down like a sack of (shit) potatoes and I smashed my head against the side of the wall and my left shoulder.
Behind me the screen door was closed, the front door open and down the hallway in the lounge was my mum. She heard the meowing I let out and came down, by the time she got to me, I had levered myself up onto the fence and noticed across the street, the creepy-but nice dude in the public housing flats on his balcony. He had seen me fall and I could tell he was concerned and was contemplating coming to help me. I gave him a wave to tell him I was OK. Mum appeared at the door “what have you done?” she demanded.
Have I mentioned my mum is NOT my Italian parent, yet this is how she responded, I know she cares and the noise I let out was just awful, pain and surprise, all rolled into one.
Now, in short, my left shoulder (to this day) mum is angry that it’s dislocated and no one wants to put it back in. Officially it’s not dislocated, but it kinda is. If I’d hit my right shoulder, it would be dislocated, but my left one has the muscle tone of an old worn elastic band. So, when I hit the wall it all just move and stretched.
Again, it’s not in its kind ‘out’ but can’t be put back ‘in’ because there is no muscle tone to hold it back in place. I’ve seen a private shoulder specialist who said he could ‘fix it’ (I imagine Frankenstein and bolts) but, he said I would have ‘other’ issues across my back.
So, when I ‘forget’ my arm, when I roll over and end up lying on it even briefly, it twists just a little in my shoulder, making it a little extra ‘special’.
Every single time I go to roll over to my right side, I grab my left arm at the wrist and bring that arm with me taking it in comfortably in front on me for safe-keeping.
Generally, every morning I’ll get a little bit of sleep on my left side and it’s very comfortable, well from the belly button down, my left arm I have to straight-jacket down my other arm so it doesn’t creep up every time I yawn.
Oh yeah that, when I yawn, it’s an involuntary thing, all the muscles in my face (cheek) neck, shoulder all tighten up and my left arm comes up, my hand flares open and it is kinda weird, but I digress, when I even briefly sleep on my left shoulder when I get up and sit on the edge of the bad, I have my left shoulder click back into place.
So sleep Blessed sleep Yeah.
And don’t forget the T.O.S. (Thorasic Outlet Syndrome)
I generally wake up several times each night with a numb right hand or pins and needles, which is part of Carpel Tunnel Syndrome and it takes a bit of upright and moving around to have these symptoms to disappear. But it’s just another thing to add to the list.
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