Thursday, May 06, 2010


Sitting in Steve's study this morning, sharing the first cuppa of the day, catching up on the overnight Twitter feed but discussing nothing more weighty than whether we had a good night's sleep.

A thought occurs to me, I raise my head and start with "Steve?" but before he can respond, a scythe of pain slices through me, somewhere behind my eyeballs. I can't see, the world spins, I want to lie down but I can't work out which direction that might be.


There's ways and ways of saying Stop. Steve knows me well enough by now to understand what this one means. He doesn't ask questions, he doesn't move, he doesn't fuss, he just stops and waits. If we are lucky, I'm going to catch myself and slowly work back up to speed. If we're not lucky, he'd better be ready to catch me and make sure I don't knock the cups over.

Time passes, but we are a tableau, a freeze-frame, suspended animation. With an effort I breathe in, and then back out. A brightly-coloured wriggling skewer of pain dances in the cavern of my skull which suddenly seems to be much larger than any part of my body has a right to be. I breathe again and my outstretched hands identify the edge of the guest bed, which my upper body gratefully sinks onto. The duvet fills my eye sockets with calm, refreshing darkness, and the vicious little spears of pain begin to dissipate into a cloud which is bigger, but more muted and easier to cope with.

Slowly, the passage of time reasserts itself. Gently, Steve begins to move and both of us make a conscious effort to relax again.

Soon we start to giggle about the unfairness of him being effectively told to shut up before he's had a chance to say anything. The tea has not quite gone cold. I will have to be cautious today, avoid pushing my limits, but as long as I'm careful, I should have the spoons to manage everything essential.

Life goes on.

One of the 'essentials' today was to go and vote, with the help of my PA. I'm pleased to report that it was an accessible experience - we were able to park at the polling station, wheel in without difficulty, there was a wheelchair-height polling booth available, and I was politely advised that if I had difficulty reaching to post my paper into the ballot box, I could ask one of the officials to do it for me. I didn't - but the offer was appreciated.

1 comment:

evilstevie said...

I'm getting my practice in for a future career as a mime :D
The freezes can be anything from about half a minute to ten minutes, though the ten minuters generally lead to some blanket time afterwards.