2 November 2012

Day 2: Hyperventilation

This morning, I woke up hyperventilating.

This isn't unusual, but fortunately it isn't too often. Maybe 4 or 5 times a month? Maybe a bit more? I guess I could look on my Patients Like Me symptoms to see, but these days don't always get recorded.

I know I've been hyperventilating in my sleep because my lips will be numb. My breathing will be fast and shallow. And my dreams will have been brilliantly vivid, and often nightmarish. I don't know if the nightmares cause the hyperventilating, or the other way around. In this case, it was that most common of nightmares - someone in my family is being cruel to me and refusing to acknowledge that my illness is real.

Here's where I put in the disclaimer that no one in my family ever does this. I get a wonderful amount of support from everyone. But it's a fear, and apparently a real enough one that it reaches into my nightmares and haunts me. I hear media messages every day about benefit scroungers and people with fake illnesses, so it's easy to imagine a world where even my closest family, who have seen me at my worst, won't believe me either.

I buried my face in my nightshirt to control the hyperventilation, and then I asked my husband to get me a nice cup of tea. By the time I'd finished it, the nightmare was gone. My breathing was back to normal. And then I went back to bed. Because living with ME means that I spend most of my life here. Luckily, most of the time, there aren't nightmares.

(Day 2 of my daily blogging goal for November)

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