We had a hectic few months around Christmas time, and things with my headaches/migraines got really bad. The added stress of various things didn’t help matters and since I finished a big project with my work I’ve been taking a bit of a break from things and making my health & well being a bit more of a priority. I have been picky about what I’ve taken on for this blog, and yes, I am afraid I have been neglecting my emails somewhat. I have done my first crochet project this year, done a few jigsaws, and played a fair amount of Zelda!
Lydia finishes at her preschool this week, as it is actually closing down completely. Another victim of our messed up childcare system. When she moves to a different nursery after the Easter break she will be doing two 7 hour days per week rather than the 5 mornings she does now, so will be at home for 3 full weekdays. I’m hoping to spend those two days working (both my web work and the blog), and sorting stuff around the house.
I’m trying not to work too much in the evenings – or too late! I’ve also decided to take a bit of a sabbatical from work until both girls are at primary school together in September. I will still do some smaller support work, but no big projects or custom theme designs for now. I want to enjoy the time I have left with Lydia before she is at school 5 days a week, and have a relaxed Summer break with my pair of nutters!
I’m hoping that in the Summer we can turn the spare room into a home office with a daybed for guests, so that I have some dedicated work space that is better than my corner in the living room. That will free up some extra play room for the kids too and help the room feel less cramped.
It’s all about life/work balance – and giving me enough time to be ill without it stressing me out because I have too much stuff to do as well.
I went to see the neurologist last week and he was great, he is increasing the dosage of my preventative medication and spoke to me about painkillers and things like that. He wants me to give up coffee (oh no!) at least for a bit to see if it helps too. So far I have just felt tired out – and headachey, of course – the tablets biggest side effect is fatigue so each time I change my dosage I have to get used to them.
For now I am taking 2 tablets instead on 1 from my existing prescription, until his letter comes through and I can get the GP to change my dosage properly. It’s reassuring to know that progress has been made and that I’m not being dismissed out of hand like before. Just having someone believe what I’m saying and take it seriously makes a huge difference – I have been fighting with the GPs about it for well over a year now and they have been so difficult about some things!
I know that I’m never going to be headache free and in particular I will still have bad days where light and noise are my enemy, but the aim is to reduce the frequency of bad days, and lower my every day pain level. It has been a massive help to my mental health to take a break, de-stress, and take some positive action.
That “positive action” includes making changes to our home to help make things easier for me. Being able to change the brightness of the lights from my phone/via Alexa and the blackout blind in the bedroom, which James has now hooked up to our Smart Home stuff, has made a surprisingly big difference to my light-sensitive days. Sometimes I can manage my pain level fairly well simply by managing how much light I’m having to deal with, and that helps me avoid taking painkillers as much as possible. Also, I bought the Logitech Create case for my iPad Pro with some of my earnings, which has made it easier than ever to get a bit of work or blogging done while I’m not at my desk.
Here’s hoping things improve with my medication change and I’m content with decaf coffee!