Bears hibernate in the winter, MS patients hibernate in the summer

Bears hibernate in the winter, MS patients hibernate in the summer

Got a wake up call the other day. We went from a comfortable 60° in New York up to  82° overnight.  Silly me, didn’t think anything of it and opened all the windows.  I have roughly 7 windows in my apartment that I opened, well I should say my daughter before she left.  Normally there’s a nice cross breeze in my apartment, but that takes wind. I live upstairs, heat rises, no wind, so no cross breeze and by 2:00 it was  78° On my thermostat  and by 5 o’clock 82°.

Heat and multiple sclerosis do not get along for most people. I am definitely in the category of most people. It is always been my nemesis. After every summer I’m usually like, hallelujah, I made it. It’s so debilitating to me. It’s difficult for me to go in and out of my house or in and out of a car ,where there’s air-conditioning, because that means I’m going in and out of the heat.   All my symptoms act up. I won’t walk well if I can really walk at all. My numbness is 10 times more severe. I just won’t feel good, not achy or sickly but it’s like all my bones feel heavy.  Fatigue is a huge factor in the heat. The littlest thing can knock me out.  I become lethargic, uncomfortable and honestly depressed.  I’m forced to turn down invitations to do things because there outdoors. I end up cancelling plans because I don’t feel well by the end of the day and I don’t have that many offers to begin with.  I feel even more isolated and alone than I already am.  Summer really becomes a time I hibernate and don’t come out.

The other day when the temperature reached 82° in my apartment by the end of the day, I saw what the summer is going to be like.  I moved  slower than a snail because I couldn’t walk any faster. I couldn’t fathom trying to close them all the windows because I didn’t have the energy in my body. That and then jumping up to reach the AC, I just couldn’t do it. It was like someone dropped 100 pound weight on my back and told me to move. It got so hot in my apartment, so fast, it was very difficult for me to adjust. I was lucky my daughter got home on the earlier side of the evening, help me close the windows and turn the air-conditioner on.  Once the house cooled down, within an hour I felt so much better because my body temperature came back down. It was a rude awakening to what the summer will bring. It also was a rude awakening to the fears the summer brings.



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