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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

6 Things I Want Improved by DBS

My handwriting, 1982 and now

When I first went to my present neurologist, I had a list of 6 things that I hoped DBS would fix. I showed him the following list, (in no particular order), and he said that DBS should fix 5 out of six. Can you guess which one he says it won't?
1. Take less pills
2. Stop dyskinesia
3. Get a good night's sleep
4. Improve handwriting
5. Stop toe curling
6. Drive better

1. Take less Pills
No-one likes to swallow lots of pills; besides ingesting unknown toxins, there are the side effects, which is a whole other topic. But without the pills, I could not move. Yet one of the most noticeable side effects is dyskinesia. (unwanted movements.) It seems that the very pills we have to take to move, can in some way also be a hindrance....
2. Stop Dyskinesia
People who know me, know that I can't stand or sit still. I am always twisting and turning. I have actually broken china in Dalgarnos. I pity the 3rd person in my row of seats travelling on the planes around Europe last year. The upside? I have lost weight; I get a good workout every day.
3. Get a good night's sleep.
See below
4. Improve handwriting
Sigh...and I used to be a primary teacher and teach kids to write! I no longer write cards or cheques, and if I write a shopping list, I'm bound to not know what-the-hell it was that I wanted when I get to the shops. Thank G-d we live in the computer age. And I just discovered the notepad ap on the iphone....
5. Toe curlingI .
think I mentioned this earlier.... usually happens early in the morning, occasionally, but not often during the day. My toes curl under, and I liken it to walking on your knuckles. Toes go one way, big toe the other. Ever tried to walk on your big toe? impossible. In the days when I got up at nights, I would often be 'stranded' at the other end of the house, where Yon couldn't hear me. I would call out for Molly, who usually sensed i was on the floor, and I'd curl up with her and wait for Yon to wake.
At other times, I would crawl back to bed...if Molly would stop licking my face and let me....
6. Drive Better
About 5 years ago, I notified Vic Roads that I had Parkinson's. This means that my GP must declare me fit to drive every 2 years. My driving is not as good as it was, I admit. I had a small accident last year where I swiped a mirror off a car travelling in the same direction. I was driving like I walk, and had wandered into the next lane....slightly. As a result, I drive MUCH less, and only to the local shops. My husband, my 2 boys and my friends are happy to drive me around, and I rarely take a passenger. I have a tram at the end of my street, and a train nearby. I was not very popular when I brought the Vic Roads forms to a meeting a few years ago, but I reckon when my GP says I can't drive, then its time to give up.
And the answer is... handwriting! I can live with that!